Newtown Township

Board of Supervisors

Minutes of July 22, 2009


The Newtown Township Board of Supervisors met on July 22, 2009 in the Township meeting room at 7:30 PM. In attendance and voting were Supervisors: Vice Chairman Robert Ciervo, Secretary-Treasurer Michael Gallagher, Philip Calabro and Jerry Schenkman, members. Also present were: Joseph Czajkowski, Township Manager, Jeffrey Garton, Township Solicitor and Michele Fountain, Township Engineer.

Call to Order: Vice Chairman Ciervo called the regular meeting to order at 7:30 PM with a moment of silence and an invocation by Reverend Sandra Reed of St. Mark’s AME Zion Church. This was followed by and the Pledge of Allegiance.

Changes to the Agenda: Mr. Czajkowski announced that added to the agenda would be the resignation of Chairman Thomas Jirele and appointment of a new labor solicitor.

Resignation of Chairman Jirele: Dr. Ciervo read into the record an e-mail from Mr. Jirele tending his resignation effective immediately due to changes in his job and family situation. Dr. Ciervo said that Mr. Jirele’s first wife had recently died and the needs of his family must come first at this difficult time.

Mr. Garton advised the Board that a formal motion accepting the resignation would be in order.

Mr. Gallagher moved to accept with regret the resignation of Supervisor Chairman Thomas Jirele. Mr. Schenkman seconded.

Discussion of motion: Mr. Schenkman said that Mr. Jirele had been an effective chairman. His knowledge had helped to guide the Board in a non-partisan way and he will be missed.

Mr. Gallagher agreed, noting that Mr. Jirele’s long history with the Township had provided some perspective. The Board will feel the loss of his experienced guidance.

Mr. Calabro said that although it appeared that his relationship with Mr. Jirele was at times adversarial, it was never personal. Mr. Jirele always had the betterment of the community in mind.

Dr. Ciervo agreed that Mr. Jirele will be greatly missed. The Board is very grateful for his eleven plus years of dedicated service to the Township.

Resident Ethel Hibbs said that Mr. Jirele’s dedication to the Township will be greatly missed.

The motion passed 4-0.

Dr. Ciervo said that the Board would have 30 days to fill Mr. Jirele’s position. The next regular Board meeting is August 12, 2009. He suggested that meeting would be the appropriate time to appoint a replacement supervisor.

Mr. Garton confirmed that this would be the correct procedure. In the event that a candidate could not be agreed upon after 30 days, the vacancy board would be convened and would have 15 additional days to make the appointment. The appointee would have to be a registered voter and a resident of the Township for one year.

Mr. Schenkman suggested that the Board conduct interviews open to the public in advance of the meeting. Allowing for time to advertise the opening and to request applicants to submit resumes and letters of interest, perhaps a special interview meeting could be scheduled some time between August 7 th and 11 th.

Mr. Gallagher suggested placing notices on the teleprompter, the Township Web site and in local papers with a deadline for letters of interest of August 6 th , then depending on the responses, meetings could be scheduled on Sunday afternoon, August 9 th and Monday evening August 10 th to interview prospective replacements. A chosen candidate could then be appointed at the regular meeting of August 12 th.

Mr. Calabro explained that he would be unavailable on August 12 th as he would be taking his son to college. He said that because this is an election year he has some concerns about political ramifications of an interim appointment. He suggested looking to fill the position with a past supervisor rather than to entertain applications from people who might want to be on the ballot in November. He said that he is eager to keep politics out of this appointment.

Dr. Ciervo said that he would not want to limit the consideration to only a caretaker appointee.

Mr. Gallagher reviewed the timetable and suggested that the Board change its first regular meeting of August to Thursday, August 13 th , with interviews on August 9 th and if necessary, August 10 th . All agreed they could attend those dates.

Mr. Czajkowski confirmed that an advertisement would indicate a deadline for letters of interest to August 6 th, with interviews August 9 th and 10 th , and a regular meeting on August 13 th, with the August 12 th meeting canceled. If the second interview meeting is not necessary, that could be canceled as well. A legal notice would announce the changed meeting date.

