Golf Course Purchase and Lease
The purchase agreement with ILGC was signed and closing is expected to occur in the next 2 weeks. Northwinds has their attorney(s) working on a simple short-term lease agreement to operate the course for the rest of 2018, and a more comprehensive agreement for 2019 and beyond.
Debt Refinancing/Consolidation
After lengthy deliberation and planning, in June we restructured our finances using available cash in accounts earning very little, paid off our highest interest loan for the Dam work, and paid down the other loan substantially. On the heels of last year's 3 mil (15.5%) tax decrease, this is yet more great news. The immediate benefit is a nearly $20,000 per month decrease in interest expense going forward. For the remainder of this year we will use this savings to rebuild reserves, but beginning 2019 we will have the enviable choice to more aggressively retire the remaining (~$2Million) in debt or to further lower taxes. We may opt to do some of both. And yes, we kept sufficient reserves for the Golf Course purchase.
Anglers' Club
The last issue outlined their summer tournament plans but didn't include a membership app. Click below to sign up. It's only $25.
New Police Officer
Officer Ray Wilhelm accepted a position as a part-time police officer and will work approximately 36 hours per week through the summer. Officer Wilhelm is a military policeman with the PA National Guard and will deploy to the middle east in September. We plan to offer him a position as a full-time member of the police department when he returns from his deployment.
Zoning/Code Enforcement Officer
Council has elected to supplement Dave Wood's weekday schedule with evening and weekend coverage by a seasoned and experienced professional Code Enforcement Officer who will focus not only on Zoning but Nuisances as well. Anson Bloom of Windber has accepted the challenge. Anson and Dave, both independent contractors, will report to Mayor Miscoe administratively.
While we are on the topic of Code Enforcement, please note that we have a Nuisance Ordinance [Ordinance 105 dated July 1997] and it is being reviewed for update. You might wish to review its breadth and make note of the Borough's options to abate nuisances, particularly chronic or festering ones.
e-Pay, Boat Registration/Licenses, Phase II
Last year's on-line boat registration and e-pay was a definite improvement, but far from 'perfect'. The biggest problem was the 'disconnected' registration and payment processes/workflows. Over the winter we researched on-line-store/shopping cart software that would capture and return to us the registration data at the same time we pay and check out; all one process. We found it. We checked it out. We liked it. We bought it. We have set it up and we are going to begin rolling it out for live testing this summer, beginning with new boat registrations and sewer bills just like we did last year. Come December we will be ready to handle the 2019-2021 boat registrations as well as water, Service Corp and other bills. We think it is a huge improvement.
This past week we had a series of storms, one of which raised havoc the likes of which we've never seen. Thankfully it was over quickly (30-40 minutes) but the damage due to flash-flooding and overflowing streams, drainage ditches and culverts was significant. Estimates were that we had between 1 and 1.5 inches of rain in around 30 minutes over large portions of our watershed and nearly 3 inches in a 4-6 hour period. The rainfall was in the range of a “50-year” 30-minute storm. The Lake rose 18-20 inches pretty quickly and subsided over the better part of the day. A few boats and docks became un-tethered. Lake Stonycreek fared worse, or so we're told. We all seem pretty much back to normal now.
Happy 4th!!