The second business meeting for December was held December 15, 2003, at the Great Valley Middle School, Room 154. Paul Hogan, Chairman, Hugh Willig, Vice Chairman, Irene W. Ewald, Mike Rodgers, Kevin R. Kuhn, Thomas Oeste, Esq., Surender Kohli, P.E, Ed Theurkauf, Tom Corcoran, Court Reporter, Linda M. Csete, Township Administrator, Melanie M. Lammers, Recording Secretary, and those on the attached list were present.
The meeting was called to order at 7:35 P.M. following an Executive Session.
Mrs. Ewald announced the passing of Miss Betty Stonorov and recalled fond memories of her, stating she was a tremendous figure in the Township for the past 75 years. She said her most vivid image of Miss Betty was of her World War II Jeep that children painted yellow and loved to ride in, as well as her big, straw hat. Mrs. Ewald said Miss Betty showed great leadership, love, and caring over the years and said she greatly admired her. Mr. Hogan added that Miss Betty was instrumental in changing his life, because she was the reason he went into the field of designing playgrounds.
Mrs. Ewald addressed the residents of Blackberry Lane, stating that their concerns have been heard with regard to the proposed billboards. She said any lack of due process, court decisions, etc., can be explored separately by the neighbors. She added that the Board may not always be able to do what the residents would like, but assured them that their concerns had been heard.
Mr. Rodgers thanked Mrs. Ewald for her service and dedication to the Township. Mr. Hogan presented her with a book of photos from himself and a framed print of the Rapp House on behalf of the Board of Supervisors, other Township committees, staff, and Township consultants. Mrs. Ewald said she was overwhelmed and thanked everyone. She said it has been a privilege serving the people of Charlestown Township.
Mr. Bill Rhoads asked for a status of the proposed ordinance amendments regarding the commercial use of historic properties. Mr. Oeste indicated these ordinance amendments were deferred until a later date and that no action had yet been taken. Mr. Rhode is interested in hosting special events, such as wedding receptions, at his Bell and Clapper property on Route 29. Mrs. Ewald said that commercialization was a concern she raised at the last meeting, and that further discussions are needed to ensure that the proposed ordinance amendments do not open a Pandora’s box. Mr. Rhoads asked if he could accommodate a wedding in the meantime, and he was instructed to check with the Zoning Officer. Mr. Kohli said in order to host such an event commercially, he would need to meet the Labor and Industry requirements.
Mr. Kuhn moved to approve the December 1, 2003 minutes, and Mrs. Ewald seconded subject to the following correction:
Mr. Hogan called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Rodgers moved to approve the December 15, 2003 Accounts Payable report, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mrs. Ewald indicated that work by Frens & Frens for the Brightside Farm Master Plan had not been requested, and suggested a new check be issued to Frens & Frens in the amount of $3446.50, a $1026.16 reduction from the original check #2311. Mr. Rodgers agreed and amended his motion. Mr. Hogan called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
The following hearings were reported by Court Reporter, Tom Corcoran.
Mr. Oeste said he just recently provided comments to Mr. Comitta, and in order to allow Mr. Comitta ample time to review them, continued the hearing to January 26, 2004.
Mr. Oeste indicated he received a request from Joseph P. Ryan, Esq., asking for a continuance, therefore, this hearing was continued to January 26, 2004.
Witnesses were heard on behalf of Outdoor Partnership, LLC in order to prove the authenticity of exhibits previously entered by Elizabeth Witmer, Esq. Additionally, Ms. Witmer entered Exhibit A26, which was a letter dated January 7, 2003, to the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission from Outdoor Partnership, LLC asking for permission to remove trees. After cross-examinations were complete, Ms. Witmer asked for the admission of Exhibits A1-A26 into evidence. Mr. Oeste admitted them into evidence pending scrutiny at a later date, based upon their weight, etc. in given situations. Ms. Witmer rested her case. The hearing was continued to January 26, 2004.
