Friday, February 8, 2013

Pottstown Borough Briefs

No! Not that kind of brief. NEWS BRIEFS. Sheesh.

A couple of little news briefs from Wednesday night's Borough Council work session for your consideration:

Hole in the Ground No More?

Repairs on the collapsed arch on Grant Street, between Walnut and Beech streets, are estimated to cost between $40,000 and $50,000 Public Works Director Doug Yerger told council.
The collapse arch is adjacent to The Hill School's physical plant.

He said bids are expected to be returned soon and he will present them to council for approval at the Feb. 26 joint meeting with the Pottstown School Board.

Work will begin,hopefully by the end of the month.

The collapse occurred in December and was discovered by a borough consultant looking for water main leaks.

The most recent arch collapse, on North Hanover Street, in August, 2011, ultimately cost only $15,000 to repair, in large part because the size and shape of the hole made using a pre-fabricated replacement practical.

The 2004 collapse in the first block of Walnut Street cost more than $500,000.

The arch in question here carries the stream which runs through and feeds a pond on Brookside County Club, thne fills the Dell pond on The Hill School campus.

From there it runs under the campus and connects with another stream system that ultimately enters the Schuylkill near the intersection of Washington Street and Industrial Highway, Yerger said.

Mission Probable

Although discussion in The Mercury and on a previous blog post in which we talked about the new borough Mission and Core Values being proposed garnered quite a bit of conversation here and on The Mercury's web and Facebook sites, that was not the case for council.

As we first reported in this Jan. 19 post, Borough Manager Mark Flanders has proposed an updating of the borough's Mission Statement and Core Values, which was most recently updated in 2011.

The post garnered 10 comments on this blog, two on The Mercury web site, when the story ran there Tuesday, and a few more on The Mercury's Facebook page.

But council had nothing to say and Flanders said other than what was posted on the articles here, he had received no feedback from council members over the past month.

"I received no suggestions from council so I have to assume you're OK with this, although that may be a mistake," said Flanders.

The old values and statement were "cumbersome and out of date," Flanders said.

It will be on the agenda for a vote at the Feb. 11 meeting.

New Contract Maybe?

Speaking of Monday's meeting, Borough Solicitor Charles D. Garner Jr. said he hopes to have a proposed contract settlement with the AFSCME workers union before borough council for approval.

AFSCME stands for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. A unit of this national union represents the borough hall, parks and recreation and public works employees.

Police are represented by a separate union.

"We didn't make it, trying to get it done by the end of the year, but we hope to have something for your consideration Monday," Garner said.

The current two-year AFSCME contract was adopted in July, 2011 and included a pay freeze for the first year.

That pact also as much as doubled employee contributions to health care insurance, saving the borough between $35,000 and $45,000 in the first year alone.

1 comment:

  1. Is this not the core issue? Is anyone in Pottstown paying attention? Does anyone even talk to anyone else anymore? To quote a prophetic movie, Idiocracy, we need people to either lead, follow, or get out of the way. Everyone needs to ask themselves which one they are.