Grant will help some Antes Fort homeowners connect to new sewer system

Low- to moderate-income homeowners in Antes Fort will be assisted next spring when it comes time to connect to Tiadaghton Valley Municipal Authority’s new sewer lateral system.

The Lycoming County commissioners approved a $450,000 competitive Community Development Block Grant Thursday that will go to helping these homeowners.

The first lateral should be connected in April or May 2014, said Kristin McLaughlin, SEDA-Council of Governments Community Development project coordinator.

In another matter, because the commissioners approved a zoning ordinance amendment, homeowners in the county’s 18 zoning partnership areas will be able to build garages closer to their homes. The original ordinance mandated unattached garages be 20 feet away from homes, while the amendment allows 5-foot spacing. Zoning Administrator Dave Hines said there were numerous cases where homeowners couldn’t build where they wanted to, and that was part of the catalyst for this change.

Commissioner Tony Mussare clarified a comment he made at Tuesday’s planning session, noting the $300 variance fee is a necessary expense for the process, but he doesn’t want people to have to spend $300 to build closer to their homes.

Two people were appointed to the Zoning Hearing Board. Christopher Logue, of Cascade Township, was appointed as a member. He is an engineer for Hawbaker Engineering. Romauld Andraka, of Gamble Township, was appointed as an alternate member. He is a retired engineer.

The commissioners approved a federal fiscal year 2013 Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency grant in the amount of $110,766, which matches half of the benefits and wages for four county Emergency Management Agency employees.

The commissioners also approved a fiscal year 2012-13 state Juvenile Probation Office grant in the amount of $213,845, which supplements employees’ salaries and benefits

The commissioners will not meet next week.