NEWTOWN BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT COUNCIL
LUNCHEON MEETING AT GOODNOE FARM DAIRY BAR
THURSDAY, AUGUST 1, 2002
APPROVAL OF THE AUGUST MINUTES: Ms. Frederick moved to approve the minutes of August 1, 2002 as presented. Linda Mitchell seconded; the motion carried.
Present: Hal Roberts, Kristie Kaznicki, Marge Frederick, Doug Terry, Don Harris, Judy Setar, Linda Mitchell, Belinda Buras, township interns Megan and Jacqueline, Scott Little, Joy Lancaster Delan, John Bissert, Rita Cummins Sappenfield, Chris Nardo, Shannon Wilson, Barbara Anne Fowkes.
CALL TO ORDER: Chairman Weaver called the meeting to order.
Stockburger Proposal - George Stockburger and Sean Frawley
George Stockburger presented drawings for development of 2 ˝ acres in the township on Sycamore Street, 11 acres in the borough along the creek, and for moving of their car dealership to 12 acres on the Bypass. He noted that the Sycamore Street dealership is on leased property owned by Mr. McBride, and that the sketches were just ideas, concepts that would need cooperation from a number of entities including the township, borough and the property owner. He said that more intense use on the Bypass has already been approved.
Mr. Stockburger said that they feel that the location of the car dealership on the Bypass would be consistent with other uses on the Bypass, and that the tax basis would increase. He didn’t see how the area would be adversely impacted. He felt that their proposal is different from any other car dealerships, since they were working to blend with the historical nature and agricultural atmosphere of Newtown. He thought that the traffic access was good as well. It was clarified that the Bypass area is zoned OR (Office/Research), and that the dealership is zoned commercial, thereby requiring a zoning change to relocate the dealership onto the Bypass.
Mr. Nardo inquired about the zoning of the corner of Sycamore Street at the location of the present dealership; it is zoned TC (Town/Commercial). Mr. Nardo suggested that perhaps space at this location could be leased, in case of retail slowdown in the borough. Mr. Frawley emphasized that the drawings are conceptual only, and that they would look for an outside developer to develop the property. He said they are willing to do further study, investigation, and plan development if everyone desires. Mr. Stockburger felt that the proposed retail area on Sycamore Street would enhance the Sycamore Street project. Mr. Nardo said it would compete well with Doylestown to attract businesses, and that the office sizes proposed could be a good fit for people looking for office space. Mr. Stockburger said that consolidating their dealership locations would serve to save space and duplication, and said that they are just attempting to present positive ideas.
Mr. Salvatore said it would be better to have smaller retail/offices in town rather than a street full of car dealerships, and asked if Stockburger had done any surveys. Mr. Frawley said that they have received responses already, and if the supervisors looked favorably on their ideas that they would do a further survey of the residents. Mr. Salvatore said that no one wants to see too many car dealerships, like on Route 1, but thought no one wants to see a lot more office buildings either.
Ms. Mitchell felt that there was a lot to be said for Stockburger’s, who had made many contributions to the community, and have been part of the community family. Mr. Salvatore said that BDC, as representatives of the business community, needs to encourage officials to sit down and talk to anyone interested in business development ideas.
CODES DEPARTMENT BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT REPORT
In Mr. Harwood’s absence, Kristie Kaznicki distributed and reviewed the report for June and July of 2002.
APPROVAL OF THE MAY MINUTES
Mr. Roberts moved to approve the minutes of June 6, 2002 as presented. Ms. Buras seconded; the motion carried.
LOWER BUCKS CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
Lisa Kruse was not present, but Marge Frederick announced that the next Business Card Exchange would be held on August 21, 2002, 4:30-6:30 at the First County Bank at 3 Friends Lane, Newtown.
JOINT DOWNTOWN NEWTOWN CORPORATION
Rita Cummins Sappenfield distributed flyers regarding the posting of events on the JDNC website www.newtowncalendar.com.
SUBCOMMITTEE Concerned with a YMCA in Newtown - Doug Terry, Chair
Mr. Terry reported that the committee is on hold until the YMCA issues the results of its study.
Ms. Dunleavy presented a draft of the membership form; the Council approved the form. Mr. Harris suggested mailing out the BDC brochure and membership form to the business mailing list, to advertise and develop the new membership list. Ms. Kruse and Ms. Dunleavy will update the BDC brochure.
Mr. Harris suggested getting feedback concerning meeting time in the membership mailing; the Council liked the idea.
Document for Businesses
Mr. Salvatore asked if a booklet published several years ago, concerning “How to Set up a Business in Newtown” was still available. Ms. Setar remembered the document; she and Ms. Dunleavy will investigate.
The next luncheon meeting is scheduled for September 5, 2002 at the Goodnoe Farm Dairy Bar at 12:00 PM. The cost is $10; please RSVP by August 30, 2002 to the recording secretary (contact information is included on the attached agenda).
ADJOURNMENT: On motion by Ms. Frederick, and without objection, the meeting adjourned at 1:10 pm.
Leslie P. Dunleavy, Recording Secretary