Bethlehem Press

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Lehigh County executive presents no-increase 2017 budget

Tuesday, September 20, 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.

County commissioners presented with LCA five-year capital plan

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

Lehigh County Board of Commissioners were presented with the Lehigh County Authority’s five year capital plan at the board’s Aug. 24 meeting.

Liesel Gross, chief executive officer of LCA, said the plan is merely an overview.

“We felt a five-year plan was more manageable,” she said. “A capital plan is the most conceptual. It’s a five-year look out.”

According to Gross, 85 projects are included in the five-year plan, with $25 million of work anticipated in 2017. Total funding for the plan, she added, is $146 million.

County executive’s proposed budget: no tax hike

Tuesday, September 6, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Lehigh County Executive Tom Muller laid out his 2017 proposed budget amounting to $399 million, which does not include a tax increase for county homeowners, Aug. 31 at Limeport Stadium, Limeport.

“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.

Catasauqua Police Dept. responds

Monday, August 29, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Measures taken following nationwide police shootings

Many Americans remain stunned and in disbelief at the recent shootings targeting police officers in cities such as Baton Rouge, La., and Dallas, Texas.

The Press recently asked Catasauqua Police Chief Douglas Kish what his department is doing to ensure the safety of its officers as well as the community at large.

According to Kish, borough police officers have been instructed to change their daily routines and remain more watchful.

“Everybody is a lot more vigilant,” Kish said. “We’re taking even the smallest threats more seriously.”

Lehigh County approves allocation of over $300,000 in casino funds

Monday, August 22, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

The Lehigh County Board of Commissioners unanimously approved the allocation of gambling funds from the Lehigh County Gambling Grant Program amounting to $307,638 to Salisbury and Upper Saucon townships and Fountain Hill and Coopersburg boroughs at the board’s Aug. 10 meeting.

The monies will be used for the township and borough police and fire departments.

Lehigh Co. board OKs capital funding

Tuesday, August 16, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Coplay-Northampton Bridge is part of $67.5 million spending plan

Lehigh County Board of Commissioners unanimously voted to adopt and approve the $67.5 million 2017-21 capital plan at the July 27 meeting.

Over the next five years, the plan will provide funding for renovations to Lehigh County Courthouse, software for county operations, repairs to Coca-Cola Park, maintenance and improvements for county parks and agricultural conservation easements and farmland preservation.

The capital plan also includes $10 million for the demolition and replacement of the Coplay-Northampton Bridge, which is slated to begin in 2017.

Article By: MARK RECCEK Special to the Bethlehem Press

Tuesday, August 16, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Questions arose recently why Saucon Valley School Board would approve the use of obsolete math materials as the district is installing a new math program beginning this fall.

District Superintendent Monica McHale-Small commented on the new math program.

“It is EveryDay Math,” she said. “It’s just the more recent version of EveryDay Math, which is aligned to the Pennsylvania Core Standards. It’s not a whole new math program, just an updated version.”

Article By: Mark Reccek Special to the Bethlehem Press

Thursday, August 4, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

The Saucon Valley School Board approved a number of obsolete and surplus math and reading textbooks and other educational materials at the board’s July 26 meeting.

The vote was 7-0, with board Vice President Susan Baxter and board member Sandra Miller absent.

Board member Bryan Eichfeld noted some of math textbooks appeared relatively new.

“These are pretty new though, aren’t they,” he asked.

The math textbooks considered obsolete relate to the former math program. The district is installing a new math program beginning in the fall.

Catasauqua Police Dept. responds

Thursday, August 4, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Measures taken following nationwide police shootings

Many Americans remain stunned and in disbelief at the recent shootings targeting police officers in cities such as Baton Rouge, La., and Dallas, Texas.

The Press recently asked Catasauqua Police Chief Douglas Kish what his department is doing to ensure the safety of its officers as well as the community at large.

According to Kish, borough police officers have been instructed to change their daily routines and remain more watchful.

“Everybody is a lot more vigilant,” Kish said. “We’re taking even the smallest threats more seriously.”

Article By: Mark Reccek Special to the Bethlehem Press

Tuesday, July 5, 2016 by MARK RECCEK in Local News

Lehigh County Board of Commissioners decided to defer voting on amending the 2016-20 capital plan that would provide funding for agricultural conservation easements and farmland preservation.

Commissioner Percy Dougherty, who sponsored the bill, made the motion June 22 due to the absence of Commissioner Tom Creighton, who also serves as chairman of the farmland preservation board.

Dougherty explained the purpose of the amendment.