My family and I are citizens and tax payers of Perry Township for almost 20 years and I am deeply concerned for the future of our township and the future of our families. I am also a disabled veteran, serving in the US Marine Crop in the Vietnam War.
Recently, we have had two fine companies approach our Township Supervisors, wanting to invest tens of millions of dollars in our township and create over 600 very good paying jobs, along with adding millions of dollars to our tax base. The adverse effect would be increased traffic for 5-7 homes on Zion’s Church Road. I am sympathetic and understanding of their concerns because it happened to my neighbors and my family when Glen Gery Brick plant wanted to expand their quarry operations to within 200 ft. of many homes. We opposed this expansion, but we lost because the same Township Supervisors who are making it difficult for this new development, told us it was vital to the future employment and taxes of the township. Frankly, it was the correct decision for the future and the well-being of the township. Why can’t the same logic and concern be applied to this project on the Perry Golf Course and Esther Ludwig properties?
To make matters worse, we were informed recently that our Hamburg school taxes are going up and along with sewer rates going up to 60-80% because the township will lose an $850,000 grant to expand the sewer lines serving these new projects. This grant will be lost if these two new projects do not occur. The companies building these new projects have the legal right to build there. These properties are zoned for the exact use that is being purposed. Furthermore, the same Township Supervisors who are making it difficult are the same people who changed the zoning for these properties to warehouse and light industrial use 7-8 years ago.
The main issue of the Township Supervisors opposition is the placement of a new traffic signal. The developers need the traffic signal at Zion’s Church Road, and the Township Supervisors want it at Zweizig Road. The developers went to court to defend the traffic signal at Zion’s Church Road. A decision was ruled in favor of the developers, and now the township has hired an outside attorney to appeal the court’s decision at the expense of the taxpayers. Not only is this attorney representing the township’s appeal, she is also the attorney for a different developer who will gain greatly is the township prevails in preventing the traffic signal on Zion’s Church Road. I am not an attorney, but to me this seems like a conflict of interest, not to mention it appears to be unethical. Furthermore, we are told the township has no surplus monies in their budget, but they found the money to fight against a project that will benefit all the residents of the township.
In closing, I believe the township should sit down with the developers and all the citizens and work this out for the greater good of everyone. We should quit suing and spending money we don’t have. We need leaders to guide us into the future who will give us a project that will produce revenues and a quality project every residence in Perry Township can be proud of. Residents, let’s tell our Supervisors to be leaders and demand they do their jobs in the best interest of the township. Inform them it is not “their kingdom,” they work for us! Get involved before it is too late.
Miles A. Dundore
Perry Township resident