November 2020


Port Carbon Borough Council

General Meeting

November 17, 2020

COUNCIL MEMBERS                                                                                  ANCILLARY MEMBERS


Scott Krater, Vice President, p                                                                 Harold Herndon, Mayor p

Ron Zimmerman, p                                                                                     William Burke, Solicitor p

Denise Krater p                                                                                            Peggy Lubinsky, Treasurer P

James McBreen p                                                                                       Luanne Mengle, Secretary p

Cathy Manning p

Tiffany Sullivan p

Mary Jo Ferraro p


The meeting was called to order by President Scott Krater with the Pledge of Allegiance.

Zimmerman/Sullivan motioned to approve the minutes from October meetings. Motion approved.


Citizen’s – Mike Walsh – Walsh noticed a lot of abandoned vehicles in the Borough and would like Council to come up with a punch list of different items that need to be done around the borough. Such as abandoned vehicles, fire hydrants that need to be painted, signs need to be repainted, street lights are out, trees around lights need to be trimmed, creek wall needs to be repaired, vehicles that are our of dates with inspections. Winter coming and snow shoveling that will need to be done. People need to shovel their sidewalks.

Walsh does not want the recycling in town. Walsh would like to get the town back up and looking nice.


Sanitation – Bids received by County Waste and Tamaqua Transfer.

Port Carbon:

Tamaqua Transfer – 2021-$152,460, 2022-$153,980, 2023-$154,760 = Total 3 years $461,190.

Optional bid for 2024-$157,845. Clean up day included in 2021, 2022, and 2023 in bid. Optional 4th year would be $3,500 for cleanup. Bid bond included.

County Waste – 2021-$152,460, 2022-$154,700, 2023-$156,980 = Total 3 years $464,140. 2024-$159,400.

Clean up for each year would be $148 a ton. Bid bond included.



Tamaqua Transfer – 2021-$43,200, 2022-$43,632, 2023-$43,850= Total 3 years $130,682. Optional 4th year $44,727. Clean up day included in 2021, 2022, 2023 and 2024. Bid bond included.

County Waste – 2021-$52,200, 2022-$52,980, 2023-$53,700= Total 3 years $158,880. Optional 4th year $54,500.

Clean up for each year is $148 per ton. Bid bond included.


Palo Alto:

Tamaqua Transfer – April to Dec. 2021-$77,125, 2022-99,990, 2023-100,990 = total 3 years $278,105. Optional 4th year-$103,010. No clean up. Bid bond included.

County Waste – April to Dec. 2021-60,980, 2022-$87,390, 2023-$88,700= total 3 years $237,070. Optional 4th year $89,980. Bid bond included.

  1. Krater reported the sanitation committee and Borough Solicitor will look over the bids. Mechanicsville and Palo Alto bids will be forwarded to the respective secretaries.



Finance – Zimmerman reported everyone should have copy of year to date budget. Anything at 83.3% is under budget, items with an X next to it we are over budget. Zimmerman reported we are a little over our expense budget. We spent 98% of our budget and we should be at 83%. Revenue so far is 90% of what was estimated to come in.

Zimmerman met with his committee and reported the tax collector is resigning at the end of the year. Council could appoint someone to finish the term but if they would want to run for the position it would be on the ballot next year. If we appoint they will only be on for 1 year and then would have to run. Zimmerman asked the County if they would be willing to do our taxes for next year until someone would run for the position. If we appoint the County and no one runs then the County would keep doing it but they won’t do the Sanitation. We would have to bring the sanitation into the office. The Finance committee is recommending appointing the County for 2021.

Zimmerman reported if we appoint someone they would have to put $500 out of pocket, go through DCED to get certified, the County will not accept anyone unless they have those requirements. Manning asked if the County has an additional charge for collecting the taxes. Zimmerman reported only the %5 that is given to the tax collector now. S. Krater asked the Solicitor if there are people interested in doing the tax collector what is our option. Solicitor stated they would have to petition the Court of Common Pleas to enforce an appointment through a hearing. Zimmerman reported the County already collects taxes for other Boroughs.

