Juniata County Commissioners OK distribution of funds from Marcellus Shale

MIFFLINTOWN – The Juniata County Commissioners on Tuesday approved a distribution plan for $50,000 of 2012-2013 Marcellus Shale Open Space Funds.

Commissioner Robert Reynolds said a conclave of township representatives was held several weeks ago to present ideas for the distribution of funds. According to information about the funds provided by Chief Clerk Jim Bahorik, revenue may be used for planning, acquisition, development, rehabilitation and repair of outside spaces. Locations include greenways, recreational and natural areas, conservation and beautification projects, community or heritage parks and water resource management.

During the meeting, Commissioner Teresa O’Neal recommended modifying the originally agreed upon distribution plan to designate $5,000 or $10,000 of Open Space dollars to farmland preservation. She said the program is vital to open spaces and was voted the highest priority by constituents when a comprehensive plan was adopted in 2009. Her motions failed for lack of a second.

A recommendation was made by Reynolds to approve fund distribution, as discussed with the townships. The motion passed.

The approval covers $25,000 in Open Space funding, collected from both 2012 and 2013.

Also during the meeting, the board revisited action taken during an Oct. 8 meeting to approve the use of $8,855.94 of County Records Improvement Funds to purchase a new computer server for the treasurer’s office. The original action taken was based on an inaccurate invoice submitted by the county’s technology consultant.

On Tuesday, the board approved the use of funds to purchase one Dell PowerEdge T620 server and related peripherals at a total cost of $11,739 for the office. The recommendation was supported by Reynolds and Commissioner Jeffrey Zimmerman and opposed by O’Neal.

In other new business, the board:

Reviewed the October 2013 Summary of Collections Report – Fines and Costs, submitted by Magisterial District Judge Jacqueline T. Leister.

Approved requests for liquid fuel funds in the amount of $1,076.45 to Beale Township and $2,485.87 to Spruce Hill Township?

Ratified Juniata County Hazardous Materials check No. 1,177 in the amount of $108.61 to Wex Bank for fuel.

Approved tax exonerations for Fayette, Monroe and Tuscarora townships.

Approved the Report of Personnel Transactions for Non-State Employees for Heather J. Hockenberry, submitted by Penni Abram, children and youth director.

Approved checks Nos. 38,820 through 38,884 in the amount of $43,043.68.

After the regularly-scheduled board meeting, a public meeting was held to discuss the submission of the Human Services FY 2013-2014 plan to the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare. Human Services Director Allison Fisher led the meeting.

The Juniata County Commissioners meet at 10 a.m. each Tuesday in the Bousum Building in Mifflintown.