Voters Guide | Ferguson Township supervisor

November 2, 2013 

FERGUSON TOWNSHIP SUPERVISOR

Term: Four years

Salary: $3,250

Question: Zoning regulations vary between municipalities. Do you believe there should be changes to the zoning regulations in Ferguson Township? If so, what changes would you recommend?

(Vote for not more than two.)

REPUBLICAN

William “Bill” Keough, Pennsylvania Furnace

Date of birth: Nov. 3, 1944

Education: Cortland State University, B.S., 1966; Penn State, M.S., 1967

Occupation: Retired

Qualifications: Ferguson Township supervisor, 3½ years to current; COG Personnel Committee, current; Centre County Ag Land Preservation Board, 25 years to current; SCASD Continuing Education Advisory Board, five years, current chairman; Community Foundation, four years, current board member; PIAA/ASA softball umpire, 30 years.

Answer to question: I see zoning as one of several tools in the Ferguson Township land management basket. The fact that zoning regulations differ between municipalities has pluses and minuses, but these differences provide choices for residents, developers, businesses and industry within the region. Ferguson Township zoning regulations are not cast in stone. During most years, there are additions, deletions and/or revisions initiated by residents, state law, our professional planning team and the development community. I am generally supportive of our overall zoning regulation package but feel there are small revisions in each category that should be addressed.

Janet Whitaker, State College

Date of birth: April 11, 1950

Education: 1972, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, B.A. social science

Occupation: Retired educator

Qualifications: Middle and high school teacher, 24 years; Student Assistance Program Team member, seven years; Science Park Recreation Association, pool board member, four years; Meals on Wheels volunteer.

Answer to question: Zoning regulations are intended to protect the landowner and resident. Those contained in the Ferguson Township Code of Ordinances have been tested by time to meet community needs. Our dynamic community requires constant scrutiny of these regulations. Authorities, boards and commissions advise the Board of Supervisors, who are responsible for making sound decisions.

As a supervisor candidate, living in the township 32 years, I am not aware of present issues regarding zoning. When a need presents itself, I am very willing to work as part of a team toward a solution.

DEMOCRAT

Steve Miller, State College

Date of birth: Nov. 28, 1953

Education: West Virginia University, B.A., 1976

Occupation: Science writer

Qualifications: Township supervisor, eight years; Planning Commission, two years; Spring Creek Watershed Commission, six years (chair, two years); ClearWater Conservancy Board, five years (currently president).

Answer to question: The Ferguson zoning ordinances serve a variety of needs and uses within the township, from high-density residential near the university and State College borough to agricultural production in the western part of the township. During the past decade, we have added a traditional town zoning district, the mixed-use terraced streetscape district along the College Avenue corridor and the ridge overlay zoning. Current regulations have allowed this flexibility. Although I don’t see any need for additional changes immediately, I am open to considering new zoning ordinances to meet the needs of the township as they develop.

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