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Middletown posts draft agenda for Dec. 6 meeting






Call to Order – 7 PM

Pledge of Allegiance

Roll Call

Executive Session 

Report on Executive Session – November 15, 2016

Public Comment on Agenda Items

  1. Approve Meeting Minutes – November 15, 2016 and November 21, 2016
  2. Approval of Bills
  3. Presentation – Communities that Care
  4. Adopt 2017 Final Budget
  5. Adopt Ordinance 1333 – 2017 Real Estate Tax
  6. Award 2016 Audit Services Contracts
  7. Approve Resolution No. 2016-27 Train Station Transfer
  8. Discuss 2017 Meeting Dates

     9.   Adoption of Ordinance 1334 for the borrowing of $387,000 

           for LED Street Lighting Upgrade Project

   10.   Approval - Engineering Services for MS4 Permit Renewal

   11.   Approve 12-hour Police Shift Memo of Understanding

   12.   Approve Ordinance 1335 Parking Amendments for Advertising

   13.   Appointments

Civil Service Commission (6 year term)

Amy Schreffler (Term 1/1/17 to expire 12/31/23)

Todd Webb – Alternate (Term 1/1/17 to expire 12/31/23)

Planning Commission (4-yr term)

Steve Cassidy (Term 1/1/17 to expire 12/31/21)

Vacancy Board (1 year term)

Zoning Hearing Board (3 year term)

John (Jack) Still (Term 1/1/17 to expire 12/31/20)

Rodney Horton requested a position when available

  14.  Approve 2017 Insurance Policies

  15.  Discussion – Parking Study North Wood Street 

  16.  Discussion on Public Works Fire Truck for Special Events

Public Comment

Executive Session

Note – General public comment will be limited to 4 minutes per speaker



Last Updated on Monday, 05 December 2016 20:12

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Newberry Road bridge reopens in Londonderry Township

The bridge that carries Newberry Road over Route 283 in Londonderry Township reopened to traffic Friday morning. 

The bridge had been closed since Oct. 24 for a construction project to repair damage to the bridge. The bridge carries about 700 vehicles on a daily basis. 

This was the second of two similarly damaged bridges to be repaired. The first started was the Union Street bridge over Route 283 in Lower Swatara Township.    

Both bridges were damaged on May 1 last spring when the boom of an excavator carried on a trailer hauled by a truck on eastbound Route 283 struck them. The under-clearance for the Union Street bridge is 14 feet 10 inches; for the Newberry Road bridge, the under-clearance is 14 feet 5 inches. 

Any load higher than 13 feet 6 inches requires a hauling permit from PennDOT. 

Both Union Street and Newberry Road are local township roads, but the bridges over Route 283 are owned and maintained by PennDOT.

PennDOT contracted with Clearwater Construction Inc. of Mercer to replace the fascia beams of both bridges and conduct deck and parapet repairs at a cost of $407,050.   

12 7 bridge open web

Last Updated on Friday, 02 December 2016 11:39

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Highspire police seek bank robbery suspect

The Highspire Borough Police Department is investigating a bank robbery that occurred at the Citizens Bank on Second Street on Nov. 5. 

At about 9:45 a.m., the suspect approached the lobby and placed the floor mats located in the entryway under the front doors to block the doors from closing. Once inside, the suspect announced that it was a robbery and demanded all the loose money in the drawers. The suspect threatened that he had a gun, but no gun was displayed.

The suspect took an undisclosed amount of cash and fled on foot in an unknown direction.

highspire bank robbery 1The suspect is described as being a white or Hispanic male in his 20s or 30s, 5 feet 6 to 5 feet 8 inches tall, and about 180 pounds.

He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, blue jeans, white and black sneakers, a black ski mask and black gloves. He was carrying a black backpack.

If you have information about this bank robbery, submit a tip to Crime Stoppers by calling 800-262-3080. Tipsters can remain anonymous. Tips can also be given directly to police by calling County Dispatch at 717-558-6900. If your tip leads to an arrest, you could be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000.

highspire bank robbery

Last Updated on Thursday, 01 December 2016 14:16

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State police: Be on alert for phone scam from caller claiming there is a warrant out for your arrest

Pennsylvania State Police are warning residents of Dauphin and Cumberland counties to be on the alert for a phone scam.

