The first business meeting for August was held on August 2, 2021, at the Great Valley Middle School at 255 N. Phoenixville Pike, in Malvern, PA.
There were none.
Mr. Steve Subers of Spring Oak asked about the possibility of having speed bumps installed to reduce speeding. Since the roads in Spring Oak are private, they can, but Mr. Hubbard warned that with bumps comes noise, and increased traffic in other locations. Mr. Wright mentioned the need to consider snowplows and larger vehicles when designing the bumps. Mr. Subers also asked about a dog park. This was not approved on the original Plan for Spring Oak and would take away part of the Open Space intended for all residents.
Mr. Philips moved to approve:
Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Philips moved to accept the July 2021 reports #1-17 as submitted and Mr. Piliero seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Report #18 is a Spring Oak update from Mr. Wright following a familiar list of noise and odor complaints by Mr. Rubenfield. The Township’s answer to the slow response to residents was again the speed of the legal system and the need to proceed at a speed most likely to give the most beneficial outcome for everyone. The next meeting is scheduled for September since so many are on vacation this time of year. The topic will be the location and type of trucks, noise, and odor control. Due to a scheduled Zoning Hearing, the Township has a few avenues to take while waiting. The wait could be, per Mr. Thompson more than 6 months or more than a year. Discussion followed:
Mr. Philips stated the proposals are due this week for the improvement of the meadows at the Devault Gateway.
Mrs. Csete said that Traffic Planning & Design, Inc. submitted a grant application to the DCED for a multi-modal transportation grant covering improvements to the referenced intersection. The grant required a township resolution from both East Whiteland and Charlestown Township since both are partnering on the project. However, each of the townships’ meeting dates were too late for the application submission (7-31), each township manager included a letter of support with the application stating the intent of passing the resolutions at each upcoming board meeting.
Mr. Kuhn moved to adopt resolution #988-2021 applying for the DCED’s multi-modal transportation grant along with a pledge of matching funds of $150,000. Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Hubbard said that along with Mr. Paul Jorgensen, Ms. Cheryl Jorgensen has occasionally helped him with some of the park duties. Mrs. Csete recommended she be appointed as a custodian too, to be properly covered under the Township’s liability and workers’ compensation insurance.
Mr. Kuhn moved to appoint Ms. Cheryl Jorgensen as a Park Custodian at $27.00/hour, and Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Wright stated a Spring Oak resident’s building permit application for solar panels was rejected due to the design exceeded the 300 square foot limitation in the Design Manual. He since learned that the 300 sq ft limitation doesn’t provide enough panel area for a workable design. In addition, it isn’t needed for the Spring Oak residential development since the other restrictions in the Manual limit solar panels to the back roof area, thereby managing the size of solar panel designs. Other restrictions, such as the fire department access walkways, would remain in place.
The homeowners’ association was contacted and it was suggested to them to provide the township with a request to revise the manual, which was received 7/29/21. The Design Review Committee reviewed the change and indicated it has no objections to the revision.
Mr. Philips moved to amend the Spring Oak Design Manual by removing the 300 square foot limitation on solar panels, and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Philips said it was the responsibility of Charlestown Township’s Historical Architectural Review Board to understand the status of buildings in the Township that are on the National Register of Historic Places due to their location in the Historic District. In July, The Llewellyn House and barn at Swiss Pines were visited by Mr. Wright and Mr. Philips. The team at Patterhrn Ives proposes to:
Mr. Kuhn clarified that Township funds were not set aside for this project and it was in the research phase. As part of the research, a formal letter from the Township and HARB will be sent to the present owner inquiring about any improvements planned for the buildings. The proposal will be put on hold pending the outcome of the future ownership question for Swiss Pines.
Mrs. Csete reported the following highlights of the Interim Budget Report.
Mrs. Csete said after the July 7th meeting, she spoke further with a representative at First Resource Bank who offered to increase their CDARS rate to .4%. She also double-checked the rate offered by PLGIT as there was some confusion on converting the 7-day APR to an annual rate. She now confirmed that the CDARS rate is higher, and recommended the Board reinvest $6 M in these funds for one year. This would include the funds recently matured from the previous CDARS account.
Mr. Piliero moved to invest the $6M of Open Space funds into First Resource Bank’s CDARS program, and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called the vote.
Mr. Piliero moved to authorize Mrs. Csete to advertise a public hearing to adopt the revised Phoenixville Regional Comprehensive Plan for Tuesday, September 7, 2021, at 7:00 p.m. at the Great Valley Middle School Room 154. Mr. Willig seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion, and there being none, called for a vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Philips was told the Charlestown Landscaping Proposal for cleanup of the Volpi property frontage would arrive soon.
Mr. Wright confirmed that residents of Wells Road are prepared for paving to begin.
Mr. Thompson mentioned that the next step for relocating the Township Office would be to draft a letter of intent for a lease. Renewal periods for the lease would be 3 5-year periods, and although there are no early termination clauses, new terms can be negotiated in the last 2 weeks on any one of the 5-year leases. Supervisors stated that the HVAC system section should state that the Township’s liability will end after the first $1,000 of maintenance costs only.
Mr. Philips moved to approve the letter of intent for office space and Mr. Kuhn seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor.
Mr. Gary Sheridan, of the East Whiteland Volunteer Fire Association, thanked Mr. Hubbard for helping them get in contact with an I.S.O. (Insurance Services Office) representative for homeowner water supplies.
A Zoning Hearing is scheduled for 8-24-21 for Tom Fillippo’s appeal regarding the use of the warehouse in the Devault Building., where the tenant may not be able to continue renting there due to Use restrictions.
Ms. Armstrong asked for clarification about the Township declining PA renewable energy as electric providers. Mr. Philips stated that the PA renewable source was double the current rate Charlestown is paying now. Plus, the Township office may be moving to a new location and at that time it may be reconsidered.
Mr. Piliero moved to adjourn the meeting and Mr. Philips seconded. Mr. Piliero called for discussion and there being none, called the vote. All were in favor. The meeting was adjourned at 8:00 p.m. The next Business Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 7th, 2021, at 7:00 p.m. at the Great Valley Middle School.