Archive for September 20th, 2017

Courthouse Television Program Now On County Website

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David Castano details the Statue of Justice history for Pennsylvania Cable Network.

A 30-minute program about Potter County history and interesting features for visitors that aired recently on the Pennsylvania Cable Network can now be viewed in its entirety on the county’s website, A production crew from PCN spent two days in Coudersport earlier this summer filming local scenes and conducting interviews as part of PCN’s Historic Courthouses series. Major focus is on the Potter County Courthouse, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. However, Historical Society President David Castano and Commissioner Paul Heimel, as hosts, made sure the program spotlighted stories and attractions that would be of interest to tourists. Filming took place in and around the courthouse, as well as nearby sections of Coudersport with interesting architecture or historical significance. The crew also filmed at the Potter County Historical Society Museum and the F.W. Gunzburger County Office Building.

“The producers were very interested in Potter County’s connections to crimefighter Eliot Ness, the infamous thieves known as the Brinks Gang, famous musician Ole Bull, and other local story lines,” Commissioner Heimel said. Castano, who was the narrator and tour guide, shared colorful stories about local history, including the public execution of wife-killer Joshua Jones – whose skull is on display at the museum – and the background on the establishment of the town square and construction of the 156-year-old courthouse. Among local familiar faces appearing in the program are Judge Stephen Minor, Tillie Masolotte, Ed Thompson, Alex Fish and Kim Schaar.

“We were pleased to hear from the crew that this was one of the most interesting shows PCN has worked on since the courthouse series began several years ago,” Heimel pointed out. “One of them said the biggest challenge was assessing the volume of material they collected to determine what would make the cut for a half-hour program.”

Business Owners Hear Details On Facade Grants

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Businesses in several Potter County communities may be eligible for funding to help pay for cosmetic improvements under a grant being administered by the Pennsylvania Route 6 Alliance and the Pennsylvania Wilds organization. Maximum grant is $5,000 and must be matched dollar-for-dollar by the property owner. Included in the “regional façade improvement program” are Galeton, Coudersport, Austin and Ulysses boroughs, as well as the townships of Roulette, Eulalia, Sweden, Ulysses and Pike. Latest in a series of public meetings about the program was held on Wednesday at the Gunzburger Building in Coudersport. Shown from left are presenters Gwen Auman, project coordinator; Terri Dennison, Pennsylvania Route 6 Alliance executive director; and Ta Enos, Pennsylvania Wilds Center executive director.

“To attract visitors and most other kinds of investment, communities need to appear welcoming,” said Enos. “This program helps communities achieve that.” Eligible types of restoration activities include design assistance, paint, signs and repair or replacement of awnings. More information is available from the Pennsylvania Route 6 Alliance office in Galeton, telephone 814-435-7706.

Local Water Operators Oppose Per-Capita Fee

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Potter County’s Triple Divide Watershed Assn. has taken a position against proposed changes in state law that would result in a higher per-capita fee being paid by customers of public water systems. The proposal, contained in proposed changes to Pa. Chapter 109, is currently open for public input. A copy of the TDWC letter follows:

“Living in northern rural Pennsylvania certainly has its perks. However, our small municipalities struggle when it comes to providing government-mandated services. The Chapter 109 Proposed Regulatory Updates would have a negative financial impact on our municipal authorities. We service many seasonal customers in Potter County. It can certainly be difficult to keep our rates at a practical cost for our customers, whether they are full-time or part-time. We understand that DEP has a shortage of sanitarians and other water inspection personnel. We agree that the protection of all water resources in Pennsylvania is vital. Townships, boroughs and other affiliates of the Triple Divide Watershed Coalition believe that the fees currently being charged should not be increased. We believe the legislature has short-funded DEP and local governments (and their ratepayers) should not be compelled to cover the difference. The proposed fee schedule would cause an unfair hardship for smaller municipalities, even as it would be less burdensome to the larger service providers. If an increase in fee is the only solution, we believe that those in the rural areas should not be compelled to pay a higher fee per-customer than those in more populous areas.”

Triple Divide Watershed Coalition members are Austin Borough, Coudersport Borough Authority, Cole Memorial Hospital, Galeton Borough Authority, Genesee Township Water Authority, Northern Tier Children’s Home, Roulette Township, Shinglehouse Borough and Ulysses Borough.