Debra Mellish has become the go-to expert on Catasauqua’s early iron age. She conducts a walking tour of the borough, pointing out historical structures and where some landmarks once stood. Self-conducted tours are available at Historical Catasauqua Preservation Association. She presented a detailed genealogy of the first families of the iron age and how their legacy persisted well into the 1900s at the Helfrich Springs Grist Mill Nov. 28, 2017. The grist mill is preserved by Whitehall Historical Preservation Society.
John Schreiner, Coplay-Whitehall Sewer Authority board chairman, released the 2018 budget at the regular meeting Dec. 21, 2017. Residential households will see the base charge for sanitary sewer increase from $40 per quarter to $45. Commercial users will see a similar increase.
Revenues from all sources are projected to be $3,769,500. The expenses are broken down as a little over $1 million for administrative expenses and $2.7 million for operational expenses.
Borough engineer Daniel Witczak addressed the Tapler Street flooding problems during Coplay council’s regular meeting Dec. 12.
“We evaluated the site and plugged data into our modeling software and got similar results to what residents report,” he said.
Witczak drafted his colleagues at Acela Engineering to do an extensive data collection effort. The detail included size of piping, drainage fields, the number of acres in the drainage field and size of inlets.
“Once we had the data, we looked at the annual rainfall in the area,” he said.
At its Dec. 12 regular meeting, Coplay Borough Council made appointments to boards and commissions ahead of the Jan. 2, 2018, reorganization meeting.
Janet Eisenhauer and SueAnn Molitoris were reappointed to the Coplay Public Library board for the term ending December 2020.
Karl Korsak was reappointed to the Coplay Civil Service Commission for the term ending December 2023.
Paul Boyle was appointed to the Coplay-Whitehall Sewer Authority for the term ending December 2022. He will replace Michael Hobel, who has served 10 years on the board.
The Coplay-Whitehall Sewer Authority (CWSA) board put Engineer Darryl Jenkins on the spot regarding Front Street at its regular meeting Dec. 21.
The long-delayed project is winding down, but board members had a few concerns they want to have addressed. Board member Joseph Marx reported on the quality of the asphalt basecoat.
“The areas that were reworked were not saw-cut and then were filled in,” he said.
The final version of Coplay Borough’s 2018 budget was approved Dec. 18.
The $2.3 million budget increases property taxes by 0.03 mill. Taxes for the borough are 4.130 mills for the general fund, 0.380 mill for the library and another 0.380 mill for emergency services.
The borough increases garbage tax rates to $280 for most households. Seniors get a $40 discount.
On Dec. 5, Ellen Freeman, attorney for Giant Foods, and Josh Erb, Giant’s project manager for in-house restaurants, attended Coplay Borough Council’s public hearing regarding transferring a liquor license to the supermarket at Second and Chestnut streets.
Last month, council members had a host of concerns about how the business was working with the borough. Violations of certain ordinances were pointed out. The prime critic was Councilman Charles Sodl. He cited several instances and asked for a separate conference to discuss the details.
On Nov. 30, Lehigh County Judge Kelly Banach sentenced David Borghesani, a former Whitehall High School music teacher, to three to 23 months in the community corrections center, to be followed by three years of probation, for corruption of a minor, a first-degree misdemeanor. He will also be evaluated to determine if he is considered a sexual predator, Banach said.
Gerald Stanz spoke on the history of Tony’s Hobby Shop in Coplay.
“My dad started this in 1947, and it’s been in the family ever since,” he said of the business, celebrating its 70th anniversary this year.
In 2015, the store was recognized as the oldest single-owner hobby shop in Pennsylvania. Anton “Tony” Stanz, Gerald’s dad, ran the store until 2012 when he died at 97.
“He got the hobby bug back in the ’30s. He saved a few gum wrappers and a few pennies to get plans for a balsa airplane,” Stanz said.
Republican David Molony held a news conference Nov. 16 to get the word out on some of his campaign commitments. A special election is scheduled Dec. 5 to fill the seat vacated by Dan McNeill for the 133rd Legislative District.
“I’ve talked to more than 25,000 people in the district over the past years,” Molony said. “They want to participate more in how decisions in Harrisburg are made.”
To meet that demand, Molony said he is going to use his constituent contact mail to show voters important pending legislation and solicit feedback on how he should vote.