FINANCIAL PLANNING COMMITTEE
THURSDAY MARCH 16, 2005
Minutes of Previous Meeting – 05/16/2006 – Unanimously approved.
The regular meeting of the Newtown Township Financial Planning Committee met on Thursday, March 16, 2006 in the meeting room of the Township Municipal Building.
Members present were Jerry Schenkman, Elaine Gibbs, Robert Dieterle, Phil Vance, John Stranford and Jennifer Dix. Excused were Philip Newmuis, Allen Fidler and Township Manager Bob Pellegrino.
CALL TO ORDER:
Mr. Schenkman called the meeting to order at 7:04 P.M.
MINUTES OF FEBRUARY 16, 2006:
Mr. Vance moved to approve the minutes of February 16, 2006. The motion was seconded by Mr. Dieterle and passed unanimously with one member abstaining.
Ms. Dix arrived after the minutes were approved.
Mr. Schenkman discussed the number of meetings that the Committee has had this year and suggested appointing another member of the Committee as the Chairman.
Mr. Vance and Mr. Dieterle advised on why they believe that the Committee was setup to have the Township Treasurer as the Committee Chairman.
Mr. Dieterle advised that he agrees with Mr. Schenkman with regards to having another member chair the Committee.
The members discussed the scope of the Committee.
The members agreed that they are looking for direction from the Board of Supervisors as to what matters are important to the Township.
The members discussed the reorganization of the Committee.
The members discussed how the other Township Committee’s Chairman makes a presentation to the Supervisors.
Mr. Stranford questioned what projects have been successful for the Committee.
Mr. Vance commented with regards to the Committee reviewing the Budget and discussing Township Capital.
Ms. Gibbs advised on the Committee’s recommendations in the fall of 2005 to the Board of Supervisors with regards to increasing Township revenue. She also advised on past policy recommendations to transfer excess Reserve Funds at year-end to the Capital Projects Fund.
The members discussed Resolution 2003-R-13, Establishing a Policy for Reserve Fund Balance. Mr. Schenkman suggested that the members be provided a copy of the resolution for their review. Ms. Gibbs advised that she would provide a copy of the resolution to be mailed in the Committee’s April packet.
The members discussed reorganizing the Committee at the next meeting.
Mr. Dieterle suggested that Mr. Schenkman discuss the Committee’s goals with the Supervisors.
The Committee members discussed planing and agreed they can not plan without a plan.
The Committee members discussed past years with regards to reviewing the budget.
The Committee members discussed the Township’s wants over the next five (5) years.
PECO – Ron Smith has confirmed he will attend the April 20th meeting
Ms. Gibbs updated the members with regards to prior PECO discussions and advised that Mr. Ron Smith has confirmed that he will attend the Committee’s April 20th meeting.
Ms. Gibbs discussed the Township’s resolution with PECO with regards to location cost (tapping fees) and advised on what PECO is currently charging. She advised that the current resolution has the Township paying more for location cost than PECO is charging.
The Committee discussed the possibility of renegotiating the resolution.
The Committee discussed the Township’s cost for street lighting and what the Township has done to save costs.
Ms. Gibbs advised on what the Township has done to save cost with regards to traffic lights.
The Committee discussed the amount reserved on the 2006 Budget for electrical cost.
Department’s 2007 Budget Review
Ms. Gibbs advised the members with regards to the upcoming Department’s 2007 Budget Review in May and June.
PRIVILEGE OF THE FLOOR
Mr. Schenkman advised the members that he has been touring each of the Township’s departments. He advised the members that his overall impression is that the departments are over crowded and out of date. He discussed the conditions of the Public Works Department and the aging of Township equipment. He also discussed the conditions of the Police Department.
Ms. Gibbs advised that currently the Township has 26 active police officers.
The Committee discussed the conditions of the Parks & Recreation Department and the conditions of the Administration/Finance Department.
The Committee discussed the Township’s storage facilities.
Mr. Schenkman updated the members with regards to his thoughts regarding building a new Municipal Complex.
The members discussed the cost already incurred by the Township with regards to the Municipal Complex expansion.
Mr. Vance commented with regards to the Committee having discussions regarding the Municipal Complex and the Woll Tract being on a referendum. He also commented with regards to the Board of Supervisors approving to set aside funds for the Woll Tract.
Ms. Gibbs advised that $500,000.00 in the Recreation Impact Fund would be applied to the Woll Tract Fund if the money is available at the end of the year.
The Committee members discussed the funds received from the RCN settlement. Ms. Gibbs advised that $750,000.00 from the settlement has been applied to the Woll Tract Fund and $100,000.00 was applied towards legal fees.
The members discussed the Emergency & Municipal Services Tax increase.
The Committee members discussed applying for a bond for the Municipal Complex expansion.
The members discussed the possibility of applying excess funds from the Emergency & Municipal Services Tax to a Municipal Complex Fund.
The members discussed paying off the Township’s current debt.
The members discussed needing a commitment from the Supervisors to expand the Municipal Complex.
The members discussed purchasing the land from the Archdiocese.
The members discussed having an alternative plan with regards to the Municipal Complex.
The members discussed the possibility of relocating the Municipal Complex.
Ms. Gibbs advised that the Township has started to renovate the current building and is now taking money out of the Reserve Funds to maintain the current Municipal Complex.
Ms. Gibbs suggested that the Township have a public meeting to advise on the current working conditions for the Township employees and the maintenance of the current buildings.
Mr. Stranford suggested that the Committee draft a proposal for the Supervisors to review with regards to the need for the Municipal Complex expansion.
Mr. Schenkman commented with regards to prioritizing the Township’s needs and defining the cost.
The members agreed to draft a list of priorities for the Supervisors to review.
The members discussed the amount of taxes residents pay to the Township and the County.
The members discussed the need for more space and the cost incurred due to not doing anything.
Ms. Gibbs advised on Mr. Pellegrino’s Municipal Complex presentations to the Board of Supervisors.
The members discussed the predicted 2006 Recreation Impact Fees.
The members discussed the policies with regards to receiving Recreation Impact Fees.
The members discussed how the Committee was established.
Mr. Schenkman advised that he would approach the Board of Supervisors to discuss the Committee’s direction for the year at the next Work Session.
Mr. Schenkman advised the members on discussions at the Supervisors’ March Work Session.
Ms. Gibbs commented with regards to adding the reorganization of the Committee to next month’s agenda.
Mr. Stranford questioned the money for purchasing the land from the Archdiocese. Ms. Gibbs advised that the money has been set aside in the Capital Project Fund.
Mr. Schenkman discussed the Committee’s involvement with the Township’s Financial Monitoring and advised that the Committee will not be involved with the process.
There being no further business to come before the Committee, the meeting was duly adjourned.
The next meeting is scheduled for April 20, 2006 at 7 P.M.
Christy Holley, Recording Secretary