The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


March 8, 2013

Readers' Forum 3-8 | Hystone Avenue driving a winter nightmare

— I have lived in Ferndale for more than 10 years, and since I moved here, at least four motorists have almost lost their lives because  the hill I live on has not been plowed properly. The latest was last week, and the driver said his life flashed before his eyes as soon as he pulled onto Hystone Avenue.

He had no control of his vehicle, started sliding down the hill and his brakes locked. The next thing he knew, he was hit on Franklin Street by an ambulance that was transporting a patient. This was at 9:30 a.m.

Why was the hill not salted by 9:30?

I lived in Brownstown for many years and never had to worry about going to work at 6:30, because both hilly Gilbert and Habicht streets were always in great condition.

Of course, Ferndale officials have put up signs warning about the hill’s dangers, but when you work, you can’t stay home; people are depending on you.

One winter, they barricaded our street with snow and I couldn’t go to work. I am a home health aide and people depend on me being there. Something needs to be done.

Cheryl A. Weimann


Old Westmont, too, showing a bad side

David’s Lamison’s Readers’ Forum letter on Feb. 23 (“Action needed to restore Moxham”) was absolutely correct.

When we moved to Johnstown in 1970, Moxham was an attractive and proud neighborhood. As older homeowners pass away, properties are purchased by slum landlords who generally do not maintain the properties, allowing them to deteriorate to the point of becoming blights. They rent to anyone looking for cheap housing.

This is nothing more than a welcome mat for Section 8 dwellers – criminals, those looking for cheap rent and living on welfare, and those taking no pride in the properties or the neighborhood.

Unfortunately, this is occurring throughout the area. Our neighborhood in Old Westmont is experiencing similar unwelcome changes. A drive through our once-beautiful community reveals once- attractive homes that were turned into rentals and now showing signs of neglect and deterioration, and occupied by those seemingly unwilling to work to achieve homeownership, and obviously unwilling to maintain the properties’ appearance.

Action is needed to prevent the blight and crime arriving from Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, New York, etc., from spreading. We hope our neighborhood will not hear the gunfire now heard in Moxham.

Cynthia Petersen


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What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

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