Charlestown Township, Chester County, PA

 
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News for November and December, 1999

Thursday, December 9, 1999  (From Loretta Watson, Charlestown Green)
Regular Meeting of the Board of Supervisors
Monday, December 6, 1999
The Charlestown Township Board of Supervisor's Meeting of December 6, 1999, held at the Charlestown Elementary School, was called to order at 7:45 p.m. with recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance by all present.
Mr. Sauser, Board Chairman, made the announcement that the Township Solicitor has advised that the 3rd Circuit case of Altemose v. Charlestown Township, will be conducted by briefs, rather than via oral argument before the Judge, on December 13, 1999.
Mrs. Ewald announced the honoring by the Pennsylvania House and Senate of Eleanor Morris (French & Pickering Creek Conservation Trust) as "Woman of the Year for Historical Preservation." This event was attended by Mrs. Ewald, Mrs. Crowell, and several other local residents.
Mrs. Ewald also reported that she attended a Convention of Township Supervisors in regard to a resolution on turnpike interchanges. The Resolution passed stating that in the matter of turnpike interchanges that are planned, public hearings shall be held.
The first Citizen's Forum was called by Chairman, but he excluded comments to the Agenda items of three zoning ordinance amendments, conditional use hearings, and the curative amendment matter, since they would be permitted only during the formal hearings on those items. No other comments were forthcomng.
Various monthly reports were approved by the Board. The Fire Marshall stated that enough rainfall has occurred to put the Township in good standing.
Mrs. Ewald made a Motion to approve the Accounts Payable, and the Motion passed.
Mr. Oeste opened the hearing to consider the proposed amendment to the Zoning Ordinance, Article XV, regarding open space provisions. Exhibits were read into the record. Mr. Thomas Comitta, as advisor to the Board, addressed the meeting with an explanation of how the amendment came about and that Chester County feels it is in sync with their land ordinances. A Motion to approve "Open Space Option Ordinance " 80-99 was made and approved provided that the word "impervious" be added to references to surfaces such as driveways, parking areas, streets, etc.
Next Mr. Oeste announced opening of the hearing on the Charlestown Zoning Ordinance amendment to 80-99 to permit open space option on historic properties of 25 acres or more, stating that this was to create more development options. Exhibits were read into the record. Mr. Comitta explained the amendment to ordinance 80-99. Comments were received from the floor, prompting Mrs. Ewald to suggest continuation of this hearing. Mr. Sauser suggested continuance to February 7, 2000. Mr. Wert advised that the Board should notify property owners who are adjacent to the affected sites.
Mr. Sauser commented that there is no positive outcome of this ordinance in that it will encourage development of the properties and harm viewsheds. Mrs. Ewald stated there is a risk of "downzoning" here, and the Planning Commission should re-evaluate this ordinance, and that property owners should be consulted. Mrs. Ewald commented that the County's Planning Commission is "pushing" the Board to make the ordinance; however, Charles Philips, Chairman of the Township Planning Commision, responded that he did not feel such pressure but thinks the County wants to see land preservation.
Mr. Oeste announced the next hearing of the evening: Charlestown Township Zoning Ordinance Article 22, entitled Historic Resources Protection Ordinance, and stated it is a method designed to protect and preserve historic resources, which includes requirements, procedures, and penalties for violations. The Exhibits were read into the record. Mr. Philips endeavored to clear up some misconceptions that have arisen from notices that had been in newsletters from the Republican Committee which said there had been prior meetings. He also said that individual homeowner's maintenance would not be restricted, but if you need a building permit permit and your project is within public view, then the ordinance would apply. The proposed 500-foot buffer around historic buildings does not prevent building in the area. It is protection against developers who may come within 500 feet. The ordinance also does not prohibit putting in roads or subdivisions, but an impact study will be required.
Mr. Comitta addressed the meeting stating that similar ordinances have been passed in Birmingham, West Chester, West Bradford, Thornbury, Warwick, Concord, Tredyffrin, Edgemont (Del.Co.) and the Borough of Downingtown. He added this ordinance has been in process since 1994 through the Historic Commission. In places where the ordinance has been adopted, he stated that property values have not been impacted adversely and values have increased. Questions were invited from the group present.
