The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

September 11, 2013

New phone system will save city $43G per year

JOHNSTOWN — Johnstown City Council on Wednesday learned from its finance director that the city is on the right financial path, heard from a developer who wants to build affordable senior housing in Moxham and took a step toward  revitalizing Cambria City.

Finance Director Carlos Gunby told council that the city will save $43,000 a year in telephone service by replacing a piecemeal system that included more lines than were needed with a streamlined system.

Gunby also talked about a plan to turn the site of the former Washington Street Garage into a city parking lot with 80 spots.

He said the cost to pave and equip the lot would be about $250,000, but that the lot should earn enough money to pay for itself in about three years.

After that, the profit could go toward repaying parking department debt owed to the general fund, he said.

Gunby said the city’s finances are holding steady with revenues arriving as expected.

Council was appreciative of Gunby’s efforts.

“This is a good year,” Councilwoman Marie Mock said. “Carlos is doing a good job.”

John Verbanec, a Pittsburgh developer, told council about his Summa Development’s plans to buy the former Cypress school property from the city and build a $5 million to $6 million 50-unit complex.

“This is something we have been trying to do for years,” said Mayor Thomas Trigona after listening to the developer’s plans that will help to revitalize the city.

Trigona said council and Verbanec will meet again soon to further discuss building on the empty property.

Council agreed to accept a $10,000 grant from the Community Foundation for the Alleghenies for the development of a revitalization plan for Cambria City.

Renee Daly, director of the city’s community and economic development, said that a couple of years ago residents and businesses met with the city to discuss the future of that neighborhood.

Daly said those suggestions now will be developed into a plan with the grant, a $25,000 state grant, and another, yet to be obtained, local grant paying for the plan.

City Manager Kristen Denne said Johnstown Detective Thomas Owens is to be commended for the dedication it took to obtain an armored vehicle for the Special Emergency Response Team in Cambria County.

Owens spent much of his own time working to obtain the vehicle at no cost to the city or county, she said.

A photograph of the vehicle appeared in Wednesday’s edition of The Tribune-Democrat.

Council also approved the transfer of a liquor license from the former Chillie’s Pub in Dale to Joe’s Place, 668 Main St. in downtown Johnstown.


Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • District Deaths July 31, 2014

    July 30, 2014

  • Smaller payout to seniorsā€ˆurged

    State Lottery officials say less means more for seniors.

    July 29, 2014

  • Portage ambulance aid will add portable CPR device, other tools

    Federal funding awarded to Portage Area Ambulance Association will soon put “a third man” alongside their two-person crews when emergencies occur, ambulance operations manager Edward Nelson said.

    July 29, 2014

  • paint_twp building Paint Township considers offering part of building for rent

    Four years after Paint Township built an addition at the Basin Drive building to house its growing police department, much of the new space likely will be offered for rent this fall because the township supervisors say it's no longer needed.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Old Rockwood hotel will soon be history

    The historic – but dilapidated – Merchants Hotel in Rockwood is expected to be razed soon.
    On Tuesday, Somerset County’s three commissioners unanimously agreed to a demolition plan for the building, which was constructed in the 1880s. The arrangement calls for a private citizen, William Nair, to tear down the structure at 703 Main St. in exchange for being allowed to keep any salvageable materials.

    July 29, 2014

  • Tribune Treasure!

    July 30, 2014

  • ATV blast ready to roll at Rock Run

    Organizers are keeping the spirit of the Fisher’s ATV Reunion at Rock Run Recreation Area alive despite losing the support of the award-winning Outdoor Channel TV show “Fisher’s ATV World.” Now called the Rock Run ATV Summer Blast, the event will continue to offer demonstration rides, motor competitions, product vendors, live music, camping and trail riding.

    July 29, 2014

  • Culvert 1 Preservationists use age-old method at historic site

    Preservation work on two historic culverts associated with the Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic Site has been completed. The culverts were reconstructed using a variety of techniques, including dry stone masonry, which was used to build the culverts more than 180 years ago.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Local briefs 7/30/2014

    July 29, 2014

  • Officer, civilian motorist injured in crash

    A Johnstown police officer who was responding to an emergency and one other driver were taken to the hospital after they were injured in a three-vehicle accident around 5:40 p.m. Tuesday on Railroad Street at the intersection with Clinton Street and Church Avenue.
    The Johnstown Fire Department said that the three occupants of the third vehicle were not injured.

    July 29, 2014


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.

     View Results
House Ads