Dillsburg Banner June 30, 2022

Zoning board OKs building plans for 94 townshomes

By Peggie Williams

Developers Dillsburg Land, LLC, made it over their first hurdle to put 94 townhomes on 16 acres at the intersection of Orebank and Siddonsburg roads when the Carroll Township Zoning Hearing Board approved their request to allow perpendicular parking on an access road in a townhome development.

The design for the project calls for most of the parking to be in small clusters of parking spaces perpendicular to the road and would necessitate cars backing out onto the road when leaving the spaces.

The developer’s attorney, Charlie Courtney, explained that this design would be more aesthetically appealing, require less pervious surface and provide more greenspace in the neighborhood. He added that the access road, which dissects the development and connects Orebank and Siddonsburg roads, would be a private road used only by the residents of the development and there would not be a lot of traffic.

The primary objection to the request was regarding the fact that there was no hardship shown to trigger the request. According to the Pennsylvania Municipal Planning Code, variances can only be given if a hardship is present.

Courtney argued that the unique shape of the property was the hardship, and this was the only possible design. That argument was countered by ZHB member Frank Setlak who stated it was the number of units they proposed that made the property not work under township requirements. A lesser number of units would mean less parking spaces needed and so the variance would not be needed. Courtney replied there was an economic reality for the developer. He argued that lowering the number of units would cause a design alteration and would make the plan less desirable overall, both within the development and what the general public would see from the outside.

ZHB member Rich Gensler stated that he did not want to push the developer in that direction, but ZHB alternate Deana Weaver stated they should not be held hostage under the threat of a worse plan. She also said she felt the “hardship on the property was self-induced because no where was it required that there be 94 units”.

Resident Jim Richwine pointed out that the economic hardship of the developer was not considered a hardship under the MPC.

 

For more information see the June 30. 2022 edition.

 

Dillsburg Banner June 23, 2022

Photo by Curt Werner

Cynthia Carolyn Black at her preliminary arraignment before Magisterial District Judge Richard Thomas in Dillsburg Monday morning, July 6, 2020.

Former Warrington Township woman sentenced for hiding grandmother’s body in freezer, collecting her social security

By Marie Chomicki

A former Warrington Township woman was sentenced on Friday, June 17 for hiding her grandmother’s body in a freezer for more than 15 years and collecting her social security.

Cynthia Carolyn Black, 63, now of York Haven, was sentenced by Judge Gregory M. Snyder to 11 and a half to 23 months for receiving stolen property and 11 and a half to 23 months for theft by deception - false impression and two years’ probation for abuse of a corpse, according to the criminal docket. Black is to report to York County Prison on July 15.

The gruesome discovery of the grandmother’s remains was made Feb. 7, 2019 by a couple looking to buy the property at 40 Kralltown Rd., which sits on about two and one half acres.

Police said Tracey McCorkel and Ann Chaney were inspecting an outbuilding when they opened a white chest freezer and found human skeletal remains inside black trash bags. Pennsylvania State Police York said the call came in at 5:03 p.m. “The caller related they could see human bones,” police said. A blanket was placed over all the bags, the document stated.

An autopsy performed at Lehigh Valley Hospital on Monday, Feb. 11, 2019 confirmed the body was significantly decomposed and possibly that of a female. No trauma was noted, York County Corner Pam Gay said at the time.

On April 4, 2019, DNA samples taken from Black, and a femur bone of the deceased confirmed Black was the biological granddaughter. Black was taken into custody by Pennsylvania State Police on May 27, 2020 and arraigned before District Judge Richard T. Thomas on $50,000 unsecured bail.

According to the arrest affidavit, Black told police she and her husband, Glenn Black, previously lived in Ardmore, Pa. with her maternal grandmother, Glenora Reckord Delahay, for whom Cynthia was providing medical care. The grandmother moved in with the couple between 2000 and 2001.

 

For more information see the June 23. 2022 edition.

Carroll Township officials will get their first chance to comment on a proposed townhome development, above, during a zoning hearing on Monday, June 27 at 6 p.m.

Township officials delve into proposed townhome project

By Peggie Williams

Carroll Township officials will get their first chance to comment on a proposed townhome development during a zoning hearing on Monday, June 27 at 6 p.m.

The proposed development consists of 94 units and is located at the intersection of Ore Bank and Siddonsburg roads, the land behind the Dillsburg Shopping Center. The developer of record is Dillsburg Land, LLC with a Newport Beach, CA, address.

The first leg of the development’s journey to final approval begins with the Carroll Township Zoning Hearing Board, where they will request a variance to the standard parking requirement for such a development. The Carroll Township ordinance states parking on access drives in townhome developments must be parallel to the street, but the developer is requesting perpendicular parking.

The zoning hearing board is a “quasi-judicial” board that rules on requests for variances to the zoning ordinance. It also hears appeals from the decisions of the zoning officer. Just as a judge interprets criminal and cooperate law, the three-man ZHB interprets the township zoning ordinance to form its decisions.

However, the Pennsylvania Municipal Planning Code defines the conditions under which a variance can be granted. The developer must prove there are unique physical circumstances or physical conditions peculiar to the particular property other than those caused by the zoning ordinance. They must prove there is no possibility that the property can be developed in strict conformity with the provisions of the zoning ordinance and that such unnecessary hardship has not been created by the developer and that the variance will not alter the essential character of the neighborhood or district in which the property is located, nor substantially or permanently impair the appropriate use or development of adjacent property, nor be detrimental to the public welfare. And finally, they must prove that the variance is the minimum that can be done to fix the issue. If they fail to prove any one of these conditions, the zoning hearing board has the right to deny the request.

For more information see the June 23. 2022 edition.

 

 

 

Dillsburg Banner June 16, 2022

Photo by Curt Werner

Jason Bytof holds his daughter Abby, 3, as she pets the nose of "Always Be Miki" during the Diamond Creek Farm open house held June 4.

Diamond Creek Farm event sparkled with food, fun

By Mary Lou Bytof

Diamond Creek Farms in Wellsville is a real gem. Many of the approximately 600 visitors who attended the horse breeding facility’s fifth Open House event on Saturday, June 4 would likely agree.

On the sunny yet mild summer day from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., visitors walked along the verdant fields and browsed through the impressively large, state-of-the-art barns that house the stallions and mares that are bred for harness racing.

In addition to presenting information about the horses, horse breeding and harness racing, the staff at the farm provided food, games and entertainment. Visitors parked in a field and many chose to ride to the barns on golf carts. Others decided to “hoof it” down a dirt lane to the barns, entertainment and dining tent and a recreation area.

To get an overall view of the farm, many visitors chose to go on a hay ride. As the ride continued past pastures and buildings, colorful banners featuring the farm’s famous horses decorated the path.

At 1 p.m., before the stallions were set free to exercise in the pastures, spectators gathered outside the barn to watch the Stallion Showcase. The staff paraded the prize-winning race horses and announced some fun facts about each horse and his accomplishments.

Even before the showcase, Stallion Manager Bud Emmons escorted the world’s fastest Standardbred, Always B Miki, to the front of the barn to greet the visitors and pose for pictures. In 2016, Miki broke the Standardbred world record when he ran a mile in one minute and 46 seconds. That was in 2016 when he earned the title of Horse of the Year. His winnings totaled $1,487,292 for that year.

 

For more information see the June 16. 2022 edition.

 

Dillsburg Banner June 9, 2022

Photo by Curt Werner

Firemen set up ladders to attack flames shooting out from the roof of this house on Ridge Road, Warrington Township Saturday, June 4.

Family loses house to fire, gains outpouring of support

By Mary Lou Bytof

An early morning blaze destroyed a two-story house on Ridge Road in Warrington Township on Saturday, June 4.

Two residents and several pets were asleep in the home when the lady of the house awakened to a squeaking sound warning her that her oxygen machine had shut off.

“When I got up to turn off the machine, I took off my nosepiece and began to smell smoke,” home owner Tammey Conway recalled on Monday.

Conway said she woke her husband, Lloyd Conway, and told him that something was burning. When Lloyd looked outside at the back of the home, he saw smoke billowing out from under the outdoor air-conditioning unit. At that time, flames had climbed up to the roof of the house.

