NEWTOWN TOWNSHIP FINANCIAL PLANNING COMMITTEE

100 MUNICIPAL DRIVE, NEWTOWN, BUCKS COUNTY, PA 18940

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

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Minutes for the meeting held on June 28, 2011

The Newtown Township Financial Planning Committee met on Tuesday, June 28, 2011 at the Newtown Township Administration Building.

Members present were Joe Barkley, Aaron Borstein, Warren Dallas, Tom Dye and Gaylord Swaby. Excused were Robert Daries, Ryan Gallagher, Scott Rosenberg and Brian Wilson.

Also present were Elaine Gibbs, Financial Director; Kathy Pawlenko, Director of Parks & Recreation; Henry Pasqualini, Police Chief; Don Harris, Director of Emergency Services; Supervisor Gallagher and various members of the Technology Committee including Ed Lipsky, Anand Shukla, Kyle Davis, Prasad Ramnath, Dan Paramesh and Jonathan Schnell.

CALL TO ORDER:

Mr. Dallas called the meeting to order at 7:28 P.M.

NEW BUSINESS:

2012 Capital Budget Request

Newtown Township Technology Department

Mr. Lipsky, Technology Committee Chairman introduced himself to the Committee. The members were provided the department’s capital budget request form in advance of the meeting for their review.

The members discussed the request to purchase software licenses in 2012 at a cost of approximately $12,000. Mr. Lipsky advised that the Township does not have a current inventory of software licenses and suggested that there is the possibility of not being in compliance. The members discussed who would inventory the current licenses and the management of licenses. Mr. Lipsky noted that in 2013 there may be another request for purchasing software licenses and that a typical work station has three (3) licenses. The members discussed alternative software compatible with Microsoft. Mr. Lipsky reported that the Township did have several employees doing a trial with Open Office, but there were compatibility problems. Members discussed the servers. Mr. Lipsky advised that the Township currently has five (5) servers.

The members discussed the request for business continuity phase 1 at an approximate cost of $7,500.

The members discussed the request for pc replacement for approximately $10,000. Mr. Lipsky reported that this is a yearly expense. The Township has fifty (50) computers and tries to replace ten (10) per year.

The members discussed the request for server replacement at a cost of approximately $5,000. Mr. Lipsky reported that this is a yearly expense and noted that he feels this expense could be delayed.

The members discussed the request to replace the document management system, cost to be determined. Mr. Lipsky advised that this should be a goal for 2012, with a cost of approximately $10,000. Mrs. Gibbs and Mr. Lipsky updated the members on the Township current system, Doc Star. Mr. Lipsky noted that this is a useful tool for going paperless.

The members discussed the request to update the website, cost to be determined. Mr. Lipsky noted that he feels this expense could be delayed.

The members discussed the request to install three (3) wireless access points in the Administration Building for approximately $2,500. It was agreed that wireless access was not a necessary expense at this time. Members discussed the Police having wireless access on their laptops through Verizon.

Mr. Lipsky noted that of all the requests discussed, he felt the Township’s priorities should be the software licenses, pc replacement and document management.

The members discussed the IT Consultant with regards to the operating budget.

Mr. Swaby inquired on the current web server IIS. Mr. Lipsky reported that it is Dream Weaver.

The members thanked Mr. Lipsky for his time.

Newtown Township Administration, Finance and Codes Departments

Mrs. Gibbs reported that there were no capital budget requests for these departments.

Newtown Township Parks & Recreation Department

Mrs. Pawlenko, Parks & Recreation Director introduced herself to the Committee. The members were provided the department’s capital budget request form in advance of the meeting for their review. Members were also provided a memorandum dated June 28, 2011, showing the request from Council Rock Newtown Athletic Association for improvements to Veterans Park’s baseball fields including the following:

  • Six (6) bleachers @ $4,000 = $24,000
  • Irrigation for three (3) baseball fields = $42,625
  • Six (6) dugouts @ $6,200 = $37,200

The members discussed the requests for Helen Randle Park to install the phase II water line for approximately $10,000 and the expansion of the parking lot, cost to be determined. Mrs. Pawlenko discussed the conditions of the fields at the park and the lack of parking. She reported that the Supervisors did agree to install the water line. Members discussed the possibility of using tournament fees to fund these projects.

The members discussed the requests for Veterans Park to install safety nets between fields for approximately $11,000 and for three (3) soccer goals and nets for approximately $9,000. Mrs. Pawlenko noted that with regards to the soccer goals and nets, she is trying to get some used equipment.

The members discussed the request for Staples Field for soccer goals and nets for approximately $3,000. Mrs. Pawlenko commented on the need for the goals to be secured to the ground to help reduce the risk of accidents.

The members discussed the request for the Skate Park to install fencing for approximately $10,000. Mrs. Pawlenko noted that the fencing would help with enforcing park hours and closing it when repairs are needed.

The members discussed the Delaware Valley Insurance Trust Risk Control Survey with regards to Silver Lake Park, the Clark Nature Center and Helen Randle Park. Silver Lake Park needs a safety railing along a double culvert to reduce the risk of potential falls; the approximate cost is $2,000. The Clark Nature Center also needs a safety railing; the approximate cost is $2,000. The current bleachers at Helen Randle Park do not meet Consumer Product Safety Commission guidelines for fall protect. The cost to replace the bleachers is approximately $4,000. Mrs. Gibbs reported that the funding for these items could come from the General Fund.

Mrs. Gibbs commented on development in the Township slowing down and noted that the funding for the above request comes from Development Fees.

