Software would notify residents of emergency

First Posted: 4/8/2012

The board of supervisors is mulling the purchase of emergency notification software to update residents during emergency situations.

Alan Pugh, township emergency management coordinator, spoke along with Scott Dettling, owner of Inspiron Logistics in Akron, Ohio, via speakerphone about the Wireless Emergency Notification System (WENS) at a work session on Tuesday.

WENS is a software program the township can use to send alerts to residents in the event of emergency situations, including automatic updates.

Pugh said several administrators can provide information for residents, who would sign up through the Dallas Township website or by visiting the municipal office. Residents could register their landlines, cell phones and addresses, which would be kept in a database.

Pugh said the system could even isolate messages to be sent only to residents within a certain area where a situation is occurring.

Pugh estimated the software to cost about $650 per month, depending on how many landlines were provided in the system. He said it would cost more for landlines to be registered because of the time it takes for the system to dial the individual numbers.

Pugh also provided residents with an update of the fire at the Lathrop Compressor Station located in Springville Township in Susquehanna County that occurred last week. The natural gas compressor station connects to the Springville Gathering Line, which ends in Dallas Township.

Pugh said the township was notified at 2:24 p.m. last Thursday about the incident, about three hours after the fire began. Pugh proceeded to notify other agencies, including the school district and county emergency management agency, about the fire.

He was told gas had stopped flowing through to the Transco interstate pipeline shortly after the fire developed, but began flowing again in limited amounts by Friday. He said he would be notified once the pipeline gas flow returns to normal.

Supervisor Liz Martin announced the township is planning to host an Emergency Services Day at the municipal building to give residents a chance to see what services the township offers. She said the two fire companies, the police department and the local emergency management agency would be available for residents’ questions. The day is tentatively scheduled for Oct. 7.

Martin also said supervisors will vote on whether to provide a letter of support for communities seeking a legal challenge to Act 13, a revision of the state oil and gas act.

She said the township wouldn’t be included in that legal action, but will support those who choose to do so. The act supersedes local zoning laws concerning the natural gas and oil industries, a major concern to Dallas Township officials.

The board also heard from the township zoning officer, police chief, roadmaster and engineer during the work session.

The board of supervisors approved an inter-municipal liquor license transfer to Irem Country Club after a public hearing on the matter Tuesday evening.

Supervisors Bill Grant and Frank Wagner voted in favor of the transfer, while Liz Martin voted against the measure.

Acacia Services LLC sought a restaurant liquor license transfer from Amore Café in Kingston to Irem Country Club.

Atty. Michael Yelen, representing Irem Country Club, argued the transfer would ruin the private club atmosphere of the country club, as the previous liquor license only allowed service to club members.

Atty. Richard Bishop, who represented Acacia Services LLC, said the restaurant was seeking the license because Irem had terminated a management agreement and the current liquor license would not allow service to Masons’ wives and widows.

Grant, who made the tie-breaking vote, said he couldn’t see how the measure would affect the welfare, peace, morals and health of the township’s 9,500 residents.

The next Dallas Township Board of Supervisors meeting will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 17 in the municipal building.

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