Author: Loretta Rodgers

Brookhaven biz group changes name and focus to be more resident-friendly

In an effort to make the organization more resident-friendly and to stress revitalization, the Brookhaven Business Association (BBA) this month voted to disband and reorganize under the name Brookhaven Community and Business  Alliance (BCBA). “The group did not really disband,” said BCBA member Pat Natale. “The name was changed and we did some restructuring. Now, in addition to businesses and professional people, residents are invited to join and share their ideas.” The group considers itself a vital link to the Brookhaven business community and will work closely with Mayor Mike Hess and Borough Council to bring about positive change. Councilwoman Donna Fooks will serve as liaison between Council and the organization. Members voted unanimously on March 12th to formally make the change. “With improved social media access, including a new website, Mail Chimp, Facebook and Twitter, the BCBA invites borough residents to join the community section to keep informed and stay educated on what is important in our neighborhoods,” reads a press release. “We want to really stress revitalization and include all aspects of the community,” said founding board member Carl Meinhold. “We can’t be effective without representation from not only businesses, but also from churches and schools.” Board meetings will be held monthly with full member meetings quarterly. The group plans to invite guest speakers, preferably business association members from other municipalities to share ideas and concerns. In...

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Chester Council terminates lease with police station cyber charter school

Chester Council, last week, terminated a lease agreement between the city and Achievement House Cyber Charter School, which for the past year, has been located in the police station at 160 East 7th St. Mayor John Linder said the termination was a mutual agreement between the city and the school. “They were leased for one year with the understanding that we would extend the lease for six months, “Linder said, “and the lease would be terminated at the end of six months.” Councilman Nafis Nichols said the contract requires 90 days notice be given to either party before the agreement could be terminated. In other matters, Andrea Garrett was appointed assistant director of the summer food service program, with no benefits. Her employment shall not exceed 10 hours per week. Council approved the hiring of full-time police officers Michael Caufield and Ricci Pyle, effective March 24th.  The officers are required to live in the city for the first three years of employment. Thereafter they may live within 50 miles of City Hall. Council authorized the Chester Water Authority to install replacement piping on Harwick St. from South Route 291 to West 3rd St; Trainer St. from West 3rd St. to West 4th St.; Clayton St. from West 3rd St. to West 4th St.; and to clean the lining in various locations throughout the city. A Central Ave. resident complained...

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Felony Lane Gang hits Brookhaven banks; leaves empty-handed

Known as The Felony Lane Gang because of using the farthest teller window at a drive thru bank, the group recently struck in Delaware County. During Brookhaven’s recent Council meeting, Police Chief Randy McGoldrick said the TD and Citadel banks were hit, but due to proper teller training, the potential thieves left without stealing any money. McGoldrick said people should be vigilant and not leave valuables, including wallets and pocketbooks, in cars, especially while working out at the gym. “This gang is in operation up and down the East Coast,” McGoldrick said. “Usually two of them sit outside the gym and watch men and women, but mostly women go inside. Many women do not bring pocketbooks into the gym because they fear the lockers are not secure. “ McGoldrick said the perpetrators take a center punch, open the car window and grab the purse. “They don’t go to a bank there at the scene because they run the risk of the bank teller knowing the person on the ID,” McGoldrick said. “Instead, they travel to a close, condensed area with several banks.” He said they take people’s identification and hire prostitutes to dress in wigs and sunglasses making them look like the person on the driver’s license. “They are very good at this,” he said. “The bottom line is that when you go to the gym or anywhere, do...

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Delco leaders push support for cops to carry anti-overdose drug

Delaware County District Attorney Jack Whelan, Delaware County Council and state Rep. Joe Hackett (R-161), of Ridley, joined police officers and municipal representatives at a press conference last week at the county medical examiner’s office to urge support for state legislation that would permit police in Pennsylvania to carry and administer naloxone, commonly known as Narcan; a drug that can reverse an opiate overdose, such as heroin, and bring an unresponsive person back to life. Whelan said, “Police officers need every life-saving tool available so they can continue to protect and serve the community. Anything we can lawfully do to save someone’s life is something we need to look at doing.” Pennsylvania law currently prohibits unauthorized persons from administering prescription drugs. Rep. Gene DiGirolamo (R-18), of Bucks County, has proposed a bill to provide statutory authority needed for police to administer Narcan. Currently in Pennsylvania, which has the nation’s 14th highest drug overdose mortality rate, only medical personnel are permitted to administer the life-saving drug. Last week, James McCans, director of paramedics for Haverford, demonstrated how the drug is used and said, “We are behind the times. This (law) needs to occur.” Whelan offered Delaware County as a pilot site for a state Narcan program that would be funded by grants through the Delaware County Heroin Task Force, drug forfeiture assets or the county’s special project fund. The cost...

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DCIU still assessing school expansion; residents fear negative side effects

Delaware County Intermediate Unit (DCIU) Executive Director Dr. Lawrence O’Shea, during last week’s IU board meeting, said the board was continuing to assess comments and suggestions made by architects and residents about proposed expansion of the Delaware County Technical School on Crozerville Road in Aston. DCIU officials came under fire during a special meeting early last month when residents vocalized opposition to the proposed $33 million expansion that includes moving students from leased spaces at the Delaware County Academy at the Collingdale Community School and the County Alternative School in Middletown to the Aston site. The current school population would increase from 400 to 800 students and include the Head Start program, Career Technical School and Alternative School. Residents cited fears –perceived or actual – about behavioral problems related to alternative school students, outdated infrastructure, possible traffic issues, environmental concerns and a dreaded fear about decrease in property values as the primary reasons for opposing the proposed plan. Members of the Spring Valley Homeowners Association board were at last week’s IU meeting and asked if updated plans will be available prior to the April 19th Aston commissioners meeting. O’Shea said the IU will follow all procedures laid out by Aston Township, adding to date, there have been no updated plans presented. DCIU board member A. Lewis Boughner, a Penn-Delco School District board director, said, “Regardless of the outcome surrounding...

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