Champer, authority updates reviewed
Jessica O’Donnell from the Hellertown Lower Saucon Chamber of Commerce addressed the board with upcoming events and requested approval for a new event. O’Donnell discussed a ribbon cutting ceremony on Wednesday June 13 at 6 p.m. for Farmers Insurance Agency owner Brandon Wimbish on Main Street in Hellertown. She reminded everyone of the second annual Music in The Park series which is an event where local bands play live shows at Dimmick Park in Hellertown on weekends from June through August. Another important event highlighted is the annual Hellertown Summer Restaurant Week which is being held from Sunday, July 29 through Saturday Aug. 4. The event is designed to promote local dining with many of the participating restaurants to feature special menus during the week.
O’Donnell asked the board for approval for a proposed event called “Movie in The Park.” The event would take place on Friday, August 24th from 7pm to 9pm at Dimmick Park. The plan is to show a free family friendly movie for residents during a summer evening. O’Donnell has already partnered with Mobile Technology Graphics to provide a large screen for viewing the movie. O’Donnell is hopeful to attain sponsors for snacks to be handed out such as popcorn and ice cream. As a lead up to the movie during the same day, O’Donnell is hopeful to also include a “dine and unwind” occasion to promote and encourage people to dine at local restaurants. In addition, restaurant participation could also raise money for a local charity. Council voted unanimously to approve the Movie in The Park event.
In other news, Glenn Higbie from the Hellertown Borough Authority gave an annual update to the board of their audit from the last year. According to Higbie, the audit was clean with no issues and both the water and sewer authority are in good financial standing. Higbie also said due to higher costs, rates were raised on January 1st and all customers have been notified.
Higbie also highlighted new technology being used in Hellertown by the water authority. Over the last year, two new radio towers were installed. These towers are used to communicate with little gray boxes attached to each customer’s water meter via the internet. The gray boxes are called MIUs (meter interface units). In the past, the borough needed water authority employees to drive out to neighborhoods in trucks with computers to track meters and for billing purposes. Also, whenever a new property owner moved into a location, the water authority would have to take a trip out to the location for meter service. With the new technology, these steps are no longer needed. The benefit of this new technology is increased efficiency and lower costs. Perhaps the biggest benefit to customers is the ability for the water authority to see each customers meter readings daily. If a leak is occurring, they can notify a customer often before the customer is even aware of it. Higbie believes Hellertown is the only municipality that is using this new technology in the valley.
Also, at the May 7 meeting, Mayor David Heitzelman swore in Dewey Fire Company’s new Assistant Fire Chief John Lau. Lau is replacing Nick Keller after years of service to the Borough of Hellertown.