Mr. Dale Frens, historical architect, was then sworn in as consultant to the Historic Commission. His feeling is that this is the best thing that could happen to a rural area as it will help preserve settings of historic buildings. The ordinance will offer protection in three ways: 1) protect property from demolition by slowing down the process; 2) protect settings through use of the 500-foot buffer zone and impact studies would be required for change; and, 3) protect by establishing standards and guidelines which are triggered by application for building permit. The ordinance in his view is a moderation of standards found in historic districts.
Mr. Oeste asked for comments from the public present (which was composed largely of historic homeowners in the area). The majority of comments were unsupportive of the proposed amendment, citing individual property rights and possible devaluation of properties. Homeowners argued they need to defend their rights to maintain/restore/construct their historic properties to their own tastes and budgets. Many commented that what they read in the ordinance and what Mr. Comitta had just said was provided by the ordinance did not match. Comments were offered that the Historic Commission could do plenty to encourage homeowners with "how- advice" and developers could be urged to build in the same character as exists in the township's historic resources. Note: A document prepared by one of the affected property owners was circulated stating specific objections to provisions 2201 through 2207 and the wording of the ordinance. The mailing of the proposed ordinance was done prior to this meeting and was sent only to historic homeowners who had 25+ acres. There was no township- wide mailing, nor were adjacent homeowners, or those owning smaller historic building/lots provided with the proposed ordinance, although advamce advertising had been accomplished by the Township.
Attention was drawn to the Agricultural Security Amendment passed two year's ago in this Township which included about 30 properties of historic nature. In thuis document provisions as to preservation and rights of farm land and buildings are radically different than this proposed ordinance, making the ordinance in direct conflict with the Agricultural Security Amendment.
In defense of the Charlestown Historical Society, Deborah Kuhn, made it clear to the crowd present that some of the comments mistakenly included references to the Charlestown Historical Society. She stressed that the Society and the Township's Historic Commission are separate entities. She wanted to clear this confusion regarding the historic entities, and not allow the Society to get a "black eye" over matters which are not of their doing. The correct reference when speaking of the proposed ordinance should be in regard to the Township's Historic Commission.
Mr. Kling rose to urge the Township to re-think this ordinance since in his view they were trying to "legislate" aesthetics, which cannot be done.
After many comments from the citizens present, Mr. Sauser requested a show of hands as to historic homeowners, which turned out to be the majority of the persons present who filled the elementary school cafeteria. (A comment by the Township Secretary was that she brought 100 agenda sheets, and they ran out quickly.) Of those responding, he asked for a show of hands as to who was in favor of the ordinance -- which resulted in one person-- provided changes in the language used were made. A show of hands of those opposed resulted in numerous hands raised. There were other polls as to those present who were not historic homeowners, but were within 500 feet of a historic building, Fewer hands, by far, were raised, and again none were in favor.
Mr. Wert then took the floor to make strong comments ultimately recommending that the ordinance be returned to the Committee for further work. Mrs. Ewald made a Motion to do this. Mr. Sauser noted that the "Historic and Architectural Review Board (HARB)" had not been included in this work along with the Historic Commission, and he questioned the reasoning for this. The Motion was approved to send the Ordinance back to the Commission.
Mr. Kevin Kuhn, supervisor-elect, stood to ask why the Board had allowed this proposal to go out to the public, rather than send it back. Mr. Sauser said at the time he felt that the Commission was proceeding with their work and he did not take time to study it well before sending it to the historic homeowners and scheduling this hearing on it.
After many more speakers from the floor on this subject, some were voicing the opinion that no ordinance was needed since the historic homeowners were responsible in maintaining their homes with discretion and another thought was that historic preservation should be a voluntary option on part of the homeowner, not a required and legislated obligation.
Mr. Wert made a Motion to vote down the ordinance, stating the homeowner's had the right to do that here and now. The Motion was passed and the ordinance was thrown out, and the court-reported record will reflect all of the views given here tonight. Mr. Wert cautioned the group that this proposal could be raised again in the future.
At that point (10:10 p.m.) the meeting broke up while some of the homeowners departed. At 10:25 p.m. Mr. Sauser reconvened, and Mr. Oeste read into the record as official exhibits the Historic Commission document and all of the letters received from homeowners on the subject of the proposed ordinance. With that action completed, he closed the record.