“Lloyd came upstairs and yelled, ‘Get out, get out!’” Tammey said. When the couple met outside the home, they both took out their cell phones and called 911, Tammey said. Their dog had joined them outside; however, it took them until Sunday morning to locate their two cats, who became frightened and hid somewhere near the property, they said. Neighbors watched for the frightened felines after the Conways left their property and stayed at their daughter Sherry Conway’s home in Wellsville. On Monday, daughter Laura Conway wrote on social media, “We found both kitties very scared and smoky, but safe.” The Wellsville Fire Department was the first of many local firefighters on the scene. However, by the time the volunteer company arrived at the home, flames were shooting out from the roof and smoke billowed high into the wooded area behind the home. A large oak tree situated closest to the house showed visible damage with singed leaves and burn marks on its trunk. Burnt leaves and debris scattered throughout the back yard.

For more information see the June 9. 2022 edition.

Residents get answers to Fager’s warehouse concerns

By Peggie Williams

Warehouses and roads dominated the discussions during a four-hour marathon June 6 supervisors workshop meeting in Carroll Township.

A representative for R.H. Fager’s was present to answer questions and address concerns about the warehouse under construction at the intersection of Spring Lane Road and Old Gettysburg Pike. He explained that there were now plans to plant more trees to attempt to hide the concrete wall of the facility from the view of residents in South Mountain Estates.

Most would be evergreens but there would be some red buds and dogwoods for spring color and red maples for fall color. He also proposed planting them higher up the berm, which would cover more building and leave a grassy area that would extend the appearance of neighbors’ backyards, although this would need approval from the township. Fager’s would be responsible for mowing and maintaining that area,

The proposed color for the warehouse wall is a neutral gray, but he would pass on the suggestion that a more “nature- pleasing” color was preferred by residents. There would be no entrances on the wall facing South Mountain Estates except emergency exits, and there were no plans for security cameras, but Fager’s was open to installing them if residents were concerned about crime in that area. Residents expressed concern about the increase in truck traffic at the intersection that is already a problem and asked how tractor trailers would be able to make the tight turns there. Rob Taylor, who was a member of the Carroll Township planning commission when the Northern York County Comprehensive Plan was adopted in 2011, asked what happened to idea for a traffic circle proposed at that intersection.

 

For more information see the June 9. 2022 edition.

 

 

Dillsburg Banner June 2, 2022

Photo by Curt Werner

Carroll Township police clears the way on S. Baltimore Street for the Memorial Day Parade on Monday sponsored by the Dillsburg VFW.

Despite high heat, residents turn out to honor the fallen

By Mary Lou Bytof

On Monday, Memorial Day, area residents braved the 90-plus degree heat, lined the parade route and assembled at the Dillsburg Cemetery to honor the veterans who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.

At 11 a.m., Boy Scouts with the colors led the annual parade sponsored by the VFW South Mountain Post 6671 in Dillsburg followed by motorcyclists from the local VFW Riders of Post 6771 and the American Legion Riders of Post 26. Members of the Boy Scout Troop 38 and Cub Scout Pack 39 marched behind.

 

For more information see the June 2. 2022 edition.

 

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Dillsburg Banner May 25, 2022

Photo by Curt Werner

The NHS Prom Court:  Pictured in front from left are Brynn Crouse, Alyssa MacKay, Emma Little, Brooke Silfee and Lizzie Kilpatrick, Queen; in back are Garrett Weber, King; Phillip Sanders, Josh Sipe, Andrew Gingrich and Layne Hose.

NHS Prom

By Mary Lou Bytof

Approximately 400 Northern High School seniors, juniors and their dates attended the high school prom on Saturday, May 21.

Whether they arrived in an air-conditioned limo or car, the teens briefly posed for photos and hustled out of the heat and into the Red Lion Hotel in Harrisburg to enjoy the food and music.

Tiffany King, junior class advisor and faculty prom coordinator, said she was glad the prom was held indoors due to the humidity and 95-degree heat of the day. Last year's prom was held outdoors due to COVID.

Highlights of the event included dancing to music supplied by a dee-jay, sampling foods from an hors d'oeuvres buffet, and posing with dates and friends in a photo booth. King said the students requested the food bar this year since many of them go out to dinner before the prom.

Garrett Weber and Lizzie Kilpatrick were crowned King and Queen. The Prom Court included Brynn Crouse, Alyssa MacKay, Emma Little, Brooke Silfee, Phillip Sanders, Josh Sipe, Andrew Gingrich and Layne Hose.

Students already are expressing interest in planning for next year's prom, the advisor said.

For more information see the May 26. 2022 edition.

 

Local event honors Dillsburg heroes of war

Parade to start at Dillsburg VFW at 11 a.m., and proceed to Dillsburg Cemetery

Memorial Day - The national holiday that we observe Monday was established to honor those who have died in American wars.

Originally called Decoration Day, it began during the American Civil War, when citizens would place flowers on the graves of those who had been killed in battle. Dillsburg has sacrificed many of its sons during the conflicts our nation has endured.

Our community's Memorial Day remembrance is scheduled to begin with a parade from the VFW parking lot at 11 a.m., then proceed to the Dillsburg Cemetery for a solemn ceremony.

Former Dillsburg resident George Stauffer's story is representative of those who gave their lives in defense of their country and community. From the moment that Germany torpedoed and sank the Lusitania in May of 1915, causing the loss of many American lives, it seemed inevitable that the United States would enter the World War raging in Europe.

The declaration of war against the Axis powers was made by Congress on April 6, 1917. More than 100 young men from Dillsburg were drafted to serve in what became known as the Great War, fighting in France and Belgium.

 

For more information see the May 26. 2022 edition.

 

 

Dillsburg Banner May 19, 2022

 

Mother charged with murder of her baby

By Marie Chomicki

An East Berlin mother faces multiple charges, including murder, of her two-month-old baby who died while sleeping in a pop-up camper in 6-degree weather last January in Washington Township.

Pennsylvania State Police – York Station said they responded to a call of a cardiac arrest at 179 Bentz Mill Road on Jan. 27 at around 5:10 a.m. When they arrived on the scene, the baby girl was deceased. EMTs on the scene said she was dressed in only a soiled diaper.

The cause of death was documented as hypothermia and methamphetamine toxicity by the forensic pathologist, adding that a component of carbon monoxide poisoning cannot be ruled out, according to the affidavit of probable cause.

The mother, Ashley Nicole Decker, 25, of East Berlin, told police she spent the evening in the pop-up camper with her baby and her boyfriend Robert McCachren, 28, of Dover. Decker told police she and the baby had been living in the camper three or four days a week since the child was born on Nov. 30, 2021.

 

For more information see the May 19. 2022 edition.

Photo by Curt Werner

A woman is pulled to safety from the Yellow Breeches Creek by the water rescue team from Monroe Township Fire Department last Sunday afternoon in the 1200-block of Creek Road. The victim’s kayak overturned and she fell into the water and became trapped when her life vest caught on debris.

 

 

Woman rescued from rushing water

By Mary Lou Bytof

A woman attempting to navigate a kayak around a submerged tree and other debris in the rushing current in the Yellow Breeches Creek on Sunday fell into the water and became trapped when her life vest caught on the debris.

As her empty kayak continued to travel downstream, a nearby fisherman and other kayakers from her group who had made it past the barrier rushed to her aid to keep her head above the water level.

Those assisting the woman had managed to pull her onto branches that jutted out of the water before the water rescue team from the Monroe Township Fire Department arrived, Fire Chief David Heckert said.

“A water rescue is a low-frequency, high-risk event,” the chief said. In this situation, the victim was caught in what he called a strainer. Branches, logs and other debris lets water pass, he explained, but it will pin a person or boat as the current rushes along the creek.

The water was moving fairly quickly in the area of the accident, Heckert said. Some of the variables that created the swift current were the depth of the water and the width of the creek at the site.

For more information see the May 19. 2022 edition.

 

 

 

Dillsburg Banner May 12, 2022

 

Photo by Curt Werner

David Kelley points to Lisa Arnold of Lewisberry, first place winner of the hat contest, at the third annual Battle of the Roses Derby Day.

 

Battle of the Roses Derby Day

Greystone Brew House of Dillsburg held their third annual Battle of the Roses Derby Day Saturday, May 7 in their new facility, the Range End Pavilion to benefit Bethesda Mission and Veterans Outreach of Pennsylvania.

 

For more information see the May 12. 2022 edition.

 

Council approves fire rescue fiscal support

By Mary Lou Bytof

After some heated discussion concerning how other nearby townships will join in supporting Northern York County Fire Rescue, the Dillsburg Borough Council voted unanimously to financially support the company in the amount equal to Dillsburg’s share, 19%, based on the company’s current proposed budget.

“People need to understand that the borough has been supporting them [the fire company] from day one,” Borough Manager Karen Deibler said.

