Intelligencer Journal/Lancaster New Era
Providence looks to renew pact with Comcast
BY PHILIP GRUBER, Correspondent
Providence Township residents should see no changes in their cable television service as part of the 10-year contract renewal with Comcast Corp. that township supervisors voted to advertise during their meeting Monday.
The agreement, which will be advertised jointly with Conestoga and Martic townships, will be voted on at the March 4 supervisors meeting.
Secretary to the board, Vicki Eldridge, said in a telephone interview Tuesday that the cable franchise agreement "allows Comcast to operate and maintain cable lines on public right of ways."
Eldridge said Comcast has been serving Providence Township since cable lines were first run in the township. The new agreement with Comcast would not be substantially different from the previous one.
As part of the agreement, Comcast will pay the township a flat fee of $5,370 to renew the contract, Eldridge said. She noted that the cable provider also pays a quarterly fee based on the number of cable subscribers in the municipality. For the year, those fees are estimated at $55,000.
Township solicitor Melvin Newcomer suggested that the supervisors advertise the agreement now because the three townships involved appear to agree on the contract renewal.
With supervisors chairman Gregory Collins absent because of work, vice chairman David Gerhart guided the board through its agenda.
In other business, supervisors approved a $5,000 donation to Refton Fire Company to help with its recent purchase of a fire engine. Eldridge said Collins had earlier suggested that amount, and Gerhart and supervisor William Schall accepted the figure.
Also, supervisors tabled a decision about using the new Lancaster SPCA to pick up stray dogs until they have more information.
Gerhart wanted to know how the shelter will ensure that the dogs, once claimed by owners, do not get picked up as strays again.
The supervisors also want to find out if residents can take dogs to the SPCA or if the organization has to pick up the dogs.
In another matter, supervisors appointed Ida Conrad as a township auditor to replace Marianne Charles, who died in January.
Newcomer said he would check to see if state law calls for Conrad to fill the remainder of Charles' term, which expires in 2015, or to stay on just until the next township election, which will be held this year.
Additionally, the supervisors and Connie Peiffer, the secretary to the zoning hearing board, announced that additional zoning workshops will be held on the first and third Thursdays of every month from Feb. 7 through June 20.
The meetings will be held at 7 p.m. at the township building at 200 Mount Airy Road, New Providence. At the meetings, the zoning hearing board will review the township's zoning map and existing ordinances.
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