Residents blame new sewer lines for flooded basements
Several Slatington residents said that after the last heavy rainfall they are experiencing flooded basements and water damage. They blame the problem on the new sewer lines that were replaced throughout the borough, mainly because they did not have water problems prior to the repairs.
Several council members said the problem is with the private laterals and not with the borough lines. However, the council members agreed to look at each problem individually in an effort to find a solution.
Lou Yurasits, a Slatington resident, was one of three people who questioned the council on their decision to hire Stephanie Pretzman as the Animal Control Officer (ACO) instead of Donna Crum. Pretzman is a stay-at-home mom who qualified for the position by saying she loves animals. She was awarded the appointment over Crum, an experienced ACO with training in animal rescue.
"I want to know why you would pick someone with no abilities over someone who had credentials," Yurasits asked. Several Council members said it's a personnel issue and cannot be discussed with the public.
When resident Chad Trego asked the same question, he received the same answer, Councilman Burek suggested he rephrase his question and ask each council member why they voted the way they did. She said as a councilwoman she would always tell a taxpayer why she voted a certain way.
Although Councilman Russell Hallman was not asked by Trego why he voted for Pretzman, he volunteered the following statement: "First of all I didn't vote because I knew Buzzy. That had no basis." He continued with, "I thought [Pretzman] was the best fit. I knew her and her demeanor and I knew she was a good fit for this borough. It's not rocket science, it's a dog catcher." Hallman went on to say that Stephanie fit the bill for him "better." He ended by saying, "I know everyone in your 'clan' say it's because I know Buzzy, but it's not because I know Buzzy." Buzzy Rabenold is Stephanie Pretzman's father.
Trego immediately remarked that he didn't say anything about Hallman knowing Buzzy, and he didn't know what 'clan' Hallman was referring to.
Trego then asked police chief, David Rachman if the position of Animal Control Officer in Slatington could be simplified to dog catcher? Rachman said that it's 99 percent of the job. Councilman Hoffman, Chairman of the Safety Committee, agreed with Rachman saying, "The animal control officer does no more than [take] care of stray animals."
Burek said that in the corporate world, you hire the most qualified person. "I was disappointed that a highly qualified person [who]could have been an asset to this borough [was not hired]". The position pays $200 per month.
Robert Stettner presented council with a check in the amount of $1,000. The Borough repaired one air conditioner unit and replaced another for a total of $3,000. The Vigilant Fire Department agreed to offset the cost of the expense by contributing $1,000.