Kutztown Council plans to demolish roller rink

By Laura Quain

Roller rink demolition, a topic under discussion for three years, was officially authorized. Ammon Zimmerman will carry out the demolition for an estimated $12,000.

“It is beyond long term cost repair,” said Borough Manger Gabriel Khalife.

There were no comments and the council decision was unanimous.

Borough Council member Edwin Seyler, chair of the Water and Wastewater Committee, made the motion that in the event the Saucony Creek Regional Authority Sewage Treatment Plant is awarded to the Borough that operation be under the authority of Kutztown Municipal Authority, which will provide sewage collection, transportation and treatment services to properties outside the boundaries of the Borough of Kutztown.

Khalife explains that there is no immediate action, but in the event that the arbitrator awards the treatment plant to the borough, the motion authorized KMA to serve the customers that are located outside and reside outside of the Borough and are served by the plant.

There were no public or council comments and the council unanimously approved the motion.

In other news, Mayor Sandra Green commended several borough employees, including Suzanne Barron for her “dedication and contributions” to the borough’s emergency management center, Dale Kramer for his 39 years of service to the borough’s water department, Tony Arndt for his 10 years of service as fire chief, Robert Hauck for 15 years as fire chief and Charles Leibensperger for 19 years as fire chief.

Khalife presented the 2016 budget to-date and a draft of the 2017 budget. The borough’s tax rates were compared to surrounding areas and held up positively against other boroughs.

Council member Derek Mace said, “We do have one of the lowest tax rates in the county and we do more for the departments that take care of recycling and trash, with our budget. ”

Khalife went on to discuss the factors of people’s attraction to the borough, through variables like landscape and the amenities that the borough offers. He touched on his own efforts to extend the value of owning a home

in the borough rather than renting and that it creates long-term relationships between people and the borough.

Nancy Brooks of Kutztown Community Partnership presented KCP projects and reminded those in attendance of KCP’s dedication to the community, in hopes that the council would consider including KCP in the 2017 budget.

“These events are really about community building,” said Brooks. “They’re about the concept of you being out there with your child and 20 years later that child say ‘Oh yeah, the block party, I remember that from when I was a kid.’ And they want to come back and join their town and celebrate what the town is doing.”

The council expressed its gratitude to Brooks and to KCP.

Council member Mace addressed Brooks, directly. He said, “Nancy, Kutztown is a better place for all of your efforts and KCP. Thank you very much.”

Brooks met this sentiment with thanks and expressed that their success is a team effort.

The agenda called for the approval of several motions.

The council took action to approve the request from the Kutztown Optimist Club to hold Downtown Trick-or-Treat on Oct. 26 with a rain date set for Oct. 28; Main Street will be closed from College Blvd. to Constitution Blvd. from 6-8 p.m.

In other news, Kutztown/Brandywine Youth Football and Cheer Association was authorized to run the Babe Ruth Field snack bar and to use the multipurpose fields from Sept. 10 to the end of Nov. 2016.

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