A new ATV law went into effect on 1 July. In
under 6 years of age cannot operate an ATV, children
between 6 and 16 years of age must wear a helmet and eye protection and
must have completed an approved ATV Safety course and children
under 16 years of age cannot have a passenger on an ATV unless the
operator has a driver’s license. These
restrictions do NOT apply if the ATV is being operated for farming,
ranching, or wildlife management. They also do NOT apply if
the ATV is being used for hunting/trapping or is being operated under
DIRECT VISUAL SUPERVISION of a parent or guardian on private property.
A copy of the new law is available
On Monday 27 June 2011 County Council passed a "budget" which turned
out to be a summary of a budget for the General Fund with a
total of $32,699,523, which was asserted to require no tax increase.
Requests by the Sheriff, the Fire
Service, USCL and several service organizations were not included in
the budget. Some 200 people attended the meeting, about 24
spoke and a petition containing more than 700 signatures was
presented to Council, all objecting to any tax increase.
Economic Development Meeting
Late last week a "Budget" was posted on
the county website. This "Budget" bears little resemblance to
the budget passed by County Council. More than 30 modifications with a
total impact of more than $500k have been made, including movement of
the $99k Victims Assistance Program to another (unspecified) budget
category, movement of $120k for a new employee time management system
from the current year to next year and implementation of a $50k Special
Projects fund in the Roads and Bridges Department.
A query to Steve
Willis, County Administrator, indicated that he had put the budget as
passed by County Council through an updating process that resulted in
these changes. Mr. Willis asserts that he has the authority to do this
without submitting the changes to County Council for approval and that
the "Budget" on the county website is the official county budget for
requested that the actual transactions implemented on the budget after
passage be made public. This request was made directly to Mr. Willis
and members of County Council via email and also orally at the County
Council meeting on 11 July 2011. There has been no response to this
request; apparently neither Mr. Willis nor County Council feels any
need to make this information public.
County Council needs to make
it clear that no one has any authority to modify the final draft of
anything passed by County Council. Publication should be a matter of
transferring the document that was in County Council's hands at passage
to a website without any changes at all. If errors are found in such a
document, there is a procedure to correct them; this procedure should
be rigorously followed and entirely transparent.
The "Budget" as published on
the county website may be found
here; note that there are two documents marked "Revenue" and
Expenditures". A copy of the draft General Fund budget as of
May is available
here; this draft budget contains the original requests
submitted by County Department Heads. Additional information can be found on the LC Blog.
will be a presentation on Economic Development in the County Council
Chambers in the County Office Building an Wednesday 13 July at 6:00
PM. This is supposed to be an educational meeting to acquaint the
public with the ins and outs of the economic development process as
practiced presently in Lancaster County.
Craig Roof, Clarence Witherspoon, Jim Williams. James Auten
With 4 July Fireworks
Firefighter Jim Williams retired from the Van Wyck Volunteer Fire
Department on 4 July 2011 after 38 years of service. The Fireworks
Celebration cosponsored by the Fire Department and the Community
Development Club served as the venue for the presentation of a plaque
and provided an opportunity for the community to thank a dedicated
firefighter and the Fire Department generally for what they do.
The Second Annual Van Wyck Fireworks
Celebration was mildly hampered by a steady drizzle, but the
fireworks were impressive and the community dinner both excellent and
well attended. Jim
Williams' cake (below) provided a fitting end to the
dinner and the fireworks a fitting end to the evening.
Car Show 10 September 2011
See the brochure.
to Lancaster County food programs have fallen off recently. The
recession increases the number of people facing hunger and the need for
food. The Van Wyck Press is happy to transport food to the
agencies serving the needy in Lancaster. If you have food
you would like to donate and would like us to transport it for you, let me know.
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