McBreen/Manning motioned to appoint the County for 2021. Motion approved.


Zimmerman reported the Covid grant money will soon be available The Borough put in for $37,000 for items for the Police and Borough. We won’t be all of that money but a portion of that. The items will need to be purchased and in by the end of the year.

Zimmerman/Manning motioned to spend the funding we receive on the items that we need. Motion approved.


Zimmerman reported the Flood Insurance bills are in with an increase. Zimmerman stated we can vote on at the next meeting on what we want to do with the coverage. Work session will be changed to General meeting so we can vote on it. Manning will check with PSAB for other coverage with better insurance costs.


Zimmerman reported the Demolition grant just opened up. The County should be approving the 3 properties for the Borough to acquire on November 25th. We will have to put insurance on the 3 properties until they are torn down. The properties are Encounters bar, Kintzer property on Jackson Street, and 301 N. Coal Street the Schwalm property. The grant is one that we don’t have to match any money.


Public Works – D. Krater reported the flashing light bar is broke on top of the big truck. Faust looked on Amazon and the cost would be $149.95 and $32.99 for the back lights on the truck.

  1. Krater/McBreen motioned to purchase the safety lights for no more than $250.00. Motion approved.

D.Krater received a call about the Miller playground and when it will open. D.Krater told the caller it was vandalized and that is why it is closed.

  1. Krater will find out if Faust can order the cameras for the playground.


Property – Manning reported Hahner fixed the Library roof.


Safety – No report.


Recreation – No report.


Zoning/Code – McBreen reported there are no Quality of Life complaints since last meeting.

Lehigh Engineering is still working on 208 Valley Street and 21 Cherry Street. Lehigh is going through due process.

McBreen reported for the ad was in paper for changes to Property Maintenance 182, which will be an increase fines from $100 to $400, also a deletion of a line that requested by Hummel from Lehigh Engineering. Also some changes to put in line with Quality of Life ordinance. Chapter 189 of the Rental Registration changing from an ordinance to a resolution in order to change costs of rentals. We will vote on that at the December meeting.

  1. Krater asked Solicitor if we have any info on 208 Valley Street. Burke talked with Lehigh Engineering and we will have to condemn to tear it down. Notice will have to be given to the property owners. Burke stated that we have to give owner 15/20 days to have them repair or tear down.


Manning asked about property on Pike Street next to Peps and what they are doing. Mayor reported on his page the owner is doing video machines, coffee and snacks. Mayor reported he is thinking of doing a BYOB also. Burke stated he would have to go through gaming or PLCB for that.


Personnel – No report.


Treasurer’s – General fund as of October 31, the balance was 234,031.48, checks for $101,880.44, deposits for $44,286.58 for a balance of $176,437.29. Since the beginning of the month checks for $26,642.65, deposits of $4,503.32. New balance of $154,298.29. Deposits today of $18,815.70 for an ending balance of $135,482.56.

Liquid Fuels – Beginning balance of $127,076.41, checks for %5,595.31, deposits of $1.08, ending balance of $121,482.18

Tax Collector – Real Estate collected $2,314.29, Per Capita collected $90.78. Since March 2020 through Oct. 2020 amount collected $280,954.89


EngineerCategory C – 4th Street repairs are on hold until after the winter due to temperature restriction. We need to schedule meeting soon with affected property owners to execute the easement agreements drafted by Solicitor Burke. The Borough will have to contact PennDot to receive permissions needed to receive the ePermitting access required for a Highway Occupancy permit.

Category D – Mill Creek Channel Wall Repairs. – The Recover Transition meeting was held to move this project to PEMA’s oversight. All required documents have been signed and we are able to finalize the project. The structural dept. has completed their design and provided details and sketches to the CADD Dept. to prepare a plan set. The specification book for bidding purposes is being finalizes. All the permitting is in place. Meetings need to be set up with affected property owners to execute the easement agreements drafted by Solicitor Burke. That meeting can be combined with the Growing Greener update with those properties that may be affected but that Project. Winter/Spring construction is anticipated.

