East Penn Press

Sunday, July 5, 2020


Thursday, May 7, 2020 by SHARON SCHRANTZ Special to The Press in Local News

COVID-19 causes spending concerns

At the virtual Macungie Borough Council meeting May 4, the topic of spending and the lack of revenue pertaining to the COVID-19 pandemic was raised.

A discussion was held on the Americans with Disabilities Act ramps to be built on Church Street. A grant of $61,000 was received for this project which totals $83,000. With the grant money, the project must be completed or the money is lost. There is an additional charge of inspections which is $2,000 no matter how often needed.

There was a tie vote among the council members; Mayor Ronald Conrad voted to proceed and the project was approved. The bid was awarded to G & B Construction.

Another suggested small cost saver is the elimination of the first street sweeping. Funds for the library have been cut as the library was said to be closed. However, the library is not closed but offering limited services.

It was requested the mayor recognize medical personnel. Conrad said he will sign a proclamation for those who have worked the “front lines.” Emergency personnel, police and other members of the medical community were awarded a proclamation from the Borough of Macungie with much appreciation for helping keep residents protected.

Sgt. Travis Kocher gave a brief police update saying in the last four days, there has been an increase of calls.

There are some unsettled sidewalk repair issues. It was proposed and approved that residents with sidewalk issues have until July 31 to address the repairs or the borough will then step in and complete them at cost to the resident.

The borough employee handbook is under review for certain updates. Life insurance for employees was increased to $80,000. Fragrance usage was discussed due to the concern for asthma, COPD and other respiratory ailments. It was determined people do not know what is considered too much so this will be reconsidered and better guidelines will be considered. There were also suggestions about inappropriate clothing such as shorts and flip-flops. This will also be more clearly defined.

The topic of yard waste stickers was discussed. The price of these stickers is $30 which includes the cost to print and design them. There was a discussion on how many would be needed. The stickers will be reconsidered next year.

The search for the borough assistant treasurer is continuing. Seven applicants will be interviewed via Zoom. Council members will be included in the interview process.

For future spending in the borough, it was decided anything over $1,500 will now be brought to council for approval.

There was a discussion on volunteers and potential injuries.