LT Supers Accept PennDOT’s Corridor I-80/Route 322 Upgrades

CLEARFIELD – Lawrence Township Supervisor Ed Brown presented a proposal at last night’s meeting from PennDOT for funding to improve intersections at Interstate 80 and Route 322 for anticipated traffic volume increases.

Brown explained PennDOT is providing the five-year upgrade program in preparation for a proposed landfill project that is still pending approval from the state Department of Environmental Protection.

Brown said PennDOT will install new LED signal lights, polls, electronics, cameras and other upgrades. If the landfill is approved, the maintenance will be the responsibility of the landfill company. If the landfill doesn’t get approved, the maintenance will revert to the township. Brown said the cost/benefit analysis shows the improvements will be a major cost savings for the township.

The project includes an adaptive traffic control system that allows PennDOT to monitor and control traffic flow. Brown said after five years the township has the option of disconnecting the adaptive control system.

The supervisors agreed to accept PennDOT’s improvement project.

Two Township residents voiced opposition to proposed zoning changes. The township’s Zoning Board is proposing changes in the zoning of multi-family dwellings. Residents said they live in single-family dwelling areas and don’t want to see zoning changed that’ll permit multi-family units in their neighborhoods.

Randy Powell, Zoning Board member, noted that zoning changes include increasing lot size requirement of multi-unit dwelling sites to 35,000 square feet, plus setback from roadways. He noted that it’ll be unlikely to find areas with that amount of space for a multi-family unit in the single-family dwelling areas.

Township Solicitor James Naddeo reviewed the process for Zoning Ordinance changes. He said the proposed changes must be presented to both the Township and Clearfield County Planning Commissions, followed by a public hearing at least 30 days after presenting to the planning commissions, before the supervisors can act on any proposed zoning ordinance changes.

Supervisors set a public hearing for proposed zoning ordinance changes for June 30 at 6 p.m. at the municipal building.

A Hyde resident was present to object to the $500 sewage tap fee charges for a trailer. After determining that the tap for the trailer was already in place, supervisors agreed to waive the tap-on fee.

Code /Zoning Enforcement Officer Debra Finkbeiner said she’d billed for the tap fee because she didn’t find a letter of agreement on file for the tap.

The supervisors agreed that no tap fee waivers will be permitted in future without a letter of agreement on file showing that the tap fee had been paid. Supervisor Chairman William Lawhead said they didn’t want to set a precedent with this particular waiver.

It was noted that the previous property owner had originally set up trailer pads for four trailers but wasn’t in compliance to be able to use all three pads. The current owner made changes to be in compliance and is able to use the fourth trailer pad.

Finkbeiner reported she’d attended a “blight” meeting, and has been sending letters to businesses and homeowners that need to “clean up.” She said there’s a lot of junk and litter in the community, and this can have a negative impact on the economic development of the area.

Finkbeiner asks residents and businesses to “look like a community that cares” and take action to clean up the community.

Police Chief Mark Brooks provided some clarifications on his monthly report to the supervisors. Brooks noted the increase of 82 criminal arrests compared to the same time last year isn’5 due to an increase in crime. He explained with the increase in manpower, the police force is able to clear more crimes, including traffic arrests.

Brown pointed out from Brooks’ report that, compared to last year’s reported seven traffic stops, this year there are 61 traffic stops to date. Brown said it shows that the department is operating more efficiently with better coverage of the township.

Brooks said the department just received confirmation for a grant of $2,500 for a “Buckle Up for Safety” program. He said Officer Julie Curry submitted the grant application. He explained the grant will provide funding for one month of extra traffic enforcement dedicated for seatbelt violations.

Secretary Barbara Shaffner reported the new police cruiser would be delivered Wednesday and will be sent out for detailing and equipment installation. The supervisors approved to pay for the cost of the vehicle totaling $30,500.

The supervisors also approved for Shaffner to apply for Clearfield County Aid that the township qualifies for, totaling $11,021. Shaffner said this funding us generally used to help pay for winter road maintenance materials.

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