As the discussion began to heat up, Council President Matt Fawber said that local municipalities have been discussing how they would pay their fair share of the fire company’s services for nearly six years. He said that not all municipalities have been on board to agree to pay their fair share of expenses, as determined by the fire company.

“It’s getting ridiculous,” Fawber said of the extended bantering among the municipalities. “We need to get this thing moving.” Dillsburg has been at the forefront in showing its support for the fire company, he added.

The fire company determined the percentages owned by each municipality via a cost-sharing formula based on statistics such as population and number of service calls. The value most likely will change as the population changes.

For more information see the May 12. 2022 edition.

 

Bridge detour drawing near

By Carolyn Hoffman

The Grantham Road bridge near the intersection with AlPat Drive on the border of Monaghan and Upper Allen townships is currently slated to be replaced in 2025 at a cost of $3.1 million. The plan calls for the bridge to be closed for about eight months.

Monaghan officials and residents got a first look at the preliminary design plans during the May 9 supervisors’ meeting. A detour of 3.8 miles for passenger vehicles is planned, and for trucks the detour will be 6.5 miles. Maps of the current plan and the detour routes are available on Monaghan’s website and in the township office. Those with comments and concerns about the bridge replacement or the planned detours are asked report them to the township before May 31.

The detour for cars would follow Siddonsburg Road to North York Road and then onto West Lisburn Road. The truck detour has separate routes for northbound and southbound trucks, with southbound traffic planned for West Lisburn to Williams Grove Road and then onto York Road. Northbound trucks will follow West Lisburn to Rt. 15 and then onto Siddonsburg Road and North York Road

The new bridge is federally funded. It will follow the same approach alignment as the current bridge but will be four feet wider on each side. The construction is expected to begin in spring 2025 and be finished in fall 2025.

For more information see the May 12. 2022 edition.

 

Tax increase to fund fire company

By Peggie Williams

A fire tax of .590 mils was established in Carroll Township during the May 9 supervisors meeting.

The vote was 4 to 1 with Supervisor Bruce Trostle voting against it but gave no reason why. Supervisor Kelley Moyer-Schwille voted for the fire tax but stated earlier in the discussion that she has had “a heavy heart from the beginning” in regard to the tax raise although she understood why they had to do it.

The owner of a property assessed at $250,000 should see their taxes go up an additional $148 or $12 a month. Supervisor Kelly Wall pointed out that this was less than most people spend on coffee and donuts and about the same amount as a Netflix membership, but she said it was necessary to keep the Northern York County Fire Rescue from going bankrupt within the next three years.

The new tax is expected to generate $300,000 a year which will be put in a separate account. The Carroll Township’s share of the fire company funding will be taken from that account. Any extra would stay in the account to be used for future fire company needs; it would not revert to the township’s general fund.

For more information see the May 12. 2022 edition.

 

 

Photo by Curt Werner

A group of young men from the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property gather on the sidewalk outside Northern High School at dismissal time on Monday to show their support for the Northern York School Board.

 

Group organizes impromptu " Thank you"" to school board

By Mary Lou Bytof

A group of approximately 12 young men from the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP) gathered on the sidewalk outside Northern High School at dismissal time on Monday to show their appreciation for the Northern York School Board. Several weeks ago the board voted to deny the establishment of an After School Satan Club in the Northern Elementary School.

Some of the men carried signs, two played the bagpipes, and three beat drums as the buses rolled out of the school driveway, according to group spokesman and TSP director of student activities John Ritchie.

According to Ritchie, students on the buses hollered and clapped in a show of support as they rode past the men who were singing patriotic songs such as “God Bless America” and waving their signs.

Bus drivers and passing motorists honked their horns in support of the group's “thank you” message to the school board.

“We've gotten a lot of support from the Dillsburg community,” Ritchie said. “Most of the locals have common sense. Yet, there is a darkness out there, and I think we need to be on the offensive to combat it,” he said Wednesday.

Satanic groups around the country are trying to use the freedoms that Americans enjoy to promote their agenda, Richie said. They have a very deep-seated hatred for Christianity, and they want to be in every school, he added.

 

For more information see the May 5. 2022 edition.

 

Warehouse complex looms

By Peggie Williams

Crossroads Commercial Delopment presented Carroll Township supervisors with their first look at a concept plan for a warehouse complex to straddle the Carroll Township - Franklin Township border during their May 2 workshop meeting.

The plan would encompass over several acres stretching east to west from Route 194 to Route 15 and north to south from the Northern York School District Bostic Stadium to Glenwood Road.

According to the developer's representative, the plan is not for one giant warehouse, but several smaller ones that would add up to more than 2 million square feet, provide 200 jobs and bring in $6 million to $7 million in taxes to the townships.

There would be a connector road built from Route 15 to Route 194 near the junction with Route 74, and a traffic signal would be installed at that junctioon.

 

For more information see the May 5. 2022 edition.

 

District addresses, clarifies release time for religious instruction

Northern doesn't transport students to Bible club

By Mary Lou Bytof

As the Dillsburg community continues to discuss the action of the Northern York School Board to deny the establishment of an After School Satan Club (ASSC) at Northern Elementary last week, two major pieces of misinformation need to be clarified.

First, the Northern York County School District does not provide the transportation for the elementary school students who attend the Bible Adventure Club, as erroneously reported in last week’s paper.

Also, as of Wednesday, April 27, the school district has not been notified of any legal action to be taken against it, according to Northern Superintendent Steven Kirkpatrick.

While he was relaxing and enjoying the beautiful weather on Sunday, Kirkpatrick said a message appeared on his phone. It included an article from the national bureau of Fox News stating that The Satanic Temple (TST) is filing a lawsuit “on constitutional grounds” against Northern Elementary School.

“We are not aware of any sort of legal action [by the TST] at this time,” he reiterated.

This week, Pastor J. Robert Douglass of the Dillsburg Brethren in Christ Church issued the following statement regarding the transportation of students to the Bible club:

“As the pastor of the church who hosts that program, I would like to clarify (and would like it publicly understood) that the district does not transport any students to my church building.

We provide the space. Joy-El is the sponsoring ministry. They provide transportation. If/when they do not have their bus or bus driver available, they cancel that week.

As I believe this is an important aspect of the argument this group [TST] is trying to make, I would like the public to be clear on these facts,” he concluded.

Kirkpatrick emphatically stated that the Bible Adventure Club is not and has never been sponsored by the school. The school district does distribute the registration forms to parents who may choose to opt-in to have their children attend the instruction.

 

For more information see the April 28. 2022 edition.

 

Samantha Groome, center, seated beside her supportive friends, was the first to speak before the board at Tuesday's meeting to defend her request for the After School Satan Club.

School board shuts down After School Satan Club 8-1

By Mary Lou Bytof

In the crowded Northern High School auditorium Tuesday evening, the Northern York County School Board voted 8-1 to deny the request of a Carroll Township resident to hold an “After School Satan Club” at the Northern Elementary School. After the roll call vote, a loud applause erupted from the audience.

On Wednesday morning, Board Member Thomas Welch explained why he voted in favor of the club.

“I believe that after seeing everything, it was the right decision to give them a chance,” he said. “I don’t think this is about beliefs. I believe this is about fair access to public property,” he added.

The meeting began with the board members and visitors standing to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. During the pledge, a number of visitors shouted the words “under God” to emphasize the reason for their attendance – to protest the name of the club by proclaiming their faith.

Even before the doors of the school opened for the meeting, attendees gathered outside the doors and offered prayers for the board, the community, and an orderly meeting. The mood was somber as individuals prayed. They gave thanks for the fact that people of many denominations could gather in one place to express their common beliefs in the Word of God.

“If God is with us, who can be against us?” William Hunter of Wellsville exclaimed in a booming voice. Hunter said he found out about the meeting and the upcoming vote on Easter Sunday. A member of his church had posted it on Facebook.

Before the Board opened the floor for public comment, Board President Ken Sechrist gave background information on the request for the club.

According to Sechrist, Samantha Groome, a mother of a Northern Elementary student, approached Superintendent Steven Kirkpatrick a few months about starting the club. He denied her request. Later, Groome asked to put the request on the agenda for the Board to consider. Her request first appeared on the board’s committee meeting agenda on Tuesday, April 12. It stated “Request of Ms. Samantha Groome to establish an after-hours club to be known as the “After School Satan Club at Northern York Elementary School.”

A week later, the agenda for the April 19 school board meeting read as follows: “Approve the request of Samantha Groome to establish an “After School Satan Club” at the Northern Elementary School on a probationary basis.” As he instructed during the mask mandate debates, the board president explained that only residents of the school district were permitted to speak. He also encouraged them to be civil.

