Police calls down 28 percent in Elizabeth Twp.

By on August 21, 2013


MELINDA S. ELMER Record Express Correspondent

, Staff Writer

Representatives from the Pennsylvania State Police, the Historic Preservation Trust of Lancaster County, and the Elizabeth Township Vietnam Veterans Committee all made presentations to the Elizabeth Township Board of Supervisors on Monday.

Lieutenant Jeremy Richard from the Pennsylvania State Police Lancaster Station reported that incidents in the first half of the year decreased 28 percent compared to the same time period last year. The police responded to a total of 181 incidents in Elizabeth Township, including 26 reportable crashes, involving injury or requiring vehicle towing and 10 minor vehicle incidents. There were five Driving Under the Influence arrests. Additionally, there were four thefts, one burglary, three criminal mischief, three assaults, three suspicious persons and one suspicious vehicle incident.

Richard reminds drivers of the Steer Clear initiative. Drivers who approach emergency or disabled vehicles on the side of the highway are asked to slow down and move to the left lane to pass the incident.

For parents, the state police will provide a free child safety seat inspection to check for proper installation.

Richard reminds residents to always keep all house, vehicle and shed doors locked.

To contact the State Police Lancaster Station, call 299-7656. The tipline number is 888-292-1919. Always call 911 for an emergency.

Supervisor Rodney May, on behalf of the volunteer emergency services providers, asked Richard if there is a way that volunteers can be relieved of waiting at certain incident scenes until the police arrive. He related a motorcycle accident in which the cyclist refused medical treatment. The ambulance personnel had a form for the biker to fill out and then the ambulance returned to the station. The fire chief had to wait until the police arrived to clear the minor incident.

Lt. Richard expressed appreciation for the volunteers’ services.

"We need to maintain the safety of the scene. We rely on information that may have been provided to the chief by witnesses who may have left the scene. (The chiefs) are an important part of our investigation."

Another presentation, from Joe Patterson of the Historic Preservation Trust of Lancaster County, highlighted the mission and activities of the organization. The nonprofit group aims to encourage and facilitate historic preservation in the county through education and advocacy.

Over its almost 50 years of existence, the Trust has helped to preserve numerous old buildings, including its headquarters, the Andrew Ellicott house on North Prince Street in Lancaster. It was in this building that Ellicott, commissioned by President Thomas Jefferson, taught Meriwether Lewis surveying and navigation skills before his epic exploratory trip across the North American continent with William Clark.

The Trust has been gathering information about county buildings since 1966. Its information is being updated and volunteers will contact Elizabeth Township during this multi-year effort. Documented information will be sent to the Township.

Patterson noted that historic buildings have been demolished in some townships because officials did not realize their historic significance. A date of construction is not required on demolition permits in many municipalities. He asked that Elizabeth Township officials include that item on its permits.

Supervisor Jeff Burkholder noted that Elizabeth and Warwick townships and Lititz Borough have completed a joint survey of historic properties.

The Trust is reviving its Historic Marker Plaque program. Plaques are available for homes, barns and bridges. Visit www.hptrust.org and type "plaque" into the search box.

Interesting and educational programs are offered by the trust in addition to its preservation assistance programs. Information is available on the website.

A short presentation by Nevin May of the veterans committee informed supervisors that bronze plaques have been installed on the memorial wall in the Elizabeth Township Park. Six plaques honor the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard and Merchant Marines, and another remembers the Prisoners of War and those Missing in Action (POW-MIA).

Four plaques honoring township residents who gave their lives in service to the country are also on the wall. Those servicemen are Corporal Earl H. Edwards, Seaman First Class Charles Zartman and Staff Sergeant Carl F. Boehler who served during WWII, and Corporal Jay Dennis Webster, Jr., who served in Vietnam.

Committee members Nevin May, Dave Snavely, Terry Ober and Barry Whitcraft thank Esbenshade’s Greenhouses for providing flowers for the Memorial for the past three years.

In other business, May noted that sediment from the Speedwell Forge Lake bed will soon be removed. A temporary road will facilitate the work. The removed sediment will be replaced by ballast. Supervisor Barry Wiker suggested taking before and after photographs.

The supervisors voted on the Warwick Emergency Services Alliance Charter Agreement. Despite May’s comment, "I would like to see the new director hired before we sign it," supervisors did agree to the ordinance and signed it.

On another topic, May informed the board that a clear vinyl windscreen for the west side of the park pavilion would cost over $2,700. An electric motor to lower and raise the curtain would add almost $800 to the price.

Wiker wondered "how aesthetically pleasing" the curtains would be for the residential neighbors. May said they would be comparable to the brown curtains used in Ephrata Township’s park.

"You guys are really thinking about spending $3,000 to keep paper plates from blowing around?" commented Resident Dave Snavely. It’s an outdoor event!"

May said that one group that rented the pavilion had set some of the picnic tables on end to act as a wind block. When questioned, he said that was the only rental group that complained about the wind.

Resident Ben Sahd encouraged supervisors to continue to look for other options, perhaps more permanent and less costly.

Wiker said he appreciated the feedback from residents and thanked them for coming to the meeting.

In other business:

The Brickerville Fire Company responded to eight fire calls and nine fire police incidents in July. The ambulance report was not available.

The Zoning officer issued 17 permits in July for work valued at $538,120.

Road Superintendent Glenn Martin reported that the oil and chip road maintenance projects are completed for this season and the Fox Road project is "moving along quite well" and will soon be complete. The generator installation at the municipal building is also progressing. He will speak to some residents of Clay Manor about the need to remove obstructions from the storm water swale.

A resident of Hickory Drive asked who he needs to approach about barking dogs and shrubbery overtaking lawns in his development. Supervisors advised him to contact the Zoning Enforcement Office in both cases.

The next regular ET Planning Commission meeting will be Sept. 4 at 7 p.m.

The next meeting of the Elizabeth Township Supervisors will be Sept. 9 at 7 p.m. in the municipal building on South View Drive.

Community Events:

The monthly collection of recyclables will be Sept. 7 from 8 a.m. until noon at the municipal building on South View Drive.

The YMCA Duathlon will be held Sept. 7. Formerly the Triathlon, the swimming portion of the event had to be canceled because Speedwell Forge Lake has been drained for dam repairs.

The Lititz Library provides a free story hour for preschoolers and a caregiver on the second Friday of each month at 10 a.m. at the municipal building. No pre-registration is needed. Call the library at 626-2255 for information.

The Brickerville Fire Company offers Bingo every Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the fire hall at 10 Hopeland Road. A light supper is available.

The Elizabeth Township Park pavilion, accessed from Rt. 322 and Keener Road, is available to rent for $65 a day or a portion of the day. The restrooms are open for the season for anyone using the park. Call 626-4302 for more information.

Information about Elizabeth Township is available at http://www.co.lancaster.pa.us/elizabethtwp/site/default.asp.

More ELIZABETH TWP., page A4

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