How much is a billboard worth?

By on October 12, 2011

By: ALICE HUMMER Review Correspondent, Staff Writer

East Cocalico Supervisors reduced the annual billboard lease rate for Lamar Co. from $1,900 to $500 for one year only at their Oct. 5 meeting.

The vote was 2-1, with Supervisor Chairman Doug Mackley voting "no." Supervisors Alan Fry and Noelle Fortna voted "yes."

Lamar Co., based in York, provided evidence that declining revenues, due to the poor economy, netted them approximately $20 more than the lease rate last year, which was $1,800 in the third year of the agreement with East Cocalico Township.

The billboard, owned by Lamar Co., is located at 1975 N. Reading Road. That site was slated for inter-municipal development as a community recreation center, until evaluation of plans proved not fiscally prudent.

Supervisors raised the lease rate from $1,800 to $1,900 this year, which was to begin another three-year agreement.

East Cocalico Township Manager Mark Hiester and Supervisor Alan Fry spoke with an officer of Lamar Co.

"We countered with $800 per year," Fry said. "Lamar Co. said that they won’t go above $500."

"I’m not in favor of it (reducing the lease rate to $500)," Mackley said. "As far as I’m concerned, the company can remove the billboard. My fear is that he’s quick to tell us when he’s not making money. Will he be quick to tell us when he’s making money?"

"I think $500 a year," Fortna said. "It’s better than zero."

Hiester noted, "They (Lamar) took down 42 signs already."

Better news was announced by Supervisor Fortna, the contact person for B.C. Chicken, who rents the building at 1975 N. Reading Road.

"B.C. Chicken wishes to extend their lease another six months, to June 2012," Fortna said.

Supervisors unanimously approved the extension, noting that they are good tenants. Rent will remain at $12,202.17 per month.

In other business, several land planning extensions were granted. Included were:

? Brunner’s Grove Crossing preliminary subdivision time extension for 90 days, until Jan. 8, 2012.

? Wabash Landing preliminary subdivision/annexation plan time extension for 90 days until Jan. 19, 2012.

? Stoney Parke, phase two final and phase one revised final subdivision plan for 90 days until January 25, 2012.

? Village at East Cocalico preliminary subdivision plan time extension for six months until April 30, 2012.

Supervisors approved eight waivers/modifications for the Sensenig annexation plan.

Road material bids went to Independence Construction for $16,950 for stone materials and Martin Limestone for asphalt materials for $19,154. A cold patch bid is scheduled for award at the supervisors’ Oct. 19 meeting.

Two ordinances were passed by supervisors. The first addresses some issues of collection and documentation of the local services tax (LST).

The second ordinance deals with the earned income tax (EIT) and is based on a model created by all municipalities in the county.

During the week of Oct. 9 to 15, Zieger Brothers will be at the woody waste site to grind the waste into mulch.

The cardboard and magazine dumpster should arrive on Oct. 6.

Supervisors authorized the annual East Cocalico Lions Club’s Toll Road Fund-raiser on Nov. 25. This fund-raiser, which has been held rain or shine for many years, is the day after Thanksgiving, also known as Black Friday.

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