The Northside Athletic Complex is where the Bulldogs play football, softball, soccer and lacrosse. The bathroom, if it's ever built, will replace port-a-johns currently in place. The actual cost is currently estimated at about $300,000-$350,000.
In previous memos to Commissioners, Shafer blames the 2009 International Building Code and Township Plumbing Code for the high cost. Based on parking lot capacity, a public restroom must include six women's toilets; two men's toilets, one urinal and two lavatories (sinks) in each restroom. That's not all. Handicapped accessible facilities for each gender; two drinking fountains (one each for wheelchair and standing persons); a service closet with water heater, mop sink, and cleaning supply storage; and a separate, "family assisted use" restroom are required.
In addition to being a restroom, the facility would provide permanent storage for shoulder pads and other athletic equipment. The Bethlehem Bulldogs currently $8,000/year for storage of equipment and supplies during the off season, and have previously stated they would agree to an $8,000 cut in their annual allotment from the Township if this project becomes reality.
Voting in favor of the grant request were Malissa Davis, Kim Jenkins and Tom Nolan. Opposed were Mike Hudak and Pat Breslin, who voted against the grant request in 2015, too.
"It's a lot of money for a bathroom," said Malissa Davis. "It would be nice to see a plan. ...But I don't think it's unreasonable to provide bathrooms at the North 40."
Last year, Breslin claimed on talk radio that he could raise $100,000 for the bathrooms without involving the government. But one year later, Breslin has raised no money.
From the floor, Don Wright suggested dropping the storage room component. Roy Roth called the request "pathetic" in a township with storm water problems. Dennis Brennan said the Bulldogs should raise the money for this on their own. Martin Comer called it "the Taj Mahal of craphouses."
In other business, Commissioners voted unanimously to appoint John Meehan to the township police force. Meehan is a graduate of Rutgers with a double major in criminal justice and sociology. He has been a police officer in Baltimore for the past five years, but wants to return to the Lehigh Valley.