The caller claims to represent Pennsylvania State Police or the Cumberland County Sheriff's Department or Cumberland County Prison, state police said in a news release issued on Wednesday, Nov. 30.

The caller usually has the victim's address and says that a warrant has been issued for the victim's arrest because he or she did not show up for jury duty.

The caller asks that the person stay on the phone, go to a store and buy a reloadable gift card, and take the card to a police station or courthouse. If the victim stays on the phone and buys the card, the caller asks for the card number before the person goes to the police station.

State police have received reports from "numerous" victims who said they had gotten these calls on Tuesday, Nov, 29, and/or  Wednesday, Nov. 30, according to the release.

State police do not solicit donations in any form, the release says. State police urge that anytime you get a phone call from anyone soliciting any kind of donation, first take steps to verify the identity of the caller or the organization the caller claims to represent.

If you get a phone call like these ones being reported, police suggest that you hang up and do not provide any personal information.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 30 November 2016 17:44

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Downtown icon ‘Huff’ Hoffman passes away

Huff SLIDEDavid "Huff" Hoffman


He wasn’t a millionaire or someone who gave tons of money to various causes. He didn’t have money to give.

He wasn’t a business owner or a politician. He didn’t lead a civic organization or hold some other position of community leadership, like a school superintendent or a member of the clergy.

Word is that most of the time David “Huff” Hoffman of Middletown had to rely on others for money to survive.

Yet when Hoffman was felled by a heart attack on Friday, Nov. 18, and taken to the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Facebook exploded and the community outpouring was overwhelming. It was the quick work of several people at Roberto’s Pizza on South Union Street that saved him that day.

Huff was operated on and stayed in the hospital for over a week. He was to be released first thing Monday, Nov. 28, when he had another heart attack, according to Huff’s sister Gloria Clouser of Middletown. Huff passed away in the medical center on Sunday, Nov. 27. He was 64.

Funeral services are scheduled for 11 a.m. Monday at Evangelical United Methodist Church at Water and Spruce streets. A viewing will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. at the church immediately before the service.

Huff attended the church, but it’s also because the number of people Clouser expects to attend Huff’s funeral will be larger than can be handled at the Matinchek Funeral Home, which is handling the arrangements.

“That church is going to be packed, I just know it,” Clouser said.

An ordinary man

So what made Huff so special? He was about as ordinary as it gets. When he graduated from Middletown Area High School in 1970 in general education, the only mention of him besides his yearbook photo was that he was paired with a female student as “the tallest and the shortest” in the class. Huff wasn’t the tall one.

Huff wasn’t homeless, although he might have looked that way to people. He spent every day hanging around downtown Middletown, walking around, sitting on the bench in front of Karns, or sometimes just standing on the sidewalk — or even in the middle of the street — just staring off into space.

He was what people call a character, but also part of what made Middletown unique. One person referred to Huff as the “icon” of Middletown, as much a part of the town’s fabric as the town clock, the Elks Building, and Kuppy’s Diner — where Huff was a regular customer.

Huff was “always visible” in town, regardless of the weather, said Joe Sukle, publisher of the Press And Journal. When it was raining or even if there was a chance of rain, you’d always see Huff with an umbrella.

Sukle would often come upon Huff sitting on benches around town or on the loading dock at the Press And Journal printery.

If Huff was a character, he made characters of his own of the people that he met and knew downtown, including Sukle, whom Huff never failed to acknowledge as “Hey, Grandpa” or “Hey, Money Bags,” Sukle said.

He would habitually tell Sukle’s wife Louise that Joe was in “big trouble” for things that Sukle could never figure out.

Huff also paid attention to details. More than once, Sukle said Huff reminded him of his car coming up on its annual inspection. Otherwise, Sukle said he probably would have overlooked it and risked getting a citation.

