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New emergency equipment for Blooming Grove

By Kevin Kearney
August 21, 2013

Blooming Grove Township will purchase new communication equipment for emergency services due to radio interference on the current frequency, the board of supervisors said.

The supervisors voted unanimously at their August 5 meeting to spend $6,352 for the new equipment. Additional programming will be needed when the equipment is installed, but the township had earmarked $60,000 for upgrades to emergency services.

“We had the money set aside,” said supervisor chairman Randy Schmalzle.

The board has applied for the new system with the Federal Communications Commission, he said.

Blooming Grove currently shares its radio frequency with Porter Township, but interference has been occurring on the radios due to the dual use, said supervisor Nicholas Mazza. The problem will be eliminated when the township has its own frequency, he said.

The electrical equipment will be purchased from Industrial Electronics, Inc. of Scranton, and housed at a cellular tower at the gated community of Hemlock Farms in Lords Valley. Hemlock has offered the township space on the tower and the use of a storage shed for the electrical equipment. In return, Blooming Grove will purchase an emergency generator that can be used by both the township and Hemlock Farms in the event of a power failure, Schmalzle said.

In other business, Schmalzle said Kahr Firearms Group is moving forward with its plan to move from Pearl River, NY to Blooming Grove. The group is looking to build a manufacturing plant at the dormant Pike County Business Park, in addition to moving its corporate offices there. Between 80 and 100 jobs are expected to be created.

Kahr has recently reviewed its existing permits with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). “They (the DEP) were very positive and hoping to help with the project,” Schmalzle said.

Site preparation could happen as early as this year.