Carbon mayors meet with Rep. Heffley in Jim Thorpe
Carbon County's latest Mayor's Meeting was held in the Conference Room at The Inn in Jim Thorpe where they met to talk about the many issues that are facing each of their communities.
In attendance for this meeting of the Association of Mayors of the Boroughs of Carbon County were Jim Thorpe Mayor Michael Sofranko, Nesquehoning Mayor Toni Walck, Summit Hill Mayor Paul McArdle, Beaver Meadows Mayor William Hines, State Representative Doyle Heffley 122nd District, and Recording Secretary Jamie Solomon.
They sat down together to review a report on Act 13 which deals with how money from the Marcellus Shale drilling is disbursed by the state right now.
Rep. Heffley helped explain Act 13 with charts showing how much money is coming in from shale drilling and how money is being disbursed by the state.
He also spoke about Act 47 which deals with financially distressed communities which are either in bankruptcy or are having financial issues.
Act 47 gives these communities help from the state as to best stay out of bankruptcy.
Also discussed by the mayors and Rep.Heffley was one of the biggest issues facing state government and local government which are legacy clauses.
Legacy clauses have to do with funding pensions that are currently in place and making sure that retirements are taken care of for the future.
The mayors also spoke with Heffley about obtaining grant money for their communities.
Heffley noted that in order for any grant money to come to a community, they have to have budgets in place which include auditing and accounting.
He did mention that DCR has 50 percent matching grants that communities could begin to apply for that would help a lot.
He also said that if anyone is interested in applying for such grants, they should contact their state representatives noting that there is a grant money out there but they have to do things to obtain it.
Solomon spoke about the "Community Watches" in Carbon County which presently exist in Jim Thorpe, Lehighton, and Nesquehoning.
Speaking between these groups, such as the mayors are now doing, is like having a cumulative Carbon County Community Watch meeting. They can exchange information about what they see and can help each other through such meetings.
In a separate subject, it was noted that there is going to be a combined Carbon County Drug and Alcohol Expo on April 18 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Lehighton High School. Heffley is spearheading that event and the
Association of Mayors of the Boroughs of Carbon County has signed up to help out wherever they can.
The mayors have agreed to meet again in May with Pennsylvania State Senator John T. Yudichak, 14th District in attendance.