Newtown Township

Board of Supervisors Work Session

June 18, 2001


MINUTES WERE APPROVED at the regular meeting July 25, 2001. WORK SESSION OF 6/18/01:Mr. Mendicino moved to approve the minutes of the 6/18/01 work session. The motion was seconded by Mr. Harp and passed unanimously.


Members Present: Steve Sanderlin, Chairman; Frank Mendicino, Secretary; Raymond W. Goodnoe, Member; Steve Harris, Solicitor; Tom Harwood, Interim Township Manager.

Also Present: Winslow Mason, Courier Times

Call to Order: Chairman Sanderlin called the meeting to order at 7:12 PM.

Mr. Sanderlin reported that a letter from Representative David Steil dated May 4, 2001 has been received, containing a summary of discussions with Lower Makefield Township regarding traffic and safety issues. Mr. Sanderlin is in agreement with the content.

Helen Randle’s 90th Birthday There has been a suggestion via letter to rename Swamp Road Park in Helen Randle’s honor. No one present had heard if Ms. Randle has been consulted. Mr. Harris said it would only take a resolution of the board to rename the park. Mr. Sanderlin said he would like to wait to take action until the full board is present.

Post Retirement Medical Benefits Proposal Mr. Jirele and Mr. Sanderlin met with two consultants to hear presentations concerning this issue. Mr. Sanderlin announced the rescheduling of the meeting for executive session on July 9, 2001 at 7:30 so the full board could hear the presentations. Mr. Sanderlin said he would like the Finance Director and labor counsel to be present at the executive session.

Acme Building Mr. Harwood reported that Inspector C. Rodriguez has submitted a proposal for $2164 to evaluate the Acme building on the basis of the specifications requested by the board. On the board’s approval, Mr. Rodriguez is prepared to proceed.

Mr. Goodnoe moved to accept the proposed fee of $2164 for evaluation of the Acme building. Mr. Mendicino seconded; the motion carried unanimously. Mr. Mendicino asked where the funding for this project would come from; Mr. Harwood said that he thought that money had been set aside.

Mr. Harris said he has written to the lawyer for Acme to confirm the 60-day inspection period. He also wrote a letter requesting that Carroll Engineering be permited to conduct invasive testing; he received approval today and has sent a copy of this letter to Bob Larason. Carroll can now proceed with the environmental testing.

Cable Channels Mr. Sanderlin received a memo from Ron Weaver requesting that Council Rock School District relocate its broadcasts to Channel 78, which is designated as the local education al channel. Mr. Harwood said he had spoken to Mr. Harp and he has no objection to this suggestion.

Mr. Mendicino moved to request Comcast and the Council Rock School District change the school district cable access to channel 78 from channel 23. Mr. Goodnoe seconded; the motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Weaver suggested this change take place in September. Mr. Harwood will speak to Toby Mochel for appropriate language for the request document.

Boy Scout Troop 99 – Clark Property Present from Boy Scout Troop 99 of Newtown were: Leaders Tom Lawton, Mr. Van der Book, Mr. Brick, Mr. Luizzi, Jack Barrett and Boy Scouts Joe Luizzi, Joe Brick, Bobby Lawton, Jason Mahoney, Patrick Lawton, Steve Blumenthal, and Matt Barrett.

Tom Lawton distributed a report prepared by the troop. He said that troop meeting space has been a problem, and that they have met several times at the Clark property and have cleared underbrush as a community service project. They would like permission to meet at the Clark Property, and expressed their desire and noted the opportunity for community service by the scouts on the property. They had many ideas for projects, including the development of nature trails, clearing of underbrush, and maintenance of gardens.

Mr. Lawton said they would like to utilize the 2 ½ car garage for their weekly meetings and have the opportunity to store some supplies needed for these meetings. This would afford them a “home” and focus for community service projects. Possible locations for secure storage of scout equipment were discussed. Mr. Harwood said that space would have to be found at the municipal complex for storage of seasonal equipment presently being stored in the garage.

Mr. Mendicino moved that the board authorize Carroll Engineering to take a look at access to the Clark property and to recommend any changes to the driveway to make access safe; hopefully to be completed within 60 days. Mr. Goodnoe seconded; the motion carried unanimously.

Other action items were determined:

Mr. Lawton asked if the troop could meet outdoors at the Clark Property on Tuesday evenings this summer, to include one meeting each summer month, possibly two meetings in August. He said that Mr. Wert said it was OK with him, contingent upon approval of the board. The consensus of board members present was to approve this request, and they asked Mr. Lawton to attempt to minimize the cars accessing the property by carpooling.

