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New W.O. Council Takes Seats, Sets Projects

Paving, street improvements announced

By Christy Walters
The Tube City Almanac
January 21, 2020
Posted in: White Oak News

New members of White Oak Borough Council participated in their first monthly business meeting Monday night.

Council members Julie Opferman and George Pambacas, who were elected in November and sworn in at the council reorganization meeting on Jan. 6, joined the table, and Councilman Chuck Davis headed his first regular meeting as council president.

Another new face at the table was attorney Patricia L. McGrail. Council voted to name McGrail and her law firm as the borough's solicitor for 2020.

Council members will chair the following committees in 2020:

Finance — George Dillinger
Health, Environment and Cable — George Pambacas
Parks and Recreation — Julie Opferman
Personnel — Chuck Davis
Planning and Zoning — Ed Babyak
Public Safety — Lou Bender
Public Works — Ken Robb

In other business:

Borough Engineer Ken Hillman discussed a number of projects that will be taking place throughout White Oak during 2020:

A project on Lincoln Way that will include the installation of new street signs will be funded by an Allegheny County Community Infrastructure and Tourism Fund grant. This project will be advertised for bids on Jan. 24 and Jan. 31, and bids for the project will open on Feb. 12. More information about this project including its start date will be available at the next council meeting on Feb. 17.

A paving project will target Cool Springs Road, Messinger Lane, Cypress Drive, White Oak Drive, Rankin Road and the 1600 block of Ohio Avenue. Bids will be opened at the end of this week, and council is likely to award the contract at its next meeting.

Final improvements to extend an existing retaining wall and fix the landslide at Center Street Extension are set to cost the borough between $175,000 and $215,000. Hillman said the price discrepancy depends on how much work White Oak's public works employees can do to add concrete lagging panels to the existing wall.

Work to fix a drainage issue in the area of Cypress Drive and Lincoln Way will begin sometime in late January or early February as well, Hillman said.

Council awarded a contract to install new lighting at the White Oak Athletic Association building to Merit Electrical Group of Oakmont. Details are still being discussed with the contractor, but Hillman hopes to have a start date for the project soon.

Borough ends year with surplus

Dillinger reported that the borough ended 2019 with a surplus. From Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2019, the borough’s revenues totaled $4,858,472.31 and its expenditures were $4,552,562.85, he said.

According to Dillinger, the borough exceeded its projected revenues for last year and spent considerably less than budgeted.

Police report

In December, White Oak Police reported 19 total arrests, all of adults: two assaults, one for disorderly conduct, two drug offenses, one DUI, one false identification to law enforcement, two harassments, one for obstructing the administration of law or other government function, one for public drunkenness, eight thefts, 49 traffic violations and 685 total incidents.

Christy Walters is a freelance writer from White Oak. She may be reached at cmw119@pitt.edu.

Originally published January 21, 2020.

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