MARCH 4, 1991

The Charlestown Board of Supervisors held their regular monthly meeting on Monday, March 4, 1991 in the Charlestown Elementary School.

Present: Irene W. Ewald, Chairman; John C. Martin, Jr., Vice Chairman; Vincent G. Kling, Sr., member; Surender Kohli, P.E.; James E. McErlane, Esq.; John D. Snyder, Esq.; Ruth W. Buckwalter; and those on the attached list of attendees.

The Chairman called the meeting to order at 8:10 p.m..

Mrs. Ewald stated for the record that two Executive sessions were held during the month of February: February 26th re. Charlestown Hunt and February 27th re. Charlestown Brae.

Mr. Martin moved to approve the minutes of February 4 and February 7, 1991 meetings. Mr. Kling seconded the motion, it carried unanimously.

Mr. Martin moved to accept the February 1991 Treasurer’s Report. Mr. Kling seconded the motion, it carried unanimously.

The March 4 Accounts Payable were reviewed by the Supervisors. Check #6395, payable to Meridian Bank, was deleted from the payables until this expense can be clarified. Mr. Martin moved to approve the payables, with the exception of check #6395, Mr. Kling seconded the motion, it carried unanimously.

Zoning Officer’s Report: Mr. Kohli noted he had received the Soil Conservation Report on the Tindle property, but, as yet, no plan for the Township. He submitted the monthly Building Permit and Occupancy Permit forms for the Township files.

Planning Commission Report: Michael Churchill reported the Planning Commission had reviewed and recommended the following: Devault Quarry - approved the plan for the parking lot and new building. Sweet Meadows: preferred cul-de-sac to be constructed on lot 2. Charlestown Meadows - approved the sketch plan and recommended the Supervisors approve a zoning change which will omit the current requirement for at least 10% of the development to be single family detached homes. Charlestown Oaks - approved plans for additional parking and the location of an additional tennis court. Hough/Loew - plan still being reviewed by the Planning Commission. Mr. Churchill gave a brief summary of the Turnpike Commission public meeting held by the Supervisors on February 27. There will be another public meeting held late this spring, residents will be notified.

Roadmaster’s Report: Mr. Pyle reviewed work done on roads during February as contained in his written report for the Township files. Mine, Wells and Bodine Roads need ditching and vines cut back. Mrs. Alexy of Pine Drive reported a water run-off problem to Mr. Pyle. Mrs. Ewald suggested these and other problems be checked out on the Spring Road Tour which was then set for April 6. Meeting place will be at the Charlestown School at 10 a.m.

Parks and Recreation Report: Bob Elmer reported that the Soccer Club is drafting a schedule for proposed improvements, pending a long-term lease. Mr. Kohli requested the club contact him for instructions. The several playing fields and their uses were discussed. The Supervisors requested a map to show these fields. Bob outlined the maintenance work that needs attention and requested $100 be approved to cover the costs of material, all labor will be done by volunteers. Mr. Kling made the motion to approve the request for $100 for material. Mrs. Ewald seconded the motion, it unanimously carried. Mr. Kling thanked Bob for his excellent work and his dedicated interest. Mark Connolly will draft a commitment document to be reviewed by the Supervisors before being presented to the Park and Recreation Board members. The request for a grant of $1,500, budgeted by the Supervisors for the Nature Center’s library, was tabled until the April Supervisors’ meeting. Mr. Martin suggested the Township’s 6 acres be turned into a partial playground because it seems that the Turnpike Commission does not disturb park areas.

The Sweet Meadows plan, a 2 lot subdivision on Mine Road, was laid before the Supervisors by Robert Willson, representative of the Applicant, John Samar. The issues here are the widening of Mine Road and the location of cul-de-sacs. The Planning Commission approved the plan contingent on five conditions which are listed in Mr. Kohli’s letter of February 4, 1991. Mr. Willson stated the Applicant will not agree to fund nor build 2 cul-de-sacs, because he sees no evidence of the need for more than 1. Mrs. Ewald stated that unless a cul-de-sac was placed on lot 2, there is no turnaround for fire trucks, oil trucks, UP trucks, ambulances, etc. She enquired of Mr. Willson if this plan was a Preliminary or a Final plan. Mr. Willson replied he was asking for a decision now, afterwhich the plan would be changed to Final. Mrs. Ewald called for a 10 minute recess to consult with Council. When the meeting reconvened, it was determined that a cul-de-sac, meeting full Township Subdivision/Land Development requirements, be constructed on lot 2 and Mine Road widened to the cul-de-sac and dedicated to the Township. Mr. McErlane stated approval of the plan is subject to the conditions recommended by the Planning Commission and a revised plan sent to the Supervisors within the proper time frame as set forth in the Subdivision/Land Development Ordinance. Mr. Martin so moved, Mr. Kling seconded, the motion carried unanimously.