The first speaker was Groome. She approached the microphone and said that she had called The Satanic Temple (TST) to sponsor her club. According to district personnel, members of the Salem, Massachusetts organization had attended the April 12 meeting to offer support; however, because they were from outside the district.

 

For more information see the April 21. 2022 edition.

 

 

After School Satan Club seeks approval from school board

By Mary Lou Bytof

The Northern Elementary School in Dillsburg may become the first school in Pennsylvania and the fifth school in the entire country to permit an “After School Satan Club” to operate inside the building.

According to the agenda of tonight’s (April 19) school board meeting, the board will vote on whether or not to approve a request of Samantha Groome to establish the above-mentioned club at the Northern Elementary School on a probationary basis.

If approved, the club will follow the program designed by The Satanic Temple which is based in Salem, Massachusetts. News of the district being approached by the outside organization spread throughout the Dillsburg community and surrounding areas last week when the world-wide Christian community was observing Holy Week in anticipation of Easter Sunday.

Pastors of local churches are aware of the request and some have confirmed that they will be attending tonight’s school board meeting. In anticipation of a large crowd, the meeting will be held in the Northern High School auditorium at 7 p.m.

 

 

 

Print Edition Highlights - March 10, 2022

Agricultural lands drive new zoning debate

By Carolyn Hoffman

About 30 residents attended the March 2 public hearing in Warrington Township to learn about the proposed zoning ordinance update.

Few of those attending testified about the proposal, though two landowners complained that the changes mean fewer houses on their tracts and so affects the money to be made from developing their land. Two other residents spoke about the need to preserve agricultural lands.

Final action and expected approval of the zoning changes is planned for the March 16 supervisors’ session.

The hearing began with township officials and the consultant giving an overview of the changes and why they were needed. The proposed change that has generated the most interest over the 18-month project is a change to the township’s agricultural areas that will now focus on agricultural preservation.

Instead of creating one contiguous zone for agriculture, the new plan creates what is termed an “agricultural overlay zone.” To those farms that are currently in the conservation zone, the new regulations would apply if their parcel is larger than 30 acres. If currently in the rural agricultural zone, the regulations apply to parcels of 12 acres or larger and includes 25% or more of prime agricultural soils.

Many of the other changes are updates to regulations for new technologies, such as wireless communications and solar farms, but also include regulations for short-term rentals, such as vacation rental websites like Airbnb and marijuana dispensaries, both of which didn’t exist when the last zoning ordinance was approved.

One landowner speaking against the proposed ordinance said that the value a property currently worth $1.3 million would be cut in half, because, under the current rules, 40 homes could be built on a 50-acre tract. Under the proposed regulations, if a tract is of prime agricultural soils, only 25% can be developed for houses.

Landowners who question if the county’s soils map is correct do have the option of hiring a soil scientist to better delineate the prime soil boundaries. The landowners favoring the zoning changes spoke about the need to preserve agricultural land and the hope that the change will give them the added points needed to qualify for the county’s preservation purchases. Under the current regulations, Warrington farmers are at a disadvantage over farms in the southern end of the county because those townships have passed favorable zoning regulations. In some cases, Warrington farmers lose out by only a few points, and the proposed changes should remedy that.

The public hearing was for comments and testimonies only, and questions were not allowed at this session.

For more information see the March 10. 2022 edition.

Barn on the move to preserve local farm heritage

By Peggie Williams

The Williams Grove Historical Steam Engine Association has undertaken the task of relocating an historic 1850s barn from its location in Newberry township to their 90-acre property just north of Dillsburg.

The barn will be used in their mission to preserve steam-powered equipment and to educate the public about the history of farming.

A group of volunteers have spent the last few weeks preparing the barn for the tear-down process. Lead by volunteer George Wentz, diagrams were drawn and each piece of the barn was labeled so it could be put back in its proper place during the rebuild.

The first load of material was sent to Williams Grove on March 5, where it will in storage until the barn can be reconstructed. It’s hoped that the foundation and first floor will be finished in time to have an old-fashioned barn raising to erect the frame in July of 2023.

The barn was brought to the attention of WGHSEA by RSR Reality and Congressman Scott Perry. It was sitting on a piece of property in Newbery Township near the junction of Red Mill Road and Yocumtown Road, just east of Interstate 83. Landmark Homes recently received approval to construct 450 apartment units on the property and the barn was going to be demolished. Instead, it was donated to the WGHSEA.

Barney Kimmel, spokesperson for WGHSEA, said that once reconstructed, the barn will be “used as a barn,” for educational programs and storage of their farm equipment. While it might be used for some special events, that’s not the focus at this time, according to Kimmel.

For more information see the March 10. 2022 edition.

 

 

Print Edition Highlights - March 3, 2022

Supervisors will push to bring residents online faster

By Carolyn Hoffman

Washington Township supervisors plan to meet with Comcast for some answers to residents' service issues.

They want to discuss the terms of the franchise contract. Many residents are still unable to get high-speed internet, with one resident saying, “We're in a black hole.” The lack of internet is especially difficult for school students and home businesses.

Supervisors at the February 22 meeting also heard from solicitor Sharon Myers about possible ways to zone areas of the township to regulate possible solar or wind farms. In addition, regulations for the use of funds from the American Rescue Plan have been finalized and are more inclusive than the initial guidance. A resident from Kralltown Road asked about the process to buy property and construct a new business building on land in the rural residential zone that already has an existing business. He will need a special exception to the zoning ordinance and perhaps a land development plan.

As the calendar flips closer to spring, supervisors set April 27, 28 and 30 for the spring clean-up. On April 27 and 28 the times are 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., and on April 30 the cleanup will run from 8 a.m. to noon.

Northern York County Fire and Rescue reported a total of 58 calls in January, of which two were in Washington. Wellsville Fire Co. responded to 42 calls and had six calls in the township. NorthEast Adams had 41 calls, with four in Washington. Bills for the month were $19,622.56 from the general fund and $6515.30 from the state liquid fuels fund.

The next regularly scheduled meeting of the supervisors will be March 21 at 7 p.m. in the township offices in Kralltown..

For more information see the March 3. 2022 edition.

Print Edition Highlights - February 24, 2022

Take your vows somewhere else, residents urge

By Carolyn Hoffman

Several Monaghan residents along South Wharf Road showed up at the supervisors’ meeting to voice opposition to a possible wedding venue at a neighboring property.

Residents received a letter from that property owner asking for support for the venture. Monaghan Township told residents at the February 14 session that a barn being built on the property was to be used solely for agricultural purposes. A letter was sent to the landowner February 7 indicating that no other use was approved in the zone, which is limited to rural and residential uses.

As of this meeting no response had yet been received, nor have any proposals for the barn’s use other than for agriculture yet reached township officials.

Paul Cornell, the township’s temporary consultant, reported his initial look at the township’s fiscal condition and organization showed all was in “very good shape and is sound.” He said it was unusual for a municipality of Monaghan’s size and “not what I expected,” calling it a very pleasant surprise.

Supervisors called his reaction a “testament to 20 plus years of Linda Altland’s [the recently retired secretary-treasurer] work. Cornell, a former township manager, said he had a very good base to work from. He is expected to work in Monaghan until April. Monaghan’s share of the American Rescue Plan funding is $139,000 in each of two years, for a total of $278,000. Rules for the funding are now finalized and loosened over the original regulations.

Monaghan supervisors have discussed how to use the funds but has not yet decided.

At this session, they appeared to look favorably on using the funds to replace the Fisher Run bridge. The cost estimate from last year for the project was $315,000, and the engineer said that would probably not be far off today’s estimate. Even if supervisors agree to move forward with the bridge project using the ARPA funds, the timeline for the bridge’s replacement is about a year, as designs, permits and approvals take many months to obtain.

A meeting with Cumberland and York counties and Upper Allen and Monaghan townships was planned for the day after this meeting to discuss the decommissioning of the Bishop Road bridge. The bridge is owned by Cumberland County, which has the final say about closing it, but York County and Monaghan have concerns about emergency egress from the northern part of the township, as well as the need for room for a turnaround when snow plowing. Reports from that meeting are expected at the March meeting.

For more information see the February 24. 2022 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - February 17, 2022

Police have new contract, but supervisors disagreed on the process

By Peggie Wiliams

Carroll Township Police were given a new five-year contract with a 4% increase in pay, a change in the salary step increases to keep long term officers pay in line with new hires and a large hike in the number of accrued sick and vacation days a retiring officer could “cash in.”

