Charlestown Township
Board of Supervisors Business Meeting
Minutes of November 3, 2008

A business meeting was held November 3, 2008 at the Great Valley Middle School, room 154. Kevin Kuhn, Chairman, Charlie Philips, Vice Chairman, Michael Rodgers, Paul Hogan, Mark Thompson, Esq., Surender Kohli, P.E., Linda Csete, Township Administrator were present along with those on the attached list.

Mr. Kuhn called the meeting to order at 7:30 P.M.


Mr. Kuhn reminded everyone to vote tomorrow.

Mrs. Csete said that the process to codify the Township’s ordinances had begun this past week and thus far has been going well. The Board may expect the initial report from Keystate Publishers within a few weeks for their review.

Citizens’ Forum for Non-Agenda Items

No matters were brought forward.


Resolution #704-08

Open Space Director Aliena Gerhard said that the DCNR requires passage of a resolution to apply for $5,000.00 in grant funding for the creation of a trail on the McDevitt property, on which a conservation easement was placed last year. She said the resolution acknowledges that the Board agrees to the terms and conditions of the grant and will be bound by the Grant Agreement, and authorizes the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors to execute the Agreement. Mr. Philips moved to adopt resolution #704-08, and Mr. Hogan seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. Four were in favor.

Minutes of October 6, 2008 Meeting

Mr. Rodgers moved to approve the minutes of the October 6, 2008 meeting, and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion. He had two corrections:

Page 3, second paragraph: “Mr. Willig asked if the trenching work along Union Hill Road will be filled in” should be changed to “Mr. Willig asked if the milling work…”

Page 7, second paragraph, “pledging a match of 50% of $100,000” should read “pledging a match or $100,000”.

There being no other discussion, Mr. Kuhn called the vote. Four were in favor.

Minutes of October 23, 2008 Meeting

Mr. Philips moved to approve the minutes of the October 23, 2008 meeting, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. Four were in favor.

Treasurer’s Report October 1 - 31, 2008

Mr. Rodgers moved to approve the October 2008 Treasurer’s Report and Mr. Hogan seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. Four were in favor.

Accounts Payable – Operating Fund

Mr. Hogan moved to approve the November 3, 2008 Operating Fund Accounts Payable Report and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. Four were in favor.

Accounts Payable – Open Space Fund

Mr. Rodgers moved to approve the November 3, 2008 Open Space Fund Accounts Payable Report and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. Four were in favor.


Mr. Rodgers moved to accept the October monthly reports and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion. Mr. Alston said he was notified by the tenants at the Brightside Farmhouse that the boiler was not operating. Mr. Alston called for repairs and the boiler was found to be leaking and not safe to use. He obtained three quotes for a replacement unit, with each company providing a quote for a standard and a high efficiency unit. He distributed the results and indicated his recommendation was for the Buderus high efficiency unit quoted by Mack Services Group for $6,983.00. After some discussion, Mr. Kuhn moved to accept the bid from Mack Services for the Buderus unit subject to confirmation that the boiler is sized properly for the house and upon receiving clarification of the terms of the limited warranty. Mr. Philips seconded. Mrs. Csete said if the Board wished to accept the bid they need to approve a 50% deposit payment of $3,500.00. Mr. Kuhn amended his motion to include the approval of check #6465 for the deposit, and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Kuhn called the vote. Three were in favor, and Mr. Rodgers abstained.

Mr. Alston reported a problem on October 29th with the traffic signal at Morehall Road and Whitehorse Road last week when all directions were indicating a red signal. He was called to the scene by the Pa. State Police, at which time the signal was working properly. An East Whiteland Township police officer stopped and said he had accidentally left his emergency preemption trigger on, which had caused the problem. Mr. Alston said East Whiteland Township has had complaints from employees at the Atwater Corporate Center about the timing on the lights. Mr. Alston confirmed that the timing had been checked when the annual inspection was performed by Charlestown’s signal contractor and that it conformed to the PennDOT permits. However, the permits were issued before Atwater was built, so East Whiteland Township has now requested a timing study from PennDOT.


On-Lot Sewage Management Ordinance

Mr. Thompson opened the hearing to consider an ordinance governing on-lot sewage disposal systems.

The following items were entered into the record by the Township:

Mr. Thompson provided a brief description of the ordinance. He indicated a typographical error in Section 4.B.2 which references “Article IV of this ordinance” and should say “Article V of this ordinance”.

There were no questions from the public and the hearing was closed.

Mr. Rodgers moved to adopt Ordinance #150-08 with correction of the reference to Article V, and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote. Four were in favor.

Old Business

Road Equipment Rental Contract

Mr. Rodgers referred to the road equipment rental contract that was accepted at the October 6th meeting for rental of all equipment for an eighteen month period through March 31, 2010. He stated his concern about previous discussions on breaking out portions of the road equipment contract separately, particularly for snow removal. He spoke with representatives from other townships and learned that when one in particular attempted to do break out the snow removal work they received no bids, and when they bid a second time, they likewise received no bids. He said he spoke to East Pikeland Township’s snow removal contractor as to whether he would be interested in bidding for Charlestown and was told he was not interested. A third township he spoke to pays $200-$300 per hour for snow removal equipment rental with an operator. Mr. Alston said Charlestown pays approximately $150.00 per hour.

