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|Allegheny County, PA||November 3, 2009 Election|
Voting Record Fact Sheet
By Amy E. Sable, Esq.Candidate for Member, Council; Borough of Franklin Park; Ward 3
This information is provided by the candidate
VOTE AMY SABLE FOR FRANKLIN PARK BOROUGH COUNCIL
Primary Election Day is Tuesday, May 19, 2009
IMPORTANT FACTS ABOUT AMY SABLE'S RECORD
The following is a summary of Amy Sable's voting record and positions with respect to selected issues concerning the Borough of Franklin Park. For more information about Amy Sable's voting record and positions, please view the Borough Council meeting minutes posted on the Franklin Park website (www.franklinparkborough.us).
Worked with other council members to pass a balanced budget for fiscal years 2008 and 2009
In January 2008, after the 2008 budget had been passed, two council members voted to reopen the budget for the purpose of establishing a borough-owned and operated low-cost transportation service for senior citizens. This transportation service would have added a $96,000 expense to the budget in 2008 and would have been a continuing expense in future years. I voted against reopening the budget for this purpose and I informed Council that such a transportation service was already being operated by Allegheny County. The service, known as ACCESS, is available to all senior citizens in Franklin Park and is funded 100% by revenue generated by the Pennsylvania Lottery. At my suggestion, ACCESS made a free presentation to all interested Borough residents. Through my advocacy, and without the expenditure of any tax dollars, Borough residents were informed about the service and their transportation needs were met.
When the 2009 budget was being discussed, two council members voted to reduce the Borough's real estate tax rate and eliminate $150,000 in funds that had been earmarked to repair a dam, located in the Northmont Farms neighborhood. The dam is currently on the state's list of unsafe dams and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection ("DEP") has mandated that repairs be made to the dam. The Borough is seeking to decertify this dam, which would eliminate the need for repairs. However, there is no guarantee that the decertification will be granted by the DEP. As such, earmarking funds for the repairs was necessary. To remove this item from the budget would have been fiscally imprudent and irresponsible.
Voted to maintain concrete curbs in Borough subdivisions
Several council members voted to remove from Borough ordinances the requirement that developments within the Borough have concrete curbs. These council members were also in favor of removing existing concrete curbs as streets are repaved within the Borough. Concrete curbs add aesthetic beauty to our Borough and increase our property values, thereby increasing tax revenues to the Borough. If the curbs are installed correctly, they can last for upwards of 50 years with little maintenance. I advocated maintaining the concrete curb ordinance and the motion to remove the ordinance was defeated. There was much discussion on this issue and it seems that in recent years, developers have not been using quality concrete when new curbs are poured. Additionally, there is heaving of some roadways in the winter months due to drainage issues. I have advocated for more vigilant oversight of developers when they are pouring concrete to assure that the concrete used meets the Borough standards - - this simple step will ensure that the concrete curbs that are poured last for many decades with little or no repair necessary. Additionally, I have requested that the Borough engineer explore redesigning our concrete curbs to reduce heaving and drainage issues.
Advocated educating Council and the community about natural gas drilling
Last year, the Borough and many Borough residents were approached by natural gas drilling companies who were seeking to enter into ground leases for the purpose of extracting natural gas. I, along with other members of Council, rejected the idea of entering into any contracts involving Borough-owned lands. However, since this drilling can be done on private property and can be a very lucrative undertaking for private landowners and since local governments have little ability to prevent drilling on private lands, I encouraged all of Council to become informed about this subject so that Council could take any actions in its power to reduce the negative impact that drilling could have on our community. The Borough Manager provided all of Council with some very informative reports on the subject prepared by Penn State. This information is also now posted on the Franklin Park website so that individual landowners can gain a better understanding of the environmental impact associated with drilling, as well as the impact drilling has on local infrastructure and public safety.
Voted to re-bid the refuse collection contract after initial bids were too high
Since the Borough's contract with Waste Management was set to expire at the end of 2008, the Borough had to put out a request for bids for a new refuse collection contract. When the bids were received in September, the prices quoted by all of the bidders were higher than expected. I supported a motion to reject the bids that had been received in the hopes of procuring better pricing for Borough residents. Due to my efforts and the efforts of several other Council members, the contract was re-bid and the prices came in lower. Borough residents currently pay lower rates for garbage collection than they have in recent years.
Supported submission of a grant application to obtain state funds for garbage containers
In municipalities where automated refuse collection systems have been voluntarily put in place, the residents are required to purchase special garbage containers that are very costly. Since there has been some discussion that the state government may make the automated garbage collection systems mandatory throughout Pennsylvania, I supported the submission of a grant application to obtain $500,000 in state funds. These grant funds would be used by the Borough to offset the cost of new garbage containers for our residents in the event that the automated system becomes mandatory. Surprisingly, two council members voted against these measures which have the potential to save each household in the Borough over one hundred dollars!
Supported maintaining the integrity of Council meeting minutes
Under Robert's Rules of Order, as well as state mandated guidelines, Council meeting minutes are meant to record the actions taken by Council. However, two members of Council wanted the meeting minutes to reflect lengthy monologues regarding issues that those Council members have with members of the community and other members of Council. Since meeting minutes are not meant to be a transcript of every word uttered at a meeting and should not be used for political and personal gain, I, along with a majority of Council, voted to maintain the integrity of our meeting minutes by ensuring that they record actions taken by Council with explanations of those actions where necessary. Additionally, instead of transcribing lengthy monologues verbatim, the subject-matter of any comment that is made during a meeting is briefly summarized in the minutes.
Alerted Council to a public safety issue on Matterhorn Drive
There is a sharp, dangerous curve located on Matterhorn Drive at the entrance to the Briarcliff neighborhood which was being made more dangerous by cars being parked on it. After witnessing many near misses on this curve, I discussed my public safety concerns with Council and raised the possibility of putting in a no parking zone along this curve. The Franklin Park Police Department kept watch near the curve for periods of time over several weeks and confirmed that the curve was dangerous. Shortly thereafter, Council passed a resolution to create a no parking zone on Matterhorn Drive. I abstained from voting on this issue since it affected me personally (the no parking zone comes up to my property line), but I was instrumental in calling Council's attention to this dangerous situation.
Position Paper 2
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