Wednesday, October 10, 2012

2012 Sanitary Sewer Maintenance Program

Welcome back!

At tonight's Borough Council meeting, I seconded a motion to accept the bid from Utility Services Group (USG) to perform our Sanitary Sewer Maintenance for the amount of $9,906.65. This motion was passed by unanimous consent.  This amount is well under the budgeted amount of $25,000 the Council had previously approved for this project.

We received five bids for the program, ranging from the accepted bid to $26,758.75.  The winning bid comes from a company in Camp Hill which has done this type of work for other local municipalities. The bid includes Linear Cleaning of 12,605 feet of municipal lines, the cleaning of 47 manholes and visual inspection via camera telescoping of the 8" diameter pipes (12,605').  This maintenance is necessary to keep accumulations from building up inside the piping. USG was one of the only companies to actually come to our Borough and inspect the work they were bidding on, in order to have all the information necessary to give the most accurate, and in the end, best bid.

The alternate bid was also awarded to USG for the amount of $2,515.60. This bid includes the same services, but for 3,220 linear feet of pipe and 11 manhole covers.  The alternate bids ranged from the accepted bid and $6,735.00.

The disparitiy between the bids had to do mostly with the company's proximity to our area. The other bids from companies outside the area included travel and lodging costs for the workers, which inflated their amounts.

In other business, the Council will be putting together the 2013 Budget for the next meeting to be held on October 24th. Borough Manager Scott Cook will be meeting with Council members over the next two weeks to gain input on the budget so that it can be presented by the next meeting.  Also, Borough Solicitor Campbell informed the Council that the ordinance proposed previously concerning couches on porches could be incorporated into current ordinances for rubbish and debris accumulation on properties. Council approved advertising the amendment to the current ordinance for a future vote.

I am happy that the Council was able to save the Borough over $15,000 in budgeted expenses on the Sanitary Sewer Maintenance program. These savings can be put to use to provide other much-needed services for our citizens, such as the Internet Communications Platform Resolution which I have been trying to pass through the Council the past few months, participation in the Hanover Area Regional Economic Development Committee, new membership in the Adams County Council of Governments (McSherrystown is one of only three municipalities in the county who is not a member), as well as other worthwhile endevors.

I invite anyone who has comments, questions or concerns to contact me via email at  Thanks for reading my post, and thank you for allowing me to serve the community.

David "Scotty" Bolton
McSherrystown Borough Council member and citizen

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


Good day to all who happen upon my blog. I have created this site so that I can effectively communicate my thoughts about the political environment effecting the citizens of McSherrystown. This site is not supported or maintained by the Borough of McSherrystown, and is solely a means of my individual communication with the people I represent.  As you may already know, I was elected by a write-in campaign, in which I went door-to-door to meet many of my constiuents, get their thoughts and views on what was important to them, and let them know a little about myself and the ideas that I have to move us forward. I have been on the Borough Council now for nine full months, and I wish that I could say that everything is going great. Sure, I like talking with the other council members; they have lived here a long time and have many wonderful stories and experiences to share. I feel it is important to use that nostalgia as a motivation to make sure the quaint little town they remember in their stories is here, vibrant and robust, for the coming generations.

Let me begin by telling you what I have been doing in the past nine months to serve the good people here in town. Back in February, I attended the Newly Elected Municipal Official's Training course in Gettysburg, which was presented by the Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs, and the course was taught by Judy Chambers, who is an active member with the Penn State Extension here in Adams County. You may also know her from the Adams County Connected (Broadband Task Force). She instructed me on the ins and outs of municipal law, the powers and duties of its officers, and many more topics which have proved useful in my current position as Councilman. She asked me to join the ranks of those who started the Broadband Initiative, which was later embraced by the County Commissioners' Office and made into an official County Task Force. Why is all this important to people in McSherrystown? I will explain a little further along....

I was also introduced to the Adams County Borough Association, where representatives from all the county municipalities meet and discuss legislation vitally important to our people. Very often, we are joined by State Representatives and Senators, giving us the opportunity to represent the voices of our voters to those very important officers. Senator Alloway, Reps Tallman and Moul are usually in attendance or represented there, as well as County Commissioners Phiel and Martin. I have made some very good friends and collegues through my involvement with this group, and have attended many of their local community functions as a result. By bringing together a collection of people who are dedicated to the advancement of our local and county welfare, we are able to share ideas and find solutions to many of the issues facing our constiuency.

I have also recently become involved with the Hanover Area Regional Economic Development Committee. Being the first intra-county EDC in state history, it is an honor to represent McSherrystown and their interests. The HARED Committee is pooling the resources of Penn and Conewago Townships, and Hanover and McSherrystown Boroughs, to attract businesses to our area in efforts to create job opportunities for our citizens.

I have also been pounding the table to get a municipal website established for the Borough. Being in the Information Age, I feel it is vitally important that the people of our town have access to the budgets, meeting minutes, emergency information, and so much more, simply by logging on to their computers. The best way for me to represent the people who elected me is to be able to inform them of the situations facing us, and be able to communicate with them to find the best solutions. I am only one man, and by no means do I think that I have all the answers...the answers come from the conversations had by the whole of the town. A municipal website will promote that communication.

Now, let me piece it all together if I may. Our website, which gives information, is only as good as the connection to the internet the people use to access it. This is one reason why the Adams County Connected project is important to me. Also, if we are to hope to attract businesses to our area, we must have adequate infrastructure for them to do their business. That is another reason why the Broadband Initiative was started. So, the HARED Committee will identify and attract businesses to our area. Those businesses will check our municipal websites to see if our communities are conducive to their needs (infrastructure, community involvement, etc.).  With a more informed public, we are able to identify and communicate the skills that they possess in order to attract the right businesses to our area. This in turn will create more jobs, expanding the tax base, and thus reducing the individual tax burden on citizens and businesses.  So you see, my involvement in all of these functions is with the goal of putting more money in the pockets of our people, and reducing the individual taxes paid by them.

There is another piece to this puzzle...concerning infrastructure. That is the Small Games of Chance Bill that was signed into law by the Governor and will take effect in February. The Southeastern Adams Volunteer Emergency Services (SAVES) will lose a lot of their operating budget if this Law is not repealed. Having attended their meetings, it is evident that SAVES $1.3M a year budget will be drastically effected if they are unable to raise the $616K that they currently get at fundraisers from small games of chance. In addition, the local clubs, being effected by the same legislation, will not be able to provide the almost $50K in donations they generate from small games of chance. Taking away half of SAVES' budget will essentially put them out of business. Without this valuable piece of community infrastructure, how are we to attract the businesses we need to employ our people and get our local economy back where it should be?

These are the matters of importance that I have been trying to communicate with the people of McSherrystown. This is why I feel it is important for us to have a municipal website, and important for our citizens to have a means of communicating their thoughts and opinions with our elected officials. I hope that you will speak out in support of these efforts, and I hope that you will stand beside me as we take McSherrystown into a better and brighter future.

For Liberty,

David "Scotty" Bolton