Longtime Coaldale Borough Secretary-Treasurer Louise Lill on Tuesday announced her impending retirement.
Lill, who has worked for the borough for 11 years, will retire effective Nov. 30. However, after thanking council for a good decade-plus, she offered to remain available to help train her successor and to wrap up any open projects.
Council reluctantly accepted her retirement, with Councilman Joe Hnat moving to accept the action "with regret," and Councilwoman Nancy Lorchak symbolically declining to accept it at all.
Council will now be seeking someone to perform Lill's duties.
In other matters Tuesday, Council:
*Discussed revising its ordinance that governs the burning of materials in the borough. The discussion followed Coaldale Fire Chief Richard Marek's concerns that some residents are burning green wood in outdoor burners, sending smoke into neighbors' homes. One recent matter involved a resident burning wood in a coal stove, filling an adjoining home with smoke.
People with fire pits and chimineas must use them properly, he said. That means burning the right kinds of fuel, like dry, seasoned wood, and in the right way.
Councilman Tom Keerans said the problems happens in the summer, too, when people use fire pits, sending smoke in neighbors' open windows.
"It's consideration for your neighbors," Marek said.
Solicitor Michael Greek said he'd obtain a copy of Tamaqua's burning ordinance, which includes rules for distance between a burning container and any structures and other requirements, for council's perusal. Marek would be included in the drafting of any ordinance.
*Briefly discussed Hnat's question as to whether the borough could afford to hire back one police officer or a borough worker. Council laid off almost all of its police force and all but one borough worker to save money. Lorchak said council needs to wait to see how the 2013 budget shapes up before considering the action;
*Learned that the Coaldale volunteer fire company will hold an Open House on Monday. Oct. 15, from 7-9 p.m.
*Set Trick-or-Treat night from 6-8 p.m. Oct. 31;
*Agreed to switch from Waste Management to Tamaqua Transfer for trash pickup at the Coaldale Complex. The move will save $80 a month;
*President Susan Solt said Panther Valley school Superintendent Rosemary Porembo met with her and Lorchak about unruly children at the 132 E. Phillips St. bus stop. Police will now be able to take the names of persistently misbehaving children and report them to the school district. Also, letters will be sent to parents, warning them that bus privileges could be revoked from children who continue to misbehave at the bus stop;
*Set Saturday, Oct. 20, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., as the date for the fall community yard sale;
*Agreed to allow C.H.O.S.E. to use the Coaldale Complex gym for its annual Halloween party for children on Oct. 21;
*Agreed to purchase 3,000 gallons of heating oil from Radocha. the borough already has a $4,300 credit with the company due to a mild last winter;
*Discussed the possibility of considering a "quality-of-life" ordinance that would allow borough officials to issue tickets for high grass and other property code violations;
*Agreed to allow businessman Maury Rutch to post a "no loading from noon to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday" sign in a parking space in front of his music store on East Phillips Street;
*Mentioned that Schuylkill County commissioners on Sept. 26 awarded a contract to Northeast Industrial Services Corporation, of Shamokin, for demolition of the vacant property at 255 High St., Coaldale. The county's Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program will pay 75 percent of the cost and the borough assume the remaining costs. Northeast was the low bidder on the project.