NOTICE: We’re Moving!!!

February 12th, 2009

movedPlease be advised that Potter County Today has a new home. Effective immediately, Potter County news can be found at this site:

Please visit and bookmark the new site, since this one will soon be abandoned. Thank you for your cooperation.

‘Backpack’ Program Volunteers Needed

February 7th, 2009

backpacks1A public service program, known as “To Fill A Backpack,” is seeking volunteers in Austin, Coudersport, Galeton, Shinglehouse, Smethport, Eldred and Port Allegany. Help is needed to raise funds and distribute school supplies to underprivileged families.

The project was launched last August by Andy Kulp and Jackee Culver, who purchased backpacks and filled them with supplies for a family’s three children. They spread the word of a significant need and donors came through with enough supplies for more than 200 backpacks for area students.

Excess items were donated to the Christmas House in Coudersport to be sent to storm-struck Texas, and to the Operation Christmas Child program through the Christian and Missionary Alliance Church in Coudersport.

Those seeking more information should call 544-8032.

VA Expands Health Care To Clear Backlog

January 14th, 2009

vetsaffairsDepartment of Veterans Affairs (VA) will re-open enrollment in its health care system to more than 250,000 veterans whose incomes exceed current limits by 10 percent or less. In 1996, Congress established a priority-based enrollment system for VA and a uniform package of medical benefits for all enrollees. The legislation opened enrollment in VA’s health care system to all eligible veterans and established an annual review process. However, due to the large number of veterans applying for care, enrollment for those who are not being compensated for a military-related disability and who have incomes above a threshold was suspended in 2003.

The new rule is expected to take effect by June 30. VA will continue to monitor the backlog in demand for veterans’ medical services.

State Grants For Emergency Organizations

January 7th, 2009

Volunteer emergency response organizations in Potter County have been awarded more than $120,000 in state grants. Projects eligible for funding include construction or renovation, purchase or repair of equipment, training, and debt reduction.

coudfiretruckAustin Volunteer Fire Department received $4,917 for EMS operations and $9,500 for fire company operations. Coudersport Volunteer Ambulance Association was awarded $4,917, while Coudersport Volunteer Fire Department got $9,686. Roulette Chemical Engine Company received $3,833 for EMS operations and $9,500 for fire company operations.

Other grants included $4,917 each for Gale Hose Company of Galeton, Tri-Town Ambulance Association of Ulysses, Shinglehouse Ambulance Association, Kettle Creek Ambulance Assn. of Cross Fork and Genesee Volunteer Fire Department (EMS operations).

Also, $9,500 each for Harrison Township Volunteer Fire Company, Goodyear Hose Company of Galeton, Kettle Creek Hose Company, Genesee Volunteer Fire Department (fire company operations); $9,873 for Shinglehouse Volunteer Fire Department, and $9,686 for Tri-Town Fire Company of Ulysses.

Municipalities Must Update Emergency Plans

December 7th, 2008

Potter County Emergency Management Coordinator Jim Steiner has issued the following notice to township and borough officials, reminding them of the importance of completing a Municipal Emergency Operations Plan:

An audit with PEMA Central Area Office has found that there are several municipalities that have not completed the new Municipal Emergency Operations Plan Template, which was distributed to all municipalities by this office in August 2007.

As the time approaches for the annual review and update of your Emergency Operations Plan, please review the current Emergency Operations Plan you have on file to verify it is the current version, and to verify the promulgation page is completed and signed.

All municipalities must have a completed Emergency Operations Plan and a signed and dated promulgation page on file with this office by no later than Feb. 20. Should you have any questions, please contact Kathy Brooks or myself at 274-8900.

Tennessee Gas Shares Details On Pipeline Project

December 3rd, 2008

Tennessee Gas Pipeline officials shares details on that company’s “300 Line Expansion” project during a public meeting Wednesday evening at the Ulysses Firehall. Work is expected to start in mid-2010 after regulatory approvals are obtained. Tennessee plans to build about 125 miles of 30-inch pipeline – some of it through Potter County – while building two new compression stations and expanding four other stations. Wednesday night’s meeting will provide information on the location of the pipeline, the permitting process, construction techniques and environmental protection measures.

Tennessee is a wholly owned subsidiary of El Paso Corp., North America’s largest interstate natural gas pipeline system and one of the continent’s biggest independent natural gas producers. The company expects to increase natural gas delivery capacity in the region by approximately 300,000 dekatherms per day. The infrastructure improvements will enable the tapping of natural gas supplies from Gulf Coast, Appalachian, Rockies and Marcellus shale supply areas. Tennessee plans phased construction during 2010 and 2011. To minimize impacts from construction, the planned pipeline route would generally follow an existing pipeline corridor where possible.

The company has launched a website that contains details: