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Carbon officials okay logger's request with stipulations

Published April 13. 2012 05:01PM

Carbon County commissioners on Thursday approved a Weatherly man's request to allow a 40-ton logging truck to traverse a county-owned bridge with a weight limit of five tons.

But first, Thomas McBrien, of 207 Saw Mill Road, had to have engineers inspect the bridge and give him directions on how to reinforce it, and post a $100,000 cash bond.

McBrien owns property around the Lehigh Township bridge, on Leslie Run Road.

County engineer Ronald Tirpak of Carbon Engineering has inspected the bridge, and found that a maximum safe load capacity of the bridge for carrying a logging truck is 28 tons.

The truck load proposed by McBrien is 40 tons.

County Solicitor Daniel Miscavige said the bridge is the sole access to McBrien's land.

"At the conclusion of the operation, county engineers will again inspect the bridge to ensure that" it remains safe, he said.

"At that point, the cash bond would be released after he makes payment of any engineering fees the county incurs for the inspection of the bridge," Miscavige said.

Commissioner Tom Gerhard said McBrien "had a lot of storm damage," and that a Lancaster company would be doing the logging.

In other matters Thursday, commissioners authorized advertisement of a public notice for citizens' participation on the 2012 Community Development Block Grant program for entitlement and non-entitlement communities.

By law, entitlement communities are those with populations of 4,000 or more.

In the county, that includes the boroughs of Lehighton, Jim Thorpe and Palmerton and the townships of Franklin and Mahoning. Non-entitlement communities are those with smaller populations. Those boroughs and townships apply for portions of a county grant in which the commissioners decide on its use.

The action allows citizens to comment on projects that are planned with use of the federal funds. The projects planned under this year's programs are:

Lehighton: $74,762 to be used to repay a loan the borough obtained to improve the former Lehighton Junior High School building.

Jim Thorpe: $70,348 to be used to repay a PENNVEST loan the borough obtained for water and sewer line improvements on North Street.

Palmerton: $74,234 to be used for water and sewer line improvements in the 200 and 300 blocks of Lehigh Avenue. The borough will install a larger main with services to each house, replacing shared service lines.

Franklin Township: $67,162 to be used for a water line hookup on Main Road, from Route 209 to Wagner Street, including providing lateral line tie-ins and tapping fees for those residents.

Mahoning Township: $67,427 to be used to reconstruct and repave portions of Westdside Drive.

The county will also receive $192,545, which it will use for projects in four non-entitlement communities, including:

Weissport: $38,000 to reconstruct and repave Prospect Street.

Beaver Meadows: $30,000 for the demolition of a home that was destroyed by fire years ago; and $55,000 for a sewer replacement project on Tamaqua Street.

Bowmanstown: $37,945 for stormwater controls and continuation of the Lime Street extension project which has been ongoing for the past few years.

Banks Township: $31,600 to reconstruct and repave portions of Tamaqua Street.

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