Newtown Township

Board of Supervisors 

Organization Minutes

January 5 , 2004


MINUTES WERE APPROVED at the regular meeting January 14, 2004.  ORGANIZATION MEETING OF 1/5/04:  Mrs. Goren moved to approve the minutes of the Organization Meeting of 1/5/04; the motion was seconded by Mr. Jirele and passed unanimously, with Mr. Harp abstaining. 


In attendance were Supervisors: Treasurer/Secretary Richard Weaver, Vice Chairman/Assistant Treasurer Anne Goren, Member Thomas Jirele, and Member Raymond Goodnoe.  Also present were:  District Justice Donald Nasshorn, Auditors-elect Warren Keyser and Margaret Chleboski, Township Solicitor David Sander, Township Engineer Gerald Smith, and Township Manager Robert M. Pellegrino. 

1. Call to Order:  Vice-Chairman/Assistant Treasurer Anne Goren called the Organization Meeting to order at 8:00 PM. 

2. Moment of Silence 

3. Invocation:  Given by Rabbi Weinstein of the Lubavitcher Center Bucks County 

4. Pledge of Allegiance 

5. Changes or Additions to the Agenda:  Mr. Jirele asked that Members’ Comments be added to the agenda following Chairman’s Remarks. 

6. Oath of Office for Elected Officials:  District Justice Donald Nasshorn administered the oath of office to Supervisor Tom Jirele, Auditor Warren Keyser, and Auditor Margaret Chleboski.       

7. A. Remarks – Chairman:  Mrs. Goren explained that Mr. Harp was not able to attend the meeting because of a business matter.  She said that the Board will meet in executive session for matters of personnel following the public meeting.  She also noted that the Board met on 1/3/04 to caucus regarding the organization meeting. 

7.B. Members’ Comments 

Mr. Goodnoe said he feels the Township is heading in the wrong direction, and he will be casting many negative votes.  He said that all decisions about appointments had already been made before he arrived for the 1/3/04 caucus.  He also said he questions the qualifications of many of the proposed appointments. 

Mr. Jirele said he reviewed all resumes submitted by residents interested in serving on committees and boards, and talked to many applicants, and he is disappointed that no new appointees are from that pool.  He said he disagrees with some proposed appointments. 

Mr. Weaver said he also reviewed the resumes of applicants, and every proposed appointee had submitted a resume. 

Mrs. Goren said that every appointee she supported is qualified for the position. 

8. Community Comments:  Mrs. Goren said residents can comment on any subject, including items on the agenda. 

Frank Mendicino, a Township resident, said he is disappointed to hear the comments of Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele.  He said that when Mr. Goodnoe was part of the majority group on the Board appointments were made the same way. 

Nancy Crescenzo, a Township resident, listed ten Board decisions in 2003 that she felt were wrong.  The decisions concerned parks, appointments, meeting process, School Board redistricting, and the budget.  

Glenn Beasley, a Township resident, asked that residents be permitted to comment again at the end of the meeting.  Mrs. Goren responded that the Board will be making personnel decisions, on which the public is not usually permitted to comment.  After a brief discussion the Board agreed that a second community comments session will be added after Liaison and Coordination Assignments. 

Mr. Beasley also asked that when new appointments are made, the people being replaced be named.  Mr. Goodnoe provided a list of these names to Mrs. Goren. 

Michael Iapalucci, a Township resident, encouraged Mrs. Goren to support the election of Mr. Jirele as Chairman of the Board. 

9. Organization of the Board of Supervisors 

a. Mrs. Goren moved to elect Richard Weaver as Chairman; the motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

b. Mrs. Goren moved to elect Scott Harp as Vice-Chairman; the motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

c. Mr. Weaver moved to elect Anne Goren as Treasurer/Secretary; the motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS 

10.    Township Bonds 

Mr. Weaver moved to approve Resolution-2004-1 to set Township Bond Amounts for 2004:

a. Treasurer's                               $3,000,000.00

b. Manager’s                                 $1,000,000.00

c. Finance Director’s                     $1,000,000.00

The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

11. Real Estate Tax Levy 

Mrs. Goren moved to approve Resolution-2004-2 to establish the following Real Estate Tax Levy for 2004: 

a. Debt Service Fund                    4.50 mils

b. Fire Protection Fund                 3.50 mils

c. Rescue Squad Fund                 0.50 mils

d. Park and Recreation Fund       2.00 mils

Total             10.50 mills 

The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

12. Tax Millage Exemptions – Under PA Act 153 

Mr. Weaver moved to approve Resolution-2004-3 certifying properties that qualify for tax increase exemptions under PA Act 153.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

13. Administrative Conditional Use Procedure  

Mr. Weaver moved to approve Resolution-2004-4 reaffirming resolution 94-R-43 establishing an Administrative Conditional Use procedure.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

14. Pension Plan Investment Policy 

Mrs. Goren moved to approve Resolution-2004-5, reaffirming the pension plan investment policy.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed unanimously. 

