Irwin residents seek parks upgrades, crackdown on speeders
A group of about 30 Irwin residents told borough officials they want continued improvements to the parks, a crackdown on speeding vehicles along Pennsylvania Avenue and no more tax hikes.
“I was very impressed with the residents and the businessmen that came here and gave their input. Everybody had great ideas. We’re going to go back and takes those ideas and rate those (ideas),” council President Rick Burdelski said after a town hall forum at The Lamp Theatre in downtown Irwin.
Among the improvements under consideration for Irwin Park is the creation of a children’s splash park. It is on the agenda for 2020, Burdelski said.
Councilman Michael Yunn, who heads council’s parks and recreation committee, said the borough is researching what is required in terms of water pressure, amount of water needed and required drainage.
“It is in the infant stages of how the splash park would operate,” Yunn said.
The borough had a new updated playground installed earlier this year.
Improvements at Irwin Park have been an issue for several years.
Responding to a suggestion a parking lot at the park be paved, Yunn said the borough was denied a grant for that work.
SPEEDING ON PA. AVE.
Kim Perkins of Highland Avenue said she wanted to see a crackdown on motorists “that use Pennsylvania Avenue as a freeway.”
The drivers “just about run you over” in a rush to get to the stop sign at the intersection with Brush Hill Road, she said.
“We take our lives in our hands every time we walk” along Pennsylvania Avenue, Perkins said.
After the meeting, police Chief Roger Pivirotto said police do conduct checks for speeding vehicles along Pennsylvania Avenue.
Burdelski said the borough is committed to keeping its police force intact. The borough just approved a three-year contract with the union representing police.
“Without the police, we would not have the safe community or the events we have,” Burdelski said.
Problems with the parking meters not operating properly were also discussed.
“The parking meters are very old and expensive to replace,” Burdelski said.
Residents also told borough council the formerly proposed amusement tax, should not be revived. The proposed amusement tax would have set a levy on tickets sold at The Lamp and other venues in the borough not operated by a nonprofit charitable organization.
The controversial idea for a 5% levy on tickets was debated last year and then tabled. It was reconsidered in February, but dropped.
While members of the audience expressed what they wanted done in the borough, Councilwoman Gail Macioce said the borough needs people to volunteer to serve on the planning commission and zoning hearing board.
Macioce said volunteers also are needed on the Irwin Business and Professional Association, which organizes festivals in town, as well as the Irwin Rotary Club.
Joe Napsha is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Joe at 724-836-5252, [email protected] or via Twitter .