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.
After an extended public hearing to start Coplay’s regular meeting Nov. 14, council settled down to clear the agenda for year-end business matters.
The borough’s tree lighting is scheduled for Nov. 30.
The date for Coplay Sports’ annual Santa parade is Dec. 10.
At an Oct. 18 event, the Domino’s location at 971 Main St., Northampton, presented Coplay Councilmen Steve Burker and Charles Sodl a check for nearly $2,500 to support projects at the borough’s Community Plaza.
“This is part of our co-op program that the planning committee and the recreation committee put together,” Burker said.
Under the program, the borough helps support local businesses with advertising inserts. In return for the advertising, the local business donates a portion of the proceeds to the borough.
The Whitehall Area Hunger Initiative started as a concept with a goal to alleviate food insecurity in Whitehall and Coplay. The concept of giving food for free in a systematic program involves a wide range of partners and affiliates.
The organization came together under the leadership of Shari Noctor. At the organization’s first recognition breakfast Nov. 7, Noctor was recognized as Volunteer of the Year. Fellowship Community provided the setting and the breakfast.
At the Oct. 19 meeting of Coplay-Whitehall Sewer Authority (CWSA), Joseph Marx proposed the board donate $1,000 to Coplay Public Library and Whitehall Township Public Library.
“I was able to take a tour of the library,” Marx said. “I have not been in one in since high school. The Whitehall library was full, and I was surprised at the number of people there.”
According to Marx, libraries have a new requirement for software that ties libraries together. The cost for the software is $15,000, plus an annual support fee of $5,000.
Back in July, Giant Food Stores purchased a dormant liquor license at state auction. In October, store management asked Coplay Borough for permission to present its credentials to council to have the liquor license transferred to the Giant location at Second and Chestnut streets. At council’s regular meeting Nov. 14, Ellen Freeman, Giant’s attorney, and Josh Erb, the project manager tasked with implementing in-store liquor sales, appeared before council to present their case.