READING, Pa. | The Berks County Commissioners have announced they plan to return to live in-person meetings next Thursday, July 29.
The commissioners have been holding virtual-only meetings since the start of the pandemic in March 2020.
But Commissioner Christian Y. Leinbach emphasized that the weekly meetings of the commissioners will also to continue to be broadcast virtually.
“We made the commitment one year ago, that once we were back in person, we would continue access via virtual means,” Leinbach said. “New technology has been installed in the board room including a new sound system and other technology to make the experience as good for people joining virtually, as well as the people experience [the meeting] in person.”
Leinbach said public comments will be taken from both the in-person attendees, as well as from those attending virtually.
As a precaution to exceeding the 30-minute time-period allotted for public comment, Leinbach said comments from in-person attendees will be taken first to acknowledge the extra effort those people made to come to the live meetings.
The weekly meeting of the commissioners is held every Thursday at 10 a.m. in the commissioner’s board room, located on the 13th floor of the Berks County Services Center.
The virtual meetings can be viewed on Microsoft Teams Live, Facebook and BCTV.
In other news, the commissioners adopted a resolution for the allocation of $559,500 in the third round of funding from the COVID-19 hospitality industry recovery program (CHIRP) grant.
The Greater Berks Development Fund, which serves as the grant administrator, recommended the recipients for the last round of funding for hospitality-related businesses.
The list of recipients was not made available at the commissioners meeting.
In June, close to $1 million was allocated to Berks hospitality businesses and in April, the first round of CHIP funding was issued in the amount of $3.3 million.
Earlier this year, Gov. Tom Wolf announced that $145 million in funding would be distributed to all 67 counties in the state in an effort to help support hospitality industry businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Each county which applied to the state for the funding received an amount based on population.
In other business Thursday, the commissioners approved two promotions in election services.
Donna Blatt was promoted to assistant director of election services from the chief registrar at an annual salary of $65,000 and Anne Norton was promoted to chief registrar of election services from elections project coordinator at an annual salary of $49,000.