Catasauqua Press

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

N. Catty council reviewing demolition bids

Wednesday, January 24, 2018 by JAMES BUNTING Special to The Press in Local News

Vote is expected next month on fate of blighted homes on Second Street

North Catasauqua is reviewing a second set of demolition bids for the blighted homes at 1020, 1022 and 1024 Second St.

At the Jan. 15 borough council meeting, President Peter Paone said the borough has received one bid, received a pledge to receive another bid later that week and was awaiting response on a third.

This is the borough’s second attempt at securing a demolition contractor. Bids that were collected last year expired while the borough was working to approve its new Blighted, Vacant, Abandoned and Dangerous Property Ordinance.

Property owners were notified at the end of October that the borough was classifying their homes as blighted and they had 60 days to show significant progress in resolving the structural issues. Paone said one of the owners has been corresponding with the borough, while the other has been nonresponsive.

Council is expected to review and vote on the demolition bids at the Feb. 5 meeting.

The borough would be responsible for the initial cost of the demolition but would be eligible to pursue recovery costs through legal means.

A series of potholes have developed on Second Street, in front of the properties. The borough had previously chosen to delay fixing them while the properties were in litigation, but Paone stressed the need to get them patched.

In other business, North Catasauqua residents wishing to reserve the North Catasauqua William J. Albert Memorial Park pavilion will see an increase in cost in 2018.

The fee for borough residents has increased from $100 to $140 to match the existing nonresident fee.

Councilman Joseph D. Keglovits proposed an amendment to allow community nonprofit groups to request a waiver from the borough. Council will vote on whether or not to approve that waiver on a case-by-case basis.

Anyone who already has a 2018 pavilion rental scheduled will be grandfathered in at the old rate.

In other news from the Jan. 15 council meeting, Francis Hadik was approved as the borough’s fire marshal.

Paone provided some additional details on two grants the borough received in late December 2017. Both are intended for ADA-accessibility enhancements in the community.

Northampton County provided $25,000 for the borough to do a feasibility study on adding an elevator to North Catasauqua’s municipal building.

The second grant is for $25,000 with a potential match of an additional $25,000 for ADA improvements to the borough park.

Paone will review the potential enhancements that the playground grants would cover and advise council on some improvement possibilities.