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Established June 2, 1997
by citizens for citizens
March 16, 1998
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August 13, 1997
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Archived Home Pages - September 2002
2002 Family Center Art Show - The Family Center Art Show for the benefit of the Exchange Club Family Center for the Prevention of Child Abuse will be held at the Upper Main Line Tribute Hall in Malvern on November 15 - 17, 2002. Four Charlestown artists will be among many artists exhibiting and selling their work. Click here for details.
While Charlestown Township does not have as many farmers as it did decades ago, we still have quite a few horse and cattle farms who have to deal with empty hay barns, grain bins and silos as this winter approaches. Two articles in this morning's newspapers highlight the severe conditions Delaware Valley farmers are dealing with due to the drought. Our Charlestown Neighbors who farm are struggling with the same problems.
- "Area farmers cope with drought" by Kevin Plunket in today's Daily Local News reports on the effect of the drought on farmers in southern Chester County. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
- "Area farmers' harvest withers under effects of heat, drought" by Suzette Parmley in today's Philadelphia Inquirer reports on similar problems in Gloucester County, NJ. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
The Official Minutes of the September 10, 2002 meeting of the Planning Commission have been posted.
Reminder: Your help would be appreciated tomorrow morning at the Rapp House as the Charlestown Historical Society makes it ready for Chester County Day.
"Nature center awarded $22K grant" by Kristin Smith in today's The Phoenix reports on the PA Historical and Museum Commission's financial support for the Great Valley Nature Center. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Pa. decides to hand out certificates, not seals" by Martin Raffaele in today's Philadelphia Inquirer reports on the unanimous decision by the Independent Regulatory Review Commission that separate certificates will be given to top performing high school graduates instead of special seals on their diplomas. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
Water Forum Announced -
(from Andy Motel and the Open Space Commission)
Given the severe drought our township is experiencing, water, the lack of it, and its effects on us and on the land is on all of our minds. The Charlestown Township Open Space Commission is proud to help sponsor the "Water Forum" presented by the West Pikeland Land Trust.
"Township map tops commission's agenda" by Kristin Smith in today's The Phoenix reports on last night's Planning Commission meeting at which the proposed Township Official Map was further discussed. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
The Panel for this important forum is comprised of the Executive Director of Chester County Water Resources Authority, the Director of Green Valleys Association's Watershed Advocacy, and a member of a northern chester county township's planning commission. The panelists will discuss topics such as watersheds and how townships can adopt ordinances to sustain a water management program. (The complete Preliminary Outline is available by clicking here.)
There will also be a question and answer session following the discussion.
WHEN: November 19, 7:30 P.M.
WHERE: Cultural Center At Historic Yellow Springs
CONTACT: Eileen Quinn Juico, West Pikeland Land Trust
(610) 827-7737 or firstname.lastname@example.org
"Builders renege on growth policies" by Diane Mastrull in yesterday's Philadelphia Inquirer reports on "the Pennsylvania Builders Association ... calling for changes in the state and local land-use policies it once promoted - changes that would make the preservation of green space harder, and development easier." The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Land database will not be completed until 2004" by Jonathan Jones in today's Daily Local News reports on delays in the development of a county-wide graphical database showing all preserved and publicly owned land. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
Kris Lamley, photo artist and Charlestown resident, has captured lovely images of Charlestown, Chester Springs, and Kimberton which she has posted on her website. These images are being offered for sale in Limited Edition runs of 25. You can view these unique works of art and learn more about the alternative photography method Kris uses at http://www.funappetit.com/Polaroid_Imagx.html.
Wendy Mclean has provided some insight into our recently discovered pheasant population (see 09/20/02 entry below).
I haven't seen the pheasants yet but have little expectation that they
will survive. Ring-necked pheasants are not native to the U.S. and were
never really a self-sustaining population. In years past, their survival
rate was better because there was more of their favored habitat - corn and
grain fields bordered by brushy hedgerows. Also, there used to be a more
aggressive program of raising and releasing them. In some parts of the
state, private individuals still raise and release pheasants to supplement
the state program. As you pointed out, we also have a vigorous population
of foxes in our neighborhood as well and this provides a challenge to those
of us who have attempted to raise poultry. So, enjoy the view while it lasts!