15. Appointment of the Township’s Elected Tax Collector as the Delinquent Tax Collector 

Mr. Weaver moved to adopt Ordinance 2004-O-1, Appointing Tammy Sutton as the Delinquent Tax Collector.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

16. Fixing meeting dates of the Board of Supervisors for 2004 (Appendix A) 

Mr. Weaver moved to set meeting dates for Board of Supervisors for 2004 (Appendix A).  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

17. Procedure directing the presentation of proclamations 

Mrs. Goren moved to authorize the Chairman, after polling the Board, to have the Chairman sign and the Manager attest to proclamations honoring citizens and others for worthy deeds and activities.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed unanimously. 

18. Tax Ordinances and Resolutions 

Mr. Weaver moved to continue all 2003 Tax Ordinances and Resolutions in force pursuant to Section 4 of the Local Tax Enabling Act for 2004.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

APPOINTMENTS: 

19. Reporting Directly to the Board of Supervisors, to Serve the Township with Compensation for 2004 

a. Mrs. Goren moved to recognize Robert Pellegrino’s employment agreement as Township Manager.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed unanimously. 

b. Mr. Weaver moved to appoint the firm of Harris and Harris as Township Solicitors.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

c. Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Margaretta Stone as Board Recording Secretary.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

d. Mrs. Goren moved to appoint the firm of Stanley N. Booz & Company, CPA as Township Auditors for fiscal year 2004.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed unanimously. 

20. Standing, Non-Statutory Committees Authorized by the Administrative Code 

a. Labor Relations Committee:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Ellis Katz, Robert Pellegrino, and Thomas Jirele.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously.  

b. Public Safety Committee:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Stephen B. Harris, Martin C. Duffy, Robert Pellegrino, Anne Goren and Thomas Jirele.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

c. Banking Committee:  Deferred to the 1/14/04 meeting.

d. Pension Plan Committee:  Deferred to the 1/14/04 meeting. 

e. Occupational Safety Committee:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Elaine Gibbs, Norman Moorhead and Donald Harris (Chairman) and to affirm the PBA appointment of Paul Deppi and the CWA appointments of Joseph Martindell and Timothy Shaw for 2004.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

f. Business Development Council:  Mrs. Goren moved to appoint Supervisor Richard Weaver as Chair.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed 3-1, with Mr. Jirele voting “nay”.  

21. Reporting to the Township Manager, to Serve With Compensation for 2004 

a. Exempt and Non-Exempt employees (Appendix B):  Mrs. Goren moved to affirm the employment of exempt and non-exempt employees and non-union employees (Appendix B) as needed.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed unanimously. 

b. Communication Workers of America bargaining units (Appendix C):  Mr. Weaver moved to affirm the employment of employees (Appendix C).  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

c. Police Benevolent Association bargaining unit (Appendix D):  Mrs. Goren moved to affirm the employment of employees (Appendix D).  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed unanimously.  

d. Civil and Traffic Engineers:  Mrs. Goren moved to appoint Pennoni Associates Inc. as Township Civil & Traffic Engineers with appropriate authority to attend Board, Commission and Committee meetings.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

e. Labor Solicitors:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint the firm of Sweet, Stevens, Tucker & Katz as Township Labor Attorneys.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously.  

f. Communications Consultant:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint the firm of Rothman Gordon as Township Communication Consultants and Attorneys.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

g. Building Inspectors:  Mrs. Goren moved to appoint Keystone Municipal Services as Township Building Inspectors.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed unanimously.  

h. Pension Actuary:  Mrs. Goren moved to appoint Mockenhaupt Associates as Township Actuaries.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed unanimously. 

i. Community Planner and Environmental Consultant:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Judy Stern Goldstein (Boucher & James) as Township Community Planner and Environmental Consultant.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

j. Pension Investment Advisor:  Mr. Weaver moved to affirm the appointment of Merrill Lynch as Township Pension Investment Advisor.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously.  

k. Insurance Brokers or Carriers:  Mr. Weaver moved to affirm PIRMA, H.A. Thomson, Model Consulting Inc., DVWCT, Stalker and Associates as brokers or carriers of Township Insurance.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

l. Official Depositories:  Mr. Weaver moved to designate Fleet Bank, First National Bank of Newtown, Commerce Bank, Wachovia and Univest as Township Official Depositories.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

m. Earned Income Tax, Occupational Privilege Tax Collector And Tax Hearing Officer:  Mrs. Goren moved to appoint Berkheimer Associates as EIT, OPT Tax Collectors and Tax Hearing Officer.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed unanimously. 

n. Video Consultant:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Video Gold Productions as Video Production Consultant.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously.  