Mr. Sauser announced the imminent continuation of the Deerfield conditional use matter, whereupon Mr. Asimos, attorney representing General Residential Properties, introduced the first of three witnesses: Robert Harney, of David Blackmoor & Assoc. of Pottstown, who testified regarding a groundwater balance analysis performed. This study addresses the amount of water withdrawn though daily uses and the amount of water recharged to the ground for the 40 new plus 1 existing home that will be Deerfield. The findings were that, based on demand and recharge, there is "ample water supply" resulting in a surplus. The average use is deemed 250 gallons per day per house, or 10,000 gallons per year for the 41 homes. (NOTE: for curiosity's sake, the minute writer did calculations: 250 gallons per day x 352 days = 88,000. 88,000 gallons per year x 41 homes = 3,608,000 gallons per year for Deerfield.)
During Deerfield testimony, concern was raised regarding the safety of well water, and the testimony was that if County guidelines are followed in sewer and fresh water resource installations, there would be adequate safety considerations.
The next witness was David Horner, a traffic consultant, regarding a traffic impact study of the area and the effect of Deerfield's automobiles on the existing conditions. Findings were that there would be no impact on the roads. Actual traffic counts at several intersections around the site were done. He feels the state would issue a permit for traffic on the nearby state highways. No roadway improvements, other than entrances to Deerfield, were anticipated or deemed necessary. The anticipation was 450 automobile trips per day coming in and out of Deerfield. (Note: this calculates to 11 trips per day per each of 41 households.)
Mrs. Ewald asked Mr. Horner if he knew the width of Yellow Springs Road, and he responded 17-20 feet. Mrs. Ewald commented that PennDOT declined to work on Yellow Springs due to portions of it being only 14 feet wide. Mr. Horner stated that standard new road width is 24 feet wide, but generally accepted at 16 feet wide, and agreed that Yellow Springs is extremely curvy and hilly and site lines are not clear along spots in the road. The actual intersections studied, according to Mr. Horner, were Valley Hill and Green Lane; Valley Hill and Yellow Springs; Hollow and Yellow Springs; and Yellow Springs and Sidley, and this was done at the early rush hours and in the late afternoon. Mr. Wert then urged that the consultants should study other intersections further from the site that would have to be traversed in order to exit the immediate development area.
Since it was now 11:30 p.m., Mrs. Ewald motioned that Deerfield be continued to January 17, upon which Mr. Panizza appealed to the Board to hear his last witness which would take roughly 10 minutes, even if it had to be after the next agenda items. Mr. Sauser stated he would like to move forward and alluded that a continuance date may have to be set.
The Board opened discussion on Brooklands (Bodine Road) conditional use application and said their decision was ready to be approved according the current 12/6/99 draft. Motion was made by Mr. Wert to approve, pending discussion. Some parties to the action had not received the proposed decision and a few minutes' time was given for the board and parties to the matter to review it. Some adjustments regarding roadway references are requested and language is to be added to part 7A to "replace trees" as well as protect them from unnecessary removal. Concern was raised for the oldest, largest trees. Mr. Panizza endeavored to assure the Board that he would try to preserve the trees and replace what he could in the building process. Motion to accept the Board's decision was passed.
The Board spent a few minutes continuing some agenda items to December 20.
Mr. Oeste opened the hearing on the Altemose Curative Amendment application which proposes an assisted living development on 58 acres along White Horse Road which is now farm/residential district. A list of exhibits was read into the record by Mr. Oeste, and mention was made that the applicant had been allotted 30 minutes to present one witness due to the fullness of the Agenda for tonight's meeting.
James Garafalo, Esq. entered his appearance for G. Michael Main, an adjacent property owner, and Robert Adams, Esq. entered his appearance for the Charlestown Township Planning Commission.
Mr. Altemose's attorney, Joseph Ryan, Esq., introduced the witness, Ted Madjelewski (spelling ?), of Architectural Concepts, a registered architect familiar with the design of assisted living communities, on behalf of Mr. Altemose. The community of "Charlestown Senior Campus Living" is proposed as two, 4 story buildings, allowing for 1,875 living units and parking for 1,800 automobiles in a combination of garage and ground parking. After briefly describing the project, questions were requested from those present, but the Board decided to further review the documentation and continue the matter until January 17, 2000. Mr. Ryan was asked if any objection was present to reconvening in January before the four new Board members and Mrs. Ewald, to which he responded he had none.
Mr. Sauser then announced the imminent reconvening of the Deerfield matter.
