The final Chambersburg Borough Council meeting of the year will be held tonight

December 12 – In some respects, it certainly seems like 2022 has gone by in the blink of an eye. 

In Chambersburg, the fountain has been taken away after an accident, the police department and borough hall got a makeover and infrastructure improvements were seen. 

Chambersburg Borough Council will meet for the final time this year tonight at 7 p.m. in Council Chambers at 100 South Second Street. 

There are 40 items on the consent agenda. 

Allen Coffman, borough council president, said, “Depending on how much conversation anybody wants to have on those – these are all previously discussed items – so people are aware of what they are, but this is the last chance before taking a vote on it. So I don’t know whether people will have a lot of questions about different ones on there, whether there will be a motion to approve the consent agenda in its entirety at one time. I don’t know, but we’ll see.” 

The regular agenda has seven items which also need to be addressed. 

The two big ones will be the authorization to approve the 2023 budget and the ordinance that goes along with the tax rate. 

About 116 people have viewed the budget. 

Coffman said, “That has to be done because it has to be done by the end of the year. So this is our last meeting. It’ll get done.” 

The millage increase will be 1.5 and will go to the police station and police operations of the department. 

Another item is the water rate – it’s going up $.05 a unit. A unit is 74.8 gallons of water. For an average user the water rate will go up about $3.50 a month. 

Coffman said, “Another big item that’s coming up, to me is a big item, execute the collective bargaining agreement with the Chambersburg Police Officers Association, which gives us a contract which will take us from 2023 to 2027. I’m very happy about having a five year contract with the police department.”

The contract does include raises for each year, but does not include any more police officers. 

Pat Ryan of NewsTalk 103.7FM said, “Chambersburg is in such great shape because of the police force, so I don’t mind spending a little bit more for the quality that we’re getting and Greencastle and Waynesboro to their credit have the same thing that’s going on with their police forces.” 

Council will also be looking at a new local law concerning fireworks. 

Coffman said, “You know we’ve heard a lot about fireworks over the years since the state changed this. The recommendation that’s come to us from the fire chief and police chief is we should have an ordinance concerning that which would ban all private fireworks. You’d have to have a license to do it commercially. For instance, the 4th of July display at the park, that’s going to be it. No private stuff.” 

Ryan suggested, “Start with a big fine, then, because having a police department run around trying to find who’s setting off fireworks is not an easy thing, but once they pinch somebody, it should be a $1,000 fine or something like that. No warnings, none of this stuff here. It should be a very serious fine that will deter them from ever doing it again, in my opinion.” Coffman said, “I’ve done a ride along on the 4th of July. I know what that’s like. You go from one place to another place to another place to another place and you come back to the first place. When you go down the street, people are standing there, nobody knows anything.”