Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Wellsboro Works To Implement Outside Boiler Laws

Outdoor wood-burning furnace ordinance discussed in Wellsboro

By BRYAN G. ROBINSON - Sun-Gazette Correspondent

WELLSBORO — Borough Council still is working on a draft of an ordinance regulating outdoor wood-burning furnaces.

On Monday night, council members and about 20 residents met at borough hall to continue a workshop on the ordinance that was started last month. In December, they reviewed five sections of the ordinance; this month, they are looking at the final six sections, with residents again suggesting changes.

“Now, we’ll take all the ideas and have the solicitor draw up the ordinance to have its tentative adoption in the near future, at one of the next council meetings” Council President Mike Wood said. “We’ll show all of you a final draft before adoption.”

However, throughout the meeting, more than one resident said they were confused by wording changes made, especially in particular to one section: Section 6, changed shortly before the meeting from “regulations for existing outdoor furnaces” to “variance procedures.”

Brian Meadows, one of the main proponents of the borough enacting an ordinance on the issue, said he thought that Monday’s meeting was going to deal with existing furnaces because last month’s meeting dealt with new furnaces. When discussion arose on Section 6, Tom Warriner, who owns an outdoor wood-burning furnace, admitted he, too, was confused on wording in the section.

Chris Lantz, borough solicitor with Cox, Lantz and Stokes, said the confusion was that an entire part of Section 6 that dealt with existing outdoor furnaces was removed.

“With this ordinance, there are many drafts that were used that we are trying to synthesize,” he said. “How do we do it? It’s a complex issue.”

Lantz said he probably will recommend that council put the section about existing furnaces back into the ordinance.

Council’s next meeting is at 6 p.m. on Feb. 12.

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