CHARLESTOWN TOWNSHIP
BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MINUTES
Great Valley Middle School, Room 154
255 North Phoenixville Pike, Malvern, PA
Monday, May 2, 2022

Supervisors:
Frank A. Piliero, Chairman, Charles A. Philips, Vice Chairman, Kevin R. Kuhn, Susan T. Bednar, and Hugh D. Willig.
Consultants:
Mark P. Thompson, Esq., Robert Dettore, Wendy McLean Esq., and Daniel T. Wright, P.E.
Staff:
Linda Csete, Manager, Lisa Gardner, Recording Secretary, Tim Hubbard, Public Safety & Property Coordinator, Jim Thompson, Roadmaster, and Michael Allen, Staff Planner.

Call to Order:

7:00 p.m.

Announcements

  1. The Board of Supervisors held an executive session on April 4, 2022, following the business meeting to discuss legal matters.
  2. The Board of Supervisors held executive sessions on April 5, 12, and 28, 2022 to discuss personnel matters.
  3. There are handouts available for the Yoga Walks and Concerts in the Park.

Citizens Forum

Spring Oak and Beyond Meat

Mr. Rubenfield asked why the nitrogen tanks weren’t removed at Beyond Meat. Mr. Wright said due to code inspections and checklists, there was a delay.

Mr. Boyle - Sidewalk in TND

Mr. Frank Boyle was present to ask for an update on the sidewalk amendment language that is required as part of his land development approval at 1028 Yellow Springs Road for an apartment over office space. Mr. Thompson will review it this week and get back to him so the plan can be recorded.

Ms. Greene and Mr. Marks at 4219 Howell Road

Ms. Jill Green stated that in her review of the Board Meeting minutes from 1996 to the present, she felt that Mr. Samar should receive all applicable penalties for the deforestation of 4219 Howell Road. Referring to the Zoning Ordinance that is posted on the Township’s website, she has made a list of violations that happened including trespassing, land disturbance, health and safety violations, and the unpermitted installation of an impervious road that has not been removed.

In response, Mr. Wright stated that he met with Roadmaster Jim Thompson and Mr. Floyd Mendenhall, of Cedar Springs Construction. The discussion led to an estimate of $4000 to move the existing large woodchip piles to create a temporary stormwater holding area on the Greene-Marks property This holding area will capture runoff from the 9 acres upstream, hold the water temporarily, and reduce storm impact on Ms. Green’s adjacent property. Next, he contacted the current property owner, Mr. Chris Marks, who gave the Township permission to do the work and also will provide reimbursement. He is willing to do this to show his willingness to be a good neighbor. Mr. Thompson said the Township would ask Mr. Marks to sign an indemnification document prior to doing the work.

Secondly, Mr. Wright contacted the Chester County Conservation District.

Mr. Wright suggested that the Township establish a municipal timber harvesting permit that could require obtaining a letter of adequacy from the CCCD. Doing this would trigger the permit requirement, at least within Charlestown Township.

Ms. Green asked for an additional swale near the pile as extra protection, but Mr. Wright said it wouldn’t be effective. The Board asked Mr. Wright to provide the Board with Ms. Greene’s list to determine if there are any actionable violations and provide his assessment of each item and the reason it is or is not actionable.

Mr. Kuhn moved to approve Cedar Springs Construction Company to relocate woodchips on 4219 Howell Road so that water will travel around the wall and prevent stormwater runoff, providing the completion of an indemnification document, and Ms. Bednar seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Approvals

Mr. Kuhn moved to approve the below reports. Mr. Wright seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

  1. Minutes for the April 4, 2022, Business Meeting
  2. April 2022 Treasurer’s Report
  3. Operating Fund Accounts Payable Report for May 2, 2022
  4. Capital Fund-Open Space Projects Payable Report for May 2, 2022

Reports

Mr. Philips moved to accept the April 2022 reports #1-17 as submitted and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Old Business

Historic Atlas Project

Mr. Philips discussed a project started 2.5 years ago after the County suggested Charlestown produce a historic atlas. There is a first copy available tonight. It was created by Ms. Jane Dorchester and identified over 200 additional properties containing pre-1968 homes that meet the government criteria for historic resources. This list is separate from the 150 properties that are on the existing Township Historic Resources list, which do not have files at the township office.

