Water, sewer availability and storm water runoff are very big issues in the little borough of Bally. On Tuesday night, Bally Borough Manager Leo Mutter reported to the borough council that he acted on the request of borough resident, Victor Verdi, to pursue a grant from the state to control the storm water runoff that plagues Bally, especially on Chestnut Street.
However, although the state concedes both sewer and water control projects are necessary there are no grants currently available, at least for Bally. Mutter explained that grants or "free money" are not available to Bally because based on the 2010 census, the average household income in Bally is $55,390. For Bally to qualify for a grant to repair storm water runoff, household income must be below $53,600.
Mutter explained that he spoke with an official from Pennvest, Tersa Schulp, who informed him that a loan to repair Bally's storm water runoff and sewer problems would be based on the borough's ability to repay the loan. The loan would be for 40 years at a fixed rate of approximately 4.2 percent. The borough council took no action on the matter.
Borough Solicitor Matt Doll explained there is a sewer moratorium that does not permit any EDU sewer connections in the borough. Doll said to fix the leaks in Bally's sewer system is a costly and time consuming process for which the borough does not have the money.
In other matters, the borough council discussed its bulk water sales to Patriot Hauling and Aqua Duck. The water haulers purchase borough water at this time of year to fill swimming pools. Bally expects to conservatively earn at least $5,000 per year from the sale of its water.
Most of the water is drawn from well No. 4 on Wheeler Lane. Until now, the borough used the honor system to determine how much water the haulers were using. Now, the borough council will require the water haulers to inform the borough every 24 hours by email how many gallons they are drawing from well No. 4.
The motor for well No. 4 has been making a strange noise and it was determined it must be replaced. The borough council approved the installation of a new well motor for $9,765 and the repair of its current motor at a cost of $2,500. The old motor will be repaired at the end of this fiscal year so that it can be included the 2015 budget. Kohl Brothers of Mertztown will do the repairs.
Councilman James Frank resigned from his position on borough council. Officials accepted his resignation with regret. The borough council will send Frank a letter to thank him for his service to the community. Council Vice President Tom Leister noted Frank "did a lot on the financial side for this borough." Bally Borough Council must fill the vacated seat within 30 days. The borough is seeking applicants for the position. To be a council member a person must be a U.S. citizen and a resident of the borough of Bally.
Solicitor Doll suggested the borough pass a resolution that endorses a proposed bill in the state legislature that permits local police forces to have radar equipment. The resolution would show support for the proposed state law. The borough council agreed to consider the resolution.
Council announced that police bike patrols will resume this month. Mayor David Schott suggested citizens stop to say "hello" to patrolling officers.
Ian Meinzer, proprietor of the Bally Hotel, will hold the annual car show on July 27 from 11a.m. to approximately 4 p.m.