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Chester County Press

No tax increase expected in Oxford Borough

11/23/2021 02:58PM ● By Steven Hoffman
There will be no tax increase for Oxford Borough residents in 2022. Borough council authorized the advertising of the 2022 budget and adoption for Dec. 20. Residents can view the proposed budget online at the borough’s website, oxfordboro.org. Residents can also view or receive a copy of the budget at the Borough Hall. 
Plans are also underway to hold the annual Borough Day, which may be held two days this year, and the budget can also be viewed at that time as well.
Council member Robert Ketcham did say he would like to see more money given to the Oxford Library and to the Oxford Area Recreation Authority.
Ketcham also discussed the fact that there is a budget surplus this year and said his focus is still on making the budget easier for everyone to understand.
Council and residents were also able to view the swearing in of detective sergeant Chris Coverly as it happened at the Oxford Presbyterian Church. The live swearing in was viewed on the two big screen televisions in the Council Room. Coverly, who successfully passed the sergeant’s examination given by the Civil Service Commission, was sworn in as Sergeant with his wife and parents standing by. Mayor Phil Harris performed the swearing in.
Coverly also stopped by the Council meeting to thank the community and Borough Council saying, “I want to thank Borough Council and the community for their continued support. It has been my lifetime goal to become a leader and mentor. I am humbled to serve the community.”
Council approved the motion to appoint Coverly to the position of sergeant.
Council also heard from representatives from Presence Bank and their plans to help local borough residents deal with the departure of the BB &T Bank from the borough.
Doug Byers said, “Presence Banks is hoping to help fill the hole left by the departure of BB&T in the borough. We have a number of programs available to assist former BB&T customers if they wish to transition to our bank.”
Presence Representative Heather Patrick passed out information to council and residents and invited them to call the bank for more information.
Also on hand was professor Jennifer McCarthy from Lincoln University who spoke about her students who are monitoring the headwaters of Little Elk Creek. McCarthy, who joined Lincoln three years ago is anxious to introduce her students to the surrounding environment and the community.
“We have students very interested in the environment, which is a win/win for the community,” McCarthy said. “I hope to provide them with opportunities throughout the community which will also help them help the community. They are interested in looking at the rain gardens planned or in place for the borough and what they can learn from the head waters of Little Elk Creek.”
Public Works Director John Schaible, informed council that the Fifth Street project has been completed. The stormwater pipe has been replaced and two additional catch basins have been installed.
He reminded the public that leaf pickup continues. Residents can put leaves curbside and the leaves will be picked up by public works. He also noted that salt has been ordered, if needed, for the coming winter months.
Borough Council approved a number of motions including the following:

Ordinance  945-2021 Amending §1-502, Authorized Activities of Fire Company
Re: Fire Police (Revised)

Hearing and Motion to adopt  Ordinance 946-2021 Amending 
Chapter 27, Zoning, Part 19 –Zoning Hearing Board
Procedures and Part 20 – Administration – Conditional
Use and General Standards  
The ordinance adopted will notify residents within 500 feet of property not just the adjoining properties.

Motion to adopt Resolution 1321-2021 Chester County Hazard Mitigation Municipal Resolution

Motion to approve Resolution 1322-2021 Authorizing Participation in the Delaware Valley Workers Compensation Trust and Associated Trust Agreement
Motion to Approve Fund Balance Policy
This will not allow fund balances to dip below 15%.
Motion for Authorization for SSM to go out to bid for Streetscapes IV – Transit Center Access Improvement Project

This will include N. 2nd Street repaving, the repaving and pedestrianization of Octoraro Alley. SSM Engineering has update the projected cost estimate.

Motion to approve Option and Structure Lease Agreement Between the Borough and New Cingular Wireless PCS, LLC. This will bring in a $25.000 a year payment. The motion was approved pending review from the solicitor.

Motion to Approve HARB Recommendations for  312 Market Street; 172 N. Third, and 620 Spear Street
Council President Russell thanked all those who won in the recent election including Mayor Phil Harris, Borough Council incumbents Amanda Birdwell and Robert Ketchum, and incoming Borough Council members Amanda Woolston and Mary Laura Hulse. Cary Vargo was also thanked for his invaluable service to Oxford as interim borough manager.