By a 4-1 vote, Bethlehem Township Commissioners voted at their October 3 meeting to move ahead with the engineering and permits for the costly $3.9 million Brodhead Road re-paving project. Michael Hudak, the sole No vote, gave no explanation for his opposition. But in August, Commissioners voted to table this matter. They never voted to remove the matter from the table
In August, when the Broadhead Road project was tabled, Commissioners had no idea how it would be financed. A $2.7 million grant request to the Commonwealth Financing Agency was passed over in July, though State Senator Lisa Boscola informed the Township that the state would come up with $200,000,
The design costs alone are projected at $48,000, according to Township Engineer Brian Dillman.
Dillman stated that the best and most cost-effective way to proceed is with a complete reconstruction of the 8,500' road, which extends from Route 191 in a westerly direction to the Hanover Township boundary at Township Line Road. He added that the project could be done all at once or in three phases.
"I am sure it is going to be a budget issue," warned Tom Nolan. But he added it is a township road "that we must address."
Dillman told Commissioners that, at the quickest,the road project would start in 2017. Before that, handicapped ramps would have to be installed. Norfolk-Southern, which has a railroad crossing near Route 191, would also get an opportunity to make improvements.
"I've been after that road for ten years," said Public Works Director Richard Grube. Noting that the ground underneath the pavement is clay, he agrees that a complete replacement is needed. .
In other business, Commissioners approved some engineering changed to the community center rehab project that Entech Engineer Ryan Kennedy predicted would reduce the cost to the Township by $126,000.
They also voted unanimously to support Kim Jenkins' motion to request the state legislature to correct deficiencies in the state gaming law that have been ruled unconstitutional by the state Supreme Court. The Township relies on the casino for the funding of numerous public safety items, including police cruisers and fire-fighting equipment.