Bethlehem Press

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Board approves nursing home director, assistant

Tuesday, December 20, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Lehigh County commissioners have unanimously approved the appointments of Michelle Julian as director and Justin Cumello as assistant director of nursing, respectively, for Cedarbrook Nursing Home, South Whitehall.

Both Julian and Cumello addressed the board at its Nov. 22 meeting.

“It is really a privilege for me to serve in this capacity,” Julian said. “I thank you for the opportunity, and I am really grateful.”

Cumello, a resident of Lower Macungie, who has worked in the health care industry for 17 years, said he is excited about the opportunity to serve the county.

Local church takes in Haitian orphans

Tuesday, December 13, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Bishop’s visit to poverty-stricken island leads to opening orphanage

Editor’s note: This is the first article in a three-part series of Loving Haiti’s Children.

Visiting the poverty-stricken island of Haiti several years ago, Bishop Jim McIver of Catasauqua’s Revolution Church was burdened by what he saw.

“There were goats, pigs and babies all looking for food on the same pile of trash,” he said.

It was an image that stayed with him as he pondered what to do to help.

The poverty, hunger, devastation and desperation were unspeakable.

“People were sleeping on sidewalks,” he said. “It was mind-boggling.”

Saucon Valley-Parents unhappy with racism in schools, inclusion committee forming

Tuesday, November 29, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Saucon Valley School District parents and students are not happy with recent racist comments heard in the schools.

Parents and students appeared before the school board Nov. 15 requesting action be taken.

Lower Saucon Township resident and parent Serena Ohene told board members she moved her family from New York to the Saucon Valley area. According to Ohena, shortly after moving into the area, the racism directed at her daughter began.

Saucon Valley Board gives superintendent 3-year contract

Tuesday, November 8, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Saucon Valley School District Superintendent Dr. Monica McHale-Small will serve another three years in her current position leading the district.

The school board voted unanimously at its Oct. 11 meeting to grant McHale-Small a new contract for three more years. Small’s new contract runs from July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2020 with a first year salary of $155,714.

Board members, such as Bryan Eichfeld, offered their support for McHale-Small continuing to serve the district as superintendent.

Lehigh County Commissioners approve 2017 budget, includes $1.1 million tax cut

Tuesday, November 8, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

The Lehigh County Board of Commissioners approved the 2017 budget amounting to $402.8 million at its Oct. 26 meeting.

The budget, which includes 16 amendments, was approved by a vote of 5-3 with Commissioners Geoff Brace, David Jones Sr. and Dan Hartzell voting in opposition.

Noteworthy amendments include a $1.1 million tax cut and a one-time $400,000 rebate. The budget includes a no tax increase,with a millage rate of 3.64 mills. The budget results in residents saving $10.50 on a home assessed at $200,000.

Lehigh County Commissioners reviews budget amendments

Tuesday, November 8, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Lehigh County Board of Commissioners took its first look at the 2017 budget at its Oct. 13 meeting.

The 2017 budget amounts to $399 million and includes roughly 33 amendments. The budget also proposes no tax increase and keeps the millage rate stable at 3.68 mills.

Commissioner Geoff Brace introduced an amendment, which was approved, that would eliminate a line item for the Northern Lehigh Community Center. An ordinance would be required to release $100,000 in funds.

Article By: MARK RECCEK Special to the Bethlehem Press

Tuesday, November 1, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Opinion

It’s so easy to become consumed with the hustle and bustle of life — those “things” we believe to be important, meaningful and self sustaining.

It’s often in those times of uncertainty and crisis — whether unexpected or expected — that we begin to ask the wider universal questions related to life. What difference have I made? Who have I impacted? Have I tried to be kind and giving to another?

Lehigh Co.: Comissionoers approve bond bill reading

Tuesday, October 11, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Lehigh County Board of Commissioners Sept. 14 approved the first reading of a bill that will allow the issuance of general obligation bonds totaling roughly $20 million.

The vote was 8-0.

According to Michael Setley of Concord Public Finance, the bonds will be used to fund $19 million in county capital projects.

The county will ultimately have to borrow $20 million, he said.

The funding will be used to pay for Lehigh County Courthouse renovations, county software and repairs to Coca-Cola Park.

Fall yard waste collection begins

Tuesday, September 27, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Hellertown Borough has announced its 2016 fall waste collection at council’s Sept. 6 meeting.

Borough Director of Public Works Tom Henshaw informed council the community wide curbside yard waste collection will occur during the week of Sept. 26, with collections following the weekly trash collection schedule.

Residents, Henshaw said, are directed to place their yard waste at the normal collection location the evening before the trash collection pick-up date.

Muller presents no-increase budget

Tuesday, September 27, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Lehigh County Executive Tom Muller laid out his proposed 2017 budget amounting to $399 million that includes a no tax increase for county homeowners Aug. 31 at Limeport Stadium, Limeport, Pa.

“Proposing a budget with no tax increase has been made possible by the efforts of our employees every day to serve our citizens effectively and efficiently,” Muller said.

The millage rate will remain at 3.68 mills with the average homeowner paying $668 in taxes in 2017.