On February 22, Conrail caused another fire in approximately the same area in Charlestown Township along Rt. 29 as the previous fire of April, 1990. An embarrassed Conrail representative, Mr. Minor Johnson, Conrail State & Local Affairs, apologized to the Township and the Board and explained the fire was caused by one of the three engines which had been newly painted. When the engine was fully taxed, residue from the paint was forced out of the smokestack. Mrs. Ewald expressed concern about the health and safety of the fire fighters when breathing the fumes of the burning creosoted ties, which she believes to be a carcinogen. Conrail had promised to clean up these old railroad ties last April, but they are still there. Mr. Mark M. Owens, Superintendent of Transportation, stated this was his failure, but he will make sure they are cleared up within the next two weeks. At that time, the Board is invited to “ride the rails” either on the regular run or by high railcar. Mr. Kling enquired of Mr. Owens why the train crew cannot see the shower of sparks coming from the engines. Mr. Owens explained the cinders are very small and hard to see, particularly on hilly terrain and at blind spots. The cinders do not always ignite immediately and the train moves on. He said that Conrail will begin using 2 large engines rather than three small ones, but he still can’t guarantee this will never happen again. At the conclusion of this discussion, Mr. Martin suggested that Conrail could improve their image with Charlestown Township if they would contribute 10% of the cost of the PENNDOT approved warning device to be installed at the track crossing on Buckwalter Road. Mr. Johnson said he had received information on this from PENNDOT and was already looking into the matter.

Charlestown Meadows, a 76 acre 210 unit proposed subdivision located at Rt.401 and Newcomen Road, was submitted to the Supervisors. Mr. Russell Powell showed a colored layout plan, which he stated had received general approval from the Planning Commission on February 12. He requested the Supervisors grant an amendment waiving the required 10% of the development to be single family detached homes. Mrs. Ewald asked Mr. McErlane to prepare the desired amendment which will then come before a public hearing. She commended the applicant for a positive plan and requested a copy of the drawings to be displayed at the Township office. Mr. Kling commented on the great improvement over the original plan, particularly the open spaces, good buffering and the 2 accesses.

Daniel S. DeMucci presented the plan for Charlestown Oaks Subdivision showing additional parking area and a third active recreation area. The Planning Commission has approved these two items. Although no corrected plan was available at this time, Mr. DiMucci agreed to work with the Township Engineer towards a final plan as recommended by the Planning Commission. Mr. Kling moved the Board accept the recommendation of the Planning Commission, Mrs. Ewald seconded the motion, it so carried.

Morris Schindler requested the Board to grant him a time extension re. Aldham Hill subdivision. He stated he would like to improve lot 6 (designated historic use) without the usual funding process. After further discussion, Mr. Kling moved to give Mr. Schindler a one year time extension, Mr. Martin seconded the motion, it carried unanimously. Mrs. Ewald stated the Supervisors would consult with Councel and give Mr. Schindler further direction before April 1.

Mr. Martin moved for approval of Escrow Release #5. in the amount of $12,074.12, for Rosewood Farms. Mr. Kling seconded the motion, it so carried. Mr. Kohli noted that this was not a final release.

Mrs. Ewald gave a brief report on the VFAH meeting. She stated that an official request will be made before March 19th to the Army Corps of Engineer for a study of Phase III. There are still issues remaining to be resolved.

Mr. Martin gave a summary on the status of the Charlestown Hunt subdivision. Chester County Common Pleas Court Judge Lawrence Wood, on Friday, March 1st, denied a Petition for Preliminary Injunction brought by Charlestown Hunt Associates that would have prevented Mr. Martin from taking any further action on the Charlestown Hunt application. Mr. Martin read aloud his report which summarized the plan review process and listed the unresolved issues. The above referenced Final PRD Plan was denied for lack of a quorum of the Board of Supervisors of Charlestown Township to act thereon.

All business completed, Mrs. Ewald moved to adjourn, Mr. Kling seconded the motion, the meeting was adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,