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Dunbar moves forward with creek channeling project

| Tuesday, March 11, 2014, 2:06 a.m.

Dunbar Borough Council adopted a resolution Monday night that paves the way for the long-awaited creek channeling project that will alleviate flooding in the borough.

Council authorized its solicitor, Tim Witt, to enter into agreements with the Department of General Services and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

“These are the final amendments that need to be made to the documents,” Witt said.

“This resolution approves the amended sponsorships and deeds of agreements.”

Since the documents have been finalized, Witt said the project could begin in the spring with a possible summer or fall completion date.

“There shouldn't be anything else standing in the way at this point,” Witt said. “DEP and DGS wanted to make sure that all of the documents were completed and finalized.”

Witt said the DGS also reviewed the completed sponsorship agreements and all licenses that have been acquired through eminent domain.

The project includes removing trees and dredging the creek so it does not continue to overflow its banks and flood the borough during storms, which has continued to occur during the past 30 years.

In other business, Dunbar Mayor Norm Gordon told council members the borough's newly hired police officer, Dennis Heath, recently participated in a training program that helps officers recognize people who have mental illnesses.

Gordon said police officers then refer the mentally ill to a crisis prevention program so they can receive the help they need instead of being admitted and released from jail on a continuous basis.

“The program really helps the mentally ill to stay out of prison, and it helps police departments, because they don't have to spend as much time trying to figure out what to do with mentally ill people,” Gordon said.

“This program is going to be a great help to the borough and many other neighboring municipalities.”

Council also:

• Announced the annual Memorial Day Parade will be held on May 26, beginning at 10 a.m. Lineup will begin at 9:45 a.m. at the Old Dunbar School Building. American Legion Post 146, which is sponsoring the parade, invited the mayor and council members to attend.

• Notified the public that a “Scouting for Food Bingo” will be held March 30 at the Morrell Volunteer Fire Company, which is located across from the Comet Drive-In. Early bird will begin at 6:15 p.m., followed by regular bingo at 6:30 p.m. The cost of admission is five unexpired, nonperishable food items. All food items will be donated to Cub Scout Pack 180 and Boy Scout Troop 180 for their Scouting for Food efforts.

Cindy Ekas is a contributing writer.

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