Mr. Schenkman moved to reschedule the first regular Board meeting of August to Thursday, August 13, 2009. Mr. Calabro seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Public Comment: Resident John D’Aprile said that he would like the Board to consider appointing a past supervisor to finish Mr. Jirele’s term, although some past supervisors were better than others. Such an appointment might avoid partisan political controversy. On police matters he wanted to comment that the Police Department is doing a good job of patrolling Newtown Grant.

Resident Matt Benchener said that he is on the Township Finance Committee. He is aware that nationally tax revenues have been going down and Newtown is facing a similar situation. The Finance Committee has been considering raising taxes. He said that the Park and Recreation Department recently presented its budget which included a $50,000 floor for the Clark Nature Center barn to make the location suitable for classroom type meetings and programs and a $3000 water fountain at Chandler Field. These suggestions would be “nice to have” but he urged the Board to carefully consider these and other expensive line items when reviewing the budget.

Resident Jay Sensibaugh said that he agrees that the budget process is very important. He expressed concern that last year $900,000 was transferred from the Township’s rainy day fund. He is concerned about continued borrowing from the Township’s savings account.

Minutes, Bills Lists and Reports

Minutes: Mr. Schenkman moved to accept the minutes of the work session of June 15, 2009. Mr. Gallagher seconded.

Discussion of motion: Mr. Schenkman suggested the following changes to the minutes to clarify discussion of the Newtown Corporation:

Page 1, under Newtown Corp, paragraph 3 should read: "...Ms. Ortwein advised that the purpose of the Bylaws has not changed but the Corporation has expanded its focus to include the entire business community of Newtown Borough and Township."

paragraph 4 should read, " Mr. Schenkman commented on his attendance at the Pennsylvania Downtown Center Conference...."

 Page 2, paragraph two should read, "....from attending the above mentioned conference..."

paragraph 8, last sentence should read, ".......working for the downtown business district."

paragraph 9 should read, ".....Main Streets Program and Newtown Business Commons Association."

Mrs. Hibbs noted that page 3, paragraph 6 should read, “…suggested a dual control…”

Mr. Schenkman amended his motion to accept the minutes of June 15, 2009, as corrected. Mr. Gallagher amended his second and the motion passed 3-0-1, with Dr. Ciervo abstaining.

Mr. Calabro moved to accept the minutes of the regular meeting of July 8, 2009. Mr. Schenkman seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Bills: Mr. Gallagher moved to authorize payment of bills totaling $1,383,842.40.. Mr. Calabro seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Mr. Gallagher moved to authorize interfund transfers totaling $182,411.78. Mr. Calabro seconded.

Discussion of motion: Mr. Gallagher noted that $900,000 on this list is for the municipal complex fund.

In response to Mr. Schenkman’s questions, Mr. Czajkowski said that XO Communications is being phased out and there has been a reduction in the number of cell phones in use. There will be a savings about $1200.

The motion passed 4-0.

Mr. Gallagher moved to authorize interfund transfers totaling $230,000. Mr. Calabro seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Reports of Committees, Boards and Commissions

Board Members: Mr. Calabro reported that he attended the Borough/Township Joint Traffic Committee meeting. Among matters discussed were pedestrian safety, intersections with the Newtown Bypass, safety for walkers to Goodnoe Elementary School, the yield sentinels that have been placed at various intersections, which are being hit by motorists, and gateways to Newtown. The members also discussed campaigns to encourage walking and biking to the commercial areas.

Mr. Schenkman reported that he had attended the presentation of plans for redevelopment of the Stockburger property. Although still in a sketch phase, the plan calls for a large office building, a multi-tiered parking structure, retail space, some townhomes and a pocket park. The plans would be developed in phases. This development will have an impact on Township traffic patterns and the Borough has indicated that it would not be opposed to some Township input on traffic concerns as the project moves forward. In response to Dr. Ciervo’s question, Mr. Schenkman said that he does not know yet whether the plans would require zoning relief. He noted that included in the sketch was a walkway along Newtown Creek and a possible pedestrian bridge to the Township near Chandler Field and Carl Sedia Park.

