East Penn Press

Monday, November 19, 2018
PRESS PHOTO BY DEBBIE GALBRAITHEmmaus Main Street Manager Ashley Lorah shares information about upcoming holiday events in Emmaus. PRESS PHOTO BY DEBBIE GALBRAITHEmmaus Main Street Manager Ashley Lorah shares information about upcoming holiday events in Emmaus.

EMMAUS BOROUGH COUNCIL

Thursday, November 8, 2018 by chloe goldstein Special to The Press in Local News

Borough manager discusses flooding issues from recent storm

Emmaus Borough Manager Shane M. Pepe talked about the negative impact the Nov. 2 storm had on Emmaus at the Nov. 5 Emmaus Borough Council meeting.

“The high school was badly damaged by flooding in the street,” Pepe said. “The school is closed. There is ruined gym equipment and several dozen classrooms and offices that were also ruined.”

He also noted the severity of the storm.

“We have never seen a storm hit and flood something like a school before.”

Pepe added the storm terribly affected the rest of the community with “tens of thousands of dollars damage at community park.” The pool is flooded, a pickup truck and a mower were damaged as well as a broken sewer line and private property. He said the storm raised Meadow Pool about five feet in the air which is “significant considering it is a huge concrete pool. There’s a lot of money in making these repairs.”

“We saw 4.5 inches of rain in three hours. That amount of rain in that time flooding the streets and streams is significant. We haven’t seen that amount of water come that quickly.”

Pepe said it wasn’t just the drains on Macungie Avenue causing the flooding. There are two drains on school property as well.

“It had nothing to do with systems failing; it had everything to do with that amount of rain in that quick of time with debris filling those inlands. Unless you had someone standing in thigh deep water with a shovel trying to clean that out while the rain is coming, there was no avoiding it. This had nothing to do with any failure; it had everything to do with amount of rain in a short period of time,” Pepe said.

Three individuals spoke during the Personal Appeals Part 1.

Resident Tom Godusky stated his concerns with Second and North streets not having a crosswalk sign. He sees a lot of activity with people walking back and forth, people walking their pets and students out creating a dangerous section. He also expressed an issue with Howard Street which hasn’t had any work done in years whereas other streets have been resurfaced. Godusky has been asking for the borough to address Howard Street since 1997.

Candidate for State Representative in the 131st district, Andy Lee, introduced himself to council members. He is running for the seat state Rep. Justin Simmons, R-131st, currently holds. “I am a father of three, I have a wife who is a guidance counselor, and I am a small business owner. You have my word, I will fight on your behalf.” He encouraged everyone to vote in the Nov. 6 election.

Emmaus Main Street Manager Ashley Lorah shared the agenda for the upcoming Old Fashioned Christmas including a cheers trail, which will be a drinking trail noon to 5 p.m. They are changing the number of allowable participants from 125 to 200. She also discussed a candy cane lane for children to partake in arts and crafts, a free movie at the Emmaus Theatre, trolley rides, Santa and Mrs. Claus, musical performances and the annual tree lighting.

Council approved Resolution No. 2018-36 for a lot line adjustment for 421-423 State Ave. The lot line adjustment plan consolidates four lots into two lots.

Ordinance No. 1181 and Ordinance No. 1182 was also approved. Ordinance No. 1181 will allow for the Intergovernmental Cooperation Agreement to implement the Lehigh County Comprehensive Plan.

Ordinance No. 1182, also approved, calls for the remove of a residential handicapped sign at 624 Walnut St., Emmaus.

The council held an executive session to discuss legal issues.