There’s been a lot of talk about building a wall, a really big one, in the Presidential race. But locally, people are more concerned about fences. Privacy fences. At their April 14 meeting, Hanover Township’s Zoning Hearing Board unanimously decided to grant Brian and Gina Kutz a variance that will enable them to build a solid privacy fence at their property at 4408 Tracey Lane.
A Hanover Township man who was supposed to face trial this week in a fatal hit-and-run will wait until July 5 for his trial.
Royce Atkins, age 22, was arraigned March 17 on criminal charges filed as a result of a Nov. 6, 2015 accident along Schoenersville Road that left a 9-year-old boy dead.
This matter has been assigned to Judge Michael Koury, who has also scheduled a pretrial conference for June 10.
Approximately 30 people, most of them residents of Traditions of America’s (TOA) 241-home Jaindl Boulevard active senior development, attended Hanover Township’s April 12 meeting to complain again about the visibility of a new warehouse across the street from their development.
If there is any single reason why Northampton County nursing home Gracedale has turned around, it’s most likely Premiere Healthcare Resources. That company was hired in 2011 to take over the administration at what was then a beleaguered nursing home. Five years later, a nursing home that was projected to lose $7.7 million last year still lost money, but it was only $2.1 million. Even more importantly, the facility received an unheard-of “zero violation” inspection for two years in a row.
Amy Trapp, who was approved as Northampton County’s director of Human Resources last October, is quickly proving herself to be one of Executive John Brown’s best picks. On April 6, council voted 8-0 to approve a major reorganization of her office so she could better serve the county worker. As she summed it up, “Employees in the county have not felt the effect of good services.”
Trapp told council that since Human Resources was first established in 1998, there has been no reorganization of the office, while the county’s workforce has grown to 2,200 managed by a staff of 13.
Physically, it would be hard to find two people more different than Northampton County DA John Morganelli and Representative Dan McNeill, (D-Pa.133rd). Morganelli is small in stature, but is a fearless prosecutor, with 25 successful homicide cases under his belt. McNeill is a tough former ironworker who dwarfs a podium. But he’s been deeply touched by the heroin epidemic ripping across the Lehigh Valley and the entire state.
A Lehigh Township day care has been ordered closed by the state Department of Human Services following the death of a 3-month-old child entrusted to its care.
According to reports, McKenna Rose Felmly was put down for a nap by a staffer at Sharon’s Day Care, Treichlers, and left alone while the staffer attended to other children. Twenty-five minutes later, the staffer returned to find the baby unresponsive.
The child was rushed to the hospital, but it was too late.
The Board of Commissioners met April 4, and in the course of about a half hour unanimously voted to spend $222,000 dollars and seek $273,611 in grants. The money spent was included in this year’s budget
$116,474 goes to Recon Construction for cold in place asphalt recycling to rehabilitate township roads. This was the lower of two bids. According to Township Manager Melissa Shafer, it’s $30,000 less than what was budgeted.
Northampton County Council voted 8-0 at its March 17 meeting to spend $101,240 with Timothy Haahs and Associates for architectural and engineering services at the courthouse parking deck. Cost of the actual renovations, once the work starts, is unknown.
Northampton County’s parking deck, first built in 1975, is already well beyond its projected 30-40 year lifespan. In 2008, former Executive John Stoffa proposed a new parking facility, but scrapped that idea in favor of renovations when bids for a facelift came in lower than expected.
On April 5, at the Steelworkers’ Hall in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania Department of Aging Secretary Teresa Osborne conducted the third of seven “listening” forums planned across the state to gather ideas for the 2016-20 State Plan on Aging. About 30 people attended, and the big surprise was just how little older Pennsylvanians know about what services are available to them.