Mr. Calabro reported that he had attended a Newtown Corporation meeting on July 9. Among matters discussed were possible land use and open space preservation matters. It was agreed to postpone detailed discussion until after the 2010 census. The last Newtown Creek Coalition sponsored creek clean up had been very successful. The next clean-up will be on September 12. The Borough is working on a parking study, which is to be completed before the Stockburger plans are submitted. There was discussion about some concerns with traffic and parking with the development of the Acme property. The Sycamore Street Committee will hold its next meeting at Old St. Andrew’s Church in September. The Newtown Brewfest sold out immediately after tickets went on sale.

Planning Commission: Chairman Allen Fidler reported that Vice Chairman Jim Ott has resigned the Planning Commission due to conflicts with his work schedule. His contributions will be greatly missed by all of our members. He urged the Board to consider finding a replacement for Mr. Ott as quickly as possible.

The Commission reviewed a written report provided by Carroll Engineering and had particular concern that so many ongoing traffic issues were “awaiting direction from Township,” particularly the Terry Drive extension project. We have some concern that PennDOT is placing some obstacles in the way of this project.

The Commission reviewed Clearwire US, LLC’s Conditional Use application for co-location of three microwave dishes and three antennae and equipment cabinets at 103 Penns Trail and recommended that the Board grant approval subject to certain conditions including that the applicant extend the 6 foot fence to the required 8 foot height or provide information that would explain why the 6 foot fence had been permitted (possible variance to Crown Tower.) It is the Commission’s understanding that the application will be amended to include use I-2 for the equipment cabinet.

The Commission reviewed the application of Al Sambar for a PRD Variance at 76 Justice Drive. The applicant explained that he is seeking impervious surface relief for 31.2% where 25% is permitted for a new 581 square foot pool and for an existing 400 square foot patio for which a permit had not been issued. The Commission recommended that the Board grant approval for this application subject to the condition that stormwater management be installed to the satisfaction of the Township Engineer.

The Commission reviewed the following applications to the Zoning Hearing Board and passed them to the Supervisors without comment:

  • Dina Brilliant/George Segel, 391 Eagle Road
  • Susanne Brennan, 509 Washington Crossing Road
  • Michael & Michelle Reilly/Woodway Construction, 4 Hillview Drive
  • Grainhouse Developer, LLC, 11 Penns Trail

The Commission completed a review of the currently permitted uses and will be preparing a list for the Supervisors to review. Most of the already permitted uses have remained as permitted. Although the members are not unanimous, there is some support for permitting entertainment venues as an accessory to a restaurant use; also being considered is a small theater venue of fewer than 100 seats. The Commission has discussed mixed use developments and Planned Commercial Districts (PCD) at length. The Members agree that a PCD would occupy parcels larger than two acres and would contain a mix of at least two uses. The residential component could include multi-family residential dwellings, possibly with a certain percentage of the total number of units restricted in size to help address the Board’s suggestion to provide more affordable small units. Mr. Fidler said that he had spoken to a local realtor about marketability of different sized residential units. The realtor indicated that units of about 1200 square feet with two bedrooms were very marketable. The members agreed that multi-family dwellings would only be permitted as part of the PCD, and not as a stand alone use. There was some discussion as to whether to permit or encourage residential on floors over restaurants.

To still be addressed are specific performance standards for the PCD. Being considered are certain requirements such as staggered frontages, limiting the frontage built at the minimum setback and staggered heights, perhaps allowing additional height for portions of the PCD. Shared parking could be considered as part of the performance standards.

Also discussed for the PCD was an new medium sized retail use of between 7,500 and 12-15,000 square feet, which could be permitted as part of a PCD only. The E-2, large retail use, 10,000 square feet and above, is not permitted in the TC district. The current E-1 retail, less than 10,000 square feet is currently permitted. The E-1 could be reduced to less than 7500 square feet.