However, the Board took a few minutes to discuss postponement of two other Agenda items: Kurtz Conditional Use Hearing (to January 3, 2000) and Miles Conditional Use Hearing (to February 7, 2000) and stated the proper advertising would be done in advance. The Board Reorganization meeting will remain as stated on January 3, 2000. The item regarding Township Road Speed Limits was also postponed to a future meeting. The Township Meeting Minutes of November 1, 8, and 15 were approved after Motion made and seconded. The November Treasurer's Report was also approved.
Mr. Oeste reconvened Deerfield in order to hear the final witness. Civil engineer David Fehr, of Chester Valley Engineers, testified that he evaluated the storm water runoff at the proposed site to determine the feasibility of development. He stated 7,000 sqft was the figure for impervious land coverage for each lot. Five surface water retention basins would be built around the property to control the runoff. The Board decided to reserve questions until the next hearing on December 20, 1999, and will review the applicant's documentation in preparation.
In keeping with the Agenda, Mr. Sauser announced the Citizen's Forum for comments on non-Agenda items, to which no pertinent matters were raised. The meeting was immediately adjourned at 12:20 a.m.
The next township supervisor meeting will be on December 20, 1999 at the Charlestown School at 7:30 p.M.
 
Thursday, November 11, 1999  (From Loretta Watson, Charlestown Green)
Regular Meeting of the Board of Supervisors
Monday, November 1, 1999
This meeting at the Charlestown Elementary School came to order at 7:30 with a Pledge of Allegiance. Chairman John Sauser made announcements that the Third Circuit Court hearing for J. Leon and Carol Altemose will commence the week of December 13.
The first Citizen's Forum of this meeting resulted in no comments regarding the agenda.
The Board Meeting minutes of October 4 and 18 were reviewed for minor corrections and approved.
The Treasurer's report was approved with an objection on the record by Mrs. Ewald to one of the checks written. The Zoning Report and Planning Commission Reports were received and accepted. The Historical Commission Report was received. Mrs. Baldwin commented that the Historical Commission will dedicate itself to the fullest to save the Cornog-Supplee house on Yellow Springs and Phoenixville Pike, which is presently under application for a demolition permit by John Panizza. The Roadmaster's Report was received with the comment from the Board of Supervisors that the annual road tour by the supervisors will be November 8. The speed limit study requested for Route 401 is rejected. Mention was also made by Mr. Sauser of the Department of Transportation's request for a rating of Roadmaster Contract prequalifications. The Roadmaster was, therefore, directed to fill in his comments on the form and return it to the Board of Supervisors. Additional items were that White Horse Road will undergo water main work in February or March of 2000 and an issue regarding Newcomen Road will be addressed by the Roadmaster.
The Fire Marshall's Report was received with comments from Mr. Alston that 911 should be used in emergencies and residents should refrain from calling the fire houses directly. This only slows down the response. Additionally, the traffic light at Phoenixville Pike and Charlestown Road has a pre-emption feature now. Residents are warned to look out for deer which move freely at this time of year. Mrs. Ewald brought up the subject of accidents on Coldstream Road and the possible issuance of a letter of liability to East Pikeland and the consideration that we should immediately score the road on the curve where the accidents keep occurring. She asked for a tally of Coldstream Road accidents.
The Parks and Recreation Board report was received, but no representative was present at this time.
The Valley Forge Sewer Authority minutes of their October 11 meeting have been received and the next meeting is scheduled for November 30 to discuss the 2000 budget.
PA Turnpike Citizen's Advisory Committee. The last Citizen's Advisory Committee (CAC) meeting was attended by Charles Phillips and Sue Staas (the primary and alternate attendees). Sue attended for John Martin. Two thirds of the attendees reportedly were in favor of the Turnpike's actions to alleviate traffic problems, with the balance opposed. Consideration of transportation on a regional basis should be addressed according to the Charlestown attendees, but the idea was thwarted by Turnpike-friendly attendees. The public is invited to attend these meetings, but there is no input allowed. The next meeting is Tuesday, November 9 at 7:30 p.m. at the Hotel Desmond on Rt. 29. The most disturbing item in the whole slip ramp picture in the view of our Charlestown attendees is the proposed 2.3 million square feet of office space to be built, with or without the slip ramp, by the Trammel Crow Company. This would greatly increase the number of automobiles coming into the area. The reps stressed that a good thing coming from these meetings is that we can try to identify parties who are in sympathy with Charlestown's stance. Help is needed to attend as listeners and take notes on the proceedings to get feed back. Mr. Sauser remarked that when he attended a Chester County Republican Dinner he found his and other cars plastered with a flyer supportive of the slip ramp. There was some suggestion as to notifying the Republican Committee that this underhanded action was going on. Mr. Wert made a suggestion that a Court Stenographer be employed to take the proceedings at the Turnpike meetings, which was made into a motion and seconded. Mr. Sauser opposed negotiating with a court reporter on this project, while Mrs. Ewald and Mr. Wert were in favor. Mrs. Ewald suggested we obtain lists of the members of the various Boards of Directors for the companies supporting Charlestown's efforts.
