Antrim hires attorney, OKs sewer service area map

PAT FRIDGEN

Antrim Township hired a Hagerstown, Md. attorney to handle potential litigation. The supervisors made the move after an executive session Nov. 9. Solicitor John Lisko said he was not licensed in Maryland, and the owner of State Line Motel was pursuing legal action rather than pay the $20,000 it owed for sewer service supplied by Antrim. The motel is south of State Line Road, just into Washington County. The sewer bill was delinquent back to 2008 and Antrim Township Municipal Authority on Oct. 25 recommended going after the business, with the possibility of shutting off service. The supervisors authorized Travis Poole to represent Antrim in court at $150 per hour, to a maximum of $1,500.

Sewer service area map

With no discussion, the board selected a sewer service area map. The matter had become controversial after ATMA designed a plan that followed topography. The Planning Commission and supervisor Sam Miller had preferred boundaries dictated by property lines, roads and natural barriers, such as waterways. At the previous meeting Fred Young III and Curtis Myers moved to accept the ATMA map. It went down when Rick Baer sided with Miller, and James Byers was absent. Last Tuesday the issue was revived after administrator Brad Graham said the township needed a map for the Act 537 plan. Baer and Miller moved for a new map with the clearly delineated boundaries. Byers concurred and the motion passed 3-2.

Trains in Antrim

Miller challenged Antrim to require Norfolk Southern to submit land development plans, including stormwater management. To date NS had only presented engineering drawings, said Graham, but nothing related to sewer or the land. Lisko said because the rail company was a public utility, the matter was complicated.  Miller also pressed for financial assistance making the Hykes Road/Williamsport Pike intersection safer, since NS was closing Milnor Road, which would result in heavier usage of Hykes.

Young replied that NS had given Antrim $300,000 for unrestricted use, and he didn't want staff or attorney time spent on the matter, since all the agreements had been signed.

Miller planned to contact governor-elect Tom Corbett, because Pennsylvania supported the pending intermodal facility. The commonwealth had pledged $45 million over three years to the project through outgoing Gov. Edward G. Rendell.

"They want all this development, they need the infrastructure to handle the traffic," Miller said. "They can give them (NS) $45 million but not a dime to us."

The board did agree to proceed with engineering on Hykes, including stormwater, so it would be ready to be reclaimed in 2012.

Citizen Robert Wertime asked the supervisors to think about the air pollution that would come with the expected 500 to 1,000 trucks to daily use the terminal.

"Nothing has been said about some reasonable form of air control management," he commented. "What are you going to do for the health of the citizens?"

Other business

Miller mentioned that an owner wanted part of his property annexed into Greencastle, since the other half was already in borough limits. Lisko promised to look in to the procedure, as he had never encountered that request before.

The board heard from Joel Fridgen, executive director of the Greencastle-Antrim Chamber of Commerce. He asked for half the funds to erect and take down the Christmas tree for Center Square. The chamber had always picked up the cost, but donations for Heritage Christmas from businesses were down significantly from the years before the recession.

"We can use some help," Fridgen said. "The residents from the borough and the township see and enjoy the tree."

The board unanimously approved donating $1,300, which matched what borough council had authorized.

Lt. Wade Lauer, Chambersburg barracks of Pennsylvania State Police, made his annual visit to update the board on activity in the township.  To date in 2010, police had handled 1,815 incidents, an average of 5.8 per day. There were 36 assaults, 35 burglaries, 89 false alarms, 47 criminal mischief, 75 domestic incidents, 35 driving under the influence and 126 thefts.

"Alcohol and/or drugs have something to do with almost every incident we handle," he said.