The Planning Commission spent a great deal of time over the course of many meetings on the E-5 and E-6 uses and have decided that drive through windows would not be appropriate for an area where The Township is attempting to promote a pedestrian friendly atmosphere.

The members have some concerns about the direction to take when discussing performance standards for the PCD and would like Board input. Our Solicitor and Engineer have been researching some PCD’s in other municipalities and we would like to authorize them to begin drafting a sample ordinance. It might be timely to discuss the Board’s ideas on the PCD in a joint meeting before beginning a draft ordinance.

Mr. Gallagher said that the August work session agenda is already very full. He agreed that some Board input on a vision for the future of Sycamore Street will be needed at some point.

Mr. Schenkman said that the Planning Commission has made significant progress but now needs some Board input. He suggested that the Supervisors plan to attend a Planning Commission meeting to discuss Sycamore Street.

In response to questions from Dr. Ciervo, Mr. Fidler said that a final list of recommended uses would be completed shortly. This list would be used in helping to consider performance standards for the proposed PCD. The PCD would only be permitted on lots above 2 acres, however a new mixed use would be considered on smaller lots, with performance standards in place for the smaller lots. The Commission has not discussed changing of the permitted height in the PC district yet, although the members have talked about allowing some additional height for portions of the PCD.

Dr. Ciervo asked whether there have been complaints from residents living above restaurants here in Newtown.

Mr. Fidler said that some members of the public had brought this up in discussion of problems with mixed uses in other municipalities. It was pointed out that Allen Smith has not had difficulties with his rental tenants living above restaurants on Sycamore Street.

In response to Dr. Ciervo’s questions about the Sambar PRD variance application, Mr. Fidler said that the applicant had built a patio some time ago, unaware that the pavers are considered impervious and a permit was required. He is correcting that with the current application.

Mr. Calabro questioned the Planning Commission’s “no comment” on the Zoning Hearing Board applications.

Mr. Fidler said that the Commission reviews all of the Zoning Hearing Board applications but does not make a recommendation for the Board to oppose or support those which have minimal impact on the Township as a whole. The members feel that the Zoning Hearing Board is capable of dealing with these applications without input. He noted that the Planning Commission has been able to offer some assistance to the applicants, giving advice such as bringing letters of support from surrounding neighbors or using best management practices to deal with additional run-off.

Land Development

Al Sambar 76 Justice Drive – PRD Variance: Mr. Garton explained that this is an application for a PRD variance to construct an in-ground pool and for relief from a previously constructed 400 square foot patio creating an impervious surface ratio of 31.2% where 25% is permitted.

Applicant Al Sambar explained that he moved into Colonial Commons ten years ago and shortly thereafter constructed a paver patio himself. He was unaware that a permit was required until he applied for the permit for the pool. He has spoken to his neighbors and his homeowners association and all support the application. There was some concern about additional run-off; he will install some stormwater management to address these concerns.

Dr. Ciervo asked what the impervious surface ratio had been with just the patio.

Ms. Fountain said that the property was at 25.02% as built. It would have been above the maximum impervious surface with the patio.

Mr. Schenkman moved to grant a PRD variance for 31.2% impervious surface for a pool and patio at 76 Justice Drive, tax map parcel 29-27-2, subject to the following conditions;

  1. That the applicant comply with the CKS Engineers, Inc. review letter dated June 29, 2009,. The applicant agrees to construct stormwater BMP subject to approval of the Township Engineer.

Mr. Gallagher seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Bucks County Association for the Blind, 400 Freedom Drive – Land Development Waiver Request: Mr. Garton explained that the Association has requested a waiver of land development in order to construct a small addition to the thrift shop retail and storage areas. There are no engineering issues with this addition.

Joseph F. Catelli, architect on the project, explained that the thrift shop has experienced a large increase in both donations and in customers for the resale shop. The property will still be 83 square feet below the impervious surface maximum and there is no visual impact, as the addition is planned for the rear of the building. The donations fund the programs of the Association and they are not currently stored adequately. Land development costs would be too costly.

