Mr. Philips moved to appoint Christopher W. Heleniak to the position of Township Manager and Township Secretary starting July 5, 2022, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor. Mr. Heleniak took his oath of office and was congratulated and welcomed to the Township.
Mr. Kuhn moved to adjust the salary of the current Manager, Linda Csete, to match that of the incoming Manager, for the remainder of the year, and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor. Mrs. Csete expressed her thanks to the Board for this unexpected and much appreciated action.
Jill Green asked for a response to her undated letter to Dan Wright with six questions regarding the tree removal at 4219 Howell Rd. Mr. Thompson responded to the first question regarding the Stormwater Management Ordinance, that there is a provision requiring a logging permit, however the Township is beyond the statute of limitations of 30 days for criminal enforcement. If the conditions at the property present a public nuisance, the Township could make a decision on enforcement, but the property is now owned by new owners who weren’t responsible for the original tree removal and have now taken remedial action.
Mr. Wright confirmed that today he oversaw mulch work performed by Cedar Springs Construction Company to create a berm to handle future water runoff. He said Ms. Green’s contractor and engineer will review the work done.
Ms. Green questioned Mr. Wright’s comment that it doesn’t make sense to enforce against the new owners. Mr. Thompson said she could take action against her neighbors herself if she wished to do so. The Township will attach conditions to their subdivision and conditional use application currently under review to mitigate the current situation further, but for now, the effort the current owners have made is the interim solution the Township wanted. Ms. Green said her contractor says the berm won’t work.
Ms. Green asked the second question on her letter, how does the Township plan to enforce the ordinances and when. Mr. Thompson said all the questions have been responded to and have basically the same answer already provided to the first. Mr. Kuhn said the goal now is to mitigate the problem until the rest of the requirements can be imposed through the subdivision application approval process.
Ms. Green asked if the Township’s position is that the berm will solve the problem. Mr. Thompson responded that the Township Engineer didn’t design the berm, with Mr. Wright adding it was installed under his direction. Ms. Green said the Township authorized the work, but Mr. Kuhn clarified the property owners engaged Cedar Springs Construction directly.
Mr. Philips moved to approve the reports listed below. Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Kuhn moved to accept the May 2022 reports #1-17 as submitted and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Victoria Robinson of Troop #440 presented her proposed Girl Scout Gold Project, a butterfly garden/calming circle with painted rocks in the middle that have words of affirmation and Adirondack chairs for seating. She said Gold Projects are intended to address a specific issue, and she chose the need for a quiet place for reflection and serenity.
Ms. Robinson coordinated with Ashlee Beyer on the Parks and Rec Board for plant recommendations, and Kelsey Stanton of Theurkauf & Associates kindly offered to be her advisor. She proposed setting up a place at the September Charlestown Day event for children to paint some of the rocks for the garden.
The total cost is proposed to be under $1,000.00 and Home Depot will cover most of these expenses. Loews has offered to cover a portion as well, and she asked the Township to cover any residual costs.
Carol Armstrong said that Ms. Robinson modified her plan in accordance with recommendations provided at the Parks & Recreation meeting, which Ms. Robinson noted included removing the use of any plastic edging, and use of natural stones and primarily native plants. She said there are lilies and spider wart plants already at the park and some of them can be used. Mr. Philips commented that non-native plants can also be considered as long as they are non-invasive. She indicated that plant list is yet to be determined.
Mr. Philips moved to approve Stephanie Robinson’s Girl Scout Gold Project and to cover any costs not already addressed by the other contributors, and Ms. Bednar seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
John Meisel and Tim Phelps of TMACC presented the draft document “Devault Trail Activation Plan” that was developed under a DVRPC grant obtained by Charlestown Township that comes to a close at the end of the month. He described the process used by the steering committee to obtain input from stakeholder groups and various agencies to develop the Plan.
The Plan addressed questions on the right methods to acquire and own the trail, manage it, and maintain it. Consultation with representatives from Natural Lands Trust was welcomed due to their expertise and their potential future role in the acquisition process.
