Muncy Addresses Plans For the Community
MUNCY – Several issues were addressed on Thursday evening, Feb. 4 at the Muncy Professional Business Association meeting. Ed Dannemann, newly elected mayor for Muncy, was the guest speaker. He announced that his biggest challenge so far is the regionalization of the police departments in the Muncy, Hughesville, Montgomery and Montoursville areas. He said he met with each of the mayors and a workshop meeting is scheduled in two weeks to discuss the idea further. “All borough councils have to approve the regionalization first,” said Dannemann. A preliminary meeting is scheduled for Feb. 17 to discuss the finances to support a consolidation of police departments. He is encouraging all of the councils to put the issue of regionalizing the police departments on their meeting agendas this month and next.
“It is a no-choice situation,” he said. Jersey Shore has already proven how it has benefitted from the cost savings. “It’s not going to be an easy thing.”
Dannemann stressed the importance for community members to get involved and attend the council meetings, “We are facing some major decisions this year and next year that will have a huge financial impact,” he said. “I want to set a mandate as mayor to assist the Business Association to improve the downtown business community,” he added.
Other concerns that were raised by members were about falling trees on adjacent properties that could be a potential hazard. “So far tree ordinances are only for shade trees,” said Linda Stein, “but an ordinance could be included for all trees.” There was discussion on affordability for some residents to remove old trees in the borough with so many unemployed in today’s economy.
Stein also requested to look at property maintenance codes and stand alone ordinances. Dave Smith from the Bodine House expressed that property owners need to maintain their properties to keep property values up, and he wanted to know how the maintenance codes are enforced.
Keri Krause suggested that the business association start a volunteer group to help neighbors clean up their properties. Dannemann favored the idea requesting a need for more volunteers and Anna Falat, chairperson asked the Mayor, “How can we work together to help you implement our ideas and yours?” He replied, “If we build it, they will come.” He suggested that incentives and financial advantages be given to new businesses to come here, and perhaps Representative Everett could come to the next meeting and help us. “Commitment from our legislators is important,” said Falat and asked members to come to a planning meeting next month to discuss ideas to present to Representative Everett with hopes of finding out what funds are available to the community.
Becky Fought from Main Street said there is a grant from DCNR for front facades that would include painting signs, adding awnings or lighting. She said the landlords are not using these funds to enhance their properties to increase business. Stein concluded that a strategic plan will need to be in place before presenting it to legislators. “Three of the four gateways to Muncy need attention,” said Stein and asked to address right of ways, private properties, and land use ordinances in the plan and to be sure to include Muncy Creek Township.
Other issues on the table were concerns regarding big trucks and trailers passing through Main Street. “This is a federally funded state road,” said Dannemann, “and we can’t prohibit traffic. Unfortunately the road was built for horses and buggies, not tractor trailers. Perhaps a weighing station can be placed somewhere,” he suggested. If a truck does hit a building then they will be liable for it. Another suggestion approached was to add signs or a recommended truck route.
“I will strive to mend fences with the Township and the Borough,” added the Mayor.
Future projects that are in the works by the business association for 2010 are a Corvette Show to be held September 18 with a juried art show, a web store for business members, a kids event for Easter at the Ritz Theater and a business expo in November.