Sligo Council

RICK SMERKAR (LEFT) and Connell Kindel approached Sligo Borough Council at its meeting last week for the establishment of a small committee to develop a proposal for new community signs.

SLIGO – Sligo Borough Council granted approval at its July meeting for a committee to look at the replacement or refinishing of signs welcoming visitors to the town.

Rick Smerkar of Licking Township approached council about a sign project at the June meeting, but there were not enough members present for quorum so no action could be taken.

“We’re seeking approval to put together the four elements of a sign committee,” said Smerkar, who attended the Council meeting with Connell Kindel of Sligo. “We would look at the design, and the committee could do this and bring it back to you guys.”

The four elements, according to Smerkar, would be:

• Look at the design and types of signs — the committee could do this in any format and is looking for volunteers.

• Looking at the cost of typical signage.

• Finding funding sources — where is the money going to come from and “there are places out there to get it.”

• Doing background work and contacting other communities about their signage. Emlenton has done that and had it funded by another party.

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Smerkar said at last month’s meeting that communities have different types of signs that often project a community identity. Many are professionally produced on different material from the original Sligo wooden painted sign, to colorful molded plastic. Costs could range from $500 to more than $5,000.

“None of the group has moved forward on anything until we kind of have a blessing on a small committee that I don’t think would last very long,” continued Smerkar. “You’re probably looking at a couple of months to get through most of those issues. I’m looking for feedback. The article created a lot of interest in signage and I think it’s appropriate that it did.

“I’d like to do it, but once again I don’t live in Sligo — I’m in Licking Township,” he added.

Council member Chuck Marsh said he liked the current signs.

“I personally like the signs that we have, and all of the feedback that I got from probably eight people that I’ve spoken to in town is that they also like the ones we have,” said Marsh. “They need painted again and cleaned up and repaired. I think we could do that at a small expense. I like them the way they are. I don’t appreciate somebody coming from a different municipality and telling us what we need to do in our town with our signs.”

“I don’t think I told anyone what to do, but left it as a possible solution,” replied Smerkar.

“You live in Licking Township. Are you doing anything with Callensburg signs?,” asked Marsh.

“Yes, I am, as a matter of fact. This isn’t about me and that’s not why I’m here,” Smerkar said.

Council member Kerry Graham weighed in.

“I kind of find it interesting that somebody is actually showing some concern about our town. Our town needs some work,” he said.

Council president Sherry Laughlin welcomed Smerkar’s proposal.

“We need all of the volunteers we can get because the people in town don’t always volunteer,” said Laughlin. “I appreciate that you’re willing to come in town. If you’re willing to spearhead it, I say go for it because every volunteer is needed no matter what you do or where you’re from. I personally feel the signs need to be updated and modernized. We don’t do an Irish Festival anymore.”

Marsh noted that reason for no Festival is a lack of volunteers.

Laughlin called for a motion to let Smerkar form a committee and anyone who wants to volunteer be on it and bring back suggestions and funding suggestions for council’s decision.

“I see myself as the project manager, because that’s my skill set (a civil engineer),” said Smerkar. “The solution really needs to go through you and all of you decide. Once again, the status quo is always one solution. We’ll try to do a good job and you can fire us at any time.”

“And my goal is to improve Sligo as much as we can,” said Laughlin.

Laughlin updated Council on efforts to replace the footbridge connecting Sligo Borough and Sligo Elementary School and the COG Pool Park. Allen Williams of PennDOT met with Sligo officials to help with a DCED Commonwealth Finance to secure funding for repair of the footbridge through a Multimodal Transportation Fund Grant Application. Applications are due by July 31 and Clarion County Commissioners have been asked for a letter of support.

In another matter, Sligo Borough Council is requesting the appearance of a Comcast representative to appear at the next meeting of borough council to discuss reasons for eliminating the complementary provision of Internet service for the Sligo Rec Center. The Rec Center is a designated disaster center and would need the connection for emergency services. In the past, Internet service was provided to the borough office, but a new stipulation and cable franchise agreement eliminates the complimentary Internet service. Sligo must still approve a new 10-year franchise agreement with Comcast.

In Other Business:

• Grant’s Plumbing is scheduled to test the backflow assembly at the Sligo Rec Center as required by Pennsylvania American Water.

• Electrical work was completed at the COG Pool Park by James Troup. Sligo Presbyterian Church paid for the work, and the church has funds to assist the COG with waterline upgrades. Advanced Disposal also donated trash collection service for the COG, and trees were cut down in the park by Halteman’s Tree Service. According to Marsh, repair of the baby pool or an alternative are being considered.

• Eleven vendors are already signed up for the Homes for the Holidays. Council released a $750 donation to the Sligo Development Council.

• Council decided to utilize the Costars program in the search for a new pickup truck. Costars is the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s cooperative purchasing program. Council had hoped to purchase a used pickup truck, but after no favorable bids were received, it was suggested to consider a new vehicle that could also serve as a backup vehicle for snow plowing.

• Councilman Buck Wyant reportedly roped off an open borough street or borough alley and corrected no trespassing signs by the cemetery near the trailer he occupies. Wyant has missed five consecutive monthly meetings of borough council.

• Notice was received from Southern Clarion County Ambulance Service that Rimersburg Borough has agreed to let SCCAS employees sign on with the borough’s health insurance. SCCAS is asking municipalities where they serve to consider extending a monthly donation amount to offset the cost their employees have to pay. Sligo Borough currently donates $250 per year for the ambulance. No action was taken.

• Hager Paving, Inc. was the low bidder for milling portions of Morris Street, paving a portion of Front Street Extension, and seal coating a portion of Lyon Street. Hager was awarded the contract for $38,181.

Attending the meeting were: Laughlin, Marsh, Michele Elder, Graham and Mayor Jeremy Shumaker.

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