Rapho Township municipal building

Supervisors meeting, Oct. 3.

What happened: The board approved a request to rezone 3.5 acres at 2990 Mount Joy Road from agricultural to highway commercial. The tract is owned by Steve and Dina Faus and houses the Hess Agency, an insurance firm.

Why it’s important: Melvin Hess of Gibbel Kraybill & Hess, the attorney representing the Hess Agency, said the rezoning will allow the business to expand its operations.

Background: The Hess Agency is headquartered in a repurposed 19th-century bank barn. There’s also a home and garage on the property. Faus, president of the Hess Agency, said he is the fourth generation to be involved in the business that moved to the barn from Mastersonville in 1999. In a letter for the rezoning request, Faus indicated a need to expand the parking area.

Flooding talk: Millersville University student Amber Liggett invited residents affected by flooding in July or August 2018 to participate in a study the university is conducting. A discussion about residents’ experiences during the flood events will be held at 5:30 p.m. Oct. 14 and Oct. 15 at the Rapho Township Municipal Office, 971 N. Colebrook Road, Manheim. An Oct. 16 meeting will be held at 5:30 p.m. at the Mount Joy Borough Hall, 21 E. Main St., Mount Joy. Adults living in Rapho and East Hempfield townships as well as Manheim, Mount Joy and East Petersburg boroughs are invited to participate in a meeting. Registration is available here: bit.ly/2m1BRxF

Budget: Township Manager Sara Gibson presented a preliminary draft of the proposed 2020 budget. She said one of the challenges in this year’s budget is a request for additional funding for Northwest EMS. To sustain its operations, the ambulance provider is asking the township to increase its annual contribution from the current $2,500 to $50,000 in 2023. Gibson said Northwest is requesting increased support from each of the 12 municipalities it serves. However, in Rapho there are two providers, Northwest EMS and Susquehanna Valley EMS, and the township supports each equally.

What’s next: The board will discuss the budget during the Oct. 17 meeting. Gibson anticipates prelminary budget approval Nov. 7, with  finalization Dec. 5.