Coplay Whitehall Sewer Authority passed its budget for 2019 at its last meeting of 2018, held Dec. 20.
The authority is projecting income of $3.8 million. Operational expenses are totaled at $2,667,000. The remaining is for administrative expenses. Salaries and wages are $353,000, and the benefits package tops out at $402,000. Insurance expense for workers’ compensation and commercial coverage is $76,500.
When Mark Reccek was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, he began his treatment in the oncology department at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Muhlenberg, Bethlehem. The Marine was a fighter and wrote regularly for The Press newspapers.
While he was undergoing treatment, he was being cared for by his sister, Donna Kukor, of Bath. During his stints in the hospital, Reccek continued to write columns on the experiences he had during his treatment.
At the Coplay Borough Council meeting Dec. 11, the borough was asked to approve a beer festival in April. The fest, a fundraiser for Coplay Sports, would be sponsored by the Whitehall Area Chamber of Commerce. One of the conditions for approval was that someone from Coplay Sports serve as a point of contact for the borough to assist with coordination.
At Coplay Borough Council’s workshop meeting Dec. 4, township Engineer Daniel Witczak, of Acela Engineering, presented an assessment of the Saylor Park project.
The original idea was to refurbish the existing Saylor Park into a modern playground with top-flight sports fields. The goal was to use grants from various state agencies and philanthropic groups.
At Coplay Borough Council’s regular meeting Nov. 13, Councilwoman Janet Eisenhauer gave council members a final opportunity for changes to the borough’s website. The new design and details were made available before the final approval to go live with the effort.
Lehigh Valley Planning Commission released a plan dubbed Walk/Bike LV as a way to encourage development of walkways and bike paths to make it easier for residents to get outdoors. The proposal is a regional master plan for pedestrians and bicyclists. Some cities, like Portland and Seattle, lead the way in accommodating everyday trail users. Others like Tucson are a destination for bikers during the winter season.
At Coplay Borough Council’s workshop session Nov. 6, council President Louis Bodish announced that meetings to plan for the borough’s sesquicentennial will soon begin.
“We anticipate that we open the celebration year on April 6,” he said.
There is a list of events that will be held throughout the year. The earliest one under consideration is a beer festival.
“We need to start the planning now. We had one of these planned last year, but it fell apart,” Councilman Mark Molitoris said.
Coplay Whitehall Sewer Authority Engineer Darryl Jenkins reported during an Oct. 18 meeting that the solar electrical project has been awarded to RER Energy Group.
RER was awarded the contract because it was the only bidder to meet expectations.
The project is moving forward as the contractor prepares a project schedule and necessary documentation. One criterion is that the solar panels be American made. Chairman John Schreiner verified that provision at the CWSA board meeting.
Northampton County Executive Lamont McClure and Lehigh County Executive Phillips Armstrong, along with state Rep. Zach Mako, R-183rd, and Michael Dee, chief of staff for state Rep. Jeanne McNeil, D-133rd, gathered at Fellowship Community, Whitehall, Sept. 12 to present their thoughts on the state of the counties to Whitehall Area Chamber of Commerce.
McClure emphasized the crossroads he sees in the future.
“In the next decade, we need to decide if we are going to be the home of fulfillment centers or if we can balance economic development and land protection,” he said.
Councilman Stephen Burker reported to Coplay Borough Council at the Oct. 9 meeting that he has been in detailed discussions on grants for the Saylor Park project. He is confident he has the right combination in place to extend the grants.
As background, Coplay proposed upgrading Saylor Park to a state-of-the-art recreational park. The expected cost was around $600,000. Grants and in-kind services were expected to bring the borough’s contribution to $200,000.