The Conditional Use Hearing regarding the Brooklands proposed development was brought underway and the exhibits were reviewed by the Township Solicitor. Charlestown Township will be represented by Mr. Adams as far as presenting witnesses. George Asimos of Saul, Ewing represented two engineers on behalf of General Residential Properties, the applicant for the conditional use approval. During the hearing, maps of the Bodine Road area were presented and the water flow and steep slope issues were presented and explained in detailed testimony by a representative of Chester Valley Engineers and also a Geological Engineer. Testimony was taken from 8:20 p.m. to 9:50, after which the Board went off the record to decide the date and time of continuance. This was set for November 15 at the Charlestown School.
At 10:07, the hearing for approval of the requested Conditional Use for the proposed General Residential Properties project of the Deerfield development was begun with introduction of the exhibits by the Township Solicitor. It was noted this hearing was to consider the Open Space Option only. The Board suggested deferring this to November 8 at the possible location of the Great Valley Nature Center. Notice will be posted as to actual meeting site.
Immediately, the Conditional Use hearing for GRP's proposed Spring Lane Farm development was begun by a review of the exhibits. Spring Lane is proposed to be 12 lots on 38 acres. Discussion ensued regarding possible defective notice, wherein Mr. Panizza agreed to notify additional property owners who are within 250 feet of the site. Spring Lane hearing was continued to November 15 at 7:30 p.m. at Charlestown Elementary School.
Due to the late hour, Mrs. Ewald reminded the Board that it was subject to a 10:30 curfew, so she suggested rescheduling the remaining agenda items.
Another discussion ensued regarding the responsibility for the curves on Coldstream Road and whether the township should mill it.
The issue regarding township review of speed limits was referred to a December meeting.
Regarding the agenda item of PennDOT's reconstruction of the Bridge on Route 29, Mr. McErlane has contacted Mr. Weldon's office and is awaiting a response. This issue is referred to November 15.
Chester County Park Land and Open Space Acquisition Grant, Round X, Dec. of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions was referred to November 15.
Regarding a Budget Session, it was suggested by Mrs Ewald that Mrs. Csete could take the YTD budget and highlight any changes proposed and circulate to the Board for study. This would cut the time required to approve. It would then be discussed on November 8. It was noted that advertising and township display is required.
Several Salt Bids were received, but unopened. Mr. Sauser directed that they be opened for immediate review at this meeting. Two bids were "no bid" and the two remaining were taken in to consideration.
The Charlestown Township Park Master Plan was tentatively referred to December 6 meeting.
The Altemose Curative Amendment Application must be heard by December 5. A suggestion was to start the hearing on November 15 with advertising done before that date.
Kurtz conditional use hearing (for a home-based bakery). Application was filed October 18 so December 6 is the hearing deadline.
Miles conditional use hearing will be scheduled for the first Monday and the Board will request an extension.
Schedule advertising and presentation of the Year 2000 budget - (board's decision/action not known).
Charlestown Hunt Escrow Releases #3 for Phases 4 and 5 were approved.
The meeting was adjourned at approximately 11 p.m.
 
Monday, November 22, 1999  (From Loretta Watson, Charlestown Green)
Regular Meeting of the Board of Supervisors
Monday, November 15, 1999
In attendance for the Township: Mr. Sauser, Mr. Wert, Mrs. Ewald, Mr. Kohli, and Mr. Oeste (of Lamb, Windle & McErlane)
This meeting was called to order at 7:35 p.m. at the Charlestown Elementary School by Board Chairman John Sauser. After recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, Mr. Sauser made the following announcements:
The Agenda item regarding advertising and scheduling for the Altemose Curative Amendment hearing for property on White Horse Road must be rescheduled to December 6 due to scheduling difficulties. This is still within the legal time allowed for hearing.