The Plan proposes that the four trail corridor municipalities enter an intermunicipal agreement, which differs from an Authority that has taxing and borrowing capabilities, neither deemed to be necessary here. The simpler intergovernmental agreement was considered the best option. For maintenance, options would include hiring a contractor, sharing maintenance responsibilities, or having one municipality take the lead.
The second public meeting was held via Zoom on April 28th and provided more input to the steering committee. The next steps will include negotiations with Norfolk Southern and determining the cost of acquisition and sources of funding.
Mr. Kuhn said the intermunicipal agreement sounds complex and asked, doesn’t Chester County own most of the other larger trails in the County? Mr. Meisel said the County indicated it was not interested, partly due to other projects taking priority. Mr. Willig said an intermunicipal group could function well, citing the Phoenixville Regional Planning Commission, of which Charlestown is a member.
Mr. Meisel said the value of the property has yet to be determined, although a previous indication from Norfolk-Southern was in the $20M range. He noted the rail line is designated “inactive” rather than “abandoned”. Mr. Richter asked Norfolk-Southern would be receptive to an offer, and Mr. Meisel said yes, but they want to deal with a single entity.
Mr. Phelps said there’s no official action for the Board to take this evening, but is just to acknowledge receiving the report.
The proceeds were taken by Mr. Mark Hagerty, court reporter. Mr. Thompson opened the hearing for Christopher Marks and Kathy Greene’s property at 4219 Howell Road, parcel #35-5-22 located in the FR district. Mr. Marks and Ms. Greene seek approval for construction of a driveway in steep slopes for their proposed 3-lot subdivision. The following exhibits were noted for the record:
|T-1||The Conditional Use Application|
|T-3||Proof of Publication of Public Notice|
|T-4||Review Letter by Advanced GeoServices dated 5/24/22|
|T-5||Letter from Applicant’s Attorney Greg Adelman extending the time to hold the hearing and make the decision to 8/1/22.|
No testimony was given this evening since the plans are still under review by the Planning Commission. The hearing was continued to July 5, 2022.
The proceeds were taken by Mr. Mark Hagerty, court reporter. Mr. Thompson stated that a public notice was placed for tonight’s hearing to consider acquisition of a conservation easement with the French & Pickering Creeks Trust on parcel #35-3-24, the 7.5 acre Rodgers property, 1152 Green Lane Road. He asked for public comment and there was none.
Mr. Philips moved to adopt Resolution #1010-22, to authorize the expenditure of Open Space funds to acquire an easement on the Rodgers property, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor. Mr. Kuhn noted this is the property of former Supervisor Mike Rodgers.
Mr. Thompson indicated that Beyond Meat had declined the invitation to appear this evening to provide an update on noise and odor issues at the plant and would instead appear at the June 14th Planning Commission meeting.
Lorraine Fillippo said the State Police refused to respond to her complaint of trucks parked at the Post Office lot overnight when she last called, after she’d been told they would handle those calls. Mr. Hubbard offered to reach out to the State Police.
Ms. Fillippo said Beyond Meat has denied cooking when she complained about odors. Mr. Wright said Beyond Meat has agreed to look into an ozone method they had initially rejected due to cost that might prove effective in reducing odor.
Ms. Fillippo complained about the amount of traffic coming from Beyond Meat that doesn’t stop at the 4-way stop intersection, though she agreed the traffic on Devault Lane had decreased after signs were posted.
Spring Oak resident Steve Subers said heavy equipment construction vehicles for Devault Village are coming through his development when they are supposed to use the Rees Road access. Mr. Wright said he will contact the developer.
Mr. Wright said Mr. Cartolaro is not in attendance and referred to his May 20th letter where he informed Mr. Cartolaro that a variance is not needed because the porch is unenclosed so is not considered an encroachment on the side yard setback. He advised him in the letter to withdraw the application, which hasn’t yet been done. Mr. Wright said he’ll follow up with the applicant.
