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Yea or nay? Answers sought on library signage

September 15, 2011

Susan Glessner

PUNXSUTAWNEY — The director of the Punxsutawney Memorial Library returned to Punxsutawney Borough Council Monday, seeking a clarification on which sign council approved at the August meeting.

Coral Ellshoff, director of the Punxsutawney Memorial Library, spoke at the Aug. 8 council meeting, noting that there have been numerous complaints from the public about difficulty in locating the library’s entrance from the rear parking area and Union Street.

She said she left last month’s meeting without knowing what her next step was in purchasing the new signage, which would be paid for by the library board.

Last month, council approved a sign to be placed at the rear of the library building to face the parking lot, and one under a light in the breezeway with an arrow pointing to the entrance.

Ellshoff said the sign she is proposing is comparable to the existing signs on the Civic Center Complex, specifically signs for the Central Fire Department and Phil’s Burrow.

“It isn’t clear to me if council approved the sign that was chosen by the library board or not,” Ellshoff said, adding that she was again seeking council approval of a sign — designed by Sekula Sign — that the library’s Board of Trustees had already approved to be installed at the rear of the library building.

Ellshoff said the library board is not asking for the borough to pay for the project, just for its approval.

Council President Susan Glessner said one of the signs that council commissioned through R&M Signs is already being created.

The first sign will have the word “Library” on it and should be visible from the parking area. A second sign will be placed in the breezeway area between the main building and library building, with an arrow pointing to the library, Glessner said.

Ellshoff said the library board thinks the sign it approved for the rear of the building would be the most visible from Union Street.

Council member Roger Steele said that before council approves another sign, it should see how the other signs look.

Ellshoff also asked if the sign she proposed was tabled or not approved.

Steele said if the signs council is putting up aren’t doing the job, then it will revisit the sign proposed by the library board.

In other business:

• Council members attempted to mediate a dispute between Graffius Avenue property owners.

Michele Armstrong, of Graffius Avenue, asked council for assistance in what she considered to be a problem with a neighboring property owned by Richard Shaffer.

Armstrong said she has complained to Code Enforcement officer Mary McHenry for the last two years about numerous problems, including a refrigerator without padlocks, and the door removed, which is required by state law to prevent a child from climbing into it and suffocating. Other issues include garbage around the property and high weeds and grass, Armstrong said.

She said she has worked hard to improve her property and would like to see that this other property was also improved.

Council member Larry Chenoga said he has reviewed the issue with McHenry and plans to so do again this week.

For his part, Shaffer said he has never been contacted by the code enforcement officer, and that he wouldn’t permit the former tenants to bury a deceased pet on his property.

He said he would clean up the garbage and correct the refrigerator situation, noting that he was unaware of the state law regarding old refrigerators.

Glessner said Chenoga and McHenry would visit the property again and report to council on their findings.

Armstrong and Shaffer said they were both satisfied with that action for the time being.

• Steele said oil and chipping is scheduled to be done Monday. The process had been delayed due to the wet weather.

Also Monday, council:

• Approved fire contracts between the Punxsutawney Fire Department and Bell and Young Townships.

Solicitor Jay Lundy updated the renewal language.

• Approved EADS as the borough’s CDBG engineer for the coming year.

Borough Manager Ben White said EADS scored higher in an evaluation performed by Borough Secretary Mary Neal than another candidate.

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