Last updated: June 03. 2014 10:55PM - 972 Views
By B. Garrett Rogan Times Leader Correspondent

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EXETER — The borough’s troubled waterway, Hick’s Creek, will soon be getting revamped pumping stations that the borough has sought for the past 30 years.

The creek, which has caused regular flooding for some Exeter residents, has been a frequent subject of discussion at council meetings. At Tuesday night’s meeting, council awarded a bid for the Hick’s Creek Pump Station Improvement Project to Blooming Glen Contractors.

The Blooming Glen, Pennsylvania,-based company will install new pumps and upgrade the pumping facilities for $434,932.

The project will be funded through $579,265 in state gaming grant funding. Recycling coordinator and grant writer Karen Szwast said state Rep. Phyllis Mundy and state Sen. John Yudichak were “instrumental” in helping to secure funding.

The bid will now be reviewed by Borough Solicitor Ray Hassey and Penn Engineering.

The council approved the bid 6-0 with Councilm Joseph Pizano abstaining.

Pizano cited the length of time it took to obtain funding for the project in his skepticism that the lowest bidder would necessarily perform the best quality of work. He wanted to know that the job would go to a company with specific experience with this type of work.

Councilman Joseph Esposito said the bid did include references, but he also asked that the specific issue be included in Penn Engineering’s review.

Council President Thomas Shannon said the council will vote on the bid again if any sticking point is identified by Hassey or Penn Engineering.

In other matters, a group of residents from the borough’s Wildflower neighborhood brought up their concerns over federal flood zoning map reclassifications. Some residents, whose property was not flooded in 1972 or 2011, are now being forced to purchase flood insurance under classifications similar to individuals who live much closer to water sources.

Council members lamented their lack of control over the issue, but pledged to support residents in any possible way in their efforts to fight for rezoning. They suggested reaching out to representatives of the office of U.S. Sen. Robert Casey because the issue concerns federal regulation.

The next regular council meeting will be July 1 immediately after the public work session at 6:30 p.m.

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