Potential Closing Of Arcola Road Bridge Stirs Controversy In Lower Providence

Location of Lower Providence Township in Montg...

Location of Lower Providence Township in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

LOWER PROVIDENCE — More than 600 residents crowded into the Arcola Intermediate School auditorium Monday night to learn when the Arcola Road bridge over Perkiomen Creek will close to traffic.

If the bridge passes a Friday inspection and subsequent, six-month inspections, the bridge will close at the beginning of 2015 and be closed while a new $7.7 million, three-lane bridge is built in the same location.

“We’ve had many partners on this project,” said Montgomery County Commissioners’ Chairman Josh Shapiro said. “You will see leaders who are all working together to address our infrastructure needs.  Sixty-two of our Montgomery County bridges are structurally deficient.”

Montgomery County Commissioner Vice Chairman Leslie Richards said the bridge built in 1931 was “functionally obsolete and structurally deficient.  There is a weight limit of three tons.  It was placed on a six-month inspection schedule.”

Read more: http://www.timesherald.com/article/20130812/NEWS01/130819905/potential-closing-of-arcola-road-bridge-stirs-controversy-in-lower-providence?nstrack=sid:772346|met:300|cat:0|order:1#full_story

Scranton Apartment Building Partially Owned By State Rep At Center Of Controversy

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An apartment building owned in part by state Rep. Marty Flynn has been the center of controversy, neighbor complaints, multiple police calls and finger-pointing among city agencies.

An agreement to allow an inspection at the request of neighbors of 1401 Prospect Ave., Scranton, fell through when Mr. Flynn and his partner reversed positions and said they would not consent to the inspection, accusing the director of the city Department of Licensing Inspections and Permits, Mark Seitzinger, of playing politics and wanting to run against Mr. Flynn for the 113th Legislative District seat.

Mr. Seitzinger originally considered seeking a court order to inspect the property after continuous complaints from neighbors Ann and Mark Wadika, but backed down.  After consulting with an attorney, he said the department has no right to inspect the six-unit building.  He denied wanting to run against Mr. Flynn for office or of having any other political motivation.

Mr. Flynn and his partner, Greg Hunt of Moscow, registered the building under the city’s 2012 rental ordinance after being questioned by a Times-Tribune reporter.  The ordinance entitles the city inspector to conduct a limited “safety” inspection of the building.

Read more:  http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/apartment-building-partially-owned-by-state-rep-at-center-of-controversy-1.1520374

Pottstown Codes Deptartment Gets Reprimanded By State

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County

Location of Pottstown in Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  This made the Mercury’s 2012 Top Stories list…always good to keep the shenanigans in Pottstown on our minds!  Be vigilant!

POTTSTOWN, PA — The state agency which oversees code and inspection functions in Pennsylvania has issued a “formal warning” to the Pottstown Codes office for a number of violations, including allowing inspections to be conducted by personnel not certified to perform those inspections.

In a letter issued Oct. 2, the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry informed the codes office manager, Maria E. Bleile, of the results of its complaint investigation.

The letter outlines eight complaints regarding inspections at both commercial and residential properties, ranging from Pottstown Memorial Hospital, to the Salvation Army to four residential properties.

Issues ranged from inspectors conducting “plan reviews” and inspections without the proper certification; to no records of reviews or certain inspections being conducted at all; to missing dates in inspection reports.

Read more:  http://www.pottsmerc.com/article/20121224/NEWS01/121229767/pottstown-codes-dept-gets-reprimanded-by-state

Reading City Council Gets Tough On Blight!

City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved a new version of the pre-sale inspection ordinance that it repealed in 2006, requiring all properties to get checked for code compliance when they’re on the market.

The ordinance mandates that property owners get a certificate of transfer for all properties – residential or commercial – sold after April 1, 2012.

To get the certificate, the owners will have to pay $150 for the health and safety inspection, and pass it. However, the inspection will be scaled down from the full-blown inspection required under the earlier program that cost $300.

It’s also far less than the higher costs in a new fee schedule for other inspections that council adopted Tuesday. For instance, a regular inspection of a single-family home will cost $505, up from $240.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=355261