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Emmaus Halloween 5K draws 195 runners

Editor's Note: This article has been updated since its publication Oct. 21.

Emmaus Borough Council met Oct. 19 and heard comments from Wesley Barrett, who hosted the annual Emmaus Halloween 5K race Oct. 17. He offered a thank you to the borough for allowing his team to host the 5K race which included 195 runners. Overall, Barrett described the event as amazing and said many people were excited to be outside in their costumes. This was the 14th year of the race.

Again, there was an appeal for resident participation in the parks, recreation, greenways and trails study. Information is on the Emmaus Borough Facebook page.

In communications, Christian Verrastro was approved as a volunteer for the Joint Environmental Council and the recreation and entertainment commission. Additionally, Chloe Romanowski and Rosalie Sell were approved as recreation and entertainment commission volunteers. With these additions, there are four members on the commission.

Following this, the solicitor gave his report. The settlement with the Rodale building was resolved. Verizon is in communication to move into the building. However, there are several court decisions which need to be settled. More information will come in a couple of months.

In new business, Ordinance 1205 was passed which amends the rate of compensation and commission for the Emmaus Borough real estate tax collector. This aligns the percentage of annual raise to an appropriate rate.

In a public safety committee announcement, Councilman John Hart spoke about Emmaus Police Chief Chuck Palmer’s involvement in a livestreamed event titled “Black and Blue: Race, Relations and Rhetoric.”

Palmer accepted a $2,000 donation from members of the Board of Governors of Emmaus Fire Company #1. This will go to the Emmaus Police Department’s Community Outreach Program.

Councilman Chris DeFrain, from the budget and finance committee reported on Resolution 2020–36, which is the bill list for the first half of October. The total is $1,523,889.

In the borough manager’s report, Shane Pepe reported the ballot box is downstairs in the borough building. It is open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Pepe said enormous crowds have been gathering at the borough building and the ballot box filled up multiple times. There was such a large crowd and so many questions from the public. Pepe said he was excited to see the high level of participation, but more information needs to be provided to the public about the ballot box. The borough building is just a location and not every employee can provide thorough answers on the exact voting process.

Budget decisions are upcoming as drafts were handed out to the council members. Discussions will be held in the next few weeks. Election Day is the first budget workshop. Borough President Brent Labenberg thanked Pepe for the immense amount of work he puts into preparing the documents.

Mayor Lee Ann Gilbert reminded the community about trick or treat night in the borough. It will be held 5:30 to 8 p.m. Oct. 30. An extra half-hour was added for this year.

The next meeting will take place 7 p.m. Nov. 2. Emmaus residents can join through Zoom on the borough website or attend in person at Emmaus Borough Hall, 28 S. Fourth St., Emmaus.