WOMELSDORF BOROUGH COUNCIL WORKSHOP MEETING
Held at 101 W. High Street on
November 20, 2012
Council President Vince Balistrieri called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M.
Council Members: Carl Liptak, Connie Keller-Sheffy (7:04 P.M.), Kyle Hamilton, Jack Hays, Wynn Herbine and Vince Balistrieri, Mayor Jennifer Gettle, Chief Reber, and Acting Secretary – Nan Feeg.
David Reis and Reading Eagle Reporter Michael Wagner
CITIZENS TO BE HEARD
David Reis – After previously discussing his issues with Mrs. Madden, Mr. Reis expressed his concerns with Council regarding Ruth Field. Mr. Reis feels the fence is not back far enough or high enough because according to him, there are too many homeruns hit by ball teams using the field. It was explained to him that extensive research was done regarding the size of the field prior to its construction, which, according to President Balistrieri, does meet regulations. The Borough does not have the funds to raise the height of the fence nor has Mr. Balistrieri seen an excessive amount of homeruns hit during the games he has attended at Ruth Field. Council agreed that if the CWCA would like to pay for the additional fencing, they would be more than happy to allow them to do that.
County Commissioners’ Breakfast – Mr. Liptak reviewed with Council some of the topics discussed at the October County Commissioners’ Breakfast such as the radios, use of funds from the shale income and the Commissioner’s request for a wage freeze for County employees.
Motion moved by Mr. Herbine, seconded by Mrs. Keller-Sheffy to approve the list of bills to be paid as presented with three additions: Bilco Safety for $300.00, Bilco Safety for $49.32 and Jennifer Gettle for $40.48 for the key bringing the total bills to $26,294.17. Motion carried unanimously.
A list of communications was given to Council Members, none requiring action.
Motion moved by Mr. Herbine, seconded by Mr. Hays to pay payroll between meetings. Motion carried unanimously.
Borough Tree Lighting – Mrs. Keller-Sheffy informed Council the band from the school is coming again. She will get the refreshments and get the Santa costume. One of the firemen will be Santa. It was agreed to decorate the tree on Sunday evening at 4:30 P.M.
Swim Lessons – Mrs. Keller-Sheffy questioned if a letter is going to be sent to Dave Kaley since the “Y” is going to be running the swimming lessons. It was agreed that once things are solidified, he will be sent a letter. The Borough will still be able to use Dave to DJ for splash parties.
Maintenance Garage Key – Mr. Hamilton informed Council he still needs a key to the old maintenance garage so he can check the cameras there.
Illumination of Flags – Mr. Hamilton questioned how flags are to be illuminated at night because he has noticed that neither the school nor does he think the Post Office has lights on their flags. Discussion followed.
Code Enforcement Issues – Mr. Hays questioned if there are any updates from Mr. Motley regarding issues that were discussed at the previous Council meeting. Mr. Balistrieri reviewed with Council the West High Street rental unit situation and the school drainage updates although the total fix at the school will not occur until spring.
Use of Facilities – Mr. Hays discussed with Council how to handle the issuing of the key regarding use of facilities due to the recent issue and if we could put something in the Hold Harmless Rules and Regulations to try and control this better. Mr. Hays questioned if we could have the Solicitor write something to add to the Use of Facilities form. Discussion followed including listing it on the Use of Facilities in strong language that whoever signs the key out is responsible as well as possibly using a combination lock and who would change the combination between renters. It was agreed to look into these ideas. Mr. Hays also has a request from the custodian to not allow the use of confetti due to the time involved in cleaning it up between the floor boards upstairs. Discussion followed regarding the loss of the security deposit if confetti is used, charging for excessive clean up if confetti is used as well as raising the security deposit to $75 and who would check it between parties on the same weekend. Council agreed on suggesting increasing the security deposit to $75 and a stipulation for excessive clean up. Mrs. Keller-Sheffy and Mrs. Madden will consider these issues when reviewing the fee schedules for the use of facilities, which they hope to present at the January meeting.
Traffic Light Repair – Mr. Herbine informed Council that the control box out at the traffic light that was hit by lightning has been fixed and is working. The repair bill was $2,139.88, which Mr. Herbine submitted to the Borough’s insurance company. The insurance company reimbursed the Borough $1639.88, leaving the Borough’s portion in the amount of $500.
Check Signers – Mr. Herbine informed Council that he requested Mr. Hamilton be added as a check signer.
New Year’s Eve Street Closings – Mayor Gettle presented the 250th Anniversary Committee’s request to have the same streets that were closed last year closed this year for New Year’s Eve beginning at 4 PM. They are also requesting no parking in front of the Borough Hall and 1 East High Street and would like to close North Front Street. Discussion followed regarding if High Street was closed and closing North Front Street all the way to Franklin Street.
