LA EMS Facebook
Lower Allen Township Facebook


Home»Board of Commissioner Minutes»Board of Commissioners
10-2-17 Budget Meeting Minutes

Board of Commissioners
10-2-17 Budget Meeting Minutes



                       BUDGET MEETING                                               OCTOBER 2, 2017                              


The following were in ATTENDANCE:


H. Edward Black, President Thomas G. Vernau Jr., Township Manager
Peddrick M. Young, Sr., Vice President Erin Trone, Assistant Township Manager
Carolyn E. Holtzman David Holl, Director of Public Safety
Jack R. Simpson, Jr. Daniel Flint, Community Development
  Richard Grove, Finance
  Bob Nailor, Public Works
  Bryan Harshbarger, Highway
  Jim Chianos, Parks
  Ken Rocuskie, Fleet Maintenance
  Scot Emerson, Maintenance
  Julie Echterling, Recording Secretary


President Black called the October 2, 2017 Budget Meeting of the Board of Commissioners to order at 6:02 pm.  He announced that Proof of Publication was available for review.  He called for a moment of silence for those injured and killed in Las Vegas.  Mr. Vernau stated that Commissioner Schin had called this morning and wasn’t sure he would make the meeting due to illness.


Mr. Grove spoke about the planning that went into the budget this year.  He stated that they continue to provide services at the lowest cost which takes planning over a course of years.  He stated that, overall, the operating budget is up 2.5% from 2017.  He spoke about the new category added for MS4 Projects and, without this new department, the operating budget would be down from last year.  He stated that there are a few unknowns, including healthcare premiums, which we should receive at the end of the month.  He included a 10% increase, which may be low.  He budgeted for a 3% increase in salaries based on the Wells Fargo indicators.  He stated that revenue is strong but isn’t growing.

Mr. Vernau stated that there would be no discussion on capital requests tonight.  He stated that Public Safety will present their budgets at the next budget meeting.  He spoke about the 3% increase in salaries and stated that it was up to the Board to decide what the increases will be, if any.  He stated that the healthcare premiums could increase by as much as 19%, but we won’t know until the end of the month.  He has reached out to Benecon and told them the Township will be looking at other options. 

400-ADMINSTRATION – Mr. Vernau:

Account $ Justification/Reasoning
314 Legal Services +$10,000


Increased DZMM for potential participation in the TCC lawsuit.

Added for Eckert Seamans for potential contract arbitration costs.

318 Other Professional  $20,000 Hiring of Branding Consultant to increase Township’s visibility for economic development.  Was discussed during strategic planning.
420 Dues & Subscriptions  $850 ICMA dues for Mr. Vernau.
450 Codification of Ordinances +$2,500 Increased in anticipation of ordinance changes following the Comprehensive plan update.

402 – FINANCE-
Mr. Grove:

260 Minor Equipment $4,200 Formax pressure sealer – this machine will seal the utility bills.  The old one is having issues.  Safety issue with ensuring bills are sent out correctly.  The Board asked about paperless billing and Mr. Grove stated that the current system is not able to do this.
312 Service Bureau $5,220 Tri Teck Ambulance – New billing software for ambulance billing.  Current system is no longer receiving updates on Medicare Billing.
  Postage +$50 Anticipating an increase in postage rates for 2018.

403 – TAX –
Mr. Grove:

353 Fidelity Bond -$1,300 Decision was made to not have a Fidelity Bond for the Treasurer (Mr. Grove), who is covered under other insurance and doesn’t handle large amounts of cash (less than $1,000).

Mr. Vernau:

260 Minor Applications $800


Upgrade WiFi in Gorgas Hall to handle more devices.

Firewall upgrades.

730 Equipment $16,540 Upgrades to servers.  Current 2008 software no longer has security patches available.

Mr. Vernau and Mr. Emerson:

141 Part-time Labor $5,560 For summer outdoor maintenance person to help with rain garden, landscaping and would also assist Public Works with mowing.
231 Gasoline $800 For pickup truck being transferred from Public Safety to Building Maintenance.
250 Building Repairs $1,500 Motion activated faucets in public restrooms.  Would replace spring based facets which at times keep running.
260 Minor Equipment $2,200




For 10 replacement telephone sets. Our current models are no longer being manufactured and these will be extra for additional personnel and for replacement sets.

Push mower for building.

352 Auto Insurance $500 Added as part of cost of pickup truck transfer.




-$800 Will see movement between accounts as gas is used to heat the building at night versus electric.  This is done with software for the roof top unit through scheduling.
373 Maint& Rep Building $3,800 President Black asked about this cost for wall cracks.  Mr. Emerson explained about the caulking and joints and stated that this was due to aging.
374 Maint & Repair Equip $1,000



5 additional telephone licenses – for new hires and more extensions.

Annual telephone system maintenance – first two years were free.

Repair catwalk around rooftop A/C units – safety issue.

Mr. Flint:

131 Salary office PT -$21,350 MS4 personnel costs were in the 2017 budget but going forward MS4 will have their own department for expenses.
244 Code books & Publications +$1,500



Hopeful an update will be done to the codes and new books will be needed.

