New Crafton manager zooms in on unnecessary utility bills
By Alice Crow
New Borough Manager Jim Price is already saving the taxpayers of Crafton money with only a week of the job under his belt.
Price identified an unnecessary Verizon bill that was costing the borough $500 a month and a bill for extra Zoom features that cost around $2,800 a year.
The Verizon bill was canceled and the Zoom bill was reduced to $400.
This will save taxpayers around $8,000 this year.
Mayor Coletta Perry congratulated Price for identifying the unnecessary Verizon bill even though it had been charging the borough for almost two decades.
“I would like to mention that in my conversations with the Chief [of Police], this has been going on for close to 20 years and I would like to congratulate Jim for being the first manager in his first week to have discovered this and got it taken care of. Thank you, Jim,” she said.
Crafton Borough Council is continuing its work on its five-year road paving plan. The list of streets to be improved in 2023 was provided by the borough engineer and included Crafton Boulevard; Station and Johnson streets; and Chartiers, Kingston and Chester avenues. Crafton is already several years into the plan.
The streets for 2023 were selected based on the Borough’s budget and what streets currently need the most attention. The plan relies on data analytics that were conducted throughout Crafton to monitor and assess street conditions.
There was no formal vote, but council members confirmed that they would like to move forward and request the borough engineer to construct a detailed cost estimate for each road.
The plan includes securing a contractor for the repaving by this spring.
New stop signs
New stop signs could potentially be installed at several intersections in Crafton. Council members unanimously passed a motion at the Feb. 23 meeting to advertise an ordinance that would install stop signs at various intersections.
The intersections include East Crafton and Stotz avenues, North Emily and Coulter streets, North Linwood Avenue and Hardy Street, as well as North Linwood and Highland avenues. A stop sign already exists at the intersection of Willard and Barr avenues and will be included in the ordinance.
The intersections were selected after an evaluation was done by the borough’s engineers, some by request from residents. The engineer’s study found that a stop sign was not merited at the intersection of Crafton Boulevard and North Emily Street.
Crafton council members are moving forward with plans to upgrade Crafton’s pool bathhouse after this swimming season. The pool bathhouse is currently out of ADA compliance.
The project will primarily address ADA issues, such as the locker room floors needing to be entirely replaced.
The current project will cost around $500,000, for which the borough has already secured a grant worth $250,000 that requires a 50% match.
With rising costs for construction due to inflation, parts of the original project have needed to be pushed to a later time, including replacing the roof, lockers and windows, as well as upgrades to the concession stand.
Final designs for the project should be completed in May of this year, while the entire project is set to be complete by May of 2024.
Alice Crow is a senior at Chatham University and is the editor-in-chief emeritus of Chatham’s student newspaper, the Communiqué.