East Penn Press

Monday, April 22, 2019


Thursday, November 8, 2018 by LORETTA FENSTERMACHER Special to The Press in Local News

Maintenance requests reviewed

Members of the Alburtis Borough Council met Oct. 29 where Mayor Kathleen Palmer reported receiving an email from resident Lori Miller questioning the accuracy of the garbage rate of $47.09 reported in the Oct. 17 edition of The East Penn Press.

“We are still under contract. What was stated in the paper was correct,” Council President Ron DeIaco said.

Palmer also received an anonymous letter with no return address, about the 200 block of Main Street not being zoned commercial questioning parking. Council recalled there used to be a day care on that block and it is now a fitness business. Council supposed this person wants a parking space where there is public parking and said there was nothing they could do.

Maintenance Supervisor Donnie Derr was present at the request of council to discuss items on a maintenance budget request list submitted. Derr said the items are necessary for the work his maintenance crew must do in the borough. DeIaco began the discussion by thanking Derr for coming and saying he and his crew have done an excellent job this year. Council members.

The listed items were reviewed and discussed and it was decided the items to be purchased right away are the telescopic pole to reach into manholes, a sewer station basket, an electric sump pump and a sewer gas meter. Derr is waiting for Jeff Ott to get a price on a sewer station basket. Three quotes for an electrician are needed. The 2000 utility truck should be updated; bids are needed for this. Small tools are needed for the shop. Other items to be addressed are to update the pumps at Well #3 and update the roller, road signs and mower. Other items include a used tree chipper, yard tools, pole saw and other small items. A mower and plows were added to the list. DeIaco suggested keeping an eye on the bottom line as the items are purchased. Some items will be added to next year’s budget.

Borough Manager Sharon Trexler suggested when the grass cutting is finished, members of the maintenance crew look at the trees to scrape (Lantern Fly) larva off of the trees.

“We must do our due diligence,” Trexler said. Snow removal was briefly discussed.

“Maintenance will work at their discretion during snow removal. Maintenance is efficient and they do not waste money,” Derr said.

DeIaco said what the maintenance department does is appreciated.

Derr reported the maintenance crew removed the temporary patch on Front Street and the road is back to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation specifications. The crew has started trimming trees around street signs, the generators at the well houses have been serviced, water meters are being replaced with new digital units and the crew has started cleaning out the drains and have a lot of repairs. Derr has met with Jeff Ott on the sewer station and the sewer lines for free-flowing sewer.

An executive session regarding a personnel matter was held in the middle of the meeting. When the meeting resumed, Solicitor David Knerr reviewed with council two borough resolutions about the Civil Service Commission and the borough’s rules, regulations and procedures when hiring police officers.

Knerr advised council many things have changed in the county to make things more reasonable, including quorum rules, alternate members rules, candidate investigations rules and more and council needs to keep pace with the county and pass an ordinance accepting those changes.

From a list of 10 candidates and based on background and other information, three were chosen and of those three, Broc Termini was chosen as the best candidate. Council passed a motion approving the hiring of Termini as a full-time police officer pending a background check and Termini passing the psychological and physical examinations.

Jeff Ott of Ott Consulting, Inc., borough engineer, recommended paying Zgura Concrete Services, Inc. $12,553.50 for work done on the Walnut Street multi-modal project. Council passed a motion approving Ott’s request.

There was a sewer backup from Allentown at the Alburtis Tavern during a rain storm and owner Terry Bender requested the borough pay the insurance deductible of $2,500. Council decided they cannot pay the deductible because what happened is not the fault of the Alburtis system which is well maintained. The backup came from Allentown not Alburtis. A motion was passed not to pay the deductible.

Jennifer Montero, of Lehigh County Authority, sent a memo advising the borough, based on the 2010 U.S. Census data, wastewater allocations have been reduced from 250 gallons per day to 223 gallons per day for Alburtis. Action for approval is required at the monthly advisory committee meeting. Council passed a motion allowing Trexler to vote “yes” at the meeting.

A letter of protest and dispute was received from Stephen J. Roth, of Thomas Street, for being billed for using an excessive amount water on his current bill. After checking his monitored daily usage July 17 through Sept. 27, it was decided Roth used the water and does owe the money, even though he had a toilet leak in his system. As soon as the leak was stopped, his water consumption went down dramatically.

Macungie Ambulance reported they responded to 308 calls for service this month, eight were in Alburtis and of those eight, one call was answered by their mutual aid provider because they were out on other calls.