But the vote was not unanimous, with supervisor Bruce Trostle voting against the motion. He stated that he was not against supporting the police or the contract, but rather he could not support the way the negotiation and discussion process was carried out among supervisors.

“I just don’t like the way this went down,” he said. His first objection was that the terms of the contract were discussed during two public meetings, the workshop meeting on February 7 and the regular meeting on February 14. Trostle asked that the discussion be moved to executive session, which is permitted by law and customary for the township when negotiating contracts.

But Chairman Tim Kelly said he thought there was no reason not to keep it all in the open.

Supervisor Kelley Moyer-Schwille also protested that she did not care to be “put on the spot” at the public meeting and did not feel as free to say things as she would have in executive session. She asked that they table the contract so she could better understand the figures and ask more questions on the details.

She stressed she supported the police but resented being put in a position where it looked like she was either for or against the police rather than just examining the contract terms.

Trostle also questioned the speed of the process. He explained that in the “past history of negotiations,” the committee brought each change to the board to discuss, not just a finished contract. Wall and Kelly said they had meet with or had discussions with the officers as many as seven times over the four weeks they had been on the negotiating team. Trostle said they should have conferred with the entire board on each change before proceeding to the next. “Then we’d know where we were headed,” he said.

Kelly pointed out that the other three supervisors had received the new contract a week prior to the workshop meeting where it was first discussed, and they now have had another week to think about it.

Trostle also questioned what happened to the contract he and former supervisor Dominic DePalma had negotiated. They were the members of the township’s police committee until the end of last year and had a “handshake agreement” on a new contract that included a 3% raise and none of the other cost increases. But changes to the board of supervisors in January, including a new member and Kelly chosen as chairman of the board, brought changes to the committee assignments. The chairman traditionally assigns committees, and Kelly made himself and Wall the new police committee.

For more information see the February 17. 2022 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - February 10, 2022

Residents bag a trash credit

A credit is on the way for Warrington Township customers of Penn Waste whose trash wasn’t picked up during the recent snowstorm .

Four-bag customers will get a credit of $6.49, and eight-bag customers will get $7.80, reflected on their next bill.

Supervisor John Dockery objected to the plan, not because of the credit, but because he felt the board overstepped its authority and should have imposed the penalty specified in the trash contract. He indicated any settlement or credit should be between Penn Waste and individual customers. He felt the board was creating a precedent by negotiating a settlement for Penn Waste’s customers.

The rest of the board disagreed, noting that individual residents didn’t have the bargaining power of the township. The solicitor also stated that courts would likely not sustain a penalty as the trash was collected the next week and no residents were harmed.

During the recent snowstorm, the combination of poor weather and lack of staffing by the trash hauler resulted in half of one Warrington run being missed that week. The trash was removed the following week.

In other action at the February 2 meeting, a special meeting was set for February 15, the last allowable date, to approve a budget change adding $45,000 to the donation for the Wellsville Fire Co. The total donation for 2022 will be $80,000. Representatives from the fire company and Warrington are planning to meet on February 23 to foster better communications between the two, as well as to determine the appropriate amount for future township donations.

The name of the township’s new Agriculture Preservation, Planning and Zoning Committee was changed to Agriculture Preservation and Planning because zoning issues are separate from supervisors’ board.

For more information see the February 10. 2022 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - February 3, 2022

Lit cigarette sparks fire at local landmark

A Boiling Springs landmark received extensive fire damage late Saturday evening as firefighters struggled for 10 minutes to defrost a nearby fire hydrant.

Local residents recognize the impressive, white structure at the end of Children’s Lake. It was once an old mill dating back to 1785 and is now an apartment building with seven units.

All residents and pets safely escaped the burning building; however, they cannot return to the extensively-damaged structure.

According to PA State Police, the fire marshal determined the cause of the fire to be accidental. The fire started on the fourth-floor balcony and spread to the attic and roof. A lit cigarette ignited the fire. When firefighters arrived on the scene, the deck in the rear of the building was engulfed and the fire had spread to the roof. The major damage is on the fourth floor, and the attic area is completely burned out, Citizens Fire Company #1 Chief Tim Yingst said. He also reported significant water damage on the third floor and some structural damage on the first and second floors.

For more information see the February 3. 2022 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - January 27, 2022

Beer-brewing group wins five medals

Four members of the Sons of Alchemy, who also are pro brewers, owned the Pennsylvania Farm Show Beer Competition this weekend. Steve Anderson, of Big Bottom Brewery, took third place in fruit, herb and vegetable Beers with It’s Gourd for You Imperial Pumpkin Ale.

Brooks Hemauer, of Hemauer Brewing Company, took third place in kettle sours with Kosmic Boom No.1 and second place in pale ales with Americanization.

Brad Moyer and Brian Keeney, of Mount Gretna Craft Brewery, took first place in mixed fermentation sours with Sailing the Seas of Consequence and first place in fruit, herb, and vegetable beers with Hemp Hemp Hooray. In all, 120 twenty beers were entered in more than 16 categories. Hemauer said this was his first professional competition. He has won multiple “homebrew” awards prior to the brewery opening.

For more information see the January 27. 2022 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - January 20, 2022

Cuts in line: Customers await their turn at popular, no-appointment barber shop

By Marylou Bytof

In more clement weather, motorists traveling past The Village Shops on U. S. Route 15 may notice men sitting outside one of the newest businesses in the strip, waiting to take advantage of the senior discount offered on weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon at Uncle B’s Barber Shop.

“The seniors usually show up first thing in the morning,” said Lauren Bauer-Allen, who owns the business along with her husband, barber Celby Allen. As they wait for their $10 haircut, the seniors may socialize outside in fairer weather, or they may wait inside and watch sports on the shop’s big screen television.

The shop is open on Monday and Wednesday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday hours are from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. It is closed on Tuesday.

The Dillsburg shop has been open since July 2020, Bauer-Allen said. It is the second shop owned by the couple. The first Uncle B’s opened almost six years ago in Etters.

“We took a risk when we decided to open another shop during COVID,” Bauer said. During the lock-down, she said they painted, decorated, and transformed the shop from what was formerly a dog-grooming business to a full-service, four-chair barber shop. “It was really scary, but we made it work,” she said of the uncertainty of the times. The couple accomplished this while also caring for a toddler and a newborn.

For more information see the January 20. 2022 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - January 13, 2022

Council, police discuss snow removal policy

By Marylou Bytof

On Tuesday evening, Carroll Township Police Chief Thomas Wargo addressed the Dillsburg Borough Council concerning the enforcement of the current snow removal ordinance.

Although he said he has no problem with the ordinance, the chief told the council that he would prefer the borough post signs that clearly indicate the borough’s snow removal protocol.

“Does the law require signage?” he asked the council. “I want to make sure we are doing this the right way.”

Borough Council President Matt Fawber told the chief that two past borough solicitors have examined the current ordinance which was adopted in 2014 and have approved the implementation of the ordinance.

“We are doing what we are told we have to do,” Fawber said of the solicitors’ reviews and comments.

“Yes, we can’t have a sign for every single ordinance,” Councilwoman Holly Kelley added. Borough Manager Karen Deibler added that the borough once installed snow removal signs on Second Street, which was a problem area in regard to compliance with the ordinance. However, it did not make a difference, she added.

For more information see the January 13. 2022 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - January 6, 2022

After midnight fall, Mr. Pickle doesn’t relish recovery

By Marylou Bytof

At the New Year’s Eve Pickle Drop last Friday, Mr. Pickle sustained multiple injuries when he fell while being lowered into the barrel. EMTs immediately rushed him to the hospital where he remains in serious condition. jj

Most of the people attending this year’s Pickle Drop were unaware of the mishap because their attention turned to the fireworks display. As in past years, the show was put on by Bixler Pyrotechnics of Ashland.

“This year’s fireworks were especially beautiful,” Dillsburg Borough Manager Karen Deibler said. Because of the heavy fog, the colors from the explosions permeated the sky in pinks and light blues, she said.

“People were very appreciative that we held the event,” Deibler said. Because of the increase in COVID-19 cases throughout the country, many municipalities had decided to either cancel or modify their celebrations.

Days before the Pickle Drop, the borough closed all indoor activities due to the surge in COVID infections. Although a number of food trucks were slated to attend the festivities, only one truck selling caramel corn actually came to the celebration. Several other food truck businesses canceled on Thursday, citing a weather forecast of a 60 percent chance of rain.

 

For more information see the January 6. 2022 edition.