146 Charlestown residents and friends of the Township attended last night's Patrons' Dinner, the Charlestown Historical Society's annual fund raising dinner. This year the dinner was hosted at Tom and Joanne Fillippo's beautiful Mine Run Farm. Dinner was preceded by cocktails, an antique car exhibit and a silent auction with approximately 45 items.
A delicious dinner was served in a new barn and under awnings. Dinner was followed by a live auction, shown here, with approximately 20 items selling for as much as $475 for an antique carriage ride. I hope to have additional photos and a report soon for a separate 2002 Patrons' Dinner page in the Historical Society's section of our site.
"Emerging emergencies" by Jonathan Jones in today's Daily Local News reports on a high percentage of outdated emergency management plans among Chester County's townships and municipalities. Charlestown is identified as one of 10 municipalities and townships with an emergency management plan that has not been reviewed or updated in more than eight years. (I'm a little confused by this as I thought our plan had recently undergone a review and update.) The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Great Valley challenges tuitions" by Pamela Batzel in today's Daily Local News is requesting a review by the Department of Education of the number of charter school students for which the district is being charged. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
Bird Sightings - Many years ago Charlestown Township was heavily populated with ring-neck pheasants. It was common to see them crossing the road, sitting on fence rails, in fields or gliding through the air. I don't know whether foxes or disease eventually eliminated them, but they have been missed. I and several other Charlestown residents who live in the vicinity of Brightside Farm have seen one or more ring-neck pheasants in the last few days, both mature and young. It seems likely they were released in this area, but regardless of how they got here, we hope they can survive the many foxes that also live in this area. Several residents in our area also report seeing a crane with approximately 7 foot wingspan.
"Attorney: Great Valley district has followed the state school code" by Pamela Batzel in the current Suburban Advertiser is an additional article by the same reporter (see 09/19/02 entry below) covering the superintendent salary approval process used by the Great Valley School District Board. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
The Preliminary Agenda for the September 24 meeting of the Planning Commission has been posted.
Last Chance for Household Hazardous Waste Disposal -
From Twp. Admin. Linda Csete
The last drop off for Household Hazardous Waste Materials for the year will be held on Saturday October 5, 2002 from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM at the Chester County Government Services Center at 601 Westtown Road in West Chester. Items must be in their original containers with labels. They accept turpentine, paint thinners, oil-based paints, stains, varnish, weed killers, antifreeze, gasoline and more. No latex paint. For a complete list, click here or call the Township Office at 610-240-0326.
A second posting from resident Ellen Behrle, this one regarding Tuesday night's GVSD School Board Meeting, has been posted to our Schools Forum.
In conjunction with the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event, Chester County is accepting unwanted computer equipment for recycling. Computer-related electronics that will be accepted include: CPU's, scanners, mouse, printers, monitors, power supplies, keyboards, laptops and cables. There will be a maximum of 3 computers accepted per vehicle. Businesses will be turned away.
"Contract controversy continues at Great Valley" by Pamela Batzel in today's Daily Local News reports on that same meeting. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"County gains little rainfall" by Jonathan Jones in today's Daily Local News reports on the current drought situation in Chester County. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"West Nile virus program changes focus" by Dennis Wright in today's The Phoenix reports on a change in Pennsylvania's West Nile virus program which will no longer accept birds for testing in Chester County and 28 other counties. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
Note that citizens are asked to call 1-877-PA HEALTH to report dead birds that may have been infected with West Nile.
Polling Place Moved - Due to the construction taking place at Charlestown Elementary School, for this fall's general election, Charlestown residents will vote at the Bacton Hill Bible Church at 2109 Conestoga Road (Route 401).
The Official Minutes of the August 19, 2002 meeting of the Board of Supervisors have been posted.
