The Elizabethtown Borough Council was briefed on the feasibility of moving the borough offices from the current building shared with the Police Department to a historic building at the north end of the central business district.
The current building at 600 S. Hanover St. is overcrowded and does not fit in with the borough’s plans to encourage a vibrant downtown. The borough has already purchased the building at 56 N. Market St. that dates to the 1700s and might be the oldest building in town. Gary E. Weaver of Lancaster-based Tippetts/Weaver Architects said at the Borough Council work session on Thursday, April 5, that conceptual design studies had been done early on and he would likely present them at the Borough Council meeting on Thursday, April 19.
Weaver said a construction budget must be worked out. Also, he said work must be done to see how the police can better use the existing borough building once the administrative offices have moved out.
In other construction plans, all council members present voted to approve an architectural services proposal from Lititz-based Beers & Hoffman Architecture for a public works garage. (Councilor Bill Troutman was absent; he has not been at council meetings since he was badly injured in a traffic crash on Feb. 27.) Borough Manager Roni Ryan said the garage is budgeted to be built this year.
Council President Marc Hershey said he was impressed with the firm’s previous projects.
“They’ve got some good municipal experience,” Hershey said.
“Let’s get it rolling, please,” Councilor Tom Shaud said as he moved to approve the proposal.
In other business, councilors heard from Police Chief Ed Cunningham about a service he wants to subscribe to that would make sure police policies comply with statutory law, case law and best practices.
Cunningham said the service, called Lexipol, is most useful to small departments; he said larger ones can dedicate officers to researching and updating policies, but small police forces cannot. Cunningham said the service would cost between $16,000 and $19,000 in the first year, which he said would be well spent if it prevents one lawsuit from being filed. Council members said they wanted to take two weeks to think about the proposal before voting on it at their April 19 meeting.
Cunningham also said officers checking businesses at night to make sure they are locked up found an unusual number of them unsecured in the past month. When asked after the meeting how many were found unsecured, he said he was not sure of the exact number, but he believed it was six or eight.