In a tumultuous night at the April 2 Bath Borough Council meeting, a council member vacated her office and a beloved fire chief resigned. A new council member was appointed via a tie-breaking vote by the mayor, and the search for a new chief began.
Freshman legislator Cynthia Anderson resigned to take a position with the Nazareth-Bath Regional Chamber of Commerce. She said she will miss the experience as a member of Bath Borough Council.
When asked about the best thing about council membership, Anderson said, “Working to better Bath, and we did not raise taxes.”
A parking enforcement officer may be coming to Bath as officials begin planning for the transition to Pennsylvania State Police coverage.
The borough will be issuing parking tickets beginning in 2019. State police will not enforce borough ordinances, which include parking tickets.
An issue was the perception in the community and by some elected officials that Colonial Regional Police Department was not providing the level of service it provided in previous years.
Council Vice President Michele Ehrgott said, “We are still paying. We should get services.”
In a 3-0 vote, Moore Township Board of Supervisors agreed at the Feb. 6 meeting to purchase a 2018 GMC 3500 utility body pickup truck. The truck is a 4x4 with an electric lift gate. The cost, which is budgeted, is about $50,000.
Police Chief Gary West reported 297 incidents in January. There was one arrest for marijuana possession, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.
The fire department reported there were 535 total calls for 2017. During January 2018, there were 35 fire calls.
Despite levity among the council, mayor and residents, serious matters were discussed at the Feb. 5 Bath Borough Council meeting.
One of the most important changes council has embraced in decades is the transition to having police services provided by Pennsylvania State Police.
Colonial Regional Police Department ends its coverage in January 2019.
Council President Mark Saginario announced that a town hall meeting is being planned for either April or May at the Bath Social Hall.
“We want to update the residents on the status of the police change,” Saginario said.
The Moore Township reorganization meeting Jan. 2 began as a testy affair. There was an overflow in attendance. Upon opening the meeting, the chair and vice chair moved and seconded a motion to immediately eliminate Supervisor Richard Gable from his full-time paid position.
The next procedural step was to have citizen input, during which time the motion was stopped in its tracks. Residents generally objected to the immediacy of the motion. Numerous residents asked for a slower process.
It was announced at the Moore Township Supervisors December meeting that a main goal of the Moore Township Historical Commission is officially nearing completion.
The application for the Edelman School to be included on the historical registry has been submitted. It is expected Moore will learn if the application is successful sometime in early 2018. If successful, a celebration is planned.
Although not present at the beginning of Bath Borough Council’s meeting Dec. 4, Colonial Regional Police Department (CRPD) Chief Roy Seiple got the proverbial earful upon his arrival.
A room full of angry residents attended to protest an increase of parking tickets in the Old Forge area. A number of residents reported they called CRPD to complain but were told to call the borough office. Residents insisted they were told the borough asked CRPD to write numerous tickets, described by one resident as “a sweep.”
Each parking ticket has a $20 fine.
At their Oct. 3 meeting, Moore Township supervisors only needed a few minutes to discuss and unanimously vote for a new police vehicle.
The vehicle, a 2017 Ford Explorer with a price tag of $47,000, will replace the police department’s Crown Victoria.
Richard Gable, board treasurer/secretary, in his support for the new vehicle, said, “The Crown Vic has 180,000 miles and will not pass inspection.”
A special meeting of Bath Borough Council was held Sept. 5 to allow residents and council members one final chance to question Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) about the services it can provide to them and their community.
Ed Murphy and Craig Rodriguez, lieutenants from Troop M, Bethlehem barracks, were present to answer questions.
The future of policing was a topic of discussion at the Aug. 7 Bath Borough Council meeting.
Council voted last month to end its agreement with Colonial Regional Police Department (CRPD) for policing services to the borough.
Bath submitted its exit proposal to Lower Nazareth and Hanover townships, both members of CRPD. Borough Manager Brad Flynn explained the exit proposal from CRPD includes a buyout option. The details of the exit proposal are confidential at this point.
“We feel the buyout option is fair and equitable,” Flynn said.