County Working on New Transportation Plan, Tower Lease

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Photos and story by Rick Hiduk

Wyoming County Commissioners (from left) Judy Mead, Tom Henry, and Ron Williams discussed a variety of topics in a relatively short meeting on July 1. Among them were a new transportation deal for senior citizens and the county’s lease with Shadowbrook Resort for the site on which an important communications tower is erected.

The regular meeting of the Wyoming County Commissioners convened on July 1, immediately after the monthly meeting of the county’s Prison Board.

Chief Clerk Bill Gaylord showed the commissioners a map developed by PennDOT District 4 of planned road construction in Wyoming County this year. Most of the work, he noted, involves bridges.

Commissioner Ron Williams announced that he has been working with the Luzerne County Area Agency on Aging and Trehab to facilitate the transfer of the county’s transportation contract from the Luzerne County Transportation Authority. A new deal has been struck between Lackawanna and Wyoming Counties that will also provide transportation for senior citizens in Susquehanna County.

There’s a couple of glitches to work out, but I’m sure that it will go smoothly,” Commissioner Tom Henry said of the plan. Two used vans on loan from Luzerne County will remain in service until new vans can be acquired.

Commissioner Judy Mead noted that seniors in Wyoming and Susquehanna Counties who need rides may call 866-278-9332 for more information.

Williams related that the county is getting quotes from contractors to remedy an “unsafe entrance” at the Human Services building in Eaton Township. A ramp is needed along with other repairs.

County Solicitor Jim Davis told the commissioners that his participation in a solicitors seminar at the CCAP headquarters in Harrisburg last Friday was well worth the trip. Among the topics he deemed most beneficial were discussions about HIPPA compliance and the new federal healthcare plan.

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On the topic of a communications tower on Osterhout Mountain, Davis (above) advised the board that a more concrete deal with Shadowbrook Inn & Resort was within reach. Davis and the commissioners have long been dissatisfied with the language of the lease concerning the site on which the tower is situated.

I’m pretty satisfied with it in its revised form,” Davis said of the pending deal. “I think we’re finally seeing some light at the end of the tunnel.”

It was noted that the controversial project to restore all of the windows in the courthouse was to begin on Tuesday morning but, as of midday, there was no sign of workers from Commonwealth Energy.

When it was determined in the spring that the sills and frames were badly deteriorated due to decades of exposure to the elements, Commonwealth Energy added $26,000 to a contract that already carried a quarter million dollar price tag. Williams rejected the amendment when it was discussed at a meeting in June, but Henry and Mead voted to move the project forward.

The commissioners expected to be busy on Wednesday afternoon, as their presence was expected at both a Trehab meeting at 4 pm and a Drug Court graduation ceremony at the Triton Hose Company at 5 pm.

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