Paint Marker – are needed for marking with PA One calls.

260 Minor Equip $2,000 New shirts and rain coats for staff working in the public.  Has been years since new ones have been ordered and old ones need replaced.
317 Stenographer +$400 Increasing based on current experience for cases this year.
318 Other Professional -$105,500


2017 Comprehensive Plan won’t be in 2018 budget.

Pedestrian Bridge Planning at Arcona for RR crossing-Charter Homes payment for this will be in revenue which nets to $0.

420 Dues, Sub & Membership +$100 Increasing based on current experience this year.
451 Contract Services +$200 Mowing for abandoned properties.

414 – MS4
-New Department for 2018 – Mr. Flint:

131 Salary Dep Head $55,000 Full-time MS4 Coordinator will be hired.
313 Engineering & Archet $100,000 Consultants to do required study for establishing stormwater fee to pay for MS4 services-including this study.
318 Other professional $5,000 MS4 required sampling.
340 Advertising $500 For required advertising.

– Mr. Nailor, Mr. Harshbarger, and Mr. Emerson:

387 Rentals -$1,000 Screen Machine – were able to reduce rental costs from County.

– Mr. Nailor, Mr. Harshbarger, and Mr. Emerson:

730 Mach, Eqpt, & Vehicles $51,000 Brine Unit Upgrade-software upgrade is needed because if the software crashes.  Costs include replacement of valves.  The Board asked how much is made selling to municipalities -about $6,900 since 2008.  The Board discussed if we charge enough or if it is worth doing because of expenses.  If the machine fails, then salt could be used.  Extensive discussion ensued.

Mr. Rocuskie:

145 Salary – Mechanic $48,570 Replace part-time mechanic with full-time mechanic.  Work load has increased and a mechanic student could be transitioned into the position and become full-time.  Possible vehicle leasing was discussed as an option.  Discussion ensued on this request.
245 Operating Supplies +$200 Increased pricing of Nuts & Bolts.
395 Hwy Vehicle Repair +$1,000 Increased based on repairs this year and because parts are becoming more expensive.
420 Dues, Sub, Membership $6,060 EMAINT Fleet & Facility software (3-year subscription).  Current system is 20 years old and is no longer supported.  The system keeps track of vehicles, maintenance, stats, VIN and repairs.  The cost includes upgrades, maintenance and training. This would also replace the Facility maintenance software.

Mr. Nailor, Mr. Harshbarger, and Mr. Emerson

245 Equip Supplies +$360 EZ Melt Enzos 55 gallons, instead of Citrus King which is made with orange peels.  The price of Citrus King is based on the price of oranges in Florida so EZ Melt is a better way to go.

Mr. Nailor, Mr. Harshbarger, and Mr. Emerson

220 General Expenditure $1,000 Leak & Line testing & Cathodic Test – these are only during every other year.
260 Minor Equipment $2,663 New Copier – current one prints lines on it and Quality can’t fix it anymore.  New one will allow printing of envelopes.
371 Maintenance Grounds $800 New water fountain – current one is 27 years old – and would be replaced with a new one and would be ADA accessible.
373 Repair & Maint Building $475







5-year Sprinkler piping test.

1 interior door – install 3 doors – Doors have rusted and need to be replaced.

Back flow device – required by PA American Water.

Replace heaters for sign/parts room -heater is as old as the building.

Wash Bay Drain – needs to be placed – as old as building.

– Mr. Chianos

371 Maintenance





Back flow preventers for 3 parks- required by PA American Water

Swing set replacement – Highland playground

Water Fountain at Pete’s Park – request from Recreation Board for years.  The water fountain would be vandalism proof, ADA accessible and would have a special bottle filler.

– Mr. Chianos

370 Maintenance

Dog Park

$2,000 Eliminate gate between small and large dog park and fix some current issues.
372 Maintenance


+$500 Added $500 to tree trimming for contractor to come in for trees too large for removal of large trees.
373 Maint & Rep Building $4,500 Replace 2 pole barn garage doors.  Doors are from the 1980s and the new ones will provide more security and would be electric.

President Black thanked everyone for doing a good job on the budget.  He stated that it is important to remember we are representing 18,000 residents and not just one.

Mr. Vernau stated that next budget meeting will be for Public Safety.  He stated that if the agenda is light for the next BOC meeting, maybe Other Funds will be presented.  He stated that the capital budget is difficult.  He stated that an executive session is on the agenda but he would like the whole Board to be present before discussing the police negotiations.  He would like to talk with President Black and Vice President about a phone call he received after the meeting.

President Black asked Director Holl to congratulate the police on their apprehension this past weekend of the wanted suspect.  Director Holl spoke about how the incident and agreed they did a great job.  Vice President Young asked about the alert system not being activated during this incident.  Director Holl spoke about the timing of the incident and how they are working on the process.


The Budget Meeting of the Board of Commissioners adjourned at 8:30 pm.