Clarks Green residents address council with concerns over park

By Meredith Colohan - For Abington Journal | October 27th, 2015 11:37 am

CLARKS GREEN – Residents attended the regular borough council meeting Oct. 21 on behalf of the group Friends Interested in the Neighborhood Environment (FINE) to report concerns to council regarding, “a serious problem on Clarks Street,” as stated in a letter from the group.

Martha McAndrew read the letter addressed to council and signed by members of FINE regarding the deteriorated condition of the park and the adjacent land behind the borough building.

“We [FINE] would like to see the park cleaned up and restored to its former dimensions and, ideally, even expand it,” she read. This included fixing the gazebo, benches, a broken trashcan, and to remove the scrap on the creek side of the storage building.

Since the area has been used as a dumping spot and storage for industrial materials, McAndrew said it is dangerous and she is concerned about children cutting themselves on sharp edges from junk and ripped up metal scraps.

“The whole place is a mess and I’m ashamed of it…All of us would like to see the council do something about it before the winter comes.”

Emil Pieski also attended the meeting and told council, “It would be nice if [council] could do something reasonable about it in a timely manner,” he said.

Council President David Rinaldi said, “We understand our problems and we are looking for solutions.”

“We want to rehab the park in the spring,” Chair of the Public Works Committee Lynne Earley said during her report. “We’ve discussed in our work sessions having Boy Scouts rehab the park benches and gazebo…and getting the grass growing again.”

Earley said that unfortunately right now the borough is preparing for winter, so trees will not be ordered until the spring, but she would follow-up with the DPW crew to get a date that someone from the crew will take the scrap to the junkyard.

In other news, council voted 6-0 to approve moving forward with installing an automatic door opener for the borough building’s side door. Rinaldi said Lackawanna County commissioners approved the borough’s Community Re-invest Grant from 2013 which will fund the automatic door opener.

“What we are looking at is $2600 for the ordering and installation of the automatic door opener for the side door of the borough building,” Rinaldi said. Council’s unanimous vote approved.

The grant money will also be used to reimburse costs for a defibrillator the borough wanted to purchase for the DWP crew. Rinaldi said council discussed at the work session whether the borough should purchase a new or refurbished defibrillator.

“The new ones were approximately twice the amount council included in the application,” Rinaldi said. Council agreed to wait to vote regarding the defibrillator until the November council meeting because council member and Health and Safety Committee Chair Joe Barrasse was absent from the council meeting.

Council also voted 6-0 to complete budgeted contributions of $1,000 to the Abington Community Library and $500 to the senior center.

By Meredith Colohan

For Abington Journal

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