East Penn Press

Friday, July 19, 2019

LOWER MACUNGIE BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS Bond refinancing to save township money

Wednesday, October 3, 2012 by SHARON SCHRANTZ Special to The Press in Local News

Financial Consultant Gary Pulcini spoke to the commissioners at their Sept. 20 meeting about refinancing bonds within Lower Macungie. The refinancing of $3.2 million in bonds would cost about $75,000 and would pay down the debt 10 years earlier. Another $2 million would be taken out of the fund balance and paid directly to the debt. This action would save the township $235,000. For more detailed information, visit lowermac.org.

The funding for Hamilton Crossings development was discussed. The Tax Increment Financing was further discussed to assist with funding this project to bring a Cosco Wholesale Club to the Lehigh Valley, as well as a Target. The TIF representatives from the township are Business Manager Bruce Fosselman and Commissioner James Lancsek.

There was a Conditional Use hearing for proposed development of 5248 Hamilton Blvd. Presently this location has a large vacant building which was used to house American Kitchens. There is also a dilapidated two-story house and a four-bay garage. The proposed development would bring in some retail space as well as a restaurant. The preliminary development was approved with Commissioner Douglas Brown opposing.

Resident Luke Sebastian sent a letter expressing concern for the Willow and Sauerkraut Lane intersection. Mike Siegel, a resident, expressed his concerns for parking along Mill Creek Road. This occurs during sporting events in the fields near Walmart.

The Parks and Recreation Board requested the appointment of Ron Beitler for their board. His appointment was rejected due to Beitler's alleged negativity and criticism of the township. It was also said Beitler is part of the lawsuit against the township over the Jaindl land development. Commissioner Roger Reis said he was not aware of Beitler's involvement in the lawsuit.

The sewer collection delinquencies continues to be a topic in the township. Turn off notices will be issued at the end of October. Properties will be red-tagged for this action. There is still time to either pay the bill or make a payment arrangement. This action has come after many attempts to have residents pay their accounts. Once the water is turned off, the only way to have it turned back on, is to pay the bill in its entirety. Lehigh County Authority is the agency that shuts off the water. Over 50 families will be affected.

Lancsek made a request for another part-time person for the last quarter to assist with the collecting of sewer and water bills as the workload will increase with the potential action.

The new speed limit has been posted on Mill Creek Road. It is 25 mph from Sauerkraut Lane to Spring Creek Road. Presently, there are homemade signs on several of the posted signs which will be removed.

It was suggested the barricades at Macungie Crossings be replaced as they are not in good condition. This area is on Hamilton Boulevard.

Faith Evangelical Free Church has been granted a time extension for their proposed additions to their facilities.

The Public Safety Committee made a proposal for their police study. After receiving several bids for this, Reis made the recommendation Dr. Gary Cordner be awarded the bid as his was the lowest and he offered to take only half of the total since he lives locally. Cordner is a professor of criminal justice at Kutztown University. He was a former police chief in Maryland and an author of a leading textbook on police administration.

AnnMarie Cordner is an assistant professor of criminal justice at Kutztown University. She specializes in research methods and statistical analysis. Edward Connors is the president of the Institute for Law and Justice, a law enforcement consulting and research firm. He wrote a publication "Guidelines for Starting and Operating a new Police Department."

Commissioners Ryan Conrad and Lanscek complimented Reis for his hard work and his recommendation.

There is a new lieutenant at the Fogelsville State Police barracks. His name is Lieutenant Paul Gaspich.