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Greencastle council discusses plan for rundown properties

July 07, 2010|By DANA BROWN

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - Members of the Greencastle Borough Council agreed Tuesday to work toward clarifying their stance on derelict properties and what action they will take against those property owners.

The areas prompting the discussion includes portions of the south side of West Franklin Street and the east side of South Jefferson street.

"It's way past time to clean up these areas," councilman Harry Foley said. "We're going to have to go in full force."

While all council members agreed on the need to address the issue, the discussion centered around how to go about handling the situation.

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Mayor Robert Eberly suggested the matter be put before a committee to look at what can be done and then make recommendations to the council. The council should also seek legal council, he said.

"That's why we have committees," Eberly said. "That's where we should start so we can make an informed decision."

Referencing the Code Book of the Borough of Greencastle, councilman Craig Myers suggested the committee also research the code book for answers.

"Instead of trying to reinvent the wheel," Myers said, "maybe the wheel is in here. We need to look at our own black and white."

Councilman H. Duane Kinzer said he wanted to see the council settle on a consistent approach to dealing with rundown properties.

"I've seen former councils focus on a few properties and go around others," Kinzer said.

The council agreed to hold off on taking action until a committee could present recommendations.

"There's no question something has to be done," Eberly said.

In other council business, the council asked Borough manager Kenneth Womack to submit a request to Pennsylvania Department of Transportation requesting PennDOT hold off on starting curb work in the borough until after Old Home Week.

The project - which includes bringing the curbs into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act guidelines - was originally slated to begin this past spring, Womack said.

"The state is going to do what they please," Eberly said. "We can just request they put it off until after Old Home Week."

The Old Home Week triennial celebration is July 31 to Aug. 7.

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