Zoning issue heats up in Dingman

| 29 Sep 2011 | 08:34

    DINGMAN - Vito DiBiasi claims nothing has changed to make Dingman Township revisit a zoning change that was set aside two years ago. Supervisors’ chair Tom Mincer says DiBiasi is an “alarmist” who makes baseless claims regarding his personal issues. DiBiasi resides on Buist Road just south of the U.S. Route 6/Interstate Highway 84 interchange. He has conducted a personal “watch dog” campaign to preserve the aquifer for Milford’s water supply that lies in part under 87 acres being considered for rezoning from NC to a more liberal RC, or resort commercial zone. NC uses include parks, home businesses, school bus shelters, and timber harvesting. RC adds commercial nurseries, essential services, and residences. Both NC and RC zones can be used for more commercial purposes with approval of a conditional use zoning permit. DiBiasi says expanded RC commercial use may impact on the groundwater and have a negative impact on the aquifer. After DiBiasi lobbied them in late 2004, the Milford Water Authority, Milford Borough Council, and Pike County Conservation District, all sent letters to Dingman Township Board of Supervisors asking that the zoning classification that could impact the Sawkill Creek Watershed remain unchanged.. Dingman supervisors’ chair Tom Mincer said the supervisors have been working on this project for over five years with careful thought and a comprehensive plan. The supervisors want to expand the township commercial tax base to reduce the financial burden on seniors and others with fixed incomes. Mincer says DiBiasi’s only concern is that nothing gets built near his home. ”’I got mine and I don’t want anything around me’ is what DiBasi is all about,” said Mincer. Confronting one another Tuesday night, Mincer made it clear to DiBiasi that the supervisors are just looking to go back and check the various areas to see what is appropriate for possible changes. No public hearings have been scheduled regarding this issue. “When a public hearing is scheduled you will be more than welcome to air your concerns,” Mincer told DiBiasi. The meeting became confrontational between DiBiasi and Mincer regarding an inference that DiBiasi made to the Courier that a “back door deal” may have been involved in the zoning reconsideration. Before the supervisors, DiBiasi denied ever saying anything regarding this “deal.” “You feel that you speak for us by telling the public what we are intending to do. We don’t need you to speak for us; in fact, you do not have the right to speak for us,” solicitor John Klemeyer said, lecturing DiBiasi. DiBiasi claimed that he was just reminding the supervisors of what is going on and what took place in the past. Mincer told DiBiasi that this was not the appropriate time for the discussion since it wasn’t a public hearing about zoning changes. Mincer went on to remind DiBiasi that he has had a garbage mess in front of his home for over two years and has also moved into an extension on that home before receiving final approval for its use. “It seems like you make your own rules and the township has had enough of your rhetoric ... You claim concern for the environment but only in the area of Buist Road where you live,” Mincer said. “Mr. DiBiasi, we are volunteers and work for the community. I have never seen you at anything that we do every day. You have never volunteered to do anything in this community like adopting Buist Road, help on town cleanup day, help the volunteer fire department, or come to a town recreation meeting. You only come here when it involves your house and your personal issue,” charged Mincer. “I’m glad I’m getting under your skin,” DiBiasi told Mincer, as he left the room. The meeting ended on that note.