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Published: Thursday, 6/12/2003

Sylvania Twp. ends truck scale lease


After weighing the benefits and liabilities of leasing a truck scale for Sylvania Township, trustees have decided to end what township administrator Brad Peebles called “a very expensive learning process.''

Trustee Dick Moses said township officials thought the scales would generate income from a portion of fines levied against overweight trucks; and that they would discourage heavy trucks from using Central Avenue.

The trustees who made the agreement are not any of today's panel members. Mr. Peebles said that state law does not allow the township to collect money from the fines. Money collected from operators of overweight trucks is sent to the county for use in road maintenance.

Leasing the scale and related costs have totaled nearly $167,000 since the lease began in October, 1998. He said the total doesn't include pay to township police officers who had to stop the trucks and weigh them.

Police Chief Joe Valvano said when there is a scale at a fixed site, such as the township's, it doesn't take long for truckers who are hauling weights above the legal limit to know where the scale is and avoid that area.

Trustees chairman Jim Schwerkoske said there also are times when police have stopped a truck with a load over the legal limit for which the trucker has a temporary permit to carry.

Part of the expense of the scale operation was the lease of land from the Reichert Family Limited Partnership at Central and Centennial roads.

Mr. Peebles said that part of the agreement is that once the lease is ended, the township must return the site to its original appearance. That involves digging up the concrete ramp and bed for the scale.

He estimated the cost for that might add $5,000 to the amount spent by the township on the scales. Trustees gave him permission to negotiate a purchase price for the scale with an eye toward selling it at a profit.

Otherwise, Mr. Peebles said, the lease will be canceled.

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