Howe Twp. has become the hub of development in Perry County.
Supervisors gave conditional approval to the Newport Convenience Center plan at their September 2 meeting. Penn Holding Group’s development on Bretz Court just off Shortcut Road will include a convenience store, gas station and Dunkin ‘Donuts.
By approving the plan, a sidewalk requirement was lifted, however, a trail would have to be added later if an adjacent property installed one.
Upon approval, President Dale Beaver said he was somewhat concerned with the stacking pattern of cars going through drive-thru, but the plan was in accordance with township codes. He said he would prefer underground electrical wiring as well, but a precedent was set by allowing the neighboring Burger King to have its underground facilities connected to existing overhead wiring.
Jason Finnerty of the Perry County Planning Commission encouraged supervisors to participate in updating the county’s comprehensive plan. Finnerty said he wanted to work with municipalities in the county to help them meet development goals. He also noted that participation in the process would allow inter-municipal cooperation and a more regional approach to development by identifying the common interests of neighboring municipalities, which could increase the likelihood of projects receiving grants.
Townships can choose to participate at three different levels with a corresponding cost ranging from $ 600 to $ 2,400. Finnerty said now is the perfect time to update, on the heels of the latest census data.
Although no action was taken, supervisors expressed enthusiasm for the participation and said they would give more consideration in the upcoming budget negotiations. Supervisors have scheduled three budget meetings to be held in Buffalo Township. building at 1 p.m. on October 12, 19 and 21.
Beaver said he felt the overall plan was very important and Howe Twp. “Wanted to be on the train”. He thought Howe had a wonderful mix of commercial, residential and agricultural development. He hopes the recently completed sewer project will spur residential growth and that the township explores a downtown concept, possibly including a community 55 and over.
Finnerty said the county had a housing committee that the township would likely find beneficial on several fronts, including planning and ordinance development.
Frank Campbell provided an update on the sewer project. He said the system was practically ready to go, but delays with back-up generators for pumping stations prevented the system from fully functioning. The generators have been delivered and should be installed soon. He said residents are expected to receive letters in early October explaining they have 60 days to make connections.
He also indicated that customers will be invited to vote on one of two options regarding listening charges. The first option is a $ 1,500 fee with an estimated monthly bill of $ 113. The second option has an initial cost of $ 3,000, but an expected monthly bill of $ 85. The next Sewer Authority meeting will be at 5:30 p.m. on September 20 at Hope Eternal UMC. Residents are encouraged to attend and participate in the process.
The Zoning Hearing Commission is looking to fill a vacant seat; residents interested in serving must submit a letter of interest. A hearing on the changes to McDonald’s drive-thru is underway, but no date has been set.
Ron Crockett was hired for the road crew at $ 20 an hour. He will receive a signing bonus of $ 500 upon completion of training and 60 days of satisfactory service.
During a recent storm, the road crew was busy backfilling runoff water on township roads.
The township plans to do line painting later this month. Beaver reported that Messick delivered the necessary snow removal accessories for the township tractor.