 

Shakeups, ill will mar meeting

By Peggie Williams

A contentious and sometimes nasty Carroll Township reorganization meeting brought many changes to the township.

Tim Kelly was unanimously elected chairman of the board, replacing Bruce Trostle. Newly elected supervisor Dave Bush did not vote on this item, because he was late arriving to the meeting. He was there in time to vote the next vote.

Kelly Wall was elected vice-chairman, replacing Kelley Moyer-Schwille. This vote was split, with Schwille and Trostle against it; Wall, Kelly and Bush for it.

Duane Stone was not reappointed as township solicitor with Wall, Kelly and Bush voting against the reappointment.

There was an attempt made to appoint Michael Pykosh to the position, but Schwille and Trostle both said they would not be comfortable voting for someone they knew nothing about and asked for time to interview the candidate. They also suggested it would be appropriate to seek other candidates.

Kelly pointed out that the township should not be without a solicitor for any length of time, but he was fine waiting until next week to make the appointment in order for Schwille and Trostle to have time to speak to the candidate.

As Stone left the meeting, Trostle thanked him for his service and said, “They can take your job, but they can’t take away what you’ve done for us.”

Mark McCurdy was appointed as the single member of the of the vacancy board with Schwille and Trostle voting no. He is replacing Norm Shelley, Jr., who has held the position for many years. Trostle argued that three applications had been received for the position and interviews should be done, but he was overruled. The vacancy board is a committee of one that appoints supervisors should there ever be a situation where a seat on the board becomes empty leaving an unfilled term, and the sitting supervisors cannot agree on a replacement to fill the seat until the next election.

Some things were left unchanged, but not without controversy.

For more information see the January 6. 2022 edition.

 

 

Print Edition Highlights - December, 2021

Pickle Drop an All-Outdoor Event, thanks to COVID-19

By Marylou Bytof

After a year hiatus, the annual Pickle Drop is back in downtown Dillsburg this New Year’s Eve— minus the previously planned indoor events.

On Friday evening right before midnight, Mr. Pickle will begin his descent from the boom of a firetruck in the Ace Hardware parking lot and drop into his barrel to herald the year 2022. A fireworks display will follow immediately.

“We are shutting down all indoor activities due to COVID,” Dillsburg Borough Manager Karen Deibler said on Tuesday. The outdoor festivities will begin at 9 p.m. along South Baltimore Street. A D.J. will provide musical entertainment and some food trucks will be available, she said.

Due to reports of an increase of COVID-19 in the area, borough officials decided that it was wise to close all planned indoor events, Deibler said. BINGO and games for the children are canceled. The Bloodmobile also will not be at the event.

Dillsburg celebrated the first Pickle Drop on New Year’s Eve 1993. Sponsored by the Downtown Business Association, the event featured food stands operated by local organizations, games, raffles and souvenirs. The Heinz company of Pittsburgh donated some pickle-related items, according to a Banner article.

The highlight of the event was when the fire company lowered the 6-foot-long, papier mache Mr. Pickle into his barrel to welcome the year 1994. There were no fireworks that first year.

More than 1,000 people crowded onto Baltimore Street to participate in what had become a local tradition. Many people left the dance at the firehall to rush into the street to witness the novel event.

According to the Dillsburg Banner, the organizers heavily promoted the event on local TV and radio programs in addition to the newspapers. The article also stated that the Dillsburg Pickle Drop was mentioned on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

 

For more information see the December 31. 2021 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - June 17, 2021

Dillsburg paramedic earns merit award for saving boy

By Carolyn Kimmel

Rex Carmichael, a paramedic with Penn State Health Life Lion Emergency Services, earned top honors recently for doing what he considers normal—but was others see as heroic.

The Monroe township man rescued a child who was caught in the roots of a tree on the Yellow Breeches creek in May 2020 after the family’s kayak capsized in the swollen waters of the Yellow Breeches Creek.

Carmichael worked for more than an hour in the icy water—the only emergency responder who was able to reach the boy because of the swift current—using a reciprocating saw, or Sawzall, to cut pieces off the kayak and saw through tree roots to finally free the boy’s foot. And he did all this while he was off duty.

For more information see the June 17. 2021 edition.

 

MONAGHAN TOWNSHIP

Celebration of life facility back on the table

By Carolyn Hoffman

Monaghan Township supervisors voted to “go back to the beginning” and restart the process that would allow a funeral home and celebration of life facility along Andersontown Road on property owned by Supervisor Rob Lauver.

That means the proposed ordinance that would have allowed the facility is now moot, but the original plan for a zoning text amendment is active once again. Supervisors did not detail what the next steps would be concerning this move. As before, Lauver is permitted to vote on the measure but is, on the advice of counsel, prohibited from participating in discussions for it. Supervisor Ron Allen also asked the solicitor to look into legalities concerning a possible conflict of interest with Chair Vicki Aycock about her votes on subdivision plans while she was employed by Penoni Associates, which is also the township’s engineering firm. When Aycock worked for Penoni, the township solicitor had her put a letter in her personnel file about the possible conflict of interest. She also abstained from voting on bills submitted to the township by Penoni until she left their employ.

For more information see the June 17. 2021 edition.

 

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP

Zoning changes could trigger development pressure

By Carolyn Hoffman

Franklin Township’s engineer Phil Brath no sooner finished explaining that Carroll Township’s expected zoning changes would “increase development pressure” in Franklin when two representatives of Crossroads Commercial Development asked supervisors to consider changing their own zoning so the firm could build a 1-million-plus-square-foot distribution center on the King’s Kids Kamp site.

The two did not expect or receive an answer at the June 9 supervisors’ session, nor did the supervisors provide one or further discuss the request during the meeting. The firm presented no plans, but suggested that if supervisors changed their zoning at the northern end of the township, where it adjoins Carroll, they would build the warehouse off Glenwood Road. They said they would “relocate” King’s Kids Kamp but provided no details. Carroll Township is nearing the final stages of changing some of its zoning around the Rtes. 15 and 74 corridors to allow for more industrial and commercial uses. Their township planning commission has already approved the changes. The York County Planning Commission was expected to act this week. A public hearing at Carroll is currently planned for July 19.

For more information see the June 17. 2021 edition.

 

FRANKLINTOWN

First responder contract changes hands

By Peggie Williams

First responder contract changes hands by Peggie Franklintown Borough will be using Wellsville Fire Company as its primary emergency first responder beginning July 1.

WFC representative Brian Rogers attended the June borough council meeting to fine tune the details of the new contract between the two entities.

The agreement establishes a yearly fee of $8,000 payable in quarterly increments to the fire company and a yet-to-be- determined portion of their workman’s compensation insurance to be paid to the Wellsville Borough, which holds the policy. In return, the fire company will provide firefighting and emergency services for the borough as well as some non-emergency services and use of their fire police for occasional community events such as trick-or-treat.

Until July 1, the borough will continue to be covered by Northern York County Fire Rescue as it has been in the past.

During an interview after the meeting, Council President Tony Vasco said the council had become disillusioned with NYCFR.

For more information see the June 17. 2021 edition.k

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Print Edition Highlights - June 10, 2021

A salute to Northern High School graduates in the June 10, 2021 edition

 

For more information see the June 10. 2021 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - June 3, 2021

‘Guardians of Freedom’ remember, celebrate Memorial Day

By Mary Lou Bytof

Many spectators gathered along Baltimore Street and at the Dillsburg Cemetery late Monday morning to pay tribute to those who lost their lives while serving their country.

Sponsored by the VFW South Mountain Post 6771, the event featured a parade down Baltimore Street in Dillsburg, a wreath-laying ceremony at the firehouse, and a ceremony at the cemetery that included a keynote speech from the Congressman Scott Perry, musical selections performed by the Northern High School Band and the placement of a wreath and flowers at the memorial.

“Let’s remember and honor [those] who gave their lives for the cause of freedom,” Perry, a retired Army brigadier general, said as he addressed the large crowd that gathered around the memorial. “I hope you are enjoying your freedoms that they paid for in these conflicts,” he told the crowd that sunny day. They fought for freedom from oppression, from communism and from economic and cultural depravity, he added.

For more information see the June 3. 2021 edition.

 

Time to make hay: Farmers Fair returns

By Peggie Williams

One by one, things are getting back to normal as the population gets vaccinated and the risk of COVID-19 recedes. Now the residents of Dillsburg can add one more thing to that list.

The 106th Dillsburg Farmers Fair is a go for October 11-16, 2021. “We’re back,” proclaimed Paul Tucker, vice-president of the Dillsburg Community Fair Association, “and it will be pretty normal.” Last year’s event was canceled due to the pandemic—the first time that had happened since WWII.

