Archive for November, 2020

Grants Awarded To Local Fire, Ambulance Companies

November 27th, 2020 Comments off

Fire and ambulance organizations in Potter County were recently awarded grants from the state through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Money must be used for operational and equipment expenses, such as utilities, insurance, equipment repairs and personal protective equipment; to replace lost revenues due to pandemic restrictions; or to cover costs related to cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting equipment and property or other expenses incurred to prevent the spread of communicable illnesses.

In Potter County, Austin Volunteer Fire Dept. has been allotted $23,973 for fire services and $15,048 for ambulance service; Coudersport Volunteer Ambulance Assn., $15,048; Coudersport Volunteer Fire Dept., $24,657; Germania Fire Company, $22,603; Goodyear Hose Company of  Galeton, $11,094; Harrison Township Volunteer Fire Company, $23,836; Kettle Creek Hose Company, $22,603; Roulette VFD, $22,877 for fire services and $15,048 for ambulance service; and Shinglehouse Volunteer Fire Dept., $23,014.

World War II Soldier From Galeton Memorialized

November 2nd, 2020 Comments off

More than 75 years after he lost his life in service to his nation, a Galeton soldier is properly memorialized with a grave marker. Family members of U.S. Army Private James F. Platt contacted Potter County Director of Veterans Affairs Michael Pepper for assistance in securing a bronze marker. Working with Commissioner Barry Hayman and the Pa. Dept. of Military and Veterans Affairs, the marker was obtained for placement in Galeton’s West Hill Cemetery. Pvt. Platt had been serving in Belgium when he lost his life on Dec. 20, 1944. At the time, the Western Allies forces were steadily gaining ground in the liberation of Belgium, which was completed just six weeks after his passing. Director Pepper (left) and Commissioner Hayman display the marker before delivering it to Pvt. Platt’s survivors. In appreciation for the county’s assistance, the family donated an accompanying cash stipend to LEEK Hunting and Mountain Preserve in Oswayo to support services for disabled military veterans.

Another Potter County Farm Preserved; Total Now 1,390 Acres

November 1st, 2020 Comments off

Farmers across Pennsylvania face mounting pressure to sell their acreage for real estate development or other non-agricultural uses. The loss of a farm often creates a ripple effect with economic, environmental and social consequences. Hundreds of acres in Potter County have been permanently preserved for agriculture under a state-sponsored program — with a county partnership — to purchase conservation easements, or “development rights.”

Most recent addition is the 84-acre Robert J. Hallman crop farm. Its development rights were purchased with $75,000 in state funds and a $16,900 county share. Potter County’s Farmland Preservation Program has now paid landowners just over $1 million for easements on 1,390 acres spread out over nine farms. State funding for the program has been significantly cut in recent years, with the vast majority being committed to counties in the southeastern part of the state where development demands are strongest. Despite the state cuts, the Potter County Commissioners have maintained the county’s yearly contribution to the program.

Guidelines require that easements be at least 50 acres, although counties can elect to lower the requirement to 35 acres. The program is administered by the Potter County Conservation District and directed by a board appointed by the commissioners. Farms are chosen on the basis of quality as well as stewardship – use of conservation practices and best management practices of nutrient management, as well as erosion and sedimentation control, proximity to water, and extent and type of non-agricultural development nearby. Payments are determined by assessing the market value and agricultural value of the land. The difference between those two figures is the maximum value of the easement. For more information, contact Potter County Conservation District office at 814-274-8411.