BOARDS AND COMMISSIONS 

22. Individuals Serving With Compensation 

a. Zoning Hearing Board:  Mrs. Goren moved to affirm the appointment of John Lenihan (2004), Mario M. Lionetti (2005), Franklin Carver (2006), and Gail Laughlin (2007), and to appoint Victoria Bowe(2008) to replace Tom Reagan.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

b. Zoning Hearing Board Alternate:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint William Wall (2004) as Zoning Hearing Board Alternate, to serve a one-year terms.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

23. Individuals Serving Without Compensation 

a. Official Voting Delegate to the 2004 PSATS Convention:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Anne Goren as delegate.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

b. Lower and Upper Neshaminy Rivers Conservation Plan Municipal Subcommittee and to the Delaware River (South) Watershed Planning Committee:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Thomas Harwood as the Representative.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

c. Vacancy Board:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Shawn Ward (Chairman) for a term ending January 3, 2005.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

d. Planning Commission:  Mrs. Goren moved to affirm the appointments of Vincent Lombardi (2004), Susan Beasley (2004), Bob Dieterle (2004), Frank Mendicino (2005), Allen Fidler (2006), Jay Sensibaugh (2006), and Shawn Ward (2006), and to appoint Beth Sanderlin (2007) and Michael Piazza (2007) to replace Karen Doorley and James Ott.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and failed 2-2, with Mr. Goodnoe and Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

e. Park & Recreation Board:  Mrs. Goren moved to affirm the appointment of John Davis (2004), Joel Grosso (2004), Susan Sutton (2005), and Michael Clancy (2005), and to appoint Kathy Kelly (2006), Buck O’Neill (2006), and Andrew Levine (2006).  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed 3-1, with Mr. Jirele voting “nay”. 

f. Newtown Joint Historic Commission:  Mr. Weaver moved to affirm the membership of Roberta Taylor (2004), Paul Cohen (2005), and Alan Harvison (2006), and to appoint Jeanette Rogers (2007).  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

g. Newtown Area Cable TV Advisory Committee:  Mr. Weaver moved to affirm the membership of Walt Iwaskiw (2005) and James Bowe (2004), and to appoint James Manahan (2006).  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

h. Historic Architectural Review Board:  Mr. Weaver moved to affirm the membership of Keystone Municipal Services (Building Inspector), Charles Sibre (2004); Doug Terry (RE Broker)(2005); Harriet Beckert (2006), Elinor Campbell (2006); to appoint Dolly Gish and Helen Randle to serve as honorary members; and to appoint as statutory member Terry Mclean (Architect)(2007).  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

i. Traffic Impact Fee Advisory Committee:  Mr. Weaver moved to affirm the membership of Vince DeLuca, Karen Doorley, Doug Terry, Vince Lombardi, Tom Salvadore, Michael Vesey, Joe Barbagallo, and Bob Dieterle; and Thomas J. Harwood, Jr. and David Sander, Esq. to serve as consultants.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

j. Newtown Joint Municipal Authority Board:  Mr. Weaver moved to affirm the membership of Martin Sutton (2005), Raymond W. Goodnoe (2007), and Anne Goren (2008).  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

k. Sycamore Street Committee:  Deferred to 1/14/04 meeting. 

l. Codes Committee:  Mr. Weaver moved to appoint Anne Goren as Board of Supervisors' representative.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed 3-1, with Mr. Goodnoe voting “nay”. 

m. Financial Planning Committee:  Mr. Weaver moved to affirm the membership of Anne Goren, Allen R. Fidler, III, Elaine Gibbs, Phil Vance, Bob Dieterle, Philip Newmuis, Jr., Sarita Tirpak, and Ryan O’Keefe.  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren. 

Discussion of motion:  Mr. Goodnoe noted that the Board has not yet elected a Treasurer, so this motion should also be deferred to the 1/14/04 meeting.   

Mr. Weaver and Mrs. Goren withdrew their motion. 

n. Joint Downtown Newtown Corporation:  Mr. Goodnoe moved to affirm the appointments of Vincent Lombardi  (2005), Lisa Kruse (2005), and Raymond Goodnoe (2005), and to appoint John Perry (2007), Lorraine Sikora (2007), and Douglas Terry (2007).  The motion was seconded by Mrs. Goren and passed unanimously. 

o. Economic Development Commission:  Mrs. Goren moved to affirm the following appointments as an ad hoc Advisory Commission:  Robert Connell, Robert Cormack, Richard DePaola, Allen Fidler, Scott Harp, Joe Houldin, Marvin Kierstead, Andy Levine, John Parry, Bill Rickett, Joseph Szafran, Doug Terry, Gail Titus, Richard Weaver, Robert White, and Jim Worthington.  The motion was seconded by Mr. Weaver and passed 3-1, with Mr. Goodnoe voting “nay”. 