"Open Space Commission presents progress" by Kristin Smith in today's The Phoenix reports on Andy Motel's excellent presentation of the open space issues and options facing Charlestown Township. The presentation was made at Monday's Board of Supervisors meeting. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Chester County adopts 'Watersheds'" by Jonathan Jones in today's The Phoenix reports on the final adoption by the county commissioners of the plan that ties water preservation issues to open space preservation programs in the county. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Dedication day at Paoli Battlefield" by Susan Weidener in today's Philadelphia Inquirer reports on this Saturday's ceremonies, including a reenactment of the battle by 250 reenactors, formally dedicating the new Paoli Battlefield. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Officials discuss township map" by Kristin Smith in today's The Phoenix reports on last night's public hearing on the proposed township map. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Staggering crow alerts police at Reeves Park" by Dennis J. Wright in today's The Phoenix reports on a possible West Nile Virus infected crow captured in Reeves Park in Phoenixville. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here. This is the second reported find in our area, the previous having been in Chester Springs in June. That crow was confirmed to have the virus.
Reminder: The Open Space Commission will be making a special report at tonights Board of Supervisors Meeting and there will be a hearing on the new Proposed Township Map. The full agenda is available here.
Charlestown Green's report on the August 19, 2002 meeting of the Board of Supervisors has been posted to our Neighborhood News page.
Fred Alston's Fire Marshal report for the month of August has been posted.
"Drought forces lifelong farmer into no-win situation" by Jerry End in today's The Mercury shows just how severe the drought is for Delaware Valley farmers. The article reports on a Berks County farmer who is harvesting 1/10th of his normal pumpkin and ornamental corn crop this year, and the produce itself is noticeably smaller than normal. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Metro rail project gets nearly $7M from federal transportation dollars" by Margaret Gibbons in today's The Mercury reports that SEPTA has received almost $7 million from the US Dept of Transportation to help pay for engineering studies for the proposed Schuylkill Valley Metro rail service. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
There are several new features available today.
The Proposed Official Map of Charlestown Township that is to be the subject of a hearing at the next Board of Supervisors meeting has been posted. This is the color version for those who received a black and white copy from the Township. For more information and to download the map, click here.
I have set up a Surplus and Needs page where residents of Charlestown Township may list FREE surplus materials they are making available as well as where residents may list specific needs or information they seek. The new page is available here and already has items in both categories. The new entry is John Nurthen of Charlestown Hunt who is looking for space in which to offer baseball instruction. See Surplus and Needs for details.
Schools Forum - As you may know from the newspaper articles linked from this site in recent days, there is a lot of current discussion about the process by which the Great Valley School Board has renewed the contract of the superintendent. After receiving a lengthy comment on the matter from Ellen Behrle, and having received other comments from residents over the years regarding our public schools, I have set up a new Schools Forum. This forum will function similar to our Traffic Forum. Please follow the rules specified on the forum. As with all forums on this site, postings there do not necessarily reflect my own opinions or the opinions of any governmental or administrative body. Remember, this web site is the undertaking of a private resident of Charlestown Township for the benefit of other residents and is not an official web site for any entity.
In the near future I will set up permanent links to the new Surplus and Needs and the Schools Forum pages.
"Annual flower show canceled" in today's Philadelphia Inquirer reports that the Chester County Flower Show voted Wednesday to cancel plans for next year's show. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
The Preliminary Agenda for the September 16 meeting of the Board of Supervisors has been posted. Note that the agenda includes a presentation by the Open Space Committee and discussion of the new official Township Map.
The Official Minutes of the August 27 2002 meeting of the Planning Commission have been posted.
"GVSD attorney defends contract approval" by Pamela Batzel in today's Daily Local News continues the discussion on the appropriateness of the manner in which GVSD Superintendent Rita Jones' contract was recently renewed. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Commission rejects plan for development" by Kristin Smith in today's The Phoenix reports on the response at last night's Planning Commission meeting to a revised plan for a development on Sycamore Lane. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Great Valley taxpayers fault contract process" by Susan Weidener in today's Philadelphia Inquirer reports on reaction to Superintendent Rita Jones' new 5 year employment contract. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
Free Pachysandra - Harry Burhans, a resident on Wells Road, has mature shade grown pachysandra plants available for the taking. Harry can be reached at 610-827-7374.
This is one of my favorite Charlestown Twp barn photographs, even though it was taken years ago with a low resolution digital camera. Do you know what farm it's on? Let me know.
The Board of Supervisors apologizes for yesterday's misstatement that next Monday Sept. 16 is Rosh Hashanah when it is actually Yom Kippur. Thanks to all who brought the mistake to my attention.
