Street wise: Adamstown council considers crossing guard cost

By on April 12, 2017

In “fire and safety” news at the April 4 Adamstown Borough Council meeting, Mayor Dean Johnson discussed a meeting he had with Denise Long, Adamstown Elementary School principal.

“We currently only have one crossing guard, and that’s in the afternoon,” said Johnson. “A couple citizens have asked why don’t we have a crossing guard in the morning?”

The borough hires crossing guards and pays half their salary, while the school is billed the other half.

“When I went back to her and asked if the school would pay for the other half of the salary for the crossing guard in the morning, everything stopped and they said they don’t have any money,” he said.

At this point in the meeting, chuckles were heard in the room.

Councilman Mark Bansner inquired about the cost for the guard. Crouse said the portion to the school is about $1,100.

“I think it would be money well spent to give kids the security of crossing the street,” said Bansner. “We were going to put a sign up that would have cost way more than that, that wouldn’t have slowed down any vehicles.”

The personnel committee will review the matter and it will be discussed at the next meeting.

A new park is coming to Adamstown and the recreation department is “really excited about.”

Councilwoman Jessica Kelly asked council for approval to spend $5,000 for the next step in the construction phase Celebration Park.

The park will be in the Brookview Estates development off Route 272.

“Currently, it is nothing more than open green space and this gives the borough an opportunity to introduce something unique and creative to the community,” Kelly said.

The recreation committee has worked over the past year to develop a concept for a “natural playscape pocket park.”

“Nature-based playgrounds are not only environmentally friendly, but full of benefits for children, too,” she said. “Instead of climbing on a maze of metal and plastic, natural playgrounds offer an opportunity for children to climb trees and explore the environment through creative free play.”

Kelly and Jessica McManimen (community representative to the committee) spearheaded the project with input from the committee and council.

“Central to the playscape will be a manmade hill with integrated play elements including a slide, rock scramble, climbing wall, and wooden overlook,” noted Kelly.

“The plan also calls for the planting of at least 15 new trees throughout, in order to create a shaded gathering space,” Kelly said. “In that space, we hope to include balancing logs, tree stump steppers and climbing rocks. We also hope to incorporate a seating area for relaxing in the shade (there are zero shade options in the park at this time).”

The committee is in early stages of preparing a construction bid. Members hope to have the first phase of the project (the hill) completed by fall 2017.

In more recreation news, the borough is introducing a sponsored summer playground program to be held in The Grove this summer.

“The borough is partnering with the YMCA to offer this community-building program with the goal of bringing together kids from throughout the borough to get outside and have some old-school summer fun.

Other municipalities in the county offer something similar, but this is the only one in the Cocalico area.

“Adamstown Borough residents will receive priority registration and that will begin in May,” Kelly said. “The prices are for the entire 8-week program, so $2 a day for residents or $3 a day for non-residents.”

In other news:

* Andrew Kehl from RKL Financial visited the meeting and gave a summary of the borough’s financial statements and gave audit results.

“We had only two minor auditing adjustments and that certainly speaks volumes in the confidence we have here in the borough,” said Kehl. “It was a very clean audit, very smooth process. Lisa (Crouse, borough treasurer) was very well prepared.”

Kehl explained the borough’s enterprise revenue which totaled $1.16 million.

“Our enterprise funds are made up of water, sewer, pool revenue,” said Kehl. “The $1.16 million is $75,000 more than what we had budgeted. The revenue exceeded our budgeted amounts for 2016. In fact, the pool revenue exceeded by about $8,000 which is helps have a surplus at the end of the year compared to 2015, the pool revenue had a loss, so that’s certainly great news.”

* Ephrata Police Lt. Thomas Shumaker said dog wardens will be “out in force going door-to-door to verify and enforce dog licensing and rabies vaccine” on May 24.

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