Lansford Borough's budget is being trashed by residents who owe a total of $104,000 in delinquent sanitation bills.
Councilman Tommy Vadyak brought up the matter at a public meeting Wednesday.
"We have to do something," he said.
He suggested sending those residents letters, giving them a set amount of time to respond. If they continue to fail to pay their bills, the borough could take them before a district judge or even, if the overdue bill is high enough, put liens on their properties.
"Letters will be going out," said council President Rose Mary Cannon. She said the procedure is already in place.
Council also approved emergency repairs to about 900 feet of sewer pipe that is blocked on the east end of the borough. The old terra cotta pipe runs along East Ridge Street, and runs in a wooded area west of the Lansford Townhouses, said Councilman Lenny Kovach. The work could cost about $10,000, but would be paid for through the sewer fund.
Kovach said work would .start in a week or so, as soon as the materials he needs arrive. It will take about two weeks, depending on weather and other factors, to finish the job.
The blocked pipe is not affecting residents.
In other matters, Council:
*Agreed, with Vadyak and Councilwoman Mary (Kruczek) Soberick opposed, to hiring Barry Isett & Associates as the borough's new code/zoning officer;
*Agreed to buy two school bus stop signs to make alert drivers of children waiting for the bus. Councilwoman Samantha Yasson said parents have approached her with their concerns about people smoking at school bus stops. Solicitor Michael Greek will research the matter to see if the borough has any control over that.
*Tabled pending further details on a matter involving the balancing of 1.45 hours of pay for two police officers, one of whom had to wait while the other was late for work;
*Listened as Cannon, at the start of the meeting, spoke about a recent report on borough operations by the state Department of Community and Economic Development. Among the state's observations was that council members need to work together, and Cannon agreed with that.
She cited an example of one unidentified council member who is sending emails that are "negative in nature" to the borough secretary to distribute to the police chief, officers and others.
Cannon said she hoped council would be able to work together "behind the scenes" as well as in public, and disagree without being disagreeable, in order to move the borough forward;
*Set Trick-or-Treat night from 6-8 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 31.