During their meeting on Thursday, February 4, the Northampton Borough Council praised public works and first responders for keeping borough roads clean and residents safe during the week’s earlier snowstorm.
“This one is one of the bad storms I remember in my lifetime,” said Councilman Keith Piescienski.
Over two feet of snow fell across the Lehigh Valley during the January 31 to February 2 storm. Borough Manager LeRoy Brobst described the difficulties that public works drivers face as they drive through the dark of the night in the middle of a blizzard. All roads were kept clean, despite criticism online, said council.
“Those people..love to complain,” said Councilman Anthony Lopsonzski, Sr. “If you think they did not [do a good job] why don’t you…go out and push the snow and see what happens to you.”
He added that some residents hindered street cleaning and vehicle traffic by shoveling the snow back into the street.
“Ignore that criticism [online] and know you are second to none,” Councilwoman Judy Kutzler told public works.
Council also added that despite rumors online, no borough trucks broke down during the storm.
There were also two critical incidents during the storm that fire and police responded to.
The first was a sewer gas leak on 11th Street. No evacuations were needed, but members of the fire department went door-to-door to check on the welfare of residents. Fire personnel were also called to the Hampton Lanes bowling alley collapse to secure the structure and ensure no individuals were in the building.
Councilman Thomas Gehringer also praised the fire department, adding that a crew was sent out with every ambulance call to help clear roads and pathways for patients.
Council requested that residents and businesses “adopt a fire hydrant” during the next storm. They encouraged home and business owners to take responsibility for shoveling out fire hydrants near their properties to help first responders keep them safe.
In other news, council approved a paper shredding event for April 10, 2021, from 10 a.m. until noon at the Northampton Community Center.
“These events have always been successful in the past and we can apply the tonnage to our recycling performance grant,” said Brobst.
Council also approved the ordinance designating portions of Station Alley and West Alley as one-way streets. Station Alley will be one-way east from West Alley to Main Street. West Alley will be one-way north from 21st Street to Station Alley. Only Lopsonzski, Sr. voted against the ordinance.
Finally, council also approved a motion that would add the Northampton Community Center to the borough building’s insurance premium. This would keep the community center’s payment closer to $2,000 as opposed to $6,000. The community center has been struggling to hold events for nearly a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The next council meeting will be held on Thursday, February 18 at 7:30 p.m.