Coenen asked when East Penn’s plans for traffic improvements at Willow Lane will be filed with Lower Macungie so township officials can begin their formal review.

Last week township engineer William Erdman told Lower Macungie commissioners that review process may be slowed if East Penn does not submit its plan by Wednesday.

Seidenberger said he doesn’t know when Paul Szewczak, the school district’s engineer, will be done with his drawings. “He’s working on them overtime.” He said Szewczak will get those drawings to the township as soon as possible. East Penn hopes to change traffic patterns at the school before late August.

Although Lower Macungie’s fire chief is skeptical about East Penn’s traffic plan, Seidenberger said in conversations over the last three years, the township’s fire department consistently has asked what the district can do about parents driving up the main driveway off Sauerkraut Lane, which serves both the school and a fire station. The school district proposes putting all car traffic on the Mill Creek road entrance, with only school buses using the Sauerkraut Lane entrance.

Coenen told the board that by switching bus and car traffic patterns at Willow Lane, the district will eliminate 10 student drop-off spaces. She said there are 22 spaces now, but only 12 will be in the plan Lower Macungie is waiting to review.

Seidenberger expressed confidence that Lower Macungie will follow-through on pedestrian safety improvements the township plans to make in neighborhoods around Willow Lane. He said he has no reason to believe township commissioners won’t approve those off-site improvements, but he’ll feel a lot better when they do.

He said if Lower Macungie does not make those improvements --- school zone signals, crosswalks, and crossing guards – “I will come back to this board in late July and recommend we continue busing for all students.”

At least one of the five commissioners wanted to be sure East Penn would act to reduce busing at Willow Lane before the township spends money to make those improvements.

Fuller told Seidenberger Lower Macungie has been waiting for the district to make the first move on the issue. She expects the township now will take action very quickly.

Also during the board meeting, the administration handed out “budget books” to the school board and the superintendent said the discussion of the 2013-14 district budget will begin with a proposed 1.69 percent tax increase.

“I’m very confident that number will be reduced,” he told the board. “I’m going into this year’s budget more optimistic than I’ve been in a long time. We’ll do everything we can to present a budget that is educationally sound but fiscally prudent as well.”