East Penn Press

Wednesday, October 23, 2019


Thursday, July 11, 2019 by jake meluskey Special to The Press in Local News

Emergency management coordinator chosen

A debate over the hiring of an emergency management coordinator position occurred at the June 20 meeting of the Lower Milford Township Supervisors.

The position was recently introduced by the township to help coordinate emergency teams during crisis situations. Lower Milford Township has a small emergency team and needs help when serious situations occur. It was brought to their attention the township did not have a certified person to communicate with during times of disaster, which makes response times slower. This new position will be vital in helping coordinate with neighboring departments.

Elaine Snovitch, wife of Supervisor Michael Snovitch, applied for the position. She served as president of the Southern Lehigh Public Library Board of Directors and has proven experience to handle this new role for the township. A dispute over whether she should receive her monthly stipend followed. The argument was that the new township employee should only start being paid the stipend once they have passed the certifications and can start in the role.

The monthly stipend being offered was budgeted for $100 a month. The basic argument was coming from Supervisor Jack Quigley. He said he was uncomfortable paying somebody that still needed to go through training and certification. Michael Snovitch retorted he had full faith in his wife and that, without question, he knew she would be able to handle the position.

Quigley believed in Elaine’s ability, but was generally uncomfortable paying anyone not prepared for their position. Instead, he proposed that once she receives her certification, she’ll receive a bonus of $500 and will be paid the stipend thereafter.

This was an agreeable compromise and will be presented to Elaine, upon her acceptance of the position, at the next supervisor’s meeting.

In other business, there was an amendment to the minutes from last meeting. Community member Ellen Koplin was in attendance to call attention to the absence of a letter her husband and she submitted last month. Ellen, along with her husband Dale, expressed public concern over the conditions of Spring Hill Road. The addition of the letter was accepted within the April minutes.

The treasurer’s report was read following the amendment of the minutes. The full cash and investments in funds ending May 31 totaled $1,742,228.

Regarding the public works personnel, Chairperson Donna Wright said major potholes and washouts are being worked on as quickly as possible by road crews.

“Considering the weather conditions, it’s amazing that they’re able to get done what they’ve done.,” Snovitch said. “On Grant Road, I was impressed with (what) they did with the clearing up of the potholes... I just came up, the other day, after that torrential rain... and the potholes looked great.”

Snovitch continued by explaining the worsening conditions of the road surface. He emphasized the roads were originally built with no bases. To save time and effort, past road crews placed a top coating onto the road surface and therefore, loose gravel and potholes are going to keep happening on a consistent basis. Snovitch gave credit to the teams of township workers helping to keep driving conditions as safe as possible.

In the zoning report, Wright brought attention to the township’s Spotted Lantern Fly program. She wanted to mention the fast spreading species is expected to return and should be monitored.

Supervisors moved next onto the fire company report. Supervisor Jack Quigley mentioned he attended that department’s fall festival and was given a tour of the new fire engine purchased.

“It’s very impressive … It was quite an amazing machine,” Quigley said.

Township Manager Zach Cooperman gave an update on the bank rates the township was being offered for a CD account. Embassy Bank is offering a 2.6 percent rate for a 12-month CD for $100,000. The board gave their approval of the rate.

During public comments, a complaint over neighborhood fireworks was made by a couple from Lower Milford Township. Their claims were that a neighbor has been harassing them with extremely loud fireworks and dangerous driving. The couple said they have contacted the zoning department and a letter has been sent, which seems to have quieted the neighbor. They wanted to bring it to the attention of the supervisors as they simply feel unsafe living in the neighborhood with this person.

They were told that if any harassment continues, their first actions should be to call the police.

In other news, a request for solar panels to be installed on a roof of a resident was made. Neighbors surrounding the Wind Hill Road household will be contacted before the installation takes place.