Baldwin Boro Seeking New Animal Control Services
And other notes from Tuesday night's borough council meeting.
New Animal Control Services?
The Baldwin Borough Council received just one bidder each of the last two times that it requested proposals for animal control services, and both times, they were from the same company.
Now, that company—Triangle Pet Control Services—has been shut down by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture for allegedly defrauding the state by getting paid for services that it didn't perform, leaving Baldwin Borough without a company to collect stray animals.
But borough Manager John Barrett said at borough council meeting on Tuesday night that he is researching possible successors to Triangle Pet Control to cover Baldwin in 2013.
The borough has budgeted around $5,000 so far for 2013 animal control, Barrett said, but more money could be committed.
Baldwin Councilman Michael Stelmasczyk offered an endorsement (somewhat) of South Hills Cooperative's services.
"I'm an animal lover," Stelmasczyk said. "They (South Hills) are a much more humane company than Triangle. That's for sure."
Ryan Homes Moving Closer to the Street?
Ryan Homes, a developer of residences in north Baldwin's Breckenridge Highlands complex, is asking the Baldwin Council to make an exception to the amount of space required in the borough between a structure and the street that it sits along (known as "setback").
The impetus for the request is that Ryan Homes wishes to build "morning rooms" onto five future Breckenridge homes. The morning rooms are extra living spaces built onto residences' kitchens.
Ryan Homes hopes to lessen its required setback from 20 feet to 15 feet, but Barrett pointed out that Ryan's 20-foot requirement is already down from an original 35-foot one.
The morning rooms cannot be added in the space moving away from the street, borough engineer Larry Souleret said, because there is a slope and utility line situated behind the potential homes in question.
Some council members expressed concern that 15 feet is too close to the street, especially if driveways and sidewalks get involved.
"Cars are shorter now(adays), but people don't pull right up next to their garage door, either," Souleret said. "If you (council) would approve this, you'd have (approximately) 7 feet from the back of the car to the back of curb (without a sidewalk)."
Councilman John Ferris was opposed to granting Ryan the additional 5 feet.
"You got a developers agreement; let 'em abide by it," Ferris said. "When do you stop?"
Added Bob Ieraci, a north Baldwin resident and a borough municipal volunteer, "It's not a necessity to me. It's a sales gimmick for them (Ryan) to get rid of the houses, and I feel that they're using the borough to help them do that."
The council agreed, unofficially, to have representatives from Ryan appear at a future council meeting to argue their case.
"They need to make their case in public," Stelmasczyk said.
Baldwin Mayor Alexander R. Bennett Jr. was absent from Tuesday's meeting.
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