City golf course funding approved
Two new ordinances were scheduled to be voted on by Bethlehem City Council Sept. 4 but one, an amendment to the fireworks ordinance was pulled to allow council to reconcile differences on the permitted hours for fireworks.
The second bill, a $2 million general obligation note for improvement at the Bethlehem Golf Club on Illicks Mill Road, got preliminary or first reading approval from the council, but over the objection of councilwomen Dr. Paige Van Wirt and Olga Negrón.
“I don’t feel there is a strong enough business plan,” said Van Wirt in an interview. “Projected revenues are based on hope – not firm evidence.”
She said that operational plans to reduce the golf course’s staff from eight to four full-time employees will require some kind of “magic potion” to keep up with the maintenance. She didn’t believe replacing the full-time help with part-time help would solve the issue.
In other business, city council approved a request by Police Chief Mark DiLuzio to allow retiring police officers to purchase their service weapons at “fair market value.” Chief DiLuzio explained that in the past it has been a routine procedure to allow retiring officers to purchase their service weapons, but he has concluded that existing regulations require City Council approval.
He said newly hired officers are issued new weapons.