GALETON — Concerns about the existing status of the borough police, as well as parking and roadway obstructions were among the topics discussed at the Galeton Borough Council regular session on Monday.
After Joe Peterenczik and Doug Droppa were both nominated and re-elected to their respective positions as president and vice president, during the reorganizational session, council heard from Terry Sinclair during public comment. Sinclair expressed concerns about the present structure of the borough police department; with no chief and only a part-time officer, Sinclair suggested the borough consider utilizing the Pennsylvania State Police, rather than rely on and staff a borough police department. Sinclair suggested the Galeton Police Department could function as a satellite office for PSP and that using PSP would save the tax-payers money.
“This town is cash-strapped for money, as are many municipalities,” Sinclair told the Potter-Leader Enterprise.
Council indicated they would consider Sinclair’s suggestion, however many expressed misgivings that PSP could respond in a timely manner to local issues.
Part-time Officer Will Yoder reported a total of 33 incidents in December. Council unanimously approved appointing Yoder to assistant chief and briefly discussed the three applications already submitted for the chief position, as well as two which are pending. Borough Secretary Annie Caracciolo said applications have come from York, Carlisle and Pittsburgh, many who are retired police officers from other departments. Peterenczik said council still has time to review applications and make a decision.
“I don’t think we have to jump into anything,” Peterenczik said.
Joe Cimino reported issues with parking at the community building on Sundays, as well as at the zoning area for a local business and expressed concerns about several obstructions on the roadways, making snow plowing difficult. Cimino also advised council the hydraulic pump in the street roller needs replaced, but cannot be rebuilt. Cimino said the replacement from the factory will cost approximately $5,000, which Caracciolo said liquid fuel funding can cover. After discussing the long-term benefits of the replacement part, council unanimously approved the purchase.
Under new business, a recent article in the Endeavor about the dam project was addressed, which one council member stated had a negative slant. Peterenczik dismissed the issue.
“That’s a case of mind over matter,” Peterenczik said. “I don’t mind because that paper doesn’t matter. The people want the dam (project completed). End of story.”
Other issues addressed during the January meeting included complaints about tractor trailers driving down Sherman Street at the intersection of SR-144 and Bridge Street and a property owner requesting variance to tear down an existing structure and rebuild on a lot questionably too small on which to build, per current codes.
The next borough council meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 12.