By Libby Rosequist
North East Borough Council held the monthly meeting on Monday, April 5, which focused on the new residential rental inspection program set to start in June.
Ordinance 916, residential rental inspection program, was approved unanimously.
“We are excited for this rental inspection program to help many of these properties in need and enhance our community by improving the properties and safety of the renters,” Borough Manager Pat Gehrlein said.
The code enforcement department run by Wayne Yokom will be taking over this program. Yokom will be holding a meeting in the first week of May for property owners to attend and gain more information about the checklist and timeline for their rental units.
Letters with this information will be sent to all property owners as well.
Ordinance 917, neighborhood blight reclamation act 90, was approved unanimously.
“Ordinance 917 is to help enforce the rental inspection program,” Gehrlein said. “It is an additional tool for us to make sure any blighted property is properly addressed before the owner of such property can continue to operate any of their other properties in the borough.”
This ordinance also allows the borough to disclose all code violations to anyone inquiring about said properties.
Ordinance 918, repeal and replace ordinance 691 LERTA, was approved unanimously.
This ordinance is a tax abatement program through LERTA for anyone who provides substantial and significant improvement to the assessed value of a property within the borough for the first five years.
“This program is designed to relieve the local real estate tax to anyone who has massively improved the value of a property,” Gehrlein said. “The first year is 100%, second year is 80%, third year is 60%, fourth year is 40% and the fifth year is 20%.
“We are hopeful that this program will be a stimulus for expansion in the borough and bring much needed improvements as well.”
Under new business the Grahamville Street sewer line extension was approved, bringing additional service to two homes and access to further expansion to vacant properties.
Zoning hearing board member Alice Davis submitted her resignation letter to the borough and will be moving to North East Township.
Anyone interested in filling this vacancy must submit a letter of interest to the borough office.
Police Chief Mike Sliker announced his retirement set for May 4 after 26 years of service. He is looking to pursue other career opportunities at this time.
A replacement has not been mentioned and the borough is actively looking to fill the vacancy.
The Skunk & Goat Tavern was approved for the use of Gibson Park and borough streets.
Park United Methodist Church was granted approval for the use of Gibson Park.
The North East Area Chamber of Commerce was approved for the use of Gibson and Heard Park.
4NINE was approved for the use of Heard Park to begin Yoga in the Park.
Mayor Steve Gregory will be giving a proclamation in May for Arbor Day in support of the Shade Tree Committee.
There will be a second monthly meeting on Monday, April 19, at 7 p.m.