Mr. Sanderlin said they would assess the situation in mid-August, and suggested that Mr. Lawton contact the board for progress reports.

Municipal Secretary for Administration (part/full time) Mr. Harwood said that Fran Swirsky is retiring in July and asked the board to consider changing her position from part time to full time. He said that more time is needed to complete paperwork, window coverage, research, mail and more. The difference in salary, at a rate of $11.71, and benefits would be approximately $5000 - $6000. Mr. Harwood said that he reviewed the administrative budget, and if the position is filled by July this shouldn’t impact the budget dramatically.

The issue was tabled until it could be considered by the full board; it will be added to the agenda for the next regular meeting.

Liquor License Transfer Form Mr. Sander cited a letter from him in the packet, and said that in an attempt to be proactive, he had attempted to draft a questionnaire to accompany an application for a liquor license. If an applicant is refused, they can appeal to the court of common pleas; Mr. Harris said there is not case law concerning this as of yet. He said the attached draft questionnaire might give guidelines to the BOS to consider, and that the procedure to consider an application is not very stringent. Mr. Harris said that the new law puts the burden on the township to prove the addition of liquor licenses into the township is not in the interest of public health, safety and welfare to deny.

Mr. Goodnoe did not like the form, and he and Mr. Sanderlin said they would like to see the document revised. Mr. Harris recommended a fee of $250 and $500 escrow; Mr. Mendicino suggested a fee of $500 and $1000 escrow.

Mr. Mendicino moved to accept the liquor license transfer form as supplied by Harris & Harris dated June 11, 2001, as an interim application, with any changes that Harris & Harris deem necessary, and the application fee be $500 and $1000 be held in escrow. Mr. Sanderlin seconded the motion. Mr. Sanderlin voted for the motion; Mr. Goodnoe voted against. The motion did not carry.

Mr. Mendicino moved that the board approve a liquor license transfer fee of $500 and an escrow of $1000. Mr. Goodnoe seconded; the motion carried unanimously.

Use of Township Website for First Night and First Fourth Promotion Mr. Sanderlin said he wanted to clarify that present policy concerning the township website. The policy limits use of the township website to non profits and township sponsored activities, and does not allow businesses to participate. Mr. Sanderlin said he has built a website for First Fourth and will be building one for First Night.

Jake Brake/Brake Retarder Ordinance Mr. Sanderlin reported that the board had received a letter from PennDOT approving the board’s request to enact a Jake Brake Ordinance and to post signs to that effect.

Mr. Mendicino moved that the board direct the solicitor to draft an ordinance implementing the prohibition of the use of Jake Brake and brake retarders and the erection of appropriate signage. Mr. Sanderlin seconded.

The board was concerned that township residents might think that such an ordinance was an attempt to limit traffic on Stoopville Road, or was politically motivated. Mr. Mendicino felt it would be in the best interest of the township to seek similar approval for Durham Road and Swamp Road.

Mr. Sanderlin and Mr. Goodnoe felt that the grade on Swamp Road was too steep to prohibit Jake Brakes.

Anne Goren said that it was her understanding that Jake Brakes were usually used as back up, and what if trucks needed to use Jake Brakes to stop on the Bypass. The board said that they thought that the brakes should not be prohibited on the Bypass.

Mr. Mendicino amended his motion to add that the township should expand its request to PennDOT to include the other roads utilized by trucks. Mr. Sanderlin amended his second. There was little consensus. The issue was tabled, to be added to the agenda for the next regular board meeting.

The Public Works Pick Up Truck

Mr. Harwood presented a memo requesting a new pick up truck for the Public Works Department, to be paid for with liquid fuel funds. The Chevy Blazer that the township presently owns has a lot of mileage and has proved to be a poor investment.

Mr. Harwood said that the state bid price for a new pick up truck was $20,000 - $21,000; and that he would like to purchase the new truck soon, to be ready for winter usage. It would be probably be a ¾ ton truck; Mr. Harwood would like to get a 1 ton if possible. He intends to trade another township vehicle and the Blazer for the new truck.

Mr. Goodnoe moved to amend the budget and purchase the truck in the amount of $21,000. Mr. Mendicino seconded; the motion carried unanimously.

Adjournment On motion by Mr. Mendicino, and without objection, the meeting was adjourned at 9:30 pm. The board went into executive session to discuss the SERT Report.

 

Respectfully Submitted by: _________________________________________
                                                Leslie Dunleavy, Recording Secretary 7/13/01