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Kidder’s short-term rental rules pass, food truck next

Months and months of work to get rules on the books to regulate short term rentals in Kidder Township ended at the Kidder’s July supervisors meeting with the unanimous adoption of a new ordinance.

The supervisors then voted to amend the township fee schedule to include the fees that are part of the short term rental ordinance.

Highlights of the ordinance:

• A property must have a permit from the township, provide z24-hour contact phone number, and be able to respond to problems within an hour.

• The ordinance seeks floor plans with the number of bedrooms, site plans for the lot and location of parking spaces on site, proof that any septic system is properly maintained and is functioning as intended, and at least $500,000 in insurance to cover the commercial use of the building for STRs.

• Units will have smoke detectors in each bedroom and common hallways, and a carbon monoxide detector. Units will be inspected yearly.

• Maximum occupancy is eight people for a two bedroom home, to a top figure of 18 people for a seven bedroom home. Among the definitions is that a bedroom is a space designed for sleeping with two means of egress (one may be a window).

• Violations include noise disturbance, disorderly, fireworks, fighting, offensive condition, nudity, trespass or too many vehicles for the property. Fines are $300 for a first violation, $500 for a second and $1,000 for a third.

• The property owner must also show certificates for the Carbon County Room Tax and Pa. Sales and Use Tax.

• The permit is proposed to cost $2,000 in the first year, then $1,000 for renewal.

Other matters

Supervisors voted to advertise a new ordinance to regulate food trucks (mobile food facilities), to be voted on at the August meeting.

Police chief Matt Kuzma was approved to order a new police-package SUV to cost $47,648 at PA Co-Stars prices. The first payment toward the vehicle will be in the 2022 budget.

The vehicle itself should arrive and be put into service in August. The oldest police vehicle will be taken out of service and given to the Code Enforcement department.

June was a busy month for police, with 230 total calls reported.

Albrightsville Volunteer Fire Company president Rich Smallenburg asked about progress in installing emitters onto the township’s traffic lights, so that fire apparatus can get the red lights they need as they approach an intersection.

He pointed out the increase in traffic in the township, and the need for safety for the apparatus and fire personnel. Township manager Suzanne Brooks promised an answer from a supplier of emitters for next month’s meeting.

Lake Harmony VFD chief Ralph Lennon agreed with Smallenburg on the emitters.

He then asked Brooks about whether she had any luck in getting funds to install a repeater at the fire house so that Carbon County Comm Center’s signal can come in clearly. Brooks reported “no progress.”

There was no response again to the advertising for bids for tree trimming along township roads. The township can now talk to local contractors and see how much of the work they can do.

Lennon commented that the trees in the developments have grown out toward and over the roads. Some of those branches now brush against fire equipment and should get trimmed.

As recommended by the township engineer, the financial security posted by The Exeter Group toward property improvements on their warehouse site was reduced by $3,228,156, to $13,631,613.

Later in the meeting, The Exeter Group offered to voluntarily pay the township tax although they do not have to do so due to their Keystone Opportunity Zone agreement.

Seventeen properties were claimed at the county tax sale and returned to township tax rolls.

This year’s Parade of Boats will be Aug. 15 with judging at Nick’s Lake House. The event raises money for the Lake Harmony Rescue Squad and the Lake Harmony Volunteer Fire Company through raffles and a tricky tray.