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Human Interest - Morrisville Borough

New Borough Manager’s First Days on the Job; Secures Library Roof Funding, as She is Off & Running

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New Morrisville Borough Manager Judith Danko hit the ground running in her first two weeks as lead administrator for the borough

Danko in an e-mail exchange Thursday, described her “first 13 days on the job as an exciting time with and for the Borough of Morrisville.”

The recently hired Danko, sources have said, has been working the phones, attending meetings and getting acquainted with her new employer and its surroundings.

In her first days on the job, Danko was able to secure funds for the roof to be replaced at the Morrisville Library from the  Community Grants Block Program.

“It was a team effort with staff, engineering, and the County CDBG staff,” she said.

Dank said she didn’t have the exact details in front of her on the grant, but they would be made public soon.

Danko whose salary is prorated, according to borough documents obtained through a open records request, begins at $135K annually with a performance review clause.  If approved by council, that will bring her yearly salary to $140,000.00 annually.

Recently passed away borough manager, Scott Mitchell was paid $109.500.00, annually, according to records obtained through a Right-to-Know request this month.

Danko’s contract automaticley renews from year to year until its terminated by borough officials and has a cell phone allowance of $50 monthly (if she continues with her own), health and medical plan, gas reimbursement for up to $200 monthly, and the approval of travel and subsistence expenses by officials.

Danko declined to answer question related to traveling back and forth from Morrisville to her home, in the Bethelhem Pa area, and the contract does not spell out the specifics of that pay-back plan.

Danko has over 20 years of borough management experience to her credit, serving Slatington Borough (2017-2018), Freemansburg on two separate occasions for a total of 15 years and Bath Borough for just over 7 and 1/2 years. 

With the borough needing new cash flow streams, a proposal to redevelop Williamson Park and council’s recent interest in voting on a earned income tax, for residents, are among the issues Danko with council will be tackling in the coming days.

She did say, that her first 13 days (now 14) have been welcoming, so far.

“Everyone has been extremely welcoming and eager to help me hit the ground running with learning as much as possible about Morrisville Borough. There are many needs of the borough which will be challenging to accomplish with budget constraints. I look forward to working with Council and employees to achieve our goals along with providing the residents quality of life services.”

 

 

 

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Human Interest - Bensalem Township

Neshaminy Mall Sale Finalized Large Scale Redevelopment Planned Says New Owners

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One of the area’s biggest shopping malls will have new life given to it by its new owners, they say.

As previously reported, Paramount Realty Group  has purchased the 1-million square foot mall which sits at the crossroads of Lincoln Highway, Route 1 and the Pennsylvania Turnpike from Brookfield Properties. 

Opened in 1968, the Neshaminy Mall has hosted stores such as “Boscov’s” and “GameStop”, but over the years, the mall has started to decline in both visitors and renters. Walking through the mall now is like walking through a ghost town. The AMC theater and Boscov’s are still there, but stores like Macy’s, Friendly’s, and even Rita’s water ice are all gone with the mall dying a slow painful death prior to the sale.

The mall will undergo large-scale construction that will see roughly half of the area demolished in the process, the new owners told the Philadelphia Business Journal last week. 

The plans, which have not been finalized as of yet,  but could include a mix of residential, retail, and medical facilities, according to Paramount Realty Principal Maurice Zekaria, in the report.

Paramount and Edgewater jointly announced that they had closed on the purchase of the 108-acre site from Brookfield Properties for $27.5 million, a far cry from a previous estimated market value of $45.4 million.

Credit: DeZen Graphics

Paramount owns numerous properties in Bucks County, including Marketplace at Neshaminy, which is adjacent to the mall, and Lincoln Plaza in Middletown Township, which they acquired in 2020, according to public records and also purchased Brunswick Square Mall in Middlesex County, New Jersey in 2023.

The former Macy’s was recently purchased by Tony Chowdhurry, who is converting the space to a Fusion Gym in the hopes of giving the mall a “shot in the arm.” 

At the Oxford Valley Mall, Boscov’s was torn down to make way for luxury apartments and is expected to be completed soon.

The ability to shop online, experts say, is the single biggest contributor to the demise of shopping malls across America.

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Bristol Township

Turnpike Commission: Traffic Disruptions along the Pennsylvania Turnpike and I-95 in Bristol Township

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The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission is warning motorists of expected traffic disruptions along the Pennsylvania Turnpike and I-95 in Bristol Township due to an ongoing bridge rehabilitation project.

Starting this week, drivers merging onto I-95 northbound from the Delaware Valley Interchange acceleration ramp will encounter a temporary stop sign. The stop sign is in place through August 11 and is being placed to facilitate safe merging near the Levittown/Bristol Interchange (Exit 42). Additionally, on Friday, July 19, from midnight to 5 a.m. traffic pacing operations will slow vehicles to 20 to 25 mph. The intermittent 15-minute slowdowns at milepost 42.35 are planned for the safety of motorists and construction crews working on the bridge over the East Penn Railroad.

Motorists traveling eastbound and westbound on the Turnpike and northbound and southbound on I-95 in Bucks County are advised to adjust their travel plans accordingly. Pennsylvania State Police and Turnpike personnel will be on-site to guide drivers through the work zones. Travelers can also expect updates from changeable message signs along the routes, according to officials. Officials noted that the work schedule may change depending on weather conditions.

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Falls Township

Bucks Judge Orders Triple Killer Committed for 60-Day Mental Health Evaluation

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The man accused of killing three family members, hours before the Levittown St. Patrick’s Day parade causing it to be cancelled followed by a hours long manhunt, has been ordered to be evaluated at a state behavioral health facility.

Andre Gordon 26, a homeless Trenton, N.J man who is charged with three counts of first-degree murder, and three counts of second-degree murder in connection to his March 16 rampage in Lower Bucks County has been ordered to undergo a competency evaluation by a Bucks County Judge Raymond F. McHugh.  The evaluation period is not to exceed 60 days, court records show.]

Mr. Gordon is to be committed to Norristown Hospital or Torrance State Hospital under the Mental Health Procedures Act (AKA 302 and 302 b.) for psychiatric evaluation and treatment, said Manuel Gamiz Jr., director of communications for the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office. He added the facts about the petition are publicly available at this link. 

Killed in Gordon’s alleged killing spree was his 52-year-old stepmother, Karen Gordon, 13-year-old sister, Kera Gordon, and 25-year-old mother of his children, Taylor Daniel.

3/16/24 Andre Gibson

In May, Gordon was charged with aggravated assault and disarming a law enforcement officer —and eight related offenses stemming from an incident in the Bucks County Correctional Facility.

District Attorney Jennifer Schorn said she is seeking the death penalty, if the case goes to trial.

Marcel Johnson, now 31, is the last Bucks County resident sentenced to death. He was convicted in 2015 for the 2013 killing of five months pregnant Ebony Talley, 22, and daughter R’mani Rankins, 4. Rankins murder is what earned Johnson the death penalty.  The last person executed in Pennsylvania was Gary Heidink in 1979 by lethal injection.

 

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