The COVID-19 pandemic has forced the cancellation of two more beloved community events. During the August 20 Northampton Borough Council meeting, it was announced that both the Uptown Street Fair slated for September and the Jack Frost Parade scheduled for October have been canceled in an effort to keep residents safe.
The decision to cancel the street fair was made by the Northampton Area Chamber of Commerce. However, the event is rescheduled for May 22, 2021.
The Jack Frost Parade, held by the Northampton Exchange Club, has been a borough tradition for over 70 years. It celebrates fall and draws hundreds along its route.
In light of these announcements, Councilman Tony Pristash said he hopes the borough can “find a way” to keep Trick-or-Treat and the annual tree lighting on the calendar.
In other news, code enforcement officer Keith Knoblach said he is catching up on rental inspections that were put on hold during the pandemic.
Despite the pause, Knoblach announced a 95.1 percent compliance rate. Only 25 rental parcels have not been registered. Owners have until the end of August to do so before they are taken to court.
Even when the legal system gets involved, Knoblach said there are still some landlords who do not cooperate.
“Unfortunately, there are [property owners] even the magistrate cannot get a hold of.”
By the end of 2019, the borough had 97.9 percent compliance with its ordinance. Knoblach said data will be easier to compare the longer the program is in place.
Finally, it was announced that a public MS4 meeting will be held on Thursday, October 1. The borough and its engineers will present proposed changes to Dry Run Creek as part of state-mandated MS4 requirements. The borough was awarded a $200,000 grant to help with these improvements.
Not only will the changes help with sedimentation issues, but council also suggested that they could help prevent flooding in the area. Residents living along the creek will be notified with more details.
Lastly, Northampton’s Fourth Ward voting location will be at the Gospel Chapel, 1769 Newport Ave. It will not be at the Northampton Memorial Community Center as it had been.