NEWTOWN TOWNSHIP ENVIRONMENTAL ADVISORY COUNCIL

100 MUNICIPAL DRIVE, NEWTOWN, BUCKS COUNTY, PA 18940

Internet: http://www.twp.newtown.pa.us

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Meeting held on March 25, 2013

The Newtown Township Environmental Advisory Council met on Monday, March 25, 2013 at the Newtown Township Building. In attendance and voting were Shannon Escalante, Chairman, Eric Korn, Vice Chairman and members Amy Easterly (alternate member) Pam Fitzpatrick, and Steven Jenks. Also in attendance was Dennis Fisher, Planning Commission liaison.

Call to Order: Ms. Thomas called the meeting to order at 7:30 PM.

New Business

Electronic Recycling Event: The members reviewed a schedule to work at the Leck & Son Electronic Recycling event on Saturday, March 30, 2013 at the Township Public Works Building. Mr. Fisher also volunteered to help for one hour. The members agreed to work in pairs for 75 minute intervals throughout the morning. Ms. Thomas had made copies of handouts on Bird Town and the June quarterly forum to be distributed at the event.

Liaison Reports

Newtown Creek Coalition: Ms. Fitzpatrick reported that the Coalition has expanded its scope to include the portion of the creek in Newtown Grant, near the Wrightstown headwaters. The members are asking Newtown Grant to use its meeting room for the monthly meetings.

Resident Joan Farb said that she is a Newtown Grant resident and a member of the Coalition and will be helping to get the permission of Newtown Grant’s master board. She asked for the support of any EAC members who are also Newtown Grant residents. Ms. Easterly and Mr. Jenks agreed to co-sponsor the request for use of the room and possible waiver of rental fees.

Planning Commission: Mr. Fisher reported that the Planning Commission had reviewed a revised solar energy ordinance. This ordinance now serves as a use ordinance only, permitting solar panels as an accessory use, not a primary use. Any performance standards would be addressed by the three municipalities in stand-alone ordinances.

Ms. Farb asked for a copy of the draft ordinance.

Mr. Fisher explained that this is a work in progress. The Supervisors have not yet authorized advertisement of it. Once that is done a copy would be available at the Township building.

Discussion of Projects

Quarterly Forums: Mr. Jenks said that he would be working with Mr. Katz on an agenda and additional speakers. State Representative Steve Santarsiero has been confirmed for June 1.

Ms. Fitzpatrick said that Wrightstown EAC member Robin Hoy is interested in helping with this event.

Bird Town Forum: Mr. Fisher said that he believed that about 38 people attended the forum. Ms. Escalante and Mr. Katz brought morning coffee and a lunch buffet and everyone seemed to enjoy the event. Not all of the attendants were Newtown residents, but Mr. Fisher was not sure of the percentage of residents in attendance.

Mr. Korn and Ms. Fitzpatrick reported that they would be attending a Bird Town Certification program shortly. Ms. Fitzpatrick said that she would like to do a Bird Town plan for Newtown Elementary as part of her certification.

Green Corner: Ms. Escalante reported that she would be submitting articles on environmentally friendly household cleaning products and on composting.

Correspondence

The recording secretary shared a letter from member Sandy Bender stating that he has been working out of town and will not be returning for some time; his return date is open ended. He questioned whether he should continue as a member of the EAC. The secretary said that she has forwarded this note to the Township Supervisors to address. There has been no response at this time.

Member Comments

Mr. Jenks reported that he has spoken to Ms. Leck about possibly documenting current recycling grant data. He suggested that the EAC attempt to increase recycling efforts, thereby documenting an increase in the grant amount. He asked the recording secretary to help him to get data on past grant applications.

The recording secretary agreed to speak to the Township Manager about this.

Ms. Fitzpatrick moved to adjourn at 9:00 PM. Mr. Korn seconded and the motion passed 4-0.

 

Respectfully submitted by:

 

Mary Donaldson, Recording Secretary