This year, the only COVID-19-related changes will be the elimination of the cider, bologna and milk samples generally available at the community hall. “But the ice cream isn’t going anywhere,” said Tucker.

According to Tucker, everything else is proceeding as usual, and everything the community has come to love should be back, including parades, food stands, entertainment, markets and contests from picking a queen to the biggest pumpkin to the best chocolate chip cookies.

For more information see the June 3, 2021 edition.

 

Former Dillsburg Attorney opens branch office in the borough

By Mary Lou Bytof

Niles Benn, Esquire, who worked as a partner in two Dillsburg law firms from 1973 through 1990, has returned to the borough to practice law. Recently, the York attorney opened a branch of the Benn Law Firm at 124 W. Harrisburg St.

A Philadelphia native, Benn recalled his first trip to Dillsburg. In the early 1970s he accompanied his wife to her job interview with then Northern Superintendent George Tjiattis at his office on the second floor of the Shambaugh building. The South Baltimore street structure also housed a five and dime store on the ground floor.

“This was a rude awakening,” Benn said of his first impression of the town in which he would eventually practice law. A graduate of the Philadelphia school system, he recalled how the city’s school administration building covered nearly an entire block. He said he wasn’t prepared for what he saw: a school district operating out of such limited office space.

Nevertheless, his wife, Joyce, was offered and accepted a position to teach students in what most recently was the old administration building on South Baltimore Street. Upon hiring her, Dr. Tjiattis looked at Benn and predicted that one day he, too, would return to work in Dillsburg, the attorney recalled.

Unknown to the young Dickinson Law School student, one of his classmates and closest friends, William D. Schrack, had ties to the borough. After graduation, Schrack asked Benn to come to Dillsburg to practice law with him and Jan Wiley, who retired from practicing law this year. Benn said their office was located at 19 N. Baltimore St. diagonally across from the current post office. “I did not know if this practice would be successful, but we fed off of each other,” Benn recalled. Clients came to the practice from York, Adams, and Cumberland counties.

For more information see the June 3, 2021 edition.

 


Print Edition Highlights - May 27, 2021

Short on business, road work tops the agenda

Road work is soon to start in Warrington Township, if it hasn’t already, first on Church Road and then to Walnut Drive. The week of June 7, sealcoating is expected to begin on Bull Rd., followed by Sunset Drive and New York Rd.

 

For more information see the May 27, 2021 edition.

 

Dillsburg Banner takes home Keystone Awards

The Dillsburg Banner won 11 honors in the 2021 Professional Keystone Media Awards sponsored by the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association.

Marie Chomicki won first place in News Beat Reporting in the Police Beat category. Her entries included Communal effort rescues boy trapped in water; A chilling plot: Deceased woman’s family conspired to hide her remains, collect her Social Security; Camper discovers one woman dead, another injured at Pinchot State Park; Details surrounding murder turn dark; and Woman to stand trial for freezing grandma’s body, collecting her Social Security.

Photographer Curt Werner took home a first place in Breaking News Photo for Fire destroys garage; second place, Boy trapped in water and honorable mention, Train derails; honorable mention, News Event Photo, Double rainbow backdrop as Life Lion takes off; second place, Photo Story/Essay, Birthday parties around town; honorable mention, Steam engine show and second place, Sports Feature, Win or lose.

Reporter Joe Guty took a first place, in the Sports Feature category for Amanda Bell Marathon and honorable mention, Sports Beat Reporting for entrees Marlee-Milrose; District Basketball; Friday Night Lights; Wildcats; Resser Retirement; Hlatky-Equestrian.

Reporter Dave Wolf won first place, Sports/Outdoor Column for his column Wolf Tracks for entrees Turtles might be slow, but ...; Nature's finest display; Memories of Deer Woods and Christmas ornaments.

The Keystone Media Awards reinforce excellence by individuals in the news media profession by recognizing journalists who consistently provide relevance, integrity, and initiation in serving readers and audiences, and faithfully fulfills its First Amendment rights and responsibilities. Further, the awards stimulate journalists to improve their craft and ultimately improve their community.

Nearly 2,600 entries were received from 117 news organizations. Entries – in 53 regular categories and eleven specialty categories across seven circulation and four broadcast divisions – were judged by journalists in New York.

The Dillsburg Banner competes in Division VII, weekly publications with under 6,000 circulation.

 

For more information see the May 27, 2021 edition.

 

How many bottles of beer on the wall here? Many!

By Peggie Williams

Which came first - Al’s Pizza or Big Bottom Brewery? Well Al’s, of course. But the addition of the brewery has taken one of Dillsburg’s most popular pizza restaurants to a new level. Al’s has been a part the community for decades and, for the last 15 years, it has thrived under the ownership of Bob Szajnuk. After a career in trucking, Szajnuk retired to try something different. He bought a pizza parlor. His original plan was to add beer to the menu, but it took until 2009 to get the license he needed. For many years, customers had plenty of beers, both on tap and in bottles, to choose from but in 2017, Master Brewers Brad Stump and Brian Keeney came onboard and Big Bottom Brewery, the area’s first micro-brewery, opened its doors in the pizza parlor dining room.

For more information see the May 27, 2021 edition.

 

Eagle sightings soar

By Carolyn Hoffman

Bald eagles are now so common that local people are seeing them around their backyard ponds. It wasn’t always that way.

When the Environmental Protection Agency banned the use of DDT on June 14, 1972, just 49 years ago, only 417 nesting pairs were found in the entire Lower 48 states, the vast majority of those in the Western states. Today, Pennsylvania alone has at least 300 nesting pairs, and the birds can be found in every state but Hawaii. The total population of our nation’s symbol now exceeds 316,700 birds.

To illustrate just how bad things were not that long ago, Waggoner’s Gap Hawkwatch along Rt.74 just north of Carlisle, saw none of these great birds in 1980, and several other years saw just one. Last year they recorded 723 eagles during migration, a new record. They have set a new record for the eagles every year since 2008, and the numbers just keep going up. During the fall there, especially during September and October when northerly winds are blowing, it’s now common to see a dozen or more on a day, and several days this past year the totals topped 25 eagles for the day.

Locally, the birds can be found around almost any water source, though when they are sitting and watching for fish to catch, they can be hard to see.

For more information see the May 27, 2021 edition.

 

Print Edition Highlights - May 20, 2021

 

Republican ballot shortfall takes voters by surprise

By Marie Chomicki

A shortage of Republican ballots throughout the York County created havoc for many residents and municipalities throughout York County.

Carroll, Franklin, Monaghan, and Warrington townships and Dillsburg Borough were among those affected in the immediate area.

“We first ran out of Republican ballots around 2 p.m. in the afternoon,” said Chris Delvecchio, Dillsburg Borough council member and Republican committee person. It was more than an hour before election officials arrived with an additional 200 ballots. That supply soon ran out, and more arrived around 6 p.m.

Delvecchio said the disenfranchised voters had a choice of waiting for the ballots, leaving and coming back, using a provisional ballot or voting with an ADA ballot-marking machine. About 20 people voted provisional and around 50 voters used the machines, he said.

Delvecchio said he was informed by Steve Ulrich, director of elections, that the county elections office did not print out enough Republican ballots. The countywide calculation was off, he said.

At the Monaghan Township Fire Hall, mid-afternoon voters were surprised to be asked whether they were a registered Republican as soon as they set foot in the door. Then, Republican voters learned they would have a 35- to- 45-minute wait to vote using the ADA machine. Some left their cell phone numbers with poll workers who texted when the paper ballots were replenished later in the day.

Some took the prospect of a return trip in stride and others marveled at the ineptness of the system to generate too few Republican ballots, especially in a county that is largely Republican. Poll workers at Carroll Township were in agreement that despite the challenges of no Republican ballots, most voters remained in good spirits.

“We ran out three times,” said poll worker Madison Lane shortly before the polls closed.

 

For more information see the May 21, 2021 edition.

 

ACNB to finance new borough building

By Mary Lou Bytof

Plans for a new municipal building for Dillsburg Borough are underway.

The Dillsburg Borough Council on May 11 voted to advertise Ordinance 2021-1 to provide for the financing of the new building. According to the ordinance, the borough will enter into an agreement with the Adams County National Bank (ACNB), which will finance the construction and mortgage of the new building.

“We received eight proposals back from banks,” Borough Manager Karen Deibler said. “We could not get a 30-year mortgage from any of them,” she said, citing the uncertainty of interest rates over that length of time.

