Quarryville Municipal Building

Quarryville Municipal Building

When: Quarryville Borough Council meeting, Sept. 8.

What happened: Borough Council has opted to retain the Quarryville Borough Police Department’s part-time police force for now, but that could change.

Background: Police Chief Clark Bearinger announced in May that all five of the department’s full-time police officers had joined a Philadelphia-based Teamsters union to negotiate a contract with the borough. The officers, according to council President Joy Kemper, were dissatisfied with changes made earlier this year to the borough’s health benefits, which now require police and other borough employees to pay an additional $214 a month for family medical, dental and eye care coverage. The department does not have a contract of employment.

Police coverage: Because of the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic and its officers’ recent decision to unionize, the council will consider a proposal to release the department’s four part-time police officers. These layoffs would allow the borough to cut expenses on next year’s budget with little to no impact on overall coverage. No savings estimates are available at this time.

Quotable: “We (the borough) have tax revenue that is down because of COVID-19, and we expect it to continue that way,” board member Brian Braightmeyer said, adding that the borough seeks to cut expenses “at all avenues” while “still providing essential services.”

What’s next: Council will retain all part-time officers until the borough can properly assess its finances for 2021, Kemper said. She expects contract negotiations to be finished by Jan. 1.

Resignation: Borough Manager Scott Peiffer announced the resignation of William Koch as chairman of the planning commission. John Chase, the commission’s vice chairman, will fill this vacancy until a suitable replacement is found.

— Kyle Kutz,

For LNP | LancasterOnline