Lehigh Valley

Allentown City Council votes down meeting procedure bill

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - Allentown City Council voted down a resolution Wednesday night that would have changed how the public comments on legislation at meetings.

The vote was defeated 6-1, with President Roger MacLean supporting the bill.

The bill, Resolution 36, was framed by opponents at previous committee and council meetings as ineffective at improving efficiency and had the potential to limit government transparency and free speech.

In other news, the council backed Gov. Tom Wolf's "Restore Pennsylvania" proposal by a unanimous vote. The governor plans to borrow $4.5 billion over the next four years to pay for various public works projects. It would also create a new natural gas severance tax to pay for it.

In an effort to promote the plan, Wolf invited several county and municipal members from across the commonwealth to appear at a news conference. The invitees included Councilman Julio Guridy.

In supporting the resolution, Councilman Courtney Robinson said the governor's plan would "invest in green spaces, infrastructure and broadband."

In other business, an ordinance was introduced that would change the city's property and maintenance code requiring landlords to install "window guards" in all windows if a child 10 years or younger lives in the rental unit or spends considerable time there. The tenant will need to make a request in writing for the installation to occur.

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