ACNB provided the best options, she said. It offered the borough $2.5 million fixed rate for 10 years. When the 10 years are over, the bank will then provide the borough an adjustable mortgage with a 5.5 percent interest rate for the next 10 years.

“I think this is a no-brainer,” Council Vice-President Matt Fawber said at the meeting.

The borough council will vote on the ordinance at its next public meeting on June 8. This Indebtedness Ordinance, if approved by the council, will be submitted to the state Department of Community and Economic Development as required by law, the borough manager said.

The building will be located next to the community park along Chestnut Street and Old York Road. Lobar Associates is under contract to construct the structure.

 

For more information see the May 21, 2021 edition.

 

 

 

 

Print Edition Highlights - March 4, 2021

Peaceful Pet Passage eases pain of losing furry friends

By Mary Lou Bytof

During the COVID-19 pandemic, pet owners have been spending even more time with furry family members as they continue to work from home, which can make losing them especially difficult.

Peaceful Pet Passage at 210 Andersontown Road in Mechanicsburg offers pet owners a variety of services to help them say goodbye to their beloved companions.

The business is the brainchild of owner Rob Lauver, an avid animal lover who first opened a kennel and first local doggy day care facility on his nearly 25-acre property on the wooded, rolling hills at the northern fringe of Northern York County in Monaghan Township. Due to the demanding schedule of running the dog care facility 24/7, Lauver and his family phased out the boarding service from 2012-17 to provide end of life services for his customers’ beloved pets.

“I buried my own pets on the property, and my clients began requesting that I offer this service for their pets,” he said.  “Every animal deserves the respect, dignity and comfort of a peaceful passage.They are, after all, our family. Our goal is to ease the struggle, and comfort both pets and their owners. We are here to honor them.” Services offered to grieving pet owners include cremation, burial, and in-home euthanasia for terminally ill pets.

 

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Print Edition Highlights - February 25, 2021

It’s all about local at 6ix North

By Peggie Williams

It’s not often that that the opportunity to preserve history, support local artisans, add to a unique and wonderful small town and make a little money all collide, but according to Kris Garvenick, that’s exactly what happened when she and her husband invested in a century-old building in the center of Dillsburg.

The brick building just north of the square has had only two other owners since it was built in 1913 and was used primarily as a residence. Currently, its second floor is home to office space and its downstairs is a gift shop. The buildings postal address, 6 N. Baltimore Street, gave rise to the name shop’s name 6ix North. Garverick said their mission at the shop is to showcase local talent and to give residents and tourists another reason to come town. Since they opened in October of 2019, Garverick has seen both.

“The local support has been amazing,” she said. It is not unusual to have travelers, who found the coffee shop across the street, come in to explore her shop. She was excited about the success of her first Christmas shopping season As it has to so many other things, the COVID-19 crisis brought new challenges. She was able to adapt quickly to strengthen her online presence and inventory, bringing even more opportunity to expose the local talent she carries to a broader audience. They also offer curbside service and porch pick-up.

“Things just exploded this Christmas season as people found us in spite of the virus,” Garverick said.

She said she was not surprised by the quantity and quality of local artisans who have found their way to her. She knew they were always out there; she saw them at the events held in town like Farmers Fair and PickleFest. She knew that if she provided them a consistent presence to market their wares, they would take advantage of the opportunity.

 

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Print Edition Highlights - February 18, 2021

Zoning changes, resident, developer issues dominate meeting

By Peggie Williams

Carroll Township supervisors changed the hearing dates for the public to comment on changes to the township zoning regulations. During their February 8 meeting, they announced there will now be only be two formal hearings, one at 6:30 p.m. prior to the planning commission meeting on March 25, 2021 and one on April 19, 2021 at 6:30 p.m., as opposed to the several hearings that were scheduled earlier. However, supervisors reminded residents they could make comments in writing or in person during public comment time at any scheduled meeting any time before that date. Both of these hearings will be to discuss the zoning changes and the changes they will make to the Northern York County comprehensive plan if the changes are adopted.

In other business, changes were made to the status of financial securities held on several developments. The developers of Mountain Crest Phase II were released of the maintenance bond the township was holding. MacMor Construction, LLC was given a reduction in the amount of $77,443 for the Chestnut Hollow Phase I stormwater basin improvement project. The township is still holding $1,650.00 to assure the necessary grading and seeding is done in the spring.

 

New borough office grounds underway

Site preparation has begun for the new Dillsburg Borough and Public Works offices located next Dillsburg Park on Old York Road. Once all permits were in place, crews scraped the existing topsoil off the construction area to allow for fill dirt to be installed to make a level area for the building that will be a home for the borough offices, maintenance garage, the Northern and Dillsburg emergency management agencies. There will also be space for Emergency Medical Services (ambulance station) and a community room.

According to Borough Manager Karen Deibler a formal ground breaking will take place this spring, and it is hoped that construction should be mostly finished in time for the community space to be used as a part of Farmers Fair.

Deibler confirmed that plans are already moving ahead for the 106th Farmers Fair in mid-October.

 

Print Edition Highlights - February 11, 2021

Residents need more notice before action on crematorium

By Carolyn Hoffman

About 50 people attended the February 8 Monaghan Township meeting, hoping to weigh in on the proposed zoning text amendment that would allow a crematorium and celebration of life facility on property owned by Supervisor Rob Lauver, only to learn that no action would be taken that evening.

The township’s new solicitor, Michael Pykosh, reported that for a zoning amendment, the advertising and public hearing requirements are different than for an ordinary ordinance action. He said the proposed amendment needed to be advertised twice and that a stenographer would be needed for a public hearing.

Supervisors tabled action on the proposed amendment but did not schedule a date for future action. The vote was 2-1 with Chair Vicki Aycock voting against as she wanted a date set for the measure’s future consideration so attending residents would know before leaving this session.

It was also reported at this meeting that York County Planning Commission recommended against approving the measure. The local planning commission previously recommended to take no action for its approval. Residents were alerted to the meeting and possible action on the text amendment by a mailer sent, not by the township, but by an unnamed resident. Many attending said it was the first time they’d heard about the proposal. However, as no action was able to be taken this evening, due to the advertising requirements, those attending the session were not able to go on the record to voice approval or disapproval of the proposal. Supervisor Ron Allen characterized the information in the mailer as “very negative” towards the amendment. Under the current proposal, the proposed text amendment would allow similar facilities anywhere in the rural residential district, which currently exceeds 50% of the township, and not just on Lauver’s Andersontown Road property. The current proposal also specifies a series of required criteria, such as a minimum 20-acre parcel, among others, before any facilities could be allowed.

 

See more in this week's Banner

 

 

Proposal would allow HS students to finish at Dover

By Mary Lou Bytof

Changing schools is never easy, but entering a new high school during the junior or senior year is especially difficult. That is why the transition teams comprised of Dover and Northern York County School District personnel are working to ease the sting of changing schools for elementary and middle school students, and proposing that current Dover High School students may choose to remain at Dover until graduation. On January 20, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court upheld a lower court decision to permit Washington Township to secede to the Northern York County School District this coming fall. The change potentially will affect nearly 200 students from Washington Township in grades K-12.

See more in this week's Banner

 

Print Edition Highlights - December 3, 2020

 

Photos by Curt Werner

In the bucket truck, John Wickard, of Leer Electric, hangs seasonal flags and snowflakes on the square of Dillsburg Tuesday, Dec. 1.

Gussying up for the holidays

Santa's elves from the Dillsburg Kiwanis and Dillsburg Area Business Association were busy over the weekend decorating store fronts and the square for the holiday season.

 

For more informat see the Dec. 3, 2020 Dillsburg Banner

Print Edition Highlights - October 22, 2020

 

 

Photos by Curt Werner

Young volunteers from Celebration Community Church wash fire trucks at the Northern York County Fire Rescue station.

'Livin it Sunday'

More than 100 volunteers from Celebration Community Church spearheaded over six community projects in Dillsburg on Sunday, Oct. 18.  There was mulching and cleaning up at Logan Park, painting and repairs at Haar's Drive-In, garbage pickup along roads, washing fire trucks at the Northern York County Fire Rescue station and clean-up and repairs at local properties. "We call it 'Livin it Sunday'," pastor Mike Hammer said. "Instead of having a sermon at church, we go out and live the sermon.  This is one of our favorite events of the year.  Our church loves to serve the community," Hammer said.

 

 

 

For more information see the Ocotber 22, 2020 edition.

 

 


 
 


 


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