Leave of Absence Request – Officer Tiffany Buck is requesting a leave of absence for training with the State Police from November – February. Council agreed to check the policy regarding this and will decide on the request at the December Borough Council Meeting. Mr. Hays requested Officer Buck correct her request to state February 2013 rather than February 2012.
Library – Mayor Gettle questioned Council regarding the Library’s payroll processing. Council agreed they will discuss the Library’s payroll processing at the December Borough Council Meeting when Mrs. Balistrieri is there for her input. According to Mr. Balistrieri the Library will have to pay their own workman’s comp. It must also be decided who from the Library will make sure the cards are here on time and who from the Library will sign and verify the cards. Mr. Liptak will gather the total payroll and workman’s comp. fee for the December Council Meeting. According to Mayor Gettle, Harriet Grimes has two more people to serve on the Library Board so Mr. Liptak will get those names.
Annual Fee for Calibrating Police Equipment – Chief Reber presented a contract for him to sign from YIS/Cowden Group Inc. in the amount of $310.50 annual fee to calibrate the police speed equipment. Motion moved by Mr. Liptak, seconded by Mrs. Keller-Sheffy to allow the Chief to sign the contract for $310.50 to YIS/Cowden Group Inc. for calibration of speed equipment. Motion carried unanimously. Mr. Balistrieri warned the Chief to be careful because he really cannot sign a contract because going by the Borough Code, having the Chief sign it does not make it legal.
Council Committees – Mr. Balistrieri reviewed with Council the revised Council Committees. The Rec. Board liaison has been eliminated because there is currently no Rec. Board and Mr. Hamilton has been added as another authorized check signer. The Pool Committee will be just Mr. Hamilton and he will be the contact for the “Y” regarding the pool. Discussion followed regarding resurrecting the Rec. Board and the Future Directions Committee. The necessary paperwork needed will be gotten for Mr. Hamilton to sign to be added as a check signer.
COG – Mr. Balistrieri asked Mr. Hays about the $5,000 extra that the Borough is paying every year to the COG. Since the hauler has given the COG $90,000 to use if something happens to the hauler, the funds are there, so the $5000 from each municipality is not needed. Mr. Hays stated that this will be discussed by the COG at their reorganization meeting in January because David Rohrbach, a member of the COG wanted to use this money to do promotional and educational things to encourage people to recycle more. According to Mr. Hays, Kreitzer Sanitation had committed to do some things to promote recycling, but to date, nothing has been done by the COG or Kreitzer. Mr. Hays feels there are things we can do to promote recycling that will not cost each municipality $5000. If Mr. Hays’s recollection of the COG’s bylaws is correct, any decisions made by the COG must be a unanimous decision, not by just a majority. Discussion followed. As for the expenses of the COG, Mr. Hays feels there are some things that can be done to cut costs. He discussed with Council the COG’s expenses regarding the audit and legal fees and will look at cutting legal, newspaper advertising and auditing costs. It was suggested to do an internal audit as was done previously. Last year instead of doing a full blown expensive audit, they did what they called an “agreed to procedure”, which was an abbreviated audit that Mr. Hays explained to Council. Instead, Mr. Hays would like the three Borough Secretaries to get together and audit the COG books. Mr. Balistrieri stated that if the COG agrees that the municipalities do not need to pay the $5000 annually that will free that money up in the Borough’s budget.
Budget - Discussion followed regarding implementing a tax for capital purchases and how to secure it into capital expenditures, so it must be researched in the revised Borough Code. Council then discussed the Borough’s tax base because we are not growing, yet our costs are rising as well as development/new businesses within the Borough. It was noted that the bidding/ quote requirements have changed but the prevailing wage is still in the works. Since the bidding/ quote requirements have changed, Mr. Hays questioned replacing doors elsewhere at the pool because the ones that were replaced this year were really nice doors and the price that was paid for them would fall within the new requirements. Council instructed Mr. Hays to contact them and have the information for the December meeting. It was agreed that in January or February to start getting quotes to paint the pool.
High and North Pine Street Intersection – Discussion followed regarding the elimination of the three parking spaces on High Street at North Pine Street and motorists’ view of oncoming traffic there as well as comparing that intersection with other intersections in the Borough. One suggestion in order to solve the problem without losing parking spaces was using mirrors mounted on the poles so Council agreed for Mr. Hays to look into the costs for this.
With no other business to be brought before Council, motion was moved by Mr. Herbine, seconded by Mr. Liptak to adjourn the meeting at 8:40 P.M. Motion carried unanimously.
Minutes Respectfully Submitted,