Growing Greener – Initial steps have begun in the survey of the large scale project for the Mill Creek By Pass Option. An extension for the access easement from Pagnotti Coal Company has been secured. Several different tasks for this project is anticipated to begin. DEP has indicated the Borough can obtain working capital for this project. DEP will give the Borough $20,000 upfront to pay for costs incurred for this project as bills are received. Monthly request for reimbursements can be requested.

Road Project – All work is complete and final inspection was held for the Pine Street and Wilson Avenue street project. Folk has submitted their first and final application for payment in the amount of $80,798.45, which is $109.55 under the contract amount. Benesch recommends the borough make payment. D. Krater/Ferraro motioned to approve the change order and making payment. Motion approved.




Fire Chief – Walsh reported 9 fire calls and 32 EMS.   101 Pottsville Street loss cost of $60,000 for structure and $20,000 for contents. Fire undetermined. 208 Valley – Walsh had the meter pulled so no one would try to turn the power back on. Fire is under investigation but will probably be undermined also. Walsh reported there was an abandoned vehicle on the street by that property that was in the way of the fire hose and caused a kink in the hose. Officer Murton who helped with the investigation reported that it looked like fire started in the mattress on the 3rd floor of the property. Officer Murton complimented the Fire Dept. for the good job they did on the fire to keep it from spreading to adjoining property.

Walsh asked if we can have a COVID policy. Walsh had to take two days off of work because of exposure to someone in the Department. S. Krater has a call into Bulino to check on this situation.

  1. Krater reported the borough received paperwork for the insurance of 101 Pottsville Street where we will hold a portion of the insurance until property is repaired or torn down.

Walsh asked what can be done because there isn’t room at the station and they would like to add on to the station. 50 X 48 addition for the extra room and what would we need to do to move this further. Walsh reported a firefighter was hurt climbing on the ladder to get supplies since there is no storage. Walsh would like some help from the Borough and the Borough Engineer to get this done. Someone told Walsh that since it is for Emergency Personnel a Zoning permit isn’t needed.


Mayor – Mayor asked for a thank you letter to be sent out to Womer who donated the paint job for the Police Car. S. Krater will work on letter with Mengle to be sent out.

Mayor reported Calibration for Enrad needed for speeding. Mayor reported the company will come out to calibrate 6 times a year. Borough would pay for 5 and the 6th time would be free. Mayor would like this done in order to conduct speed checks. McBreen/Zimmerman motioned to have the Enrad calibrated. Motion approved.

Mayor would like to have an electronic lock put on the Police Dept. Front door at a cost of about $129. McBreen/Zimmerman motioned to approve the new lock. Motion approved.

Mayor would like to get back working with the Highway Safety Committee. Our Officers would work with them and get reimbursed for hours worked. Mayor has the agreement for the Highway Safety Committee. Zimmerman/McBreen motioned to approve pending Safety Committee and Solicitor approval. Motion approved. Officer Murton reported this committee has added resources such as seat belt checks, car seats checks and other items.

Mayor would like to have the PA State Borough’s Association for Mayors dues paid for him at the cost of $60.00. Zimmerman/D.Krater motioned to pay the fee. Motion approved.

Mayor reported the paperwork for Brayden Jones is back and all is good. Brayden will start next week and training with our officers. Jones will be rotating in when other coverage isn’t available.


Solicitor– No report.


Unfinished business – D. Krater thanked Murton with a RTK that was being sent to wrong address. The RTK went to the Open Records office. D. Krater talked to the Open Records the RTK was taken care of.


Executive Session – 8:34 to 8:48

Executive session was held for personnel matters.

McBreen/Manning motioned for Chris Taylor for $1.00 more an hour as temporary Officer in Charge. Motion approved.


Meeting adjourned.


Respectfully submitted,

Luanne Mengle, Borough Secretary

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