An almost entirely new Mohnton Borough Council appointed officials and addressed residents’ questions about the state of borough finances and the local police force.
Council met Wednesday for its first nonworkshop meeting after the early January resignation of council members Mike Anderson and Dale Eisenhofer, as well as borough secretary and treasurer Jennifer Roy, engineer Kraft Engineering, code enforcement agency Kraft Code Services and civil service board members Joseph Russ and Darrel Harris.
In addition, state police are investigating acts of vandalism at borough hall in early January that impeded the borough’s ability to operate.
Borough officials declined to comment on the investigation or the resignations.
Anderson and Eisenhofer’s seats were filled by Kerry Hoffman and Alicia Bressler earlier this month.
Daniel McDevitt, Jason Kercher, Gary Hafer and council President Jonathan Davis Sr. won seats in the November election, leaving Brian Simmons as the only holdover.
Veronica Henry was hired as acting secretary and treasurer before Wednesday’s meeting and was appointed temporary right-to-know officer Wednesday.
Council also appointed Loretta Imbody as borough secretary Wednesday, and noted that Technicon Enterprises Inc. II, Morgantown, has been appointed engineer and code enforcement agency.
Speaking on the borough’s status following the state police report of vandalism, Henry said Mohnton personnel have things under control and have access to everything needed to conduct business.
“We’re digging in feet first and things are moving along smoothly,” Henry said.
In response to residents’ questions about the borough’s financial state, Davis said the borough is taking in more money than it is spending, but the new officials are still in the process of discovering exactly where the borough stands.
“There is money here, but we need to dive a little bit further,” Davis said.
He said council expects to address the question more specifically in the following months.
Officials noted that council will be exploring local alternatives to handle banking services for the borough. Mohnton currently uses Ephrata National Bank.
Resident Thomas Jaeger also spoke in support of a local police force and asked council if they plan to keep the borough department intact.
Discussions on whether to disband the department — which currently does not offer 24/7 service — and instead contract with neighboring Cumru Township’s force were a subject of contention for council last year.
The issue drew a higher-than-average resident turnout for Mohnton’s November election.
“We have every intention of keeping our police,” Davis said. “We will now start opening discussions with unions and the civil service commission to save our police.”
Newly elected Mayor Eric Burgis said the borough has refilled the civil service board, which handles police hirings, after the resignation of two of its members and plans to start hiring new officers as soon as next month.
In other business:
• Burgis said Mid Atlantic Consulting Solutions, Mohnton, has done an audit of borough computer systems, and that council will likely discuss having the company perform IT and cybersecurity upgrades next month.
• Council approved having SAH Inc., Reading, install additional security cameras on borough grounds at a maximum cost of $1,700. Officials said only police will have access to the cameras.
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