Bethlehem Press

Saturday, December 15, 2018

First meeting of year informational

Monday, January 15, 2018 by Nate Jastrzemski in Local News

Bethlehem Authority members gathered for the first time this year Jan. 11 and began with the annual reorganization meeting, at which positions such as secretary and treasurer usually hop to somebody else and longtime employees and associates are quickly voted on for retention.

John Tallarico will once again serve as president of the body, a position he has held before for several years and which other members appear perfectly satisfied with. Following the rapid votes, Executive Director Stephen Repasch eyed the clock with a smile, saying, “Seven minutes.”

The regular meeting was purely informational.

The PennEast Pipeline is discussing contract issues and the wind energy study is now in its sixth year. Solicitor James Broughal said Penn Forest Township and Carbon County opposition to the construction of multiple new energy-producing turbine towers failed to convince a judge Dec. 29, though construction is not assured as there is a 30-day appeal period.

Meanwhile Forester Robin Wildermuth presented the board with a summary of 2017 accomplishments and 2018 goals for forest management. This discussion regarded the health of pulp markets, working to save the declining Golden wing warbler, disease-resistant chestnuts and using a drone for security and tree counting.

Wildermuth also said two years of careful monitoring and targeted spraying has ceased the Gypsy moth outbreak, from which the watershed should now be safe.

The next meeting is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Feb. 8 at city hall.