Northampton Press

Friday, February 28, 2020

Lehigh supervisors maintain zoning rule on utility lines

Thursday, June 30, 2016 by Elsa Kerschner in Local News

At the Lehigh Township Board of Supervisors meeting June 14, Engineer Phil Malitsch said utility lines can run anywhere in an easement and might be close to an edge. The question discussed in previous meetings was whether construction should be 50 feet from the easement or from the utility structure.

A zoning amendment was up for discussion on this issue. Chairman Darryl Snover said it deprives the property owner of the use of land depending where it is measured from. The zoning amendment was turned down, and the ruling will remain as it has been.

Solicitor David Backenstoe said the planning commission will be using 50 feet from the physical location rather than from the easement.

The nuisance ordinance was amended, so the township zoning officer can go on neighboring property with permission to get information about a property when there is a complaint.

Decided permissible at the meeting is a fine up to $1,000 when people are found to be connecting sump pumps, drain spouts or other devices that discharge stormwater or surface water into the sewer system. A location from such a device can usually be determined by watching where illicit inflows enter the system.

In other news, Kayte Connelly was chosen to fill the vacancy on the recreation board.

Township Manager Alice Rehrig said the recreation fields in Danielsville failed a water test. Consequently, the concession stand cannot be used because there is no water to wash dishes.

The Department of Environmental Protection suggested the failed water test may be due to heavy rains.

A waiver was made at the meeting for when a property that has only 85 feet available instead of the required 100 feet of well isolation distance.

The probationary period for Officer Craig Ball has been completed. Police Chief Scott Fogel said Ball has had exposure to most things and is enthusiastic about providing an energetic and positive influence. Ball deserves to receive full employee status, Fogel said, which was given.

Fogel said he received eight applications for a new police officer position. He said he had been hoping for 30.

Vice Chairman Dell Grove said a place for a dog park should be found. Fogel said one would complement the dog kennel at the police station, adding dog parks get a lot of use.

Supervisor Keith Hantz said the recreation board should be asked for suggestions.

Getting businesses to register so a person can be contacted in an emergency was again discussed. The cost would be $10 per year, but it could be cut to a one-time fee.

Rehrig mentioned business owners should not only register but get a Knox Box, so doors can be opened.

Hantz said they were not enforcing the Knox Box ordinance and asked if they want another ordinance. Some numbers on file may belong to deceased residents, which is why they have to be kept up to date.

In other business, three of the subdivisions that were given automatic extensions were given a two-month extension to record the plans. Another two were give one month.

The Northwoods major subdivision was given an extension until Nov. 30.

The Leon and Sharon Leggitt minor subdivision received an extension until July 31 at the planning commission’s recommendation. The request had been for Oct. 31.

The Cottonwood Crest subdivision received conditional approval. It had required a four-year fill to meet sewage enforcement requirements. The conditions were to meet the sewage enforcement officers’, engineers’ and planners’ letters.