Quarryville council hears loan proposal
BY DEBBIE WYGENT, Correspondent
An obscure regulation within the federal Internal Revenue Code may allow the Quarryville Presbyterian Retirement Community to borrow $4 million for expansion at a preferable interest rate -- and net Quarryville Borough a $4,000 bonus.
Borough solicitor Joselle Cleary presented the offer from the retirement community and its bond counsel to borough officials on Monday. Cleary said retirement community officials will formally make their request to the borough's municipal authority later this month.
The retirement community is expanding by 180 units, according to previously published reports.
According to Cleary, Section 147F of the Internal Revenue Code allows nonprofit organizations a more favorable interest rate if they borrow funds through a municipal authority.
While the request seemed to surprise officials, Cleary said Elizabethtown College and the Elizabethtown Public Library both borrowed funds at favorable rates under the umbrella of the Elizabethtown Authority.
She said that when this method is used, the nonprofit pays all legal and financing fees and offers the municipality a lump sum. Cleary said the borough council and planning commission have already approved the retirement community's subdivision and development plans.
If the authority agrees, council will be asked to give its approval following a public hearing. Council members expressed no objections to the proposal on Monday.
Council members also continued to discuss whether to recommend an official ambulance company for borough residents. Last month, several residents expressed concerns about how to get the best emergency coverage from ambulance companies, who compete for funds and subscribers.
Police Chief Ken Work said the borough police committee met last week with representatives from local ambulance companies and other concerned municipal officials.
"You're always going to get an ambulance when you call 911," Work said. "You're always going to get the closest ambulance. The county always takes care of that. We're always covered by somebody. If you call 911 someone will show up at your door right away."
Work said the police committee needs to meet one more time to finish researching the issue, and is taking into consideration the views of officials from surrounding municipalities. He said the police committee will have a recommendation for borough council in March.
In other business, council unanimously agreed to contract with the Lancaster Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to handle any stray dogs this year. The service, suggested by police Chief Ken Work, will cost the borough a subscriber's fee of $500, plus $300 for each stray dog.
Work said the borough generally has to handle three or four stray animals each year, and has no kennel facilities.
Cleary suggested the borough consider adopting a fee resolution to recoup the costs incurred by dog owners who let their pets run.
In another matter, council approved the Pequea Watershed Association's offer to plant oak trees in two areas along Big Beaver Creek in Legion Park. Council member John Chase said the trees would stabilize the creek banks and provide shade.