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W. Donegal Paying Contractor Less Than Invoice for Road Work

West Donegal Township supervisors agreed to pay a contractor less than the invoiced amount for a road improvement project because of a dispute in the amount the township should pay for base repair.

A construction firm sent the township an invoice for $173,545.16 for work on Bossler Road, including a 4-foot-wide repair of the road base. Township Manager Gene Oldham told supervisors at their meeting on Monday, July 10, that the township had only ordered a 3-foot-wide repair of the road base and should only owe $167,599.36, which is 3.4 percent less than the invoiced amount.

Oldham told township supervisors that he had tried contacting the company, but got no response. He said he then asked Township Solicitor Josele Cleary what to do and Cleary advised him to send a check for what he believes the township owes along with a letter explaining why the amount paid is less than the invoiced amount. Supervisors Roger Snyder, Douglas Hottenstein and John O. Yoder III all agreed to authorize Oldham to do so; Supervisors Philip Dunn and J. Clair Hilsher were absent. Oldham said the contractor had also paved the road 26 feet wide instead of 24 feet as the contract called for because of an issue with the contractor’s paving equipment, but the contractor did not bill the township for the extra two feet of width.

In other business, Oldham told supervisors that he has gotten complaints about parking on High Street, a small street that runs parallel to Colebrook Road in the township’s Rheems section (not to be confused with High Street in Elizabethtown Borough, which is a state highway). Oldham said the street has parking on one side, which is separated from the traffic lane by a white line. But the parking area is narrow enough that many people parking there have put two wheels onto an adjoining lawn to avoid being ticketed for having the other two wheels in the traffic lane. Oldham suggested removing the white lines known as “fog lines” that are at the edge of the traffic lanes, saying they are unnecessary on a street that gets so little traffic. Supervisors decided to defer the matter until their August meeting.

Supervisors also discussed a proposal from the Bishop Woods development to donate a lot partially covered in a swamp for use as a public park. Supervisors concluded that the cost of maintaining the park and its wetlands would be high because of regulations governing the conservation of wetlands. Also, they agreed that the amount of hidden area on the lot would likely attract people engaged in illegal activity, such as drug dealing. Supervisors agreed not to accept the donation.

Also, Oldham said the township had not gotten any public comments on the state-mandated plan to reduce sediment in tributaries of the Susquehanna River. He said the 45-day period for public comments has not run out yet, but will have run out before the next meeting of township supervisors, which is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 14.

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