Hanover Township residents, especially those involved in its governance, are mourning the loss of township Engineer Fredrick Hay, who died Jan. 9.
At its meeting Jan. 12, Hanover Township Council observed a moment of silence in his memory. It was an unexpected passing for the longtime, long-term official, who was 60 years old.
Since 2014 was not a local election year, most appointed positions in the borough remain the same.
Council President remains Vincent Smith; Vice-President remains Jessica Kroope.
Committee assignments on council remain the same as well.
While some municipalities reorganize assignments and appointments annually, Catasauqua only re-evaluates council assignments after an election has occurred.
However, there are assignments and appointments that need to be made for terms expiring in 2014.
Hanover Township held a special meeting on Jan.14 to discuss with PennDOT officials the FedEx warehouse project underway in Allen Township. Hundreds of township residents gathered for the meeting at the municipal building.
The high turnout taxed the meeting facilities, with many interested parties catching the commentary in the lobby.
Michael Rebert, District Executive for PennDOT, was caught by surprise.
"We didn't expect this to be a public meeting," he said.
Council and Township Solicitor Jackson Eaton maintained order and kept the meeting informative.
Catasauqua resident Ben Ferenchak has looked after the D&L Trail for as long as he can remember.
"This was part of my playground when I was growing up," he said.
Recently, Ferenchak took 40 friends, area residents and nature lovers on a Saturday morning trek along the trail.
The event was sparked by yet another proposal for grant funds to be used to complete the section of the trail where it passes through Catasauqua and North Catasauqua.
At its annual holiday meeting, the Historic Catasauqua Preservation Association (HCPA) opened the doors to its art gallery at 8 Race St.
"We usually have this get-together before the holidays, but decided to try something in January," said Betsy Hillenbrand.
Over 50 people showed up for the event, reinforcing the organization's decision to hold the meeting outside the pre-holiday season.
The meeting Jan. 9 was special for a second reason. HCPA dedicated the art gallery in honor of artist and board member Robert LeFevre.
A revision of the Catasauqua skate park rules has been approved by Catasauqua Borough Council.
"The ordinance change we made to the skate park rules was a minor one," said Councilwoman Jessica Kroope. The skate park is a fenced-in area at the Catasauqua Park & Playground.
The new rule restricts anyone 6 years of age and younger from being in the skating area.
"This adds to safety at the skate park," Kroope said. "Anyone 10 and younger needs adult supervision, but this will keep the youngest completely out of the skate park." said Kroope.
With gusty winds swirling snow around the downtown area, Catasauqua Borough Council looked forward to the borough's summer program at its Jan. 5 meeting.
"We want to make a few changes to our Friday night concert series," said Councilwoman Jessica Kroope. Kroope's idea is based in part on the success of the 2014 Old Home Week.
"Opening night of Old Home Week was sponsored by the American Legion. With their funding, we were able to attract a popular band," she said. The event was held at the Catasauqua Park & Playground.
Accolades seem to keep coming for the Borough of Catasauqua.
First, the borough has received much praise for a successful kickoff for the development of the Iron Works property. Next, some favorable mentions have been made about borough police officers aiding bewildered motorists.
And now, Safe Choice Security has classed Catasauqua as one of the most improved municipalities in the state.
At the Hanover Township Council meeting Dec. 3, township Engineer Fredrick Hay reported that water levels in Hanover Lake in Canal Park have stabilized, but he recommended another grout to fill sink holes.
Last month, the township noticed that a sinkhole had opened in the recently revamped lake.
Two years ago, the lake had been drained and rejuvenated at considerable expense to the township.
At its November meeting, council took immediate steps to fill the sinkhole, but the grout did not flow into an adjacent sinkhole.
A garage on Pineapple Street has Catasauqua Borough Council members concerned because it has become a safety hazard.
At the Dec. 1 borough council meeting, Councilman Brian McKittrick asked borough Manager Eugene Goldfeder, who is also the borough code officer, to investigate the condition of the building.
The property was sold at a sheriff's sale for delinquent taxes and was damaged shortly after the sale.
"The building looks as if it is about to collapse," McKittrick said.