MUNCY - A newly-formed Muncy Borough Council, being made complete with the addition of a new member named Tuesday, will be mulling a fire tax.
Borough council unanimously agreed accepting Muncy native Jonathan Ort as one of its own, which will be official when he's sworn in by Mayor Edward Dannemann later this week.
Ort's appointment is needed to fill the remaining nine months of former Councilwoman Virginia Gardner's term.
A 1994 graduate of Muncy High School, Ort lives on Quarry Road.
He has a business administration degree from Pennsylvania College of Technology, and is employed as a salesman for Cysco Central Pennsylvania Food Service.
One of the matters he likely will be voting on in the coming weeks includes the implementation of a fire tax.
Council President Elaine McAleer described the fire tax as a borough tool in case its implementation ever be needed.
"It's just to put it on the books, it does not mean we're enacting it," McAleer said of the tax. "When council does the budget next year or councils after us, it's there for them."
Council instructed borough solicitor Wilfred Knecht to draft tax details expected to be considered soon.
Keystone Hook & Ladder fire Chief Jamie Brelsford said his department's merger with the Muncy Creek fire department is reaching a monumental occurrence Saturday, when the joined forces will begin referring to themselves as members of the Muncy Area Vol. Fire Co.
"We will be (together) as a new entity as of this weekend," said Brelsford, who will be deputy chief of the new department, which will continue to form.
Scott Delany will be fire chief.
Charlie Lockart, local insurance professional, said there will be substantial savings for fire department workers' compensation.
Instead of the insurance premium being based on a limited population in the borough, he said savings will occur from combining it with the township area.
Councilwoman Linda Stein said two grants are being put to use for community improvement.
She said residents will be meeting this week for downtown site masterplanning recommendations.
Stein said the other grant will be instrumental in ensuring streets and sidewalks are safe as traffic changes with the influx of industrial trucks traveling through.
In other business, council:
Agreed upon the borough's zoning hearing board to serve as the appeals authority on local storm water management.
Agreed upon the borough removing snow and ice when it accumulates at least 2 inches on the streets or when it's obviously considered plowable.
Agreed to wait until May 3 for its next regular meeting, allowing state Rep. Garth Everett, R-Muncy, to speak on Chesapeake Bay Watershed issues, April 21 at a 7 p.m. public meeting at the local high school.