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Bridge damage, speed reduction discussed

Published October 04. 2011 05:01PM

West Penn Township board of supervisors discussed speed reduction, bridge damage, a franchise agreement and fire and police department funding at Monday evening's meeting in the municipal building.

Residents on Archery Club Road requested a speed limit reduction to township supervisors. Because the area has homes too far apart to be considered urban, the road doesn't qualify for a reduction to 35 mph, which one homeowner on that road said at the meeting was reasonable. Instead, if the speed limit is changed from its current 55 mph limit, it will have to be lowered to 25 mph. The township's road crew leader, Jeremy Frable, said 10 to 12 speed limit signs are needed for the project, depending on where the reduction starts, and it will cost between $751 and $900. Nothing has been made official.

According to Frable, the recent heavy rains made the bridge on Berry Road irreparable. It will be at least a year before the old one is replaced and opened. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will be paying the costs of the construction.

The board approved a renewal franchise agreement with Blue Ridge Communications to extend cable service until 2016. This does not, however, prevent other companies from providing service in the township, just that Blue Ridge has a contract with the township itself.

As part of a fire relief fund, the West Penn Township Fire Department is due to receive its annual check, which was for $51,000, an increase of $21,000 from last year's. The money has restrictions on what it can be used for; only protective equipment (such as helmets, hoses, or any other equipment to protect a firefighter) can be bought.

Lastly, the board approved a $1,300 purchase for a generator in the police department. According to Police Chief Brian Johnson, the generator will be bought from M&S Hardware in Tamaqua with leftover police department funds from a $5,000 project to improve its garage that was never carried out.

The next board of supervisors meeting is at 7 pm. on Monday, Nov. 7, at the municipal building.

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