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Board honors two Lehigh County 911 dispatchers

Lehigh County 911 dispatchers Zach Bilder and Zara Collins were honored by Lehigh County commissioners May 10 for helping with the delivery of babies in unrelated emergency calls.

On April 17, with the help of PowerPhone, Collins provided instructions during an active labor, helping to deliver a baby boy just before the arrival of EMS. Less than a month later, on May 9, Bilder answered a similar call, helping a woman in active labor deliver a baby boy before EMS arrived at the scene.

Chairman Geoff Brace reminded everyone of the importance of the sometimes-overlooked work of the county’s 911 dispatchers.

“It’s the regular reminder the 911 system takes all kinds of calls,” Brace said. “And sometimes, the good news is, the birth of a child in our community.

“That it happened twice in a couple of weeks; they will remember that for the rest for their careers, I’m sure.”

In other matters Jonathan Strauss was appointed to the Lehigh-Northampton Airport Authority for a term expiring Dec. 31, 2026.

Beth Halpern was appointed to the Lehigh and Northampton Transportation Authority for a term expiring March 31, 2028.

Commissioner Jeffrey Dutt expressed concerns based on conversations raised by constituents and other concerned parties, most notably, pertaining to a possible Lehigh County Health Bureau and a digital radio system for first responders.

Cost and budget for both of those programs were raised with him, Dutt said.

Commissioner Bob Elbich made a point.

“This is a long-term dialogue,” Elbich said.

“There’s going to be a lot of people on this to have all the input.

“And the more opportunities we have for a dialogue, respect the dialogue, the better.”

“A budget displays the values of those who create it.”