Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Joint Meeting Focuses on Getting PAID

Peggy Lee Clark was in an unusual spot Tuesday night.

As the new executive director of Pottstown Area Industrial Development, Pottstown's economic development arm, she was obligated to give a report on the activities of her predecessor, Steve Bamford.

The occasion was the quarterly joint meeting of Pottstown Borough Council and the Pottstown School Board, a meeting of such import only three members of the school board bothered to show up.

Nevertheless, there was some news to be found amid the reports.

Clark reported that for the second time, a grant application to the state for the refurbishment of the former Ellis Mills building on High Street was turned down. Now the owner, Scott Bentley, who spend a fair bit of change trying to clear the interior, is now interested in selling.

On a brighter note, she said a deal for the purchase of the former Prince's Bakery on South Washington Street is close to closing and the new owners aim to transform the space into a restaurant.

But perhaps the best news of all is that Cedarville Engineering LLC, has not only moved from Chester County to Pottstown, but brought 35 jobs along the way, projected to expand to 50 by next year.

The will move into what is now the BB & T Bank building at the corner of High and North Hanover streets. The top three floors of that building have been vacant for 20 years, but Cedarvill will occupy the top floor and has right of first refusal for the two floors beneath it, Clark said.

"We want development that provides living wage jobs," Clark said.

Both boards also talked about the need to prepare for the pending sale of Pottstown Memorial Medical Center to Reading Health Systems and the loss of nearly $900,000 in tax revenue for the school district and less for the borough should the property come off the tax rolls because the new owner is non-profit.

Here are the Tweets from the rest of the meeting:

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