Northampton Press

Monday, May 20, 2019

Moore Township plans warehouse regulations

Wednesday, May 15, 2019 by BILL LEINER JR. Special to The Press in Local News

In response to growing resident pushback about the proliferation of warehouses in the Lehigh Valley, Moore Township Board of Supervisors unanimously agreed at the May 7 meeting to have Solicitor David Backenstoe develop an ordinance to closely regulate warehouse development in the township.

“We can tighten up the situation with stricter guidelines, more comprehensive than we already have,” Backenstoe said.

He also serves as solicitor for Lehigh Township, where he has already developed a similar ordinance.

John Becker, planning commission chair, urged the board to have Backenstoe pursue the ordinance.

Despite the benefits of warehouse economic development, residents in surrounding areas have complained about the increased traffic, noise, pollution and the loss of open space that often accompanies warehouse development. The truck traffic increase surrounding warehouse development in Bath Borough was mentioned.

In other business, Police Chief Gary West presented his report for the month of April. The department responded to 307 incidents, including a disorderly conduct arrest. Three citations regarding dogs were issued. The fire department reported four fires, four motor vehicle accidents, one animal rescue and two ambulance assists. Total fire calls for April were 17.

The board voted unanimously to purchase a Ford 550 pickup truck for a price of about $88,000. Township Manager Nicholas Steiner reported the current truck can no longer pass inspection. The board also voted unanimously to purchase a new post digger and drive kit for about $3,500.

Supervisor Richard Gable, in his First Regional Compost Authority report, said the authority is selling dyed coal-black mulch for $18 a cubic yard. The authority will load the buyer’s truck at no cost.

The recreation committee requested and received permission to get five picnic tables and was approved to purchase several speed bumps for the recreation center. There is a safety hazard due to speeding cars in the recreation area.

In a road department report, Steiner said there are plans to develop a five-year road improvement plan. He reported a plan was never developed in the past and will provide direction and better control of township funds.

“We have a lot of work to be done with limited funds. The township has a very low millage rate,” Steiner said.

Steiner lamented the rainy weather is reducing the township’s ability to promptly address road issues. Board Chair Daniel Piorkowski relayed that this year and 2018 were very wet years.

The next Moore Township Board of Supervisors meeting is 7 p.m. June 4 at the Moore Township Municipal Building, 2491 Community Drive.