Hearing set on loan for racetrack sewer plant


HILLSVILLE, Pa. — A public hearing is set for 2 p.m. Thursday on Mahoning Township’s application for $7 million in Section 108 loan funds for a sewer plant to service the planned Valley View Downs harness racing track and casino and surrounding areas.

The funding also would be for construction of main sewer lines along U.S. Route 224 and Pa. Route 551.

The hearing is at the Lawrence County commissioners caucus meeting room at the Lawrence County Government Center, 430 Court St., New Castle.

Other sources of funding for the $20 million sewer project would include an $11 million PennVest loan (pending necessary approvals) and $2 million in tap-in fees.

According to a legal advertisement placed by Lawrence County Community Action Partnership, the Section 108 Loan funds are eligible for the project because it would benefit low- and moderate-income people through creation of new job opportunities.

Racetrack developers estimate that Valley View Downs will create 1,600 construction jobs and 1,500 permanent full-time jobs.

In another matter, Valley View Downs is seeking several zoning variances on height requirements and other matters.

A hearing is set for 7 p.m. Thursday at the Mahoning Township Community Center, 4512 W. State St., (U.S. Route 224) for the Mahoning Township Zoning Hearing Board to hear the request from Stephen Zubrow, of Pittsburgh, who is listed as agent for Valley View Downs.

The 250-acre site located near U.S. Route 224 and Pa. Route 551 in Mahoning Township is zoned “Mixed-use Highway 1.”

The variance requests are for height of a hotel/parking structure, future parking structures, and a covered structure where people may exit vehicles such as at a hotel entrance; a variance to permit construction and use of an above-ground storage tank; a variance from the ordinance requiring the facility be enclosed by a fence and a variance to permit certain parking areas to use grass and gravel.

A copy of the application is available for examination by the public at the Mahoning Township Municipal Building during business hours. The zoning hearing board will meet at 6:30 p.m. before to the variance hearing to elect officers.

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