Townships consider joint purchase of durapatcher

WELLSVILLE — Yellow Creek Township Trustees are considering partnering with a nearby township in the joint purchase of a new piece of equipment to help with road repairs.

In a continuation of a discussion from a previous meeting, Trustee Chairman Kenny Biacco discussed during Tuesday’s meeting about looking into a collaborative purchase with Franklin Township for a durapatcher, which would be used for hot patching to take place in the township.

First discussed on Oct. 25, Biacco said he spoke with Franklin Township Trustee Rob Marra about possibly going half on a purchase. According to Biacco, Marra said Franklin Township utilized the machine for hot-patching in the township since Franklin’s road crew consists of only one person. The machine would shoot the hot-patch material into the pothole at a temperature of 160 degrees, and once finished, the material would give a chip-and-seal appearance and provide a smooth surface. The machine can be used in various types of weather, and can be used in temperatures as low as 20-below-zero.

Franklin Township reportedly spent $5,000 for the machine rental, with the material costing $7,000, resulting in a $12,000 effort for the township.

Biacco said the township is considering the move, noting that Yellow Creek has had to purchase 500 tons of material–400 of hot-patch and 100 of cold-patch–after making trips to Stratton and/or Weirton for the material.

Biacco added that the discussion is still in the very early stages, and more discussions are being considered in the future.

Meanwhile, also equipment-related, Biacco reported that the township’s mower recently underwent minor repairs and has been fixed, and the township’s three trucks are ready to go for the winter weather once it arrives, with only the snow plows needed to be placed on the trucks.

Also during the Oct. 25 meeting, Biacco defended the township’s efforts and purchases following comments made during the Oct. 11 meeting, to which a resident questioned the township’s purchases and quality of roads.

Biacco mentioned that the township’s purchase of a truck, replacing a 20-year-old truck, and a backhoe, replacing a 12-year-old backhoe, was used through an equipment levy passed by voters recently. He also discussed that the above-mentioned 500 tons of material cost a total of $32,000.

“If we would’ve chipped and sealed, we would’ve only done one road,” Biacco said. “Instead of one road getting done, everybody was done so we basically did the whole township in patching.”

In other matters, trustees agreed to retain its current insurance plan with Anthem, which currently costs $1,654.14 a month and includes a $2,600 single-person deductible, a $5,200 deductible for families, and complete co-insurance after the deductible. The renewal premium’s deductibles will remain the same, but will go up to $1,836.78  a month.

Speaking with the township’s health insurance representative, the township was able to receive three options in the event it wanted to go with a new option. One included an increase of deductibles to $3,500 for single-payers and $7,000 for families and would cost the township $1,662.32 a month. A second option was cheaper at $1,502.16 a month, but marked a higher deductible of $5,000 for single and $10,000 for families. A final option was for $1,738.92, which was the same deductible as now but was an 80-percent/20-percent co-insurance after deductible.

After discussing the options with Fiscal Officer Deborah Lyle, trustees agreed to remain with the current plan. No extra action was necessary on the trustees part, as the renewal will automatically take place through Anthem.

In addition, Biacco announced that the township held its tire drive this past weekend, in which the township collected approximately 130 tires during the four-hour collection.

The next meeting will be at 7 p.m. Nov. 22 at the township meeting hall on Oak Ridge Road.