East Penn Press

Saturday, July 22, 2017

EMMAUS BOROUGH COUNCIL

Thursday, May 18, 2017 by TARA CARMAN Special to The Press in Local News

Carnival coming to town

Emmaus Community Day just received a giant boost as the Emmaus Borough Council approved the addition of a carnival to the festivities.

The unanimous vote, which was held at the May 15 meeting, will allow Kairos Promotions to bring JCJ Entertainment to Emmaus Community Park June 2, 3 and 4.

The carnival will have 10 rides which include a Ferris wheel, merry-go- round, Scrambler and a Chair Jet. There will be three bounce houses and two stages for performers which will possibly include a fire spinner, fire breather and a family acrobatic team.

Borough Manager Shane Pepe said he called a number of different organizations which have hosted JCJ Entertainment to make sure they were actually legitimate. “All of the different organizations that they’ve performed for that I’ve called had very positive comments about it.”

The carnival will be taking place during the borough’s annual Community Day which is being held June 4 and hosted by the Emmaus Recreation and Entertainment Commission. This is the borough’s fourth Community Day which brings out vendors, crafters, community organizations and first responders. Council is hoping the carnival will bring out a much larger crowd, as attendance has been low the past few years.

In the contract, JCJ Entertainment said they would promote with up to 30,000 brochures, which Borough Solicitor Jeffrey Dimmich said “should greatly enhance your social activity.”

Borough President Brent Labenberg added the borough and the recreation commission should immediately start advertising on the borough website and social media sites to get the word out as fast as possible.

“If this is successful, then this is something that could be a part of Community Day for future years,” Pepe said.

JCJ will pay the borough $25,000 for services and for the borough allowing them to use their park for three days. Pepe said after the fee covering the cost of police and other borough expenses they are providing, the remaining money will go to the recreation commission.

The carnival hours will be 5 to 9 p.m. June 2 and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. June 3 and 4.

In other business, council voted to allow the fire department to purchase a brand new 2016 Chevy Tahoe for Fire Chief John Price.

The current fire chief vehicle is on its “last leg” and will require several thousand dollars in repairs. In addition to needing new tires, brakes and a driver’s seat, the current vehicle burns two quarts of oil per month, the air condition is broken and the transmission is shot in addition to other mechanical issues.

“It’s beyond the point where it’s cost effective to fix it,” Pepe said.

The raw price of the vehicle is roughly $36,000, but the borough will have to add the lights, stripping, radios and other items that will allow the chief to respond in emergencies. The total cost for the vehicle and amenities will be just about $47,000 with the cap not to exceed $48,000. The money for the vehicle will be coming from the fire budget’s contingency fund.

Some debate occurred when council received a request from the Lehigh Valley Fiber Festival to put up a banner in Emmaus to advertise the event.

The Lehigh Valley Fiber Festival is a “premier event for all things fiber and fabric” and is being held Sept. 23 and 24 at the Pool Wildlife Sanctuary. The Pool Wildlife Sanctuary will get part of the profit if there is a profit made after expenses.

The event is technically not in Emmaus, even though it is right across the borough line. According to borough policies, a banner can only be hung if the event is in Emmaus borough or being run by a borough organization.

The argument for allowing the banner is the Pool Wildlife Sanctuary does have an Emmaus address. They are also a non-profit organization and some council members felt it would benefit them and they are a great community partner. There are also no other community events going on at the time requiring banner space.

Councilman Chris DeFrain asked whether or not the banner policy is typically followed, which Councilman Wesley Barrett replied it has been followed much more strictly in the past few years.

Labenberg said he would be voting against the idea. “We try to set precedent and stick with it, because it can open up a can of worms. If you say yes to this...then who do you say yes to and who do you say no to?”

The motion passed 4-2 for allowing the festival to hang the banner. DeFrain and Labenberg voted against allowing the banner.

Mayor Winfield Iobst declared the week of May 14 as Emmaus Police Department Week. He also declared the week of May 21 Emergency Medical Services and National Public Works week.

Council approved a request by the Emmaus Public Library to hold a library night at the community pool which will be free to library card holders. The library will pay a $100 fee and the event will be held 5 to 8 p.m. Aug. 21.