Don’t shed any tears for the sizable towns in Pennsylvania that are going to lose the revenue from traffic tickets written on their roads by state police. They still get to keep a more lucrative freebie, the use of state troopers instead of locally funded officers to handle all their law enforcement.
It’s nothing short of cop welfare — a local expense covered by state taxpayers for towns that, relatively speaking, aren’t even needy.
The loss of the ticket money is due to the enactment of Senate Bill 237, which will take effect Sept. 3 in municipalities with 3,000 or more people that have no local police force. Among the towns that will be affected are Hempfield (population 42,000), Unity (24,000), Derry Township (15,000) and Mt. Pleasant (11,000) in Westmoreland County; White (16,000) in Indiana County; North Union (12,700) in Fayette County and Somerset Township (12,000) in Somerset County.
Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
After much discussion and two joint meetings, Mount Penn Borough Council and the Lower Alsace supervisors agreed Monday to move forward with a study of the pros and cons of merging or consolidating the municipalities.
Council then voted to approve a $22,500 contract with the Pennsylvania Economy League for the study. Lower Alsace had approved the contract in May after the first joint municipality meeting, contingent on Mount Penn’s involvement.
Councilman Thomas Smith said the study would provide the information needed to help supervisors and council decide whether merging or consolidating would be beneficial to both municipalities and their residents.
Results include cities, boroughs, townships and municipalities. Townships have codes beside them to indicate what major city they are near PHL (Philadelphia) HBG (Harrisburg) LANC (Lancaster) RDG (Reading) PGH (PIttsburgh) ABE (Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton).