Delaware Votes To Help the Animals
By: Kenneth Books
Pike County Dispatch – Thursday, February 4, 2016
DINGMANS FERRY- A packed house Wednesday, Jan, 27, debated the pros and cons of Delaware Township donating tax dollars to Pike County Humane Society, Inc. The often-heated discussion was prompted by a request from Humane Society Executive Director Barry Heim for a donation equal to 50 cents per township resident. The 2010 censes recorded 7,396 residents of the township. In a written request, Heim noted that the Humane Society has served Delaware Township for 18 years but has not received contributions since 2008. “Last year alone, over 30 percent of our calls and workload were from your township,” his written plea stated. “Several months ago, we attended one of your meetings to let you know what our services are and how we continue to help the residents and their pets. We also informed you that these services cannot continue without receiving adequate funding." The request threatened to discontinue services in the township Feb 1 “because you feel that our services are not important enough to be included in you budget for 2016. In an impassioned speech that drew several rounds of applause from spectators, Heim said, “The last thing we want to do is stop servicing Delaware Township, because you don’t need us until you need us.” Jane Neufeld, secretary for Delaware Township auditors, supported Heim’s request. “It’s time for us to recognize that this is something that impacts humans,” she said. “We have the amount (requested) in the budget I think it’s something we can and should do. Supervisor Tom Ryan noted that a Humane Society report lists net assets for the organization at $127,000. Heim said, however, that $100,000 of that amount came in the form of a bequest. He said he had to reduce the society’s manpower from nine to seven people because of revenue shortfalls. Ryan wondered if it is the township’s obligation to help finance the Humane Society, a comment that drew widespread opposition. In the end, it was Ryan who moved that the township donate $4,000 to the Humane Society, $302 more than would have been contributed at 50 cents per resident. Motions regarding maintenance and activities at Akenac Park sparked additional controversy as Supervisor John Henderson stood against any expenditure in that area. Three motions-one of which was retroactive-were approved by 2-1 margins for such expenditures. They were: $1,903.43 to buy plumbing materials for the Rec Hall Kitchen from Home Depot; $2,366.59 to buy tools for plumbing projects, also from Home Depot; and $5,135 retroactively to buy tile for the bathhouse from Pocono Interiors. A fourth motion, to approve an estimate from Combined Energy Services of $4,800 for the park kitchen was tabled at Ryan’s request pending receipt of additional information. “I’m not in favor of putting good money after bad in Akenac,” Henderson said in voting against the expenditure. He also said any such expenditure request should include the total labor cost using township employees, including benefits and workers compensation, a suggestion that was approved unanimously by the supervisors. An Akenac project that was approved was payment of $66,690 to Kobalt Construction for septic system replacement. Approval was given for use of Akenac Park for five events: Easter Egg Hunt March 12; free movie nights July 9 and Aug. 13; Harvest Fest Sept. 24; Trunk or Treat Oct. 22; and Dickens Christmas Dec. 10. Approvals were given for use of the township building by Delaware Township Volunteer Fire Police for March 12, July 9, Aug. 13, Sept. 24, Oct. 22, and Dec. 10; by for Pocono Mountain Lake Estates Jan. 30 from 9 to 11am for its January meeting; by for the Lion’s Club Thursday, March 3,5 to 7pm and Friday Mach 4, 2 to 9pm, for its fish fry; and Delaware Township Democratic Club for the second Thursday of each month from 7:30 to 9:30pm. The supervisors announced that electronic recycling days have been canceled because the vendor raised the collection rates from $10 to $20 per carload, with an obligation to the township to make up the difference in the vendor’s monetary goal is not met. Other are municipalities will be surveyed with an eye to possibly pooling efforts. A motion to advertise for additional Planning Commission members died for lack of a second. The Planning Commission currently has five members. There was some confusion as to whether the township was permitted to expand in according to local ordinances.
The correction should read Delaware Township requested assistance from the Volunteer Fire Police for the following dates: March 12, July 9, Aug. 13, Sept. 24, Oct. 22, and Dec. 10.