Mr. Dettore recommended the two proposals, one for Structured Cabling and one for the Access/Security Systems for the new office facility that will increase the base contract value by $167,258.00 ($53,396.00 for Structured Cabling and $113,862.00 for the Access and Security Systems). This will change the base contract value from $854,254.00 to $1,021,512.00.
Mr. Kuhn moved to authorize the landlord to execute the two contracts as stated, and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Dettore indicated that Builders Inc. has entered a contract with the landlord, who issued a Notice to Proceed on June 3rd. Performance and Payment Bonds have been received by the landlord, and a demolition permit was filed today. Demolition should be completed in 7 - 10 days. The target move-in date in late October remains in place.
Mr. Philips moved to approve the 2-lot Martellucci minor subdivision plan dated 5/2/2022, subject to Mr. Wright’s review letter dated 5/20/22 and Mr. Comitta’s letter dated 12/7/21, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Philips said he spoke to Jessica Buckner about additional work needed at the Devault basin area to include a second mowing because the invasive weeds are worse than expected, as well as additional shrubs recommended at the March 1st charette. This will be in addition to the work outlined in the 2021 proposal and requires a change order to the contract.
Mr. Kuhn moved to approve the Change Order #1 to the RES contract for the Devault Stormwater Basin Retrofit project in the amount of $8,880.78, and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Annie Neamand and Charles Faulkner from HRMM & L, consultants for East Whiteland Township, explained that as part of the process for East Whiteland Township (EWT) to sell their sanitary sewerage system to Aqua PA, Charlestown must review and adopt the Act 537 Special Study for the transfer of ownership, stating that it conforms with Charlestown Township ordinances. Mr. Thompson noted this is a procedural requirement and doesn’t involve taking a position on the sale itself from municipal to private ownership.
Mr. Philips asked if the flows have been verified, and Mr. Wright confirmed that they had. Ms. Bednar asked if this study addresses Charlestown’s comments relating to concerns communicated previously to EWT regarding rate increases and whether Aqua would be entitled to a seat on the joint board of the Valley Forge Sewer Authority. Ms. Neamand responded that those comments will be addressed by EWT as required by DEP policy and is a separate process.
Mr. Kuhn asked why Charlestown has to sign off on the revision, and Mr. Faulkner said it’s because the EWT system takes some of Charlestown’s flows. Mr. Thompson asked if any of the other affected municipalities have signed off yet, and Mr. Faulkner responded that East Goshen has signed. Malvern Borough, Willistown Township, West Whiteland Township, and Tredyffrin Township are pending.
Mr. Kuhn moved to adopt Resolution #1011-2022 authorizing a revision to the Official Act 537 Plan of East Whiteland Township, and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Wright reviewed the Bids received on May 2nd and recommended the contract be awarded to the low bidder, Innovative Construction Services Inc. He said they were $60,000 less than the second bidder, and within $8,000 of the cost estimate.
Mr. Philips moved to award the 2022 Road Improvement Project contract to Innovative Construction Services, Inc. and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Philips moved to schedule the conditional use hearing for Malvern General Warren Owner LLC for July 5, 2022 at 7:00 p.m. at the Great Valley Middle School, Room 154, 255 N. Phoenixville Pike, Malvern, PA and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Kuhn moved to accept the insurance proposal from Hudson Insurance Company for the period of June 11, 2022 - June 11, 2023, and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mrs. Csete referred to two quotes received earlier today for cyber security coverage. One quote was for $250,000 liability coverage for $5,000 and the other for $1M coverage for 9,200 and are both well rated companies. Mr. Piliero proposed waiting for the move since the needs would likely change substantially and the other members agreed to revisit this coverage in the fall.
Mr. Philips moved to approve escrow release #8 for Devault Village at Spring Oak for $113,760.00 and Mr. Piliero seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
There being no other business, Mr. Piliero adjourned the meeting at 8:15 p.m. The next Business Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, July 5, 2022, at 7 p.m., at the Great Valley Middle School.