Short meeting, big gifts at West Cocalico

By on February 17, 2016


The West Cocalico Township meeting of Feb. 16 lasted 25 minutes, but good things come in small packages. The township has been given two separate gifts.

First: Lancaster County has met the minimum requirements to request public assistance from the federal government for expenses related to the recent blizzard. This means costs were at least $3.57 per resident.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency, better known as FEMA, will reimburse 75 percent of the costs for plowing and snow removal for a 48-hour period of the storm.

“We were pleased to reach this goal and will get about $15,000,” said Carolyn Hildebrand, township manager.

Second gift: The National Fish and Wildlife is giving West Cocalico $75,000 for a project at Main Street Park where the township is putting in a riparian buffer to improve fish habitat and lowering banks of the stream to restore wetland. Officials will be working with Cocalico Creek Watershed on other projects and with the Lancaster Conservation District.

Two different issues were discussed in police news:

Supervisor James J. Stoner gave his stance on West Cocalico possibly paying for police calls from the high school when the call pertains to a West Cocalico student resident.

Denver has been carrying the load of paying for all calls from the high school to police, even when it involves a West Cocalico, East Cocalico, or Adamstown student.

“Our position right now is we are not participating in paying that,” Stoner said.

Denver Borough collects an EMT tax from employees working in Denver.

“We (West Cocalico Township) don’t collect an EMT tax (from residents or employees),” Stoner said.

Cocalico School District employees pay the EMT tax.

“I was told by Blake Daub (Denver Borough president) that was worth $60,000,” Stoner said. “I think we are not here to micromanage the school district and how that gets financed. In West Cocalico, we scrutinize on keeping our taxes low. We do not collect that tax, and therefore I think this is a petty issue.”

In the second police issue, supervisors made a motion to approve Schillacci Architects to draw up blueprints for a private, secure “broom closet” in the township building in which Ephrata police can do work. The Ephrata Police Department provides coverage to West Cocalico.

The last motion of the meeting was to appoint Scott Allen to the parks board. Terry Bergman, who had occupied the slot, passed away last summer.

Michele Walter Fry welcomes your comments at

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