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Surveys sent to Waynesboro-area residents

June 22, 2007|by JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Surveys have been sent to a random sampling of nearly 1,000 Waynesboro-area households asking questions about shopping preferences, use of the downtown, perceived police needs and possible expansion of parks.

The answers, municipal officials say, are a critical part of planning for the future. Responses will be woven into a joint comprehensive plan being developed to guide planning and zoning decisions in the Borough of Waynesboro and Washington Township, Pa., for 10 years.

"This is the time it counts, not after the fact when something happens in your neighborhood," Township Manager Mike Christopher said.

About 420 Borough of Waynesboro households were selected as survey recipients using a school district database, Borough Manager Lloyd Hamberger said. The computer spit out one address for every 10, he said.

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The same method resulted in 533 addresses in Washington Township, Christopher said.

"You're giving us an opinion for nine other people in the survey," Hamberger said.

Christopher asked that recipients complete the survey and return it in the self-addressed stamped envelope within 48 hours of opening it.

The township and borough planning commissions want to review preliminary results at their July 31 meeting.

Results are being compiled by contracted engineering firm Spotts, Stevens and McCoy of Reading, Pa.

The surveys will arrive in two parts. The first is four pages; the second is a supplemental survey that differs depending on whether the household is in the township or the borough.

"There are no names on them, no way to track them. ... It's their opportunity to make a difference in the future of both our communities," said Christopher, who is hoping for a return rate of better than 50 percent.

"It'd probably take no longer than 10 to 15 minutes to go through these and give your opinions of some of the critical needs facing us," Hamberger said.

"It's very important that, if a person receives a survey, they return it as soon as possible," said Jon Fleagle, chairman of the Waynesboro Planning Commission.

"Unless we know the views of the public, we have to go on our own judgment," said Bob Peiffer, chairman of the Washington Township Planning Commission.

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