Mr. Barkley inquired as to how much funding has been received/spent in 2011 for the Woll Tract (Veterans Park). Mrs. Gibbs advised she would look into Mr. Barkley’s request.

Mrs. Pawlenko noted that of all the requests discussed, she felt the Township’s priorities should be the fencing at the Skate Park and the installation of the water line and parking lot expansion at Helen Randle Park.

The members discussed the possibility of receiving contributions to help fund some of the projects.

The members thanked Mrs. Pawlenko for her time.

Newtown Township Police Department

Chief Pasqualini introduced himself to the Committee. The members were provided the department’s capital budget request form in advance of the meeting for their review.

The members discussed the request to purchase three (3) vehicles for approximately $96,000. Chief Pasqualini noted that this is a yearly expense and advised that the department has ten (10) front line cars. The members discussed the mileage and engine run time of the fleet. Mrs. Gibbs noted that these vehicle purchases are covered under the General Fund.

The members discussed the request to purchase five (5) ballistic vests for approximately $5,000. Chief Pasqualini updated the members on the department’s vest replacement program and noted that this is a yearly expense. Mrs. Gibbs reported that this cost falls under the General Fund.

The members discussed the request for radio replacement at an annual cost of approximately $43,000 for the years 2012 through 2016 (approximate total cost - $300,000). Chief Pasqualini updated the members on the mandate to replace the radios and the agreement made by the Bucks County Commissioners. He noted that the deadline is January 1, 2013. Mrs. Gibbs reported that this cost would fall under the Debt Service Fund.

The members discussed the request for in-car cameras at an annual cost of approximately $30,000 for 2012 and 2013 (approximate total cost - $60,000). Chief Pasqualini reported on how this would be a useful tool for the Township and possible cost savings in the long run.

The members discussed the request for park surveillance cameras at an annual cost of approximately $4,000 for the next four years (2012 – 2016); approximate total cost - $16,000. Chief Pasqualini and Mrs. Pawlenko updated the members on the recent damage to Roberts Ridge Park and advised that the proposal includes the installation of cameras at the following Township parks - Robert Ridge, Helen Randle, Veteran’s and Sedia. Mrs. Pawlenko advised on her discussions with the Township’s Insurance Company regarding the damage at Robert Ridge Park.

The members discussed the request for park lighting at an annual cost of approximately $5,500 for the next four years (2012 – 2016); approximate total cost - $22,000. Chief Pasqualini advised on how the lighting could help to deter vandalism. The proposed lights would be solar powered and installed at the following parks - Robert Ridge, Helen Randle, Veteran’s and Sedia.

Chief Pasqualini noted that of all the requests discussed, he felt the Township’s priorities should be in the following order - patrol vehicles, ballistic vests, radio replacement, in-car cameras, park lighting and park surveillance cameras.

The members thanked Chief Pasqualini for his time.

Newtown Township Public Works Department

Mrs. Gibbs advised that Mr. Crossland could not attend tonight’s meeting. She suggested that the members review the request form provided and be prepared to discuss the matter at the next meeting.

Newtown Township Emergency Services Department

Mr. Harris, Emergency Services Director introduced himself to the Committee. The members were provided the department’s capital budget request form in advance of the meeting for their review.

The members discussed the request for vehicle replacement at a cost of approximately $38,000. Mr. Harris reported that he would like to replace a 2006 Ford Expedition with a 2012 Ford Expedition (purchased through State bid) and remove a 2000 Blazer (backup vehicle) from the fleet. The 2006 Expedition would then become the backup vehicle. The members discussed vehicle downtime due to maintenance and the use of vehicles.

The members discussed the request for radio replacement due to the mandate at an approximate cost of $48,000. Mr. Harris advised that the cost would cover the replacement of twelve (12) radios and like the Police the County would finance the purchase. The members discussed the possibility of this cost being included in the request presented by Chief Pasqualini and falling under the Debt Service Fund.

The members discussed the 2014 request to replace the Fire Marshall’s vehicle. Mr. Harris noted that the current 2004 F-250 would then be placed in reserve status.

The members discussed the Fire Services Study.

The members thanked Mr. Harris for his time.

OLD BUSINESS:

Update on Variance/Executive Summary Report (Financial Management Report)

Mr. Barkley made a motion to table any discussion on the Variance/Executive Summary Report. The motion was seconded by Mr. Borstein and passed unanimously (5-0).

Update on Alternative Accounting Software Packages

Mr. Barkley made a motion to table any discussion on alternative accounting software packages. The motion was seconded by Mr. Borstein and passed unanimously (5-0).

Update on Road Analysis and Forecasting Project

Mr. Barkley made a motion to table any discussion on the road analysis and forecasting project. The motion was seconded by Mr. Borstein and passed unanimously (5-0).

MINUTES OF NOVEMBER 23, 2010:

The members agreed to table the approval of the minutes from November 23, 2010, until the next meeting due to members’ absence.

MINUTES OF April 26, 2011:

Mr. Swaby made a motion to approve the minutes from April 26, 2011 as presented. The motion was seconded by Mr. Dye and passed unanimously (5-0).

PRIVILEGE OF THE FLOOR:

The members discussed the July meeting. Some members advised that they are unable to attend. Mr. Dallas advised that he would contact Mr. Gallagher to discuss whether or not to cancel the July meeting.

ADJOURMENT:

There being no further business the meeting was duly adjourned at 8:53 P.M.

The next meeting is scheduled for July 26, 2011 at 7:15 P.M.

 

Respectfully submitted,


Christy Holley-Flaherty, Recording Secretary