Mr. Rodgers said he also spoke to Mr. Thompson about the prevailing wage question, and this can be resolved in the future by including a requirement in the township’s road bid documents that each line item be bid at both prevailing wage and non-prevailing wage rates.

Mr. Rodgers is concerned that Charlestown continue to bid out for road equipment, as creating a public works department could cost in excess of $1 million per year according to one township he spoke with.

Mr. Kuhn said discussions on this matter started over concerns that Charlestown wasn’t receiving competitive bids, and noted this is no reflection on the current contractor. He said he’s been extremely satisfied with the work performed by Melchiorre Construction, but since a third of the township budget relates to road work, he believes it is the township’s responsibility to consider ways to expand participation in the bidding process. As to larger jobs triggering the prevailing wage rate requirement, the solicitor has outlined the procedure for the Board that will require them to go out to bid on those projects.

New Business

Award Road Salt Contract

The road salt bids were opened and read at the October 6, 2008 meeting and turned over to Mr. Kohli for review and recommendation. Mr. Kohli’s review found the bids to be in order and recommended the contract be awarded to Oceanport Industries, the low bidder.

Mr. Philips moved to award the road salt contract to Oceanport Industries, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. Four were in favor.

Four-Way Stop at Pikeland and Charlestown Roads

Mr. Kuhn asked for clarification on the Ashford subdivision roadway intersection permit with Charlestown and Pikeland Roads that was issued by PennDOT with a stop control for the new Trevor Lane but not for all-way stop signs as anticipated by the Township. Mr. Kohli said the traffic control specialist at the time the permit was issued had determined an all-way stop was not needed. However, he has since retired and Mr. Kohli recommended that the Township contact his replacement at PennDOT requesting that the multi-way stop sign now be installed. Mr. Kuhn asked Mr. Kohli to draft a letter for the Administrator to send to PennDOT.

Authorize Advertising of Recycling Ordinance

Mr. Thompson said he circulated a revised draft ordinance to the Board to update the Township’s Recycling Ordinance but would like to confirm with the DEP that the ordinance contains everything they recommend. Mr. Allen asked if the ordinance requires recycling of construction material, and Mr. Thompson said no, but he can look into it. The matter was tabled to allow Mr. Thompson time to amend the draft.

Schedule Advertising and Adoption of 2009 Budget

The Board scheduled the proposed 2009 Budget for adoption at the December 1, 2008 Board of Supervisors meeting, 7:30 P.M. in Room 154 of the Great Valley Middle School, 255 North Phoenixville Pike, Malvern, PA and authorized the Secretary to advertise same.

Authorize Advertisement of Intent to Appoint a CPA to Audit the 2008 Accounts

Mr. Philips moved to authorize the Secretary to advertise the Board’s intention to appoint a certified public accountant to conduct the 2008 audit, and Mr. Rodgers seconded. Mr. Kuhn called for discussion. Mr. Kuhn called the vote, and all were in favor.

Other Business

Sycamore Woods – Robal Associates

James Tupitza, Esq., Robert Balbirnie, and Adam Brower, P.E., were present to provide a brief overview of two new sketch plans for the Robal property on Sycamore Lane. Mr. Tupitza said he recognizes the Township filed an appeal to Judge Nagle’s decision on Robal Associates’ PRD plan and they tried to modify that plan to meet those points in the decision that were denied due to noncompliance with the township ordinances. Mr. Thompson said the Board would listen to the applicant but acknowledged this presentation is not part of any formal proceeding.

Mr. Brower said the first sketch shown had the same number and layout of units as the formally presented PRD plan but with a reduction in the size of the townhouses. This would reduce the impervious surface coverage on the site and provide more qualifying open space. Grading was reduced substantially as well.

Mr. Tupitza said the second sketch eliminates one of the roads accessing Sycamore Lane. It would require a waiver for the length of the cul de sac road, which exceeds the 1,000 foot minimum but has an emergency access available from Broadwater Lane. Mr. Brower said this sketch reconfigures the units by loading them on both sides of the interior road, which is a more efficient use of the land allowing for more open space. The size of the stormwater management basin is reduced as well. Sketch #2 provides an additional 1.2 acres of open space over Sketch #1. Mr. Hogan asked about the preservation of the Sycamore trees along Sycamore Lane. Mr. Tupitza said sketch #2 would only remove trees where the access road meets Sycamore Lane, provided no widening is required for Sycamore Lane itself. Mr. Allen asked if all the units shown are front-loaded, and Mr. Brower said yes.

Mr. Hogan asked about Robal’s alternate curative amendment application for an assisted living facility on the site. Mr. Tupitza said they are still working through the Altemose records and would like to work out the PRD plan in an amicable fashion and put this application aside.

Mr. Thompson thanked the applicant for the presentation, and Mr. Tupitza said he would leave the sketches with the Township.


The meeting was adjourned at 8:35 P.M. The next business meeting is scheduled for December 1, 2008, 7:30 P.M., in Room 154 of the Great Valley Middle School.

Respectfully submitted,

Linda M. Csete
Township Administrator
sheet, 11/3/2008