Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Sandy Township Residents Ask About Outdoor Furnaces

Courier Express
DuBOIS - An outdoor furnace in the Oklahoma section of Sandy Township is causing a stir once again.

Several residents attended the supervisors meeting Monday to find out the status of the outdoor furnace ordinance.

Paul Gulvas of Maple Avenue said he hopes he will not have to spend another summer with his windows shut because of an outdoor furnace in his neighborhood. He said this issue was brought to the supervisors last year and he wants to know where things stand.

Supervisor Brady LaBorde asked what type of ordinance everyone is looking for, one that regulates furnaces year round or just for the summer.

Ron Reed said he would like to see an ordinance that is in effect year round.
"The smoke is a nuisance year round," he said. "I understand people have rights, but one person's rights shouldn't overrule a whole community's rights."

LaBorde said the board has been looking into an ordinance, "but maybe not as intensely as we should have been."

Reed said he thinks the supervisors have been dragging their feet.
"Maybe the neighborhood should get a lawyer and get an injunction like other neighborhoods have done," he said.

Supervisor Dave Sylvis said the supervisors are not ignoring the request.
"We have been checking into the legality of your request," he said. "We want to make sure (an ordinance) would be sound. I agree you should be able to breathe clean air. We don't want this to end up in court being challenged."

Solicitor Greg Kruk said there is not a lot of law on these types of ordinances.
"We don't want to draft an ordinance against one person," Kruk said. "We want to write it for the entire community. This hasn't been forgotten."

"Maybe it hasn't been forgotten, but it hasn't been put up too high on the burner," Gulvas said.
LaBorde said there is no time line for an ordinance being passed; "we have just discussed some ideas.

What you must understand is that any ordinance we draft and pass must cover the whole township," he said.

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