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Issue 11 — Thursday, October 16, 2014
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Official Paper
More Than
Forty Years

MILFORD — Although it has been publishing much, much longer, the Pike County Dispatch has been the newspaper of record for the County of Pike for more than 40 years. That means the Dispatch is the place to go to find out about public meetings, estate notices, bids, public hearings, real estate sales and transactions, and Sheriff sales.

The Pike County Commissioners listed the Dispatch as an official newspaper for legal notices during their opening meeting of 2014, and once again, during their annual reorganization meetings on the first business day of the New Year, most of the other municipalities in Pike County followed suit. So far, Milford and Matamoras Boroughs, and Westfall, Dingman, Delaware, Shohola, Blooming Grove. Milford and Lehman Townships have made it their business to have the Dispatch as an official newspaper.

So make it your business to keep up with all the news in Pike to print, including official business and legal notices from your town.

To find out where to buy your copy of the county’s official newspaper or to subscribe for home mail delivery, click here.

The Voice Of Pike County
Since 1826

The Pike County Dispatch is not only Pike County's largest circulation weekly newspaper, it is also the oldest.

Founded as the Eagle of the North, it has been in continuous operation reporting news and covering local events since 1826. It is, and always has been, the mainstay in keeping the local citizenry informed. Today, subscribers are as far afield as California and Florida

The Dispatch has covered the historic events that have shaped Pike County for almost as long as that history has been in the making.

Over the years, hometown news has shared pages with national and world events, and world events were sometimes right here in Pike County, Pennsylvania.

Its pages carry news of joy and sorrow, homespun advice, births, deaths, marriages, spats, feuds, political controversy, scandals, murders, heists, social affairs, dedications--in short, all the news in Pike to print.

Look for the Pike County Dispatch at local news dealers, and read all about it!



Wayne Boy, 10, Is Charged In Elderly Woman’s Death

DUNMORE — A 10-year-old Wayne County boy has been charged with criminal homicide in the death of a 90-year-old woman who was under the care of the boy’s grandfather. Pennsylvania State Police in Honesdale said that last Saturday, Tristen Kurilla, 10, of Damascus Township, was visiting his grandfather, Anthony Virbitsky on Skylake Road, Tyler Hill, where Helen Novak also resided.

At about 11:15 that morning, police received a call that Novak was deceased in her bed at the Tyler Hill address. Later that afternoon, Martha Virbitsky and Kurilla came to the Honesdale state police barracks and Virbitsky reported that Kurilla, who is her son, told her that he had gone into Novak’s room and she yelled at him, whereupon he got mad, grabbed a cane and put it around Novak’s throat. After being Mirandized, Kurilla told police that he pulled Novak down on the bed, held the cane to her throat and punched her several times, police reported.

Dr. Gary Ross performed an autopsy on Novak at Wayne Memorial Hospital. Ross reported that he found blunt force trauma to Novak’s neck and ruled the death a homicide. He stated that the account Kurilla provided to police was consistent with the injuries observed in the autopsy. Kurilla was charged as an adult and arraigned before Magistrate Bonnie Carney. No bail was set. Kurilla was lodged at the Wayne County Prison. Carney set the preliminary hearing for 9:30 a.m. Oct. 22, at the Wayne County Central Court.

Wayne County District Attorney Janine Edwards said the crime of homicide is specifically excluded from the juvenile act, thus Kurilla was charged as an adult; however, a juvenile may petition the court for a hearing asking that the matter be transferred to juvenile court.


Locals Gather To Discuss
Documentary About Milford

MILFORD — Lisa Mazzarella, producer of the “Our Town” documentary series by WVIA, is encouraging all Milford locals to contribute their videos, photos and stories for a one-hour documentary that will broadcast across twenty-two North Eastern Pennsylvania counties, as well as parts of New York and New Jersey. “What is the pulse of Milford?” The engrossingly passionate Mazzarella wants to know. “What does a day-in-the-life of Milford look like?” “Small towns make for the biggest stories and we want to hear about them,” she went on to say, at a meeting held in the Foundation Room of the Milford Columns on October 8th.

WVIA is ready to give Milford a broad audience, but Milford needs to come together and provide the substance. As a community, Milford is being asked to bring the material: Photos of your favorite secret spot; Videos highlighting shop owners or historical treasures; Aged photographs of interesting people, places, or things that tell a compelling story of Milford. Historical stories, contemporary stories, private stories, or public stories, all are welcome. Mazzarella wants to hear a diversity of stories from the community as to what makes Milford so special and to bring a new perspective of the town to a primarily non-local viewing audience.

John F. Kennedy speaking at Grey Towers two months before his untimely death. Milford’s old milling and farming history. The town’s long-standing relationship with New York City vacationers. The creeks and waterways. Indian lore. Shop owners. Architecture. Natural beauty. Personal stories within Milford. Anything goes. Mazzarella wants to see, hear, and feel the pulse of Milford today, and WVIA is ready to give Milford an audience. So grab your camera, get some friends, and tell your story!

