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Montgomery Borough addresses paving roads and moves toward sewer construction

By Staff | May 15, 2012

MONTGOMERY – Soaring costs of asphalt and a reduction in state funds impose challenges for the Montgomery Borough Council’s annual street paving projects this year.

“I’ve got about $80,000 to play with and that won’t go very far with the price of asphalt tripling,” said Borough Manager John Lynch, during a monthly council meeting.

The $80,000 is the portion available from a state liquid fuels fund that the borough is obliged to spend on any paving projects. The borough has a little more than $100,000 in liquid fuels money but Lynch said he wants to reserve some of it for a new truck.

Lynch reported that inspections and road surveys were made to determine the priority of what roads need work done immediately. The roads targeted for paving include a block on Penn Street, from School to Lewis streets, and a portion of Miller Avenue.

He is working with an employee of the state Department of Transportation to measure the jobs for a bidding price.

In prior years, Lynch said the job of milling the top surface of a portion of Broad Street cost $90,000, while the next phase of work on the residential street to pave the surface cost $80,000.

Resident Becky Sanguedolce spoke during a public comment period about how she believed the borough made the right decision to replace the black coal anti-skid during winter months with a crushed brown sandstone pebble material. “It’s a brown pebble similar to what PennDOT uses,” Lynch said. Sangudeolce also applauded the Main Street Committee for its work on improving the streetscape by planting trees.

Borough Council is working with the West Branch Regional Authority towards the construction of a regional sewer treatment plant in Clinton Township. Council unanimously passed two proposed ordinances as requested by Eric Moore, executive director of the authority, which oversees the design, construction and operation of the $25 million plant, and has a timetable to be operational by 2014.

The first ordinance makes it a requirement for those in the borough to connect to the sewer system, Moore said. The second ordinance allows authority personnel to open up borough streets for maintenance and repair of the sewer lines, he added.

Moore said the first ordinance does not deviate from an existing one the borough has, but changes the language from “borough” to the authority name.

When complete, the sewer treatment plant will serve here, Muncy, and Clinton and Muncy Creek townships.

Council is expected to vote on the second readings of the ordinances as proposed and adopt them June 12.

Council listened to a presentation from a representative of the Susquehanna Greenway Partnership on tree plantings and creating a “gateway” into the community.

Council sees promise in the agency moving forward with the application of a state grant that would pay for the initial plantings of the shade trees. The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources grant requires a 25 percent match of volunteers and 25 percent cash match. A local natural gas industry employer indicated it would assist in the effort.

“The borough may also provide volunteers and equipment,” Lynch said.

Interest also may be spurred with volunteers in the community to reactivate the shade tree commission, he said.