24. Liaison and Coordination Assignments:  Deferred to 1/14/04 meeting.

25. Community Comments (Second Session) 

Glenn Beasley asked what the implications are of the lack of a Board Chairman.  Mr. Sander responded that the Board is required to meet and elect officers at the Organization meeting, but three affirmative votes are needed to pass any motion.  

Mr. Beasley asked why the Township’s website lists term expirations for the members of some committees but not others.  Mr. Sander responded that members of some committees have terms that are statutorily fixed, but others are appointed annually. 

Mr. Beasley also asked if the consultants to the Economic Development Commission must be re-appointed.  Mr. Sander responded that they need to be re-appointed, and should be clearly identified as consultants in a motion that also includes appointment of members of a board or committee. 

Mr. Goodnoe noted that the Zoning Hearing Board now has only four members because one member’s term has expired. 

Jim Bowe, a Township resident, said he is disappointed in the minority members of the Board, as they seem to be obstructing Township business.  He urged Board members to try to work together.  Mr. Goodnoe responded that he cannot go along with leading the Township in the wrong direction.  Mr. Jirele responded that he cannot vote for an appointment when there was a better qualified candidate.  He also noted that there were several 3-1 votes. 

Michael Iapalucci asked why the members voting against proposed appointments did not offer alternative motions.  Mr. Jirele said that kind of discussion should happen in a caucus, but when alternatives were offered they were rejected. 

Mr. Iapalucci asked if Board members are required to offer alternative motions regarding electing officers.  Mr. Sander responded that they are not required to do so. 

Frank Mendicino said these practices are part of majority rule.  He criticized residents for questioning decisions made by majority rule, and said people are afraid to apply for positions because of discussions that take place at the Board of Supervisors meetings. 

Nancy Crescenzo asked if the three majority Supervisors broke the Sunshine Law when they made decisions about appointments without the two other Supervisors.  Mr. Sander responded that he did not know if the three majority Supervisors met; if they did, it would not be a violation because it would have been an executive session for personnel matters. 

Mrs. Crescenzo commented that just because something was done before does not make it an acceptable practice now.  Mr. Jirele said that sometimes references to past practices are inaccurate. 

Mrs. Crescenzo read excerpts from the Township newsletter regarding the Economic Development Commission and the Township’s relationship with Newtown Borough.  She asked that the Board set a time when the public can discuss the Municipal Complex Expansion project, and that the Board elect Mr. Jirele Chairman. 

Brandon Wind, a Township resident, said he applied several years ago to serve on a board or commission but has not been asked to serve in any position.  He noted that the Board is facing some important decisions and should rise above partisan bickering. 

Mr. Wind asked if the failure of the motion to appoint Pennoni Associates means that the Township does not have an Engineer.  Mr. Pellegrino said this is true, but Pennoni will continue working on projects with which they are involved. 

Mr. Wind asked Mr. Sander to discuss a recent State Supreme Court decision regarding Toll Brothers.  Mr. Sander responded that the court rejected Toll Brothers’ challenge to a Zoning Hearing Board decision on a site in Upper Makefield owned by the Dolington Land Group.  He said the court commented favorably on the Jointure, of which Upper Makefield is a member. 

Jay Sensibaugh, a Township resident, said that if Mr. Weaver becomes Chairman the Township will continue in the right direction.  He said Mr. Goodnoe led the Township in the wrong direction when he was Chairman. 

26. Miscellaneous Items 

a. Zoning Hearing Board Alternate:  Mr. Goodnoe asked Mr. Sander to research and report on the requirements for attendance for an Alternate, and how an Alternate becomes a voting member.  Mr. Jirele asked Mr. Sander to research and report on the requirements regarding paying Alternates. 

27. Executive Session:  Mrs. Goren said the Board will meet in executive session following adjournment of the public meeting. 

28. Adjournment:  With no objections the meeting was adjourned at 9:35 PM. 

 

 

Respectfully Submitted: 

 


___________________________________
Margaretta Stone, Recording Secretary

 

  

 

Attest: _________________________                       ______________________________
             Robert M Pellegrino, Manager                                    Scott Harp, Chairman

 

______________________________
                  Anne Goren, Vice-Chairman/Assistant Treasurer

 

______________________________
Richard Weaver, Treasurer/Secretary

 

______________________________
Thomas Jirele, Member

 

                                                                        ______________________________
                                                                        Raymond Goodnoe, Member