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Connellsville still has hopes ice-skating rink can be constructed

| Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, 1:51 a.m.

There may still be ice skating this winter in the City of Connellsville.

A skating rink to be placed in the city is still on the radar.

Connellsville City Council is studying different options in opening a rink.

During Tuesday night's regular meeting, council unanimously voted to approve the placement and creation of an ice-skating facility at the basketball courts across from South Side Elementary School at no additional cost to the city.

The property is owned by the Connellsville Area School District, which gave the city permission to use the property.

Mayor Greg Lincoln said a skating rink has been something the Connellsville Recreation Board wanted to do for years and this year, steps have been taken to find a location.

Along with the South Side Elementary basketball court, the basketball court at Woodruff Park was considered, but New Haven Hose Co. VFD and Connellsville Street Foreman Vern Ohler found water leaked from the surface at both locations.

“We're not giving up yet,” Lincoln said.

He said the city is looking at sealing the cracks at the South Side location.

The city would appreciate any help from the public donating materials or money for the project.

Lincoln thanked New Haven Hose Co., Ohler and Connellsville School Board Director Dan Martucci for their help in the process.

In order to operate the rink at school district property, the city will add the Connellsville Area School District to the its insurance policy as additional insurance for the rink.

When news was posted about the proposed rink a week ago on the recreation board's Facebook page, many people responded with their memories of outdoor ice skating in Connellsville.

“I can remember going to the South Side rink all the time in the winter. Loved it,” said Nancy Shultz of Connellsville, adding that it would be nice to see it come back to the city.

Nancy Jacobyansky of Connellsville said she started skating at East Park and then South Side playground.

“We would walk from our house to the school with lots of friends and family for evening skating,” Jacobyansky said.

Connellsville Treasurer Judy Keller presented council with information concerning delinquent real estate taxes for 2013.

Keller said on Jan. 14 she turned over to the Fayette County Tax Claim Bureau 499 parcels of unpaid taxes to the city worth $130,989.31 and with a 10-percent penalty, the total is $144,088.24. She added that 185 of the 499 parcels are owned by those who don't live in the city.

In other business Tuesday, council:

• Voted to change the scope of the work of approximately $15,000 in CDBG grant money originally set for improvements to the East Park tennis court to the East Park Band Shell including the installation of a new roof and upgrades to the electrical system. Lincoln said the tennis court is currently not in need of repairs.

• Appointed Marilyn Weaver to the Connellsville Redevelopment Authority with a term to expire in 2019.

• Appointed Bruce Jaynes to the Connellsville Housing Authority with a term to expire in 2017.

• Reappointed Matthew Ptacek to the Connellsville Recreation Board with a term to expire in 2019.

• Appointed Dave Waggett to the Connellsville Health Board with a term to expire in 2015.

• Hired Linda Goodlin as part-time tax clerk at $7.50 per hour not to exceed $3,600 a year or 480 hours established by the budget. No benefits are provided to Goodlin, who will start work Feb. 3.

• Hired Joyce Shaffer as a part-time bookkeeper effective Feb. 3 at $10 per hour and hired retiring bookkeeper Dorothy Fosbrink as a consultant to train Shaffer at a rate of $15 per hour not to exceed $600.

• Councilman Aaron Zolbrod announced the organization of a huge cleanup tentatively scheduled from 10 a.m. to noon April 12 with a goal of 500 volunteers including individuals and groups to clean up the trash and declare Connellsville a litter-free zone. For more information, contact Zolbrod at The Health Insurance Store at 724-603-3403.

• Opened and accepted a bid for a city-owned property along Run Avenue to Ronald and Barbara Haggerty for $250 and opened and accepted a bid for a city-owned property at 140 S. Pittsburgh St. to Peter Jandura for $400.

• Voted for the city to participate in the upcoming G-11 Conference on April 24, 25 and 26.

• Lincoln announced that groups and organizations planning on having an event in the city this year submit information for the city's master calendar by contacting city hall at 724-628-2020 ext. 201 or before May.

Mark Hofmann is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-626-3539 or

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