The Berks-Mont News (

Municipal Report: Elverson looks to prioritize repairs

By Tory Lingg, For Journal Register News Service

Monday, February 18, 2013

Residential rates for sewers have increased to $183 per quarter starting this January, Council Member Jack Stewart stated during the February meeting of the Elverson Borough Board of Supervisors. The fees had been $150 per quarter, and the rate per estimated daily use will rise to $196 next year. The current fee per unit of $183 will be enough to break even on costs, and a future fee of $193 will create a little slush fund to make some repairs.
Stewart said he would like to visit other municipalities to see how they operate. He said that he does not think they are out of line with costs and described the solicitor and plant manager as being “really on top of things”.
Council members Shirley Crehan, Tim McEwen and Borough Secretary/Treasurer Lori Stolz have been looking into costs for lawn maintenance and landscaping. It is estimated that $4000 could be saved by cutting grass 25 times rather than 27 times each year. Out of four bids, Heilner Landscaping was selected as the low bidder. Additional work can be requested from Heilner for extra costs.
McEwen was emphatic that repairs must be done on Borough Hall. He said several doors are in very bad condition and the outside plastering is flaking badly. He also suggested that the cost of caring for ball fields in the borough should be shared by the users. The Twin Valley Little League did all of the maintenance on the ball fields they used last year.
“We have to look into all facets of teams use and maintenance of the fields and come up with a recommendation,” said McEwen. “We must tell them not to use the fields when they are very wet. We hate to tell them but that is the way it will be.”
Stolz said she has been making a lot of calls to potential users of the fields to get information on interests and scheduling. Use of the fields will begin in March.
“We have to be aware of conditions on the tennis courts,” said President of Council Bob Broderick.
Borough Engineer Mark Stabolopscy said the tennis courts have been cracked before and that the borough passed up on repairing them correctly.
Council member Esther Prosser said it may cost $70,000 to fix the courts properly.
“We don’t have the money,” said McEwen, adding that it would be better to fix Borough Hall first.
“We could raise some funds by allowing businesses to post advertisements there,” Prosser said. “It is extremely difficult to get funds to repair tennis courts.”
Elverson Day is planned for Saturday, June 22. Events will start at 4 p.m. There will be a 5K Run at 8 a.m. Those interested in finding out more may call the Borough Office at 610-286-6420. The Farmers Market will run at Livingood Park during regular hours during Elverson Day.
About $1100 has been budgeted for Elverson Day.
Last year the affair came out about even in terms of costs, said Stolz.
“How come we have all this other stuff when we have to fix this building?” asked McEwen “What is more important to have an Elverson Day of fix this roof where we do business? I think the building has priority over everything else.”
“Elverson Day is a day when we can get the community together,” answered Stewart.
Prosser said that the funds needed to have Elverson Day are in the 2013 budget.
PP&L has plans to relocate the electric poles along Brick Lane and along part of Route 23, said Broderick. The time table to start the work is February 2014, and local roads will be affected by temporary closures. There is some engineering work currently underway. More information on the relocation will be available when the plans are available and Stabolopscy said that council should ask to see the plans.
Mayor Arleigh Hegarty said he learned someone blew out two tires on a pothole on Brick Lane.
Broderick said the potholes will be fixed as soon as possible.
PennDOT said they are only responsible for maintaining the surface of the roads and grates over storm water pipes and nothing below, said Stabolopscy.
“We are interested in getting local businesses to place business card size advertisements in the Borough Newsletter,” said Prosser.
A very nice cabinet has been donated to the Borough in which historical memorabilia can be placed for display.
Crehan said that an electronic contact has been established for the LED sign along Route 23 near Hopewell Manor, which means that now the messages displayed on the sign can be updated and changed from Borough Hall.
A committee is being assembled to work on updating the comprehensive plan for Elverson. The committee will meet on the second Tuesday of the month starting in March
Terms on Council will be up for Jonathan Pershall, Hegarty, Prosser, Council Member Merle Stoltzfus and McEwen. The terms of Council Members are four years.
The Neighborhood Watch has little of importance to report recently said Hegarty.
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