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MELINDA S. ELMER Record Express Correspondent
, Staff Writer
Regional or State?
What would be the better police option for Elizabeth Township residents?
That was a topic of discussion Monday night when Brian Wiker, chairman of the Elizabeth Township Supervisors, noted reports that some other municipalities are considering joining the Northern Lancaster County Regional Police Department.
He took an informal poll of the meeting audience to see whether people are satisfied with current state police coverage for the township. A few people noted that they frequently see the police in the area. One person said she’s satisfied with coverage, but she has not needed to call the police. Slow response time at certain times of the day was a concern for a couple of people.
Wiker said that he’s interested in seeing what the cost for local coverage would be if there are more municipalities to share the expense. He also wondered aloud about possibly "doing a hybrid thing," with local coverage part of the day and state coverage other parts of the day. He emphasized that "this is just a vague idea; I’m not heading in that direction. I just wonder if it would be more cost effective."
Because of the upcoming changes to the Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) regulations, the Elizabeth Township supervisors discussed the possibility of stream bank improvements along the Hammer Creek with Dick Bergey, secretary of the Hammer Creek Watershed Association (HCWA).
Township leaders are interested in fulfilling their responsibility to "improve things going on downstream," Wiker said.
"We have to take care of storm water in the township," supervisor Rodney May said.
The goal of MS4 is to reduce the downstream impact of storm water runoff.
Bergey said that HCWA was created because of interest in the stream near Snavely’s Mill. The group was instrumental in stream bank restoration and stream bed rerouting of the portion of the Hammer Creek between Snavely’s Mill and Brunnerville Road in the early 2000s. That cost about $300,000. Nothing was done to the upper end of the creek at that time.
Although the group has not met for about four years and has lost its non-profit status because they couldn’t pay someone to submit the paperwork, Bergey recently spent a good bit of time on the phone with people and organizations that might be able to help with continued stream improvements.
Discussion produced the names of some individuals and businesses that might be able to contribute equipment and labor, as well as some possible governmental sources of funding. Bergey is willing to continue his research into other possible resources.
Wiker asked what Bergey might need from the township to get the association reorganized. Bergey said most members of the inactive group were in their mid-sixties when they last met, implying that membership is a real need. Bergey would like to get the word out to as many people as possible in order to recruit help with labor and equipment.
Wiker wondered, "Could we piggy-back this onto the park board at some point?"
Supervisor Jeff Burkholder asked, "Financially?"
Wiker said, "Financially and for staff." Discussion ended pending additional information from Bergey. The supervisors thanked him for his efforts.
More ELIZABETH TWP., page A11