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From the Desk of Carroll Valley Mayor Ron

(11/2013) Itís November. We now have 54 days left for holiday shopping. I guess if you want to make it seem like it is a longer period of time, you could always say you have 1,296 hours or 77,760 minutes left before you are finished shopping. I donít think that helps. One good thing though and that is this year we turn back the clocks and say goodbye to Daylight Saving Time during the overnight hours heading into Sunday, November 3rd. That means an extra hour of sleep and at my age I want all the sleep I can get even if the rest of the nation wants to join in. You always could use that extra hour to go online and shop. Election Day is November 5th (Tuesday). The polls will be open from 7 am to 8 pm. If you have any questions regarding the election polls and voter ID, contact Ms. Monica Dutko, Adams County Director of Elections and Voter Registration at 717-337-9832.

November 7th is National Bittersweet Chocolate with Almonds day. Had to include this special day since I was told that almonds help improve your cholesterol levels. Have no words for the chocolate other than it tastes good. November 10th is Forget-Me-Not-Day. It is a day set aside to remember family and loved ones. On the same day, we celebrate the birth of the United States Marine Corps. Did you know that the Marine Corps was created in 1775 during the Revolutionary War. They are celebrating their 238th birthday. If you have never been, you may want to visit the National Museum of the Marine Corps located in Triangle, Virginia. For more information go to www.usmcmuseum.com.

On November 11th, we honor all Armed Forces veterans who have served our country. It was first celebrated in 1921 as Armistice Day. President Eisenhower changed it to Veteranís Day in 1954. As they do each year, Fairfield School is holding a "Veteranís Day Breakfast" on November 11th from 8:30 to 10 am in the Fairfield High School cafeteria. All veterans as well as their spouse or guest are invited to attend. However, RSVPís are necessary by November 5th. You can call the office at 717-642-2045 or email fasdvets@fairfield.k12.pa.us. As a 20 year veteran, please accept my heartfelt appreciation. We celebrate Thanksgiving this year on November 28th.

Around this time of year, the question always comes up as to whether someone can hunt in Carroll Valley. To clarify the rules, Carroll Valley cannot by law change state law regarding hunting; however, current state rules make legal hunting in Carroll Valley difficult. Pennsylvania has what are called "Safety Zones". In a safety zone, it is unlawful to hunt for, shoot at, trap, take, chase or disturb wildlife within 150 yards of any occupied residence, camp, industrial or commercial building, farm house or farm building, or school or playground without the permission of the occupants. It is unlawful to shoot into a safety zone, even if you are outside of the zone. Driving game, even without a firearm or bow, within a safety zone without permission is unlawful.

For comparison, think of a safety zone as about one and a half football fields. Hunting on hospital and institutional grounds, and in cemeteries, is also prohibited. It is unlawful to discharge a firearm within 150 yards of a Game Commission vehicle whose occupants are releasing pheasants. The safety zone for archery hunters statewide, including those using crossbows, is 50 yards. Archery hunters carrying muzzleloaders during any muzzleloader season must abide by the 150-yard safety zone regulation. Around playgrounds, schools, nursery schools or day-care centers, the safety zone remains 150 yards. For further information, refer to www.pgc.state.pa.us. As Carroll Valley has grown over the years, it is more and more difficult to find a location outside these safety zones. Should you think someone is hunting too close to a residence, you can call the Pennsylvania Game Commissionís Dispatch Center in Huntington at (814) 643-1831 and an officer will check for violations. If you see persons hunting from vehicles or after dark, call County Dispatch at 717-334-8101 or 9-1-1 to get the quickest response."

I have received a number of questions about texting, cell phone, and seat belt usage while in a motor vehicle. And, since many of our residents commute down to Maryland, what are the differences. In Pennsylvania, texting is prohibited while driving and is considered a primary offense (meaning the officer can pull you over if they see you do it). Texting means using an Interactive Wireless Communication Device to send, read or write a text-based message. At the present time, it is not illegal to make or receive a cell phone call while driving.

As far as seat belts are concerned, if you are driving or sitting in the front seat of a car, you must wear your seat belt. If you are driving with anyone under 18 years old in the vehicle, they must wear a seat belt at all times both in the front and back seat. Failure to do so is considered a primary offense. Pennsylvania vehicle law also requires your child be placed in an appropriate car seat. In Maryland, texting is also prohibited while driving and is considered a primary offense. However, in Maryland, you must use a hands free device to make or receive a cell phone call. The state also bans all learner permit and provisional license holders younger than 18 from cell phone usage when driving. Since October 1st all occupants of the vehicle whether sitting in the front seat or back seat must wear a seat belt. Again, failure to do so is considered a primary offense. Hope this helps you in your travels. Please follow the law and be careful when you are on the road.

You may want to attend the November 12th Borough Council meeting at 7 pm. The two topics of interest are: the public hearing on Ordinance #2-2013 Ė Zoning Change Regarding Cluster Development and the briefing to Council on a proposed Southwest Adams Recreation Commission (SARC). The briefing will explain that the SARC is a joint effort of the Fairfield Area School District and the surrounding municipalities within the District Boundaries to collaboratively create recreational opportunities for all members of the community. It is envisioned that by working together, more diverse opportunities can be provided. The organizational structure and financial support will be covered.

Borough meetings and office closures in November are: Planning Commission (Nov 4th), Borough Office Closed (Nov 5th & Nov 11th), Borough Council (Nov 12th), Borough Office Closed (Nov 28th & Nov 29th) and Parks/Recreation Committee (Nov 20th). Please reduce your speed to make sure you, your loved ones, your friends and neighbors will be safe. If you have any questions call me at 301-606-2021 or email at mayor@carrollvalley.org. Please come out and support your candidate(s) by casting your vote on Tuesday, November 5th. Happy Thanksgiving folks!

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