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Municipal News

By Jill Brown

At the March 23 Monessen Council meeting, a Letter of Recognition presentation took place. This was regarding the February 19, 2015 fire on Reed Ave. in Monessen.

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Mayor Lou Mavrakis commends Robert Bogan and presents his certificate. Bogan, a neighbor, had bravely kicked in the door at the home on fire at Reed Ave. 

 Four people attempted to save fire victim Martha Johnson, 92, who ultimately perished: a neighbor, a relative, and by-standers. Monessen Municipal Fire Chief Chris Rhome was present at the meeting to deliver the certificates. He said that, upon request, letters are to go out.

In other business, Councilwoman Lucille D'Alfonso made a motion to approve the addendum to the Monessen Grand Blvd. Sanitary Sewer Project in order to make repairs to Center Drive Ridge, lining 41 manholes and monitoring post-construction flow under the PennVest Grant. This should save money and be less of an eyesore to residents. Westmoreland engineer Tony Vitale deserves all the credit, according to Council.

Councilwoman Patricia Bukowski made a motion to approve request from Monessen Tobacco Free Coalition to use City Park Walking Track on Sat., June 13, for the Walk in the Park, contingent upon construction being completed. Motion was approved.

In public comments, a resident asked Council to consider changing the name of Monessen City Park to Monessen Veterans' Memorial Park. Council said they would look into it, citing when the park was given there were certain stipulations in place. There were some angry comments that they should rename it then. Council said simply, "If we are going to rename it, maybe we should invite the VFW down to look at [the name]."

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Mayor Mavrakis shakes the hand of Justin Oliver, who was one of four recognized on for bravery during the Reed Ave. fire.

Public address went into overtime, and sometimes the comments were heated. The executive session was held afterward.

Not present for pictures: Marilous Johnson, who ran over and tried to get door open to save the woman in the fire, and Jason Lowther, who also tried to get in to attempt rescue.

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