Franklin Township supervisors table large truck ordinance
Franklin Township supervisors tabled adopting an ordinance that would add to the restrictions of an ordinance that was adopted in December 2010. The 2010 ordinance made it unlawful for trucks over 21,000 pounds to travel on Indian Hill Road between Long Run Road and Fairyland Road and on Overlook Drive between Indian Hill Road and Fairyland Road.
Robin Cressley, township roadmaster, had suggested the ordinance be passed to keep larger trucks off township roads so they don't break up the shoulders. He said that the ordinance will force truck drivers to use state roads which are better able to handle the heavier trucks.
At the meeting held Thursday, Sept. 27, supervisors had planned to make stricter restrictions on the size of the trucks, but was warned off adopting it by Jared Hoffman, a resident of Franklin Township, and owner of All Points Towing and Recovery, Route 903, Jim Thorpe. Hoffman noted that the language in the new ordinance does not match the signage that the township is using. He suggested that the township change the ordinance to match the signage or the township will have to purchase a scale to be assured that trucks are unlawful.
The meeting was rescheduled from Sept. 18 when there was a high water emergency in the township due to heavy rain.
Hoffman also suggested that one of the police officers in the Franklin Township Police Department has singled him out to cite him when he drives home from work with his rig.
"I live here," said Hoffman. "I only drive the roads to my house and work and I feel this ordinance singles me out."
Rod Green, chairman, said that the ordinance is not meant to single him out, only to make the roads safer and to prevent breakage of shoulders.
Green said that he personally would speak to the police officer and see why he cited Hoffman.
Hoffman said that he was cited twice and when he went to the magistrate, the matter was dropped.
"I was embarrassed by getting pulled over in front of my neighbors," he said. Hoffman lives on Walnut Street and uses Indian Hill to road to respond to calls for his services.
"When I am on a call, I am in fact, an emergency vehicle," said Hoffman.
Green said that he would discuss the matter of the language change with the township's solicitor.
The original ordinance did note that emergency vehicles or trucks making local deliveries was exempt.
The board approved the subdivision plans of the estate of David J. Beltz and approved releasing a letter of credit in the amount of $16,607 regarding the Lighthouse Baptist Church because their parking lot project is completed.
The board approved a contract with the Lehighton Area School District for the Franklin Township Police Department to provide security for football games.
Supervisors approved allowing Franklin Township Special Fire Police to assist with traffic control at the Halloween Parade.
The board approved a motion to close the Phifer Ice Dam Park from Oct. 8 to Jan. 2 for the Franklin Festival of Lights.