At this time, Joseph Ryan, Esq., attorney for Mr. Altemose, inquired about the amount of time that will be allowed for presentation of testimony. Mr. Ryan was under the impression that a full three hours will be allowed, and directed the Board's attention to his letter re same. Mr. Ryan was advised that there may not be three hours devoted to this matter since the entire meeting lasts three hours and township business must be conducted that same evening. If there wasn't time for all of the testimony, the matter would be continued to another date.
Then Mr. Sauser continued his announcements with the mention that there is an opening on the Planning Commission and applications are being sought.
First Citizens Forum
Mr. Kevin Kuhn, board member-elect, asked about why an agenda items was listed when it was his understanding that it would be tabled. (the agenda item was not named).
Charles Philips of the Planning Commission, in furtherance of the vacancy, added that the web site is making a request for applicants.
Regarding the Chester County Park Land and Open Space Acquisition Grant, the Board is still awaiting word from its solicitor and expects to have the information by December 6.
In another matter, a memo was received by the Board from the solicitor on November 14 regarding two applications that are before the September Zoning Hearing Board which were rescheduled to November. Before Mr. Sauser could read the letter Mrs Ewald interjected with her feeling that the contents of the memo were proprietary and should not be read to the general public, since it was a confidential memo from the solicitor to the Board. Mr. Sauser felt it could be read in view of the Sunshine Law and proceeded to read about an application #4-99 for a variance to permit access to a parcel on Lindsay Lane and permit changes to buildings located thereon.
Mr. Sauser made a motion that would instruct the solicitor to withdraw the application on 4-99 and (rewrite?) application 6-99.
Mrs. Ewald called for a discussion over the suggestion that it be read into the record. The decision by Mr Wert was that the letter was irrelevant on the basis of Mr. Sauser's recusing himself on the basis of a relationship with the applicants. After a quick executive session of the Board, the determination was that Mr. Sauser had no conflict of interest in the matter. The Motion was made and seconded 2 yes 1 no, and the matter was rescheduled to January.
Motion was suggested that the incoming board of supervisors be allowed to deal with those proceedings. Mr. Sauser seconded, and the motion passed.
Regarding agenda item for the Route 29 Bridge Reconstruction, Mr. McErlane has been unable to get any support from Curt Weldon's office in an effort to lower the parapet to the bridge from 42 to 32 inches. This would change the appearance of the bridge. A motion was made to approve PennDOT's plot plan, easement and right of way - in favor 2, opposed 1.
Regarding the Commons at Great Valley Lots 16, 17, and 18, Mr. Kohli says that items still need to be addressed by the applicant. If these things are accomplished, then he will approve. Chester County Planning Commission has recommended approval and Mr. Philips of the Planning commission also recommends approval. Motion to approve, 2 in favor, 1 opposed.
Addressing the Planning Commission vacancy, the board reports that one member has been consistently unable to attend meetings due to a personal situation and the replacement should be sought. In that vein, Mr. Bob Jones was nominated by Mr. Sauser to take the spot. Mr. Philips reported he has several other candidates and wants to solicit other applications as well, so he would consider Mr. Jones a viable candidate with the others. The interviewing process can go forward since the work is under control and there is no critical situation at hand. There was some objection from the audience to the nomination and attempt to approve Mr. Jones on the spot in that it would appear as a political appointment.
At this time the Board reopened the hearing regarding the Application for Conditional Use filed by GRP and Mr. Panizza on behalf of their Brooklands [34-C] project. This was originally opened on 11/01/99 with witnesses presenting on behalf of Brooklands. Mr. Kohli was sworn and presented his findings regarding the flood plain and the areas contemplated for sanitary sewers. Also, he recommended that the cul de sac be slightly relocated to an area that would not require deep cuts in the land and to the trees.
Landowners at 2168 Bodine Road, Paul and Patricia Stephens, requested permission and were entered into the case as a party since their property is nestled along the border of the Brooklands development area.
Mr. Kohli continued his presentation with questioning from the developer's representatives. It centered on controlling water flow and not creating excessive runoff or erosion. Also, he said special attention should be given to the impervious surfaces such as roads, driveways, and parking areas since they will contribute to greater water runoff. There was discussion regarding the riparian buffers (including existing trees and surface growth) and how they will help control water runoff.
Mr.Theurkauf, of Commita's office, and the planning consultant to Charlestown Township spoke briefly regarding riparian buffers.