“Huff was everything a small community is,” Sukle said. “Quirky, funny, brash, honest in opinion and in a wonderful way endearing. He will be missed but long remembered.”

Life-saving efforts

Huff was sitting at a table at Roberto’s on Nov. 18 when he suddenly collapsed and fell on the floor.

Mike Kitner, a manager at Roberto’s, heard a girl at another table asking Huff, “Are you OK?”

Kitner and another manager at Roberto’s — identified only as Cesar — went over to Huff. Kitner got Huff on his back.

“It was obvious that he had stopped breathing,” Kitner said. “There was no movement in his chest.”

Kitner and Cesar started doing CPR — cardiopulmonary resuscitation — on Huff. Kitner had been trained in CPR when he was 16, but had never had to use it.

Very soon after a woman named Ann who identified herself as a registered nurse came in and took over, Kitner said. She had been a customer at Tattered Flag Still Works a few doors away that night, Kitner said.

A woman who was a friend of the nurse and who knew she was in Tattered Flag had stopped in to Roberto’s to get some food when Huff collapsed, Kitner said.

Yet another person had called 911 and the police and emergency medical technicians showed up.

The doctors at the medical center said, if not for the people at the pizza shop and the EMTs, Huff wouldn’t have made it to Hershey, Clouser said.

Kitner said the EMTs told him that “it was the whole chain of events” that saved Huff’s life and kept him alive that night, not the doings of any one person. 

Dailey living

Huff lived in Middletown all his life. His salvation — at least his guardian angel — was probably Joseph Dailey, himself a big rough-around-the-edges guy who owns JD’s Junction and the Dailey’s Gulf service station on Main Street.

Around 1980 Dailey took Huff in, and gave him a job at the service station. Before then, Huff had worked at the Elwood’s station on the west end of town, although Dailey said he’s not sure exactly when Huff worked there.

“He used to walk around town filthy and he lived in the old football house before they rebuilt it. That’s where he stayed,” Dailey told the Press And Journal. “He had probably five or six layers of coats on. He was unshaven, stunk and he used to make laps and go by the garage, so finally one day I told him, ‘Come over here.’ ”

Dailey cleaned Huff up, got him some new clothes, got him a uniform and gave him a job at the service station. He worked there for Dailey for 25 years, doing things like pumping gas and putting air in tires.

Huff could make change faster than a kid using a computer, Dailey said. He had “a thing” for women, Dailey said. If a woman came into the station with a flat tire, Huff would get right on the job. If it was a guy, Huff would walk past him as if he wasn’t there.

Dailey’s generosity didn’t end with the job. Dailey allowed Huff to move in with him so he had a place to stay. From then on, Huff lived with Dailey for the next 35 years, until he died.

Dailey isn’t sure why he put up with Huff all these years.

“He stole from me every day,” Dailey said. “He decided he needed $20 so he just took $20 out of the cash register after I left. I knew it. I’d ask him, ‘Why did you take the money?’ He’d say, ‘I don’t know’ or he’d say, ‘No I didn’t take it.’ But if you looked in his pockets it was all there. If I was $40 short you’d find two $20s wrapped together. If I was $60 short you’d find three $20s.”

At the same time Huff was a dedicated employee who never called in sick and never missed a day of work at the station.

Huff would get out of bed sometime each night, put his clothes on, and go back to bed fully dressed. That way, when he heard Dailey get up, Huff would always be able to beat Dailey to work.

“He stayed there from morning until night, every day,” Dailey said. “If we were open seven days a week, he was there seven days a week from the time we opened until the time we closed.”

In later years after Huff stopped working he spent all his time walking around Middletown and hanging out in the downtown. Dailey at one point moved out of the borough to Londonderry Township and brought Huff with him, but ended up moving back so Huff could resume his passion for street-wandering throughout Middletown.

“I don’t know why I did it,” Dailey said of taking care of Huff all these years. “I guess the good Lord pushed me to do it."

“I don’t want to take a lot of credit. I’d like to think that anybody would do what I (did). But I found out that’s not the case. Not everybody would do what I did," Dailey said.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 29 November 2016 15:58

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