Mr.Czajkowski reminded the Board that even with the waiver of land development the applicant would have to be issued permits for the construction.

Mr. Gallagher moved to grant a waiver of land development to the Bucks County Association for the Blind subject to the applicant’s signing of a waiver agreement. Dr. Ciervo seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Solicitor’s Report

Patel Residence, 430 Durham Road – Request for Extension to Fulfill Requirements of Temporary CO: Mr. Garton explained that Mr. and Mrs. Patel were granted approval to construct a new home on Route 413 subject to certain conditions including that the Patels refurbish the existing one-story ranch house with the same stucco finish that was to be placed on the new home. The Patel’s are requesting an extension until next spring to complete the task for a number of reasons including delays in completion of project, difficulty in securing financing and their continued living in the ranch house during construction of the new building.

In response to Dr. Ciervo’s questions, Mr. Czajkowski said that the current CO is to expire shortly. The Patel’s are requesting an extension until the spring, but the Board could place a new deadline on the extension.

Mr. Gallagher said that with this in mind, the Board might want to consider adding a fee for an extension to the fee schedule and perhaps a policy in place for reviewing and granting extensions. He asked Mr. Czajkowski to investigate this further.

Mr. Garton said that each request for an extension would be unique and it would be difficult to establish a policy, however a fee could be instituted and added to the Township’s fee schedule. He has seen a renewal fee elsewhere.

Resident Dennis Jefferson said that he lives on Durham Road directly opposite this property. He said that he takes pride in the appearance of his home and is very upset that a variance was granted allowing the Patel family to build a new house and retain the existing building for their veterinary offices. He said that he has spoken to 11 of the 27 neighbors whose addresses appear on the notification lists who say that they were not notified of this variance application. The two properties are not compatible; one is a large new house the other an old ranch house. The variance granted requires that some buffering be in place. He asked that the Supervisors require that the house be completely hidden from view. He would not object to the extension if evergreen trees completely hid the old house from view. Of the five trees required to be planted, only three were placed in front of the old house.

Mr. Garton suggested that the Board table this discussion until such time that Mr. and Mrs. Patel are in attendance to participate in the discussion and respond to any questions the Board might have.

Dr. Ciervo said that he would like to have additional time to review the original Zoning Hearing Board decision.

Mr. Schenkman moved to table consideration of an extension on the fulfillment of requirements for a temporary CO until August 13, 2009. Dr. Ciervo seconded.

Discussion of motion: Mr. Czajkowski agreed to invite Mr. and Mrs. Patel to the meeting.

Ms. Fountain indicated that there were no immediate issues to be addressed.

Mr. Benchener said that this is typical of decisions the Township faces. He urged that Board to grant the request and not place stringent conditions on it, but to encourage business in the community.

Resident Jay Sensibaugh said that this location is zoned R-2 residential. He urged the Board to proceed cautiously when considering businesses in the residential zoning districts.

Mr. Jefferson said that the original home occupation that had been permitted at this location had been handmade dollhouse furniture. When the property was sold it became a veterinary office. He expressed concern as to what would be the next business to occupy this property.

The motion passed 4-0.

Clearwire LLC – Conditional Use: Mr. Garton advised the Board that this application had been continued to August 12, 2009. It would have to be re-advertised for the changed regular Board meeting.

Zoning Hearing Board Applications

Dina Brilliant/George Segel, 391 Eagle Road: Dr. Brilliant and Dr. Segel were in attendance to review their application for a variance to add a second story to their home. This is a 3 acre property set 82 feet back from the road. A portion of the property is now in the right of way creating a non-conformity. There will be no change to the dental offices, only to the residential property.

The Board had no comment.

Susan Brennan, 509 Washington Crossing Road: Susan Brennan was in attendance to review this application for a variance to allow a home occupation for a beauty shop. In response to questions from the Board, Ms. Brennan said that she would have only one or two customers, and might have one employee in a 400 square foot converted detached garage. There is adequate parking for 15 cars on this 3.8 acre farm property. No signage will be required.