Chuck Dobson was presented as a witness on behalf of Brooklands, giving data on previous locations and.???ects of the cul de sac, protection of the wooded areas, the detention basin, and the wetland areas and roadways.
Mr. Kohli was recalled in regard to the proposed cuts (in grade) of the cul de sac.
Decision will be rendered by the Board of Supervisors on December 6, and this hearing closed at 9:50 p.m.
The matter of a hearing on Spring Lane Farm was opened briefly in order to continue it to December 6.
The hearing on the Conditional Use hearing for Deerfield [30-C] was opened. Mr. W. Jeffrey Miller of Evans Miller Environmental, in presenting the plan of wastewater disposal, explained the results thus far of the perc testing done on the area bounded by Yellow Springs and Valley Hill. Out of 80 to 100 pits tested, only 1 or 2 did not pass as suitable sites. He determined in his professional capacity that the proposed area would support standard on lot sewer systems.
Mr. Russell Hanscom of 2381 Valley Hill Road, requested permission and was granted status as a party in the matter since his property is close to the proposed development.
Mr. Miller continued testifying that about 50% of the proposed lots may require a sand mound system which is permissible under current regulation.
The lots would run about 40,000 square feet each, but over all, with the addition of the open space, the 41 lots would average out at about 2 acres each.
Possible impacts upon surrounding properties would include a higher than normal emission of nitrogen in the ground and possible adverse impact to ground water. Mr. Miller was asked to provide the Board with the number of lots that perked successfully.
This hearing was continued to December 6. and closed for the evening.
Mr. Sauser then brought up the matter of the Budget and the need to advertise it. Mr. Sauser proposed that we reduce the Municipal Building Fund revenue by $60,000, and transfer this amount to the Road Maintenance Fund. Mrs. Ewald reminded the board that she suggested adding to the Open Space Fund. Mr. Wert suggested an increase in Printing and Postage in order to increase communication to the citizens of the township. Also, budget could provide for a part-time assistant . The Fire departments could also take an additional $10,000, supposedly for necessary equipment that they need.
Mr. Wert, in regard to a tax increase, stated that the revenue carried from year to year has grown and would justify a modest decrease in tax rates, perhaps to .4 mills from the current .52 mills.
Mrs. Ewald countered that she would support contributions to the fire departments but says we presently contribute more to this cause than other townships and the situation merits more study. She is in favor of a lump sum contribution in order to discourage the "nickle and diming" that frequently crops up. She also felt that it was wrong to reduce the taxes when the Pyle farm is at risk, and appealed to the Board for a spirit of cooperation.
Mr. Sauser stated that the fire marshal, Mr. Alston, recommended the increase in contribution to the fire departments.
Mr. Oeste reminded the Board that the budget can be amended and that there is a 10% limit to changes.
Mr. Wert continued his appeal toward the increase in fire department contributions and that any additional taxes necessarily imposed in the future would result from the support citizens who have approved the special expenditures.
Motion to approve budget - 2 in favor, 1 opposed.
According to the Chairman, the Budget will be addressed again at a future hearing before the end of the year.
The PennDOT roadmaster survey was completed and is ready to be sent back to PennDOT. (Motion approved by 2 and opposed by 1) Mrs. Ewald objected on the basis of the condition of Wells Road.
Brief discussion came up regarding an application for land development that has been lingering before the Board for two years. The Board proposed to deny the application, subject to receiving a 90 day extension. Application will be reconsidered if extension is given. However, in the two year period, no required information has been sent to the Board by the applicants. Motion to deny was approved unanimously - three in favor.
Mrs. Ewald suggested to Linda Csete that an inquiry be made as to whether any school board plans have been recently received by the Township in regard to the 55 acres of Pyle farm. The School Board's intention is not clearly stated in their letter as to whether they are referring to some "new plans" or "existing plans" that are in the Township's possession. Decision was made to contact the school board's solicitor for clarification of the terms of the recent letter received.
Second Citizens Forum
Mr. Kuhn, as a board member elect, requested some time be set aside for a meeting with the present board members and the incoming board members in order to "pick their brains" on issues. This seemed to be something the board could do, but a date was not set.
Mr. Sauser wanted to hold an Executive Session sometime before December 6 to discuss the Altemose [33-D] Curative Amendment that is presently before the County.
The meeting adjourned at 11:10 p.m.
 
Continued in Archives


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