A final copy of the Atlas will be available in two weeks.

New Business

Appointment of Alternate Member to the Environmental Advisory Committee

Mr. Goodman gave a brief background about Ms. Stephanie Yocum and her desire to serve the Township. Ms. Armstrong asked if everyone could speak louder at the meetings.

Mr. Philips moved to appoint Ms. Stephanie Yocum to the Environmental Advisory Committee as an Alternate with a term ending 12/31/2024, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Waiver Request – Stephanie Rosenlund, Valley Beech Rd - Placement of Shed within the Front yard Setback

Ms. Stephanie Rosenlund was present to request approval of a waiver from Zoning Ordinance section 27-1608.1C (2) to permit the placement of a shed in the front yard. The shed will be 8’ x 16’ and buffered by trees. Pictures were provided to the Board.

Mr. Kuhn moved to approve the waiver to allow the shed in the front yard, and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Appraisal Proposal for University of Valley Forge Property – 1401 & 1402 Charlestown Road

Mr. Kuhn referred to a proposal from Valbridge Property Advisors to conduct an appraisal of property owned by the University of Valley Forge. It is under consideration for purchase by the Township and includes portions of parcel numbers 35-2-1, 35-2-1.1, 35-2-1.2, and 27-5-1.2. The appraisal is made complicated due to the ≈20 acres being portions of lots and not following existing lot lines. This possible acquisition would prevent further development on Coldstream Road.

Mr. Philips moved to accept the proposal to appraise the UVF properties, not to exceed the amount of $12,500.00, and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Swiss Pines Resolution to Accept Property

Mr. Kuhn stated that he, Mr. Thompson, and Mrs. Csete met with the attorney for the Bartschi Foundation, and trustees Mr. Bill and Ms. Kim Coyle, on April 29. The group discussed the details and procedural phases that will lead to the Township taking over Swiss Pines’ deed and its assets. The Township would accept the property and the residuary of the estate would be held in a restricted trust by the French & Pickering Creeks Conservation Trust.

Mr. Philips moved to adopt Resolution #1008-2022, agreeing that the Township accept the Swiss Pines property and further endorsing the proposal that the Bartschi Foundation funds be held by the French & Pickering Creeks Conservation Trust. The trust will maintain the funds in a restricted account specifically for use for benefit of the Swiss Pines property. Ms. Bednar seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Brightside Farm Park Grassland Bird Sanctuary Proposal

Ms. Jessie Buckner from RES Landscaping presented their proposal for drafting a ten-year plan for Brightside Farm Park. The foremost goal is to create a bird sanctuary that would allow the Township to manage the site moving forward as a functional grassland ecosystem to support breeding birds. Tonight, they are on the agenda to obtain a starting point with a one-year cost approval to set the initial study in motion. Some points mentioned by reps from RES:

Mr. Kuhn moved to accept the RES proposal for a one-year cost of $49,034, to create the bird sanctuary at Brightside Farm Park, and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Armour & Sons Proposal to Install Radar Detection for Whitehorse Road & Route 29 Signal

Mrs. Csete said she requested a proposal from Armour & Sons for a solution to the ongoing issue of sun glare interfering with the signal at Whitehorse Road and Route 29. The Board considered adding radar detection for approaching vehicles.

Mr. Kuhn moved to accept the Armour and Sons proposal for $16,103.85 to install radar detection at the Whitehorse Road and Route 29 (Morehall Road) intersection, and Ms. Bednar seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Authorization for Landlord to Execute Contract for Office Fit-Out

Mr. Dettore began by explaining that the architectural firm Norr has designed a fit-out for the landlord who is constructing the space for the Township. The move is scheduled for late October. Two bids for construction were submitted to Tin Cup Realty, LLC by Penn Builders and Builders Inc. Based on a review, the Builders Inc. bid price of $844,251 compared favorably with the JD Bravo estimate of $874,805. This approximate $30,000 difference is to be applied against access, security, and AV packages, as well as a package for furniture, fixtures, and equipment. The financial summary is available for the Board now and on May 13th the landlord will have the pricing.

