Charlestown Township
Environmental Advisory Committee (EAC)
Great Valley High School Library
Minutes of Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Minutes were recorded for the meeting on November 13th, 2019 at the Great Valley High School Library, 225 N. Phoenixville Pike, Malvern, PA 19355. Meeting was held from 6:05 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Attendees were Pete Goodman (Chair), Carol Armstrong (vice Chair), Veda Maany (secretary), Greg Nespoor, Richard Findlay and Meg Solomon. Daniel Walker was absent. Supervisor Kevin Kuhn attended.

The meeting was opened at 6pm

Minutes as corrected on a motion by Armstrong and seconded by Goodman were approved Unanimously.

PECO Green Region Grant: Kuhn for the BoS encouraged the EAC to pursue. Action Armstrong and Goodman.

Green Business Award: Response to the mailing has been low. Armstrong and Findlay will make direct approaches in the New Year.Voting Day: The booth was well attended particularly in the evening time frame.

Turnpike Sound Walls: No updates.

Turnpike Unpermitted land disturbance: Kuhn agreed the EAC should pursue this possibly having the Township issue a citation as appropriate. Goodman to work with Dan Wright Township Zoning Officer. As the bore holes are close to the Aqua water tank/tower Nesspor will contact Aqua if they were given notice of the disturbance.

Adelphia Gateway: No updates.

Riparian Buffer project – Pigeon Run on Brightside Farm Park: Armstrong will present to the BoS the proposed project for approval to move forward.

Community Education events: January “Plastics in our bodies” event on track. Excellent flyer included in recent Township newsletter. Findlay to work with Armstrong on printing more flyers to be posted on local notice boards and handed out to residents.

Spring event (April or May): Two ideas. Findlay to approach Philadelphia Horticultural Society for a speaker on tree related subject.

Solomon to research speaker for composting speaker as a back-up or Autumn event.

Charlestown riparian buffer ordinances and consistency with State Code Armstrong is still analyzing the documents. Goodman is also working with other municipalities looking at their ordinances. Per Kuhn our ordinance should already be consistent with state code. We will look into any discrepancies.

Volunteer List Solomon and Findlay have put together a list and exploring how to get people more engaged. How can we use modern technology solutions? Discussion around effectiveness of mailing list. Could we consider a mobile app? A good question arose about how many hits does the township website get? We can contact the webmaster to get that information. Instagram may be a good forum to start out with.

DCNR Pollinator Habitat program Project Wingspan for Brightside Farm. — we are still awaiting their response to our application. There was a wildflower patch at Brightside – seeding for bumble bee species- annuals most likely will be planted.

Chester County Water Resources Authority (CCWRA) The county is redoing their “Watersheds” document which provides a comprehensive plan for “Landscapes”. The CCWRA will address how the county uses and protects water over the next 20 years. This ties in with upgrades of the Act 167 plan (stormwater management). At this time the county is asking for community input. As far as a response to the CCWRAA we discussed updating stormwater on existing properties to comply with the ordinance upon sale of a property. We must address new development, redevelopment and particularly existing development. Goodman will recirculate the survey to EAC members again for input.

There was a question of how the EAC should proceed for approval of grants obtained. Other EAC have their BoS approve grants obtained. Per Kuhn, traditionally grants have come through the township. Do grants pursued by our committee need BoS authorization? We can work something out with the BoS.

Does the EAC have approval of their proposed budget? Kuhn will review

Thank you, Goodman, for our wonderful EAC banners.

Meeting adjourned at 7 pm, followed by a Joint meeting with Parks and Recreation commenced at 7 pm.

Members of Parks and Rec present in addition to those listed above were Chris Lawrence (Chairman) Dan Mount, Nicole Nemeth, Loise Coleman, Bill Longua, Lisa Tull (resident), Ashley Smith (resident of Phoenixville and helping out with trails) Frank Beyer (trails chair). Marie Stone (new assistant township secretary),

Lawrence presented in overview of parks and recreation current activities and goals.

Charlestown Park

Ongoing for sport – handling of fields by sport youth groups.

Maintenance of meadow and butterfly area, mowed areas, nature trail.

Erosion issues and expanding natives to the area to help mitigate.

Invasion species issue. They are trying to target by removal of Russian olive. Replace with bumble bee friendly plants.

Along soccer field there is a wetlands area overtaken by phragmites. Starting to cut them last year without using herbicides which may take 2 years. Take seed pods from cattails and spread them. Armstrong states there are native phragmites as well. There is also salt grass as a native replacement.

P&R focus on other open spaces and trails:

Ensuring trails are maintained.

Question water quality of creek. Armstrong will send 2018 integrated report for Pigeon Run to Lawrence. About 10-15 years ago native species were planted along stream in Charlestown Park. Testing water quality is good way to measure effects of a project or change— Especially with regards to Devault line trails and different permeable/semipermeable options we would like to see what impact it would have on the local stream. Current rail lines may be converted and this is a county project.

Parks and rec also has interest in alternative transportation options with regards to trails walkability to replace car options-

Longua discussed Swiss Pine and the Nature Center as a long-term project and also has been designing a bench dedicated to the late Mark Rogers to be placed at Brightside.

2019 trails effort had good turnout. Some projects are be done in December; for instance, the Pickering Dam trail is dangerous now. Water has washed away the dirt making it treacherous. Will need to create a new trail as an offshoot. Also, they are considering a Devault trail going under Route 29.

Armstrong states there is a movement away from using boulders and instead using wood to establish trails. EAC can have someone come and make assessment/recommendations.

Most of Charlestown trails are dead ends not loops so one future project is looping the trails. The goal is retrofit trails we already have. There was discussion about revisiting a survey of the community and assessing the current needs.

Public outreach efforts in the past: Bird walks lead by Lisa.

Discussion handed over to Goodman who shared EAC agendas/initiatives

  1. Green business award.
  2. Brightside Farm Park Riparian Buffer grant project.
  3. Stream naming within township and register with USGS
  4. Educational series-
  5. Earth day clean-up

Joint meeting was adjourned at 8 pm.