Borough council adjusts downtown parking spaces

PAT FRIDGEN, Echo Pilot

Greencastle Borough Council approved removing a metered parking space on Center Square at the July 7 meeting. Charles Eckstine, Frank Webster Jr., Larry Faight, Wade Burkholder, Matt Smith, Craig Myers and James Farley agreed the first spot on the east, in front of State Farm Insurance, was more dangerous than it was valuable.

The matter had been discussed before and data was received from police chief John Phillippy as well. He reported the corner would be safer for pedestrians at the crosswalk without a parked vehicle there blocking visibility.

Myers called the space “a bad place to park, with all the truck traffic.” He also said it was not ideal for a handicap parking space, since such permit holders usually needed more room to maneuver.

Council also returned the under-utilized handicap space at 17 W. Baltimore St. to a traditional metered parking space.

COPS grant

Council approved a grant application submitted June 26. The Public Safety Committee had authorized borough staff to apply for a Department of Justice COPS grant of $125,000 by the deadline.

The federal grant would require local funds of $85,988 toward a fulltime officer for 2015, 2016 and 2017. Borough manager Susan Armstrong said the grant also required the borough to fund a fourth year of employment for any officer hired, which would be around $74,400 in 2018, including benefits.

The borough was seeking the financial help to replace Officer Greg Pritchard, who resigned to work in York, leaving a vacancy on the force. Armstrong added that if the application was approved, the Finance and Public Safety committees would examine the grant requirements before bringing the agreement to council for approval.

In other business, the council approved an ordinance regarding interest that could be charged residents with a lien on their property. Armstrong said it aligned the borough code with the Municipal Claims and Tax Liens Law and Maximum Interest Rate Law.

The resignation of Wayne Warren from the Shade Tree Commission was also accepted.