A public meeting will be held at the Milford Library (119 East Harford Street) on October 23rd at 5:30 p.m. for anyone living in the Milford area to pitch their ideas of stories they want to see in the documentary... for complete story, get this week' issue.


Pipeline Tree Sitter Plans More Civil Disobedience

MILFORD — Alex Lotorto, arrested for tree sitting during gas pipeline protests in 2013, has scheduled “direct action training” in preparation for possible civil disobedience if federal authorities allow a gas compressor in Milford Township to expand.

In a press release, Lotorto, an organizer for Energy Justice Network, said community members concerned about the Milford Compressor Station expansion invite area residents to a potluck and direct action training session Saturday afternoon in the Columns Museum.

“As residents pursue all legal options through state and federal agencies to block the expansion of combustion engines at the facility, some are preparing civil disobedience for the day the construction begins, to protect public health,” the press release stated.

“The … training will allow participants to meet each other, talk about the strategic use of civil disobedience, learn about different tactics, and find out more about the legal consequences of direct action.”

The compressor, located on Firetower Road in Milford Township, is part of the Columbia Gas system.

Milford Township Supervisor Gary Williams said that the township “has done everything we can legally do” to ensure that the enlarged compressor would operate on electric power rather than use the available gas, which creates possibly harmful emissions. Regulators have yet to decide on the issue... for complete story get this week's issue.

Delaware Gives Dollar General Conditional Green Light

DINGMANS FERRY — At the Delaware Township Board of Supervisors meeting last Wednesday, Oct. 8, the Supervisors passed two motions conditionally allowing the Dollar General Store on Route 739 to proceed. Township Solicitor Tom Farley reviewed the Planning Commission’s recommendations, which included stipulations to be met by both the land development and subdivision applications.

Attorney Dave Jordan and civil engineer Jeff Paulson presented drawings of the proposed development to the Supervisors. The planned layout contains approximately 30 parking spaces, a shared driveway for the remainder of the parcel subdivision, and a large infiltration basin at the rear of the property.

Paulson said they were “trying to preserve as much of the natural vegetation as possible,” and the far rear of the property would remain undeveloped. Vegetation at the front of the property is to include plantings of 30-inch-tall shrubs and 5-foot Siberian pines. Despite a lack of objections during the Planning Commission public hearing the night before, the Supervisors were careful to review the drawings. Township Supervisor Tom Ryan voiced concerns of light infiltration into surrounding areas. Conferring with several people in attendance verified that the properties opposite the development were “dead lots,” meaning that they were unoccupied and less of a concern for potential light pollution. Other compliance issues discussed confirmed that full size semi-trucks making deliveries could navigate the turn into the driveway without crossing the centerline on Route 739.

While three sides of the structure will be beige metal, the storefront will have split-face masonry, assuaging Ryan’s concerns that it would be an “ugly” building. Supervisor Bob Luciano agreed that “Everybody did their homework” on the project. After the motions were passed, Ryan teased, “We’re excited to have you: when do you start paying taxes?” The store will be hiring an estimated 8-10 people and is currently waiting on permit approvals. Paulson said they hope to start work on the foundation before winter... for complete story, get this week' issue.


Borough To Hold Hearings On Earned Income Tax

MATAMORAS — Last week, Matamoras Borough Council committed to consider implementing Earned Income Tax (EIT). Berkheimer Associates (BA) is the Pennsylvania designated regional tax collector for municipalities and school districts that use EIT to generate extra revenue. Berkheimer collects EIT from employers and employees generating earned income in a municipality that adopts EIT. BA Director of Sales and Client Services Jim Hunt briefed council members and public on EIT at the regular council meeting held at Borough Hall.

Matamoras joins neighboring Westfall Township, which is also considering implementing an EIT. Council President Joe Sain said that the borough is facing rising expenses (due to inflation, mandated employee benefits, insurance, and equipment replacement) and does not have additional revenue sources to continue to meet those costs and to continue to provide services. Sain said that one option facing the council as they enter the Borough 2015 budget workshops in the coming weeks is to cut garbage service. This would force residents to pay for private trash pick up.

Hunt said that the potential revenue from the tax, which can be up to a maximum of 1 percent of total earned income, would be $170,000 to $180,000 the first year and $250,000 to $300,000 the second year.

Hunt explained that the increased revenue in the second year is due to the collection and administration of the tax in the first year, in which only first three quarters are accounted for by the end of the year. The municipality gets the fourth quarter at the beginning of the second year.
Also, some people are responsible for rollover payments accruing in the second year, therefore, typically, interest and penalties add to the additional revenue to the municipality in the following year. If the Borough implements EIT, the estimated 40 percent of borough residents who would be subject to EIT would only pay Matamoras, but not Delaware Valley School District (DVSD)... for complete story, get this week' issue.


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