Councilwoman: Better Communication Needed

Est. Read Time: 2 mins

Issues of importance to Lower Saucon Township residents are being communicated to township staff, but township council members aren’t necessarily being kept in the loop. That was the message delivered by councilwoman Priscilla deLeon to the other members of council Wednesday night.

Priscilla deLeon will share memories of Sauconfest at the Lower Saucon Township Historical Society's April 8 meeting. A member of township council, deLeon was involved with the festival during its six-year run from 1989 to 1995.

Lower Saucon Township councilwoman Priscilla deLeon (FILE PHOTO)

DeLeon specifically highlighted a sinkhole that formed on Viola Lane recently, which she said she wasn’t told about in a timely manner. The sinkhole was serious enough that it required a response by the Pennsylvania Fish & Game Commission, and had she run into a resident who asked her about it, deLeon said she would have been at a loss to explain what was going on.

She also advocated for department heads to attend township meetings on a regular basis; something that happens in neighboring Hellertown borough.

Township manager Jack Cahalan said the department heads did attend at one time, but deLeon said she researched the issue as far back as 2003–when Cahalan was hired–and found no indication that the police chief and township public works director had attended.

In the past, she noted, council received a weekly report about issues arising in between their twice-monthly meetings.

She said these basic reports were helpful in terms of keeping her informed.

Council president Ron Horiszny differed with deLeon’s assessment of the current communication practices and said he believes they “work very well.”

“I think micromanaging can get very tedious,” he said.

Council vice president Tom Maxfield took a measured approach in assessing current communications, which he said are imperfect but not unusual.

“Nobody ever gets communication absolutely right,” he said.

Still, there have been some “lapses” and “there’s some room for improvement,” he added.

Maxfield said he doesn’t believe department heads need to attend the regular council meetings, which sometimes last for several hours and relate to subjects outside of their work fields.

He suggested coming up with ideas for better communication between council and staff.

“I’m not asking for redundancy,” deLeon stressed. “I really feel there was a ball dropped.”


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About the author

Josh Popichak

Josh Popichak is the owner, publisher and editor of Saucon Source. A Lehigh Valley native, he's covered local news since 2005 and previously worked for Berks-Mont News and AOL/Patch. Contact him at

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