Thursday, July 24, 2014

Plymouth Twp. expects action on buyouts

July 09. 2014 11:43PM
By Susan Bettinger Times Leader Correspondent

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PLYMOUTH TWP. — Township Solicitor Robert Zaruto said Monday night that the township is expecting that the 30 properties on the Phase 2 flood buyout list will be acquired at the beginning of 2015.

Zaruto also said the township is waiting on action from the state Department of Community and Economic Development. He said the township is adhering to all necessary compliance’s in order to keep hasten the process.

Everything else is “out of our control,” said Zaruto.

The original contract was written for $2 million, but the given estimate was $3.5 million, making a revised contract necessary.

Once the offer letters to the applicants are sent out, closing on the properties can begin within 90 days, Zaruto said.

Supervisor Chairperson Gale Conrad said all residents on the buyout list will receive notification at the same time. She said the resident’s number on the list has “no bearing” on how quickly a property will bought out.

Zaruto said that “once approved, everyone (on the Phase 2 list) gets called at the same time.”

In another matter, Alan Baranski of NEPA Alliance announced the township’s position remains stable, with 54 percent of the earned income tax brought in. Baranski said that this is “good news” for the township at the midpoint of the year.

Baranski added that, in order to review its progress, the township is expected to meet with the DCD later this month.

Also, four properties in the township have been demolished this past week. Two of the buildings were on Smith Row, one on Main Street and one on Mill Street.

The four properties were included in the Luzerne County Municipal Spot Slum and Blighted Clearance Program.

The supervisors approved the appointment of Jim Brozena as the township’s consultant for the Luzerne County Disaster Recovery Program.

The supervisors also accepted the low bid of Stell Enterprises for the demolition of the 1003 W. Main St. property.

The next board meeting will be at 6 p.m. on Aug. 4.

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