The Board had no comment.

Michael and Michelle Reilly/Woodway Construction, 4 Hillview Drive: Michelle Reilly and Mr. Woodway were in attendance to review this application for a variance to allow a deck which will encroach in the setback by 14.4 feet.

Ms. Fountain explained that the deck has a different setback requirement than the pool.

The Board had no comment.

Grainhouse Developers, LLC, 11 Penns Trail: Karen Miller was in attendance to review this application for a variance for 32 square foot sign where only 20 feet is permitted. Ms. Miller explained that the Code Enforcement Officer had informed her that only a permit would be required. After the sign had been built the codes department personnel pointed out that a variance is needed. This is a sign with separate slats for the multiple tenants at this address.

The Board had no comment on this application.

Dr. Ciervo noted that the retrofit of this building from light industrial to office looks beautiful.

Manager’s Report

Acceptance of Elected Auditor Resignation: Mr. Czajkowski said that the elected auditor, Brian Zavonick, has resigned. The same requirements as applied to appointment of a new supervisor apply, as will the same timetable.

Mr. Gallagher noted that Mr. Zavonick has moved out of the Township.

Dr. Ciervo moved to accept the resignation of Brian Zavonick, elected auditor. Mr. Gallagher seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Berkheimer Agreement: Mr. Czajkowski said that he has surveyed other municipalities and learned that most use Berkheimer as tax collector, as does Council Rock School District. Newtown Township pays a flat rate of 1.9% for regular and delinquent taxes, while other Townships pay more for delinquent taxes.

Mr. Gallagher moved to authorize signing an agreement for Berkheimer Associates to collect the Local Services Tax. Dr. Ciervo seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Dr. Ciervo moved to adopt Resolutions 2009-R-17, R-18, R-19 and R-20, appointing Berkheimer as tax officer, appointing Berkheimer as tax hearing officer, appointing a liaison between the Board of Supervisors an Berkheimer and authorizing Berkheimer to impose and retain costs of collection of delinquent taxes. Mr. Calabro seconded.

Discussion of motion: Mr. Czajkowski reported that Finance Director Elaine Gibbs would be the liaison.

The motion passed 4-0.

Municipal Complex Update: Mr. Czajkowski reported that the municipal complex expansion is progressing quickly and the original completion date for the administration building, December 20, 2009, should be met. The list of change orders has been at about 1% thus far. There had been some discussion of compensation for bad weather days, but that matter has been resolved.

Mrs. Hibbs asked about the very narrow dormers on the roof of the administration building.

Mr. Czajkowski said that these are not dormers but vents for the mechanicals in the attic.

PennDOT Maintenance Agreement: Mr. Garton said that he has written to PennDOT about the Supervisors’ concerns with certain provisions of the agreement. It has been agreed that the agreement would be amended to address these concerns; specifically, the Township would have representatives present to confirm acceptable completion of the project and language would be added to limit the Township’s liability to that which was caused either by the overt act or neglect of the Township. The township will be given 10 business days to commence any work as described in the provisions of paragraph 7 of the agreement. Mr. Garton suggested that the Board approve the agreement subject to the accuracy of changes, which will be circulated among the members.

Mr. Gallagher moved to authorize acceptance of the PennDOT Maintenance Agreement for Stoopville Road medians subject to accuracy of modifications. Mr. Schenkman seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Police Report: Police Chief Henry Pasqualini was in attendance to review the Department’s activity this month, which included responses to 1227 calls. Not included in the written report to the Supervisors was a recent spate of thefts from vehicles. Over the past weekend 11 cars were broken into in the Newtown Grant area; GPS, IPods, cell phones, change, etc, were stolen. He urged residents to lock cars, even those parked in their own driveways, and to report any break-in, even if items stolen are not of value. This will help the Department target enforcement.

Dr. Ciervo questioned the current speed limit signage on Linton Hill Road, where the speed limit sign on one side of the road says 25 MPH and on the other side is 35 MPH.

