Conewango to crack down on junked yards

When the snow disappears, and the leaves aren’t yet out, it is a great time to find hidden junk.

That’s the approach that officials with Conewango Township have taken as the township is taking action against nine properties in the township for violations under the nuisance ordinance.

Police Chief Jason Peters provided pictures of each property for review by the township supervisors during a Monday afternoon meeting.

He said the police department and supervisors are seeking to crack down on violations of the nuisance ordinance, explaining that two conditions of particular concern are habitat for vermin as well as attractiveness, and subsequently danger, to children. Peters added that the ordinance can find in violation both property owners and renters.

The ordinance, which specifically notes the storage and collection of garbage as a violation, comes with a fine in the range of not less than $300 to not more than $600. Peters said the fine can be assessed per day on a property where the issues are not resolved within a given time frame.

In other business, the supervisors gave their permission for the police department to obtain a new DVR to record video both from police interviews and township meetings. Peters said the current DVR falters frequently, recording low-quality video and sketchy audio.

While the new piece would fix those problems, Peters outlined how the equipment would also allow the department to have greater flexibility in installing cameras. One specific place he mentioned that a camera would be helpful would be at the intersection of Follett Run and Rt. 62. While Peters said the camera could not be used for traffic violations, he said it would be helpful when accidents occur at the intersection. Peters explained the technology would allow officers to pull up the video on smart phones at the site and have a clearer sense for what transpired.

He estimated the cost of the new equipment at approximately $2,000.

The supervisors expressed concern about the validity of interview results when the video and audio were poor and approved the expense. “You have to have it,” said Supervisor Ed Seebeck. “You got to go get it.”

Also, Road Foreman Randy Sleeman told the supervisors that, weather permitting, street sweeping should be completed in North Warren on Tuesday.