During their August 20 meeting, the Berks County Commissioners agreed to hire Transystems/Stone Consulting of Warren, PA, at a cost of $110 an hour to provide engineering and consultation services regarding the future of the Colebrookdale Spur, the 8.5-mile short line running from Boyertown to Pottstown. The line's current owners, Penn Eastern Lines, Inc., are seeking approval at the federal level to abandon the line, which is currently used most regularly by Drug Plastics & Glass, Inc., of Boyertown.Commissioners Mark C. Scott, Christian Y.
Leinbach and Kevin S. Barnhardt agreed to hire Transystems to gather the information necessary in order to determine the rail line's future. Leinbach, who spoke at Monday night's Boyertown Rotary meeting, indicated he sought input from both Boyertown business and community leaders. He stated, "Boyertown's "business community wants to see the rail stay in place." Further, he noted that the rail line is extremely important to the future growth of Boyertown.
Scott, while noting that the county had previously owned and operated the rail line at a financial profit, agreed with Leinbach's assertion that the county no longer wanted to be in the railroad-owning business, although the Commissioners agreed that it is imperative to protect this vital link from Boyertown to the rest of the country.
The commissioners also indicated that along with their concerns about the economic impact of the abandonment of the rail line, doing so would most likely bring about a major deterioration to the rail line's surrounding properties and would encourage trespassing and increased vandalism.
September 10, 2008 is the deadline for the county to file an objection to East Penn's plans.