Mr. Bob Dettore requested the Board’s approval to authorize the landlord to execute the contract for the office fit-out with Builders Inc. for $874,805.00 following review and a recommendation of the bids received for the job.

Mr. Kuhn moved to accept the Builders Inc. bid for the general construction portion of the office fit-out at 11 General Warren Blvd, Malvern, PA, in the amount of $874,805.00. Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Award Contract for Road Equipment & Labor Contract 5/1/22-4/30/23

Mr. Wright reviewed the Equipment & Labor Bids received on April 4th. He recommended the contract be awarded to the low bidder, Cedar Springs Construction Co. Inc.

Mr. Philips moved to award the Road Equipment & Labor contract for the period of 5/1/22 - 4/30/23 to Cedar Springs Construction Co. Inc. and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Open Bids for 2022 Road Improvement Project

The Supervisors opened the following bids for the 2022 Road Improvement Project:

Cedar Springs Construction Co. $198,057
Innovative Construction Services Inc. To Be Announced - The Subtotals were listed but there was no grand total provided

Mr. Wright will review the bids and provide a recommendation for the contract award scheduled for the June 6, 2022 Board of Supervisors meeting. These prices do not include the cost of materials. Roads to be improved are Warner Lane, Sidley Hill Road, Ridgewood Road’s cul-de-sac, and Blackberry Lane.

Resolution to Amend Budget

Mrs. Csete provided details on the spreadsheet she previously circulated dated 4/25/22, proposing amendments to the 2022 Budget. Adjustments were made to the carryover figures for the General Fund and two Capital Funds to reflect the actual year-end balance from 2021.

Numerous line items in the general fund were adjusted due to a change in timing with the office fit-out and hiring of a new manager. Road categories show higher proposed expenditures due to continuing repairs from last fall’s Hurricane Ida. East Whiteland also received an unexpected $50,000 for a new ambulance. An East Whiteland rep stated the price increase was due to Covid price increases and supply chain issues. Also, the original plan was to trade in an older ambulance that will now be retained as long waits at area hospitals make this necessary.

The Open Space Capital Fund showed reductions in five line items due to the extension of timelines for these projects or seeing less activity than anticipated

Mr. Piliero moved to adopt Resolution #1009-22 amending the 2022 Budget as proposed, and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Escrow Release #7 Devault Village at Spring Oak

Mr. Philips moved to approve escrow release #7 for Devault Village at Spring Oak for $159,925, and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.

Other Business

Mr. Kuhn stated that Mrs. Csete can schedule the Rogers Conservation Easement Hearing.

Mr. Kuhn stated that there will be a joint meeting with the VFSA and the Township regarding the 17 million sale involving Aqua, Willistown, and East Whiteland. Charlestown Township will determine its position to take with the sale. The review of East Whiteland’s proposed Act 537 Plan revision will moved to the Planning Commissions agenda in June, as they will not be ready in May, per Mr. Wright.

Ms. Armstrong stated that the utility pole contractor who performed work along Howell Road left unsecured cable, plastic containers, and miscellaneous debris. Mrs. Csete will contact her rep once Ms. Armstrong provides an address range to locate the poles and debris.

A resident complained about the potholes on a state road and Mr. Hubbard suggested she use of the online PennDOT tool or calling 1-800-FIX-ROAD. Multiple submissions from residents to this number seem to get things moving faster than one phone call from the Township.

The grass strip along Charlestown’s Phoenixville Pike property has not been mowed as requested by our landscape contractor. Mr. Thompson noted that PennDOT did some clearing but it’s not uniformly done. The Roadmaster will contact Charlestown Landscaping to follow up.

Ms. Green had questions about a Conditional Use Hearing scheduling for the Greene-Marks application that was answered by Mrs. Csete.

Adjournment

Mr. Piliero adjourned the meeting at 8:25 p.m. The next Business Meeting is scheduled for Monday, June 6, 2022, at 7 p.m., at the Great Valley Middle School.

Respectfully submitted,


Lisa K. Gardner
Sign-in sheet, 5/2/2022