Chief Pasqualini said that he will investigate this. Portions of Linton Hill Road do have artificially low speed limits.

Appointment of Labor Solicitor: Mr. Calabro moved to appoint Roger Susanin of Susanin, Widman and Brennan, PC as Township Labor Solicitors. Mr. Gallagher seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Manager: Mr. Czajkowski reported that the Township has been working with CKS Engineering to treat local detention basins for mosquitoes, including at Silver Lake and Helen Randle Park.

Mr.Czajkowski has spoken with Senator McIlhinney about a DCED grant for the Omnipoint wind turbine. The deadline is September 15, 2009. It is his understanding that if grant is for 100% of the cost, however the application would be viewed favorably if the Township is willing to contribute a portion.

Engineer’s Report

Cricklewood Green Office Park: Mr. Schenkman moved to authorize escrow release of $333,248.75 to Cricklewood Green. Mr. Calabro seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Traffic Signal and Driveway Relocation at Newtown Plaza/South Eagle Road: Mr. Calabro moved to award the traffic signal bid for South Eagle Road to Armour and Sons Electric, Inc. in the amount of $172,707.35 Mr. Gallagher seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Mr. Czajkowski noted that funds would come from the TSA-2 Fund.

Ms. Fountain reviewed the bid for the driveway relocation and said that the only response seemed excessive and Gilmore & Associates was not recommending that the Township accept it.

Mr. Gallagher moved to reject the bid of K.E. Seifert, Inc for driveway relocation at Newtown Plaza. Mr. Calabro seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Ms. Fountain said that Bray Brothers had been approached about including the project as a change order to the 2009 roadway improvement project. This would be a change order totaling $33,331.50.

Mr. Gallagher moved to approve a change order for the 2009 Roadway Improvement Program for $33,331.50. Dr. Ciervo seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

Old Business: Mr. Gallagher asked for an update on matters of concern brought up by Walt Leck at the previous Board meeting.

Mr. Czajkowski said that an 8 foot shadow box fence between Mr. Leck’s property and the Woll Tract park would be installed. He has been researching whether a formal agreement existed between the Township and Mr. Leck on the sewer line. He spoke to former Township Manager Robert Pellegrino who indicated that no formal agreement had been entered into. Mr. Fleming has been working with a private contractor on sewers from the park to his property.

Mr. Gallagher said that the sewer line will end far from the Leck property line. He said that if there had been an agreement, the Township should bring the sewer to the end of the Township property line.

Dr. Ciervo said that this should have been discussed at land development.

Mr. Garton cautioned that there is a fine line when using public dollars for private improvements.

Mr. Sensibaugh said that he recalled the extension of the sewer being discussed at the Planning Commission. The conversation should appear in the PC minutes, but he did not recall the final outcome. He suggested that Park and Recreation Board chairman Andrew Levine might have more detailed information.

Mr. Schenkman asked whether there had been a follow-up with the traffic engineer on the Terry Drive extension.

Mr. Czajkowski said that PennDOT is requiring additional studies, which would cost about $25,000. He has invited the traffic engineer to the next meeting to discuss this and other concerns.

Dr. Ciervo asked whether there has been any activity on the proposal to farm the Wiggins tract and about signage for the Township owned preserved open space.

Mr. Czajkowski said that he has been putting together a lease agreement with the farmer who would farm the Wiggins tract. He had provided sample designs of signs used elsewhere in the County at a recent Board meeting. He would provide Dr. Ciervo with additional copies.

Mr. Calabro asked whether there was an update on the Grainhouse Developers’ maintenance bond.

Ms. Fountain said that she had not gotten a response from the Board’s most recent suggestions.

The meeting adjourned at 10:45 PM.


Respectfully Submitted:
Mary Donaldson, Recording Secretary



Joseph S. Czajkowski, Township Manager

Tom Jirele, Chairman

Robert Ciervo, Vice-Chairman

Michael Gallagher, Secretary/Treasurer

Philip Calabro, Member

Jerry Schenkman, Member