From the Board of Supervisors -
The Charlestown Board of Supervisor's would like to apologize for inadvertently scheduling our September 16th meeting on Yom Kippur. Mailings went out to all residents informing them of the Supervisor's desire to have public participation for discussion of the adoption of the Charlestown Official Map. Unfortunately at this time it would likely be more confusing to cancel and reschedule the meeting, however the Board will be happy to meet with any interested residents who are unable to participate on September 16th due to the holiday.
Charlestown Board of Supervisors
Two articles in local newspapers today report on the current drought situation.
- "Rain hasn't fixed drought crisis" by Gina Zotti in today's Daily Local News is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
- "Drought emergency is back" by Evan Brandt in today's The Mercury is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
A "Must Read" - I just received a lengthy and very moving email from Charlestown resident Lt. Colonel Wendy Leland who is stationed at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan. It's posted on "Wendy's page" and I hope everyone reads it.
09/06/02 (1:00 PM)
Supervisor Meeting Canceled - I just learned that the Board of Supervisors meeting originally scheduled for Monday September 9 has been canceled due to the lack of a quorum. There will be one BOS meeting this month on September 16, 2002.
Gunshot Incident Reported - Paul Stevens, a Charlestsown resident on Bodine Road, reports an alarming incident took place Thursday afternoon. Needless to say, be alert for a similar experience in your area and report any incidents to the State Police (and me if you choose). Please don't send me questions for more information, as this is all I have.
A most alarming incident occurred on Bodine Road at about 2:45 PM Thursday. A car came speeding down the hill from Route 401 towards Rose Tree Estates. Someone inside the car started shooting a gun randomly out the window. Someone working on our property took cover, and my wife, Pat, who was inside, also heard at least two shots. They called the state police and reported the incident, but there's not much the police can do. Unfortunately, the car was moving so fast no one saw enough of it to make an identification.
The Preliminary Agenda for the September 10 meeting of the Planning Commission has been posted.
Linda and I have returned from a two week drive through the south, including stops in Charleston, SC, Savannah, GA, Mobile, AL, and Asheville (the Biltmore Estate, which is unreal), NC. As webmaster of this site, I sometimes get email from people thinking our web site is for Charleston, SC, or Charlestown, MA (actually a neighborhood of Boston). In addition to spending a few days in Charleston, SC, we passed through the small community of Malvern, Alabama and by the community of Charles Town, VA.
The Official Minutes of the July 23, 2002 meeting of the Planning Commission have been posted.
Parks & Recreation Board Vacancy - From Linda Csete
There is currently a vacancy on the Parks & Recreation Board to fill an unexpired 5-year term that ends 12/31/02. Since this is only a few months duration, it's a perfect opportunity to volunteer while making only a short term commitment. If appointed, you may be considered for reappointment to a five year term at the January 2003 Reorganization meeting. The Parks & Rec Board meets once a month, on the 3rd Thursday of each month, 7:30 P.M. at the Clubhouse at Charlestown Park. If you have an interest in parks, trails and open space, please send a letter of interest to: Board of Supervisors, Charlestown Township, P.O. Box 507, Devault, PA 19432.
Volunteers Needed - From Phil DeFranco, President of CHS
We still need volunteers to help clean up Rapp House before Chester County Day. We need folks to clean windows, sweep and mop floors and help decorate. A work party is scheduled for Saturday, September 28th from 9:00 AM until early afternoon.
"Schools unsafe as polling places?" by Pamela Batzel in today's Daily Local News reports on the concerns of an East Whiteland resident and others with possibilities of a child being kidnapped when the public has access to schools during election day. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Chesco extends burning ban" by Tony Roberts in Friday's The Phoenix reports on the continuation of the county-wide ban on open burning through September. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Final hearing held for water plan" by Jonathan Jones in Friday's Daily Local News reports on the final public hearing on the proposed new Chester County Watersheds Plan along with discussion of other issues associated with the current drought. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
"Slaughter of hawks draws ire" by Tarek Tannous, also in Friday's Daily Local News, reports on the reaction of Heidi Malizia, outreach coordinator with the Great Valley Nature Center in Charlestown, to the killing of 171 hawks on an estate in Willistown Township. The article is available on-line from the paper's web site by clicking here.
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