Mr. Hogan announced that Centax was the agency recommended as the Earned Income Tax collector. He read the proposed resolution which would appoint Centax the Earned Income Tax Collection agency. Mr. Kuhn moved to approve the adoption of Resolution #614-03, and Mr. Rodgers seconded. Mr. Hogan called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Oeste stated he received the Title Report on Friday and said there was nothing of any concern. He said he prepared a resolution for the Board to approve, indicating it would be a requirement of the title company. He noted a typo in the resolution, stating that, on the end of Page 1, the word ‘easement’ should be changed to ‘property’. Mrs. Ewald moved to approve the adoption of Resolution #615-03, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Hogan called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Jim McErlane, Esq. summarized the easement acquisition. He said that one remaining issue is with regard to the trail being open to the public. He said the issue of access has not been worked out. Mrs. Ewald said it is necessary for the trail to be made public, and Mr. Kuhn disagreed, stating public access is not needed in his opinion. Mr. Willig asked if the right-of-way were moved, would the trail move correspondingly, and Mr. McErlane said it would. Mrs. Ewald said she cannot support this unless the trail is made public. Mr. Rodgers moved to approve the adoption of Resolution #616-03, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Hogan called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. Four were in favor, and one was opposed.
Mr. Terry Wochok requested permission to construct a gazebo on a corner lot in the side yard facing a street. Mrs. Ewald moved to approve the gazebo construction, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Hogan called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Oeste indicated this was not ready, and therefore, it was tabled to a future date.
Mr. Kohli reviewed the bids, indicating they ranged from $249,600 to $529,000. He said the document requires the bid be awarded within 60 days. Mr. Kohli said there is no work to be done now, and suggested tabling the awarding of the bid to the January 26, 2004 meeting.
Mr. Kuhn asked Mr. Kohli what he thought of the Township’s approach to this process, and Mr. Kohli responded they are simply having a tough time getting the right bidders. Mrs. Ewald suggested pursuing Berks County Barn Builders. Mr. Kuhn asked if the scope of work should be cut back to only the stone work for the next few years. Mrs. Ewald moved to table this topic to the January 26, 2004 meeting, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Hogan called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Nicholas Jones of Phoenixville, requested permission to use the new basketball courts for a non-profit organization, The Cory Erving Foundation. Mr. Hogan asked Mrs. Csete to refer him to the Parks and Recreation Board and said he needs to submit a proposal to them for review.
Mrs. Csete read the proposed Tax Levy resolution. Mr. Rodgers moved to approve the adoption of Resolution #617-03, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Hogan called for discussion. Mr. Willig felt it important to mention that the mils decreased from 1.0% to 0.75%. Mr. Hogan called the vote, and all were in favor.
After a brief discussion regarding some points of the proposed budget, Mrs. Ewald moved to approve the adoption of the budget via Resolution #618-03, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Hogan called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Schedule Joint Session with the Planning Commission to discuss future of Devault Area planning
Mr. Mike Allen said the Planning Commission would like to hold a meeting with the Board of Supervisors to discuss the path forward for the Devault area.
Mr. Kuhn said he met with Bill Anderson, Andy Motel, and Wade McDevitt. It is Mr. McDevitt’s desire to turn his property into four farmettes and would like the Township to help with the cost of a riding center on the property. Mr. Kuhn said he told Mr. McDevitt to give a presentation to the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors. Mr. Kuhn asked if it would be best to hold a special meeting between the Planning Commission and Board of Supervisors to discuss this topic as well as the Devault Area, and the Robal Associates sketch proposal. It was decided a special meeting would be held on Wednesday, February 11, 2004, 7:30 P.M. at the Great Valley Middle School to discuss these three topics.
This matter was scheduled for Wednesday, February 11, 2004, 7:30 P.M. at the Great Valley Middle School.
The Reorganization Meeting was scheduled for January 5, 2004 at 7:30 P.M. in Room 154 of the Great Valley Middle School.
There was no Other Business.
The meeting was adjourned at 9:54 P.M.