Category Archives: Regular

Supervisor Regular Meeting Minutes-September 8, 2015

Westfall Township, Matamoras, PA

September 8, 2015

The regular meeting of the Westfall Township Board of Supervisors was held Tuesday, September 8, 2015 at 7:03 pm. The meeting was held at the Township Building on Delaware Drive and LaBarr Lane, Westfall Township.

Those present were Chairman, Robert Melvin, Vice Chairman, Jerry Dotey; Supervisors; Lester Buchanan and Robert Bostinto; Solicitor, Robert Bernathy; Secretary, Jodi Hulse and Treasurer, Scott Myer. Also present were Road Master, Bill Schneider, Zoning Officer, Michael Rendleman, Bill Koferl, Ken Thiele (Penn DOT Representative) and approximately six members of the general public.

Supervisor Raymond Banach was not present.

APPROVAL OF AGENDA:  

A motion was made by Supervisor Buchanan to approve the agenda. The motion was seconded by Vice Chairman Dotey and carries with all in favor. 

PUBLIC COMMENT: 

No Public Comment took place.

MINUTES:

July 6, 2015- Regular Supervisor Meeting Minutes: Supervisor Buchanan moved to approve the minutes. Supervisor Bostinto seconded the motion.  The motion carries with three in favor and one abstention. Chairman Melvin abstained since he was not present for the meeting.

August 3, 2015-Public Hearing: Supervisor Buchanan moved to approve the minutes. Vice Chairman Dotey seconded the motion. The motion carries with three in favor and one abstention. Supervisor Bostinto abstained since he was not present for the meeting.

August 3, 2015-Regular Meeting: Vice Chairman Dotey moved to approve the minutes. Supervisor Buchanan seconded the motion. The motion carries with three in favor and one abstention. Supervisor Bostinto abstained since he was not present for the meeting.

August 17, 2015-Joint Meeting: Supervisor Buchanan moved to approve the minutes. The motion was seconded by Vice Chairman Dotey and carries with all in favor.

TREASURER’S REPORT: Mr. Myer gave the report for July, 2015 which is on file at the Township Office. Discussion followed regarding the need for the millage increase and/or Tax Anticipation note.

Supervisor Buchanan moved to approve the Treasurer’s Report. The motion was seconded by Vice Chairman Dotey and carries with all in favor.

POLICE REPORT: Chad Stewart was not present. Chairman Melvin read the report. The report reflects the following for the month of August, 2015:

Monthly Count of Offenses known to police:

1 Rape, 19 Larceny Theft, 1 Fraud, 1 Recovery of Stolen Property, 3 Vandalism, 14 Weapons, 6 Drug Abuse, 2 DUI, 2 Drunkeness, 13 Disorderly Conduct and 3 all other offenses. Total 52

Monthly Count of Persons Charged for offenses:

17 Larceny Theft, 1 Recovery of Stolen Property, 8 Drug Abuse, 3 DUI, 1 Drunkeness, 1 Disorderly Conduct and 3 all other offenses. Total 32

Miles patrolled for the month: 5,289 Year to Date: 38,223

Motor Vehicle Accidents for the month: 20 Year to Date: 151

Calls for Service for the month: 262 Year to Date: 1,618

A motion was made by Vice Chairman Dotey to approve the report. The motion was seconded by Supervisor Bostinto and carries with all in favor.

FIRE DEPARTMENT:

Westfall Fire Department: Bill Koferl read the report which stated the following for the month of August, 2015:

8 Automatic Fire Alarms, 1 Chief Investigation, 1 Utility/Wires Down, 1 Gas Leak, 3 Assist EMS, 2 Landing Zone, 1 Spill Control, 2 Vehicle Fires, 5 Water Rescues, 6 Motor Vehicle Accidents, and 2 Structure Fires. The Total calls for August were 32. The total fire calls year to date are 215.

The EMS Report for the month of August was as follows: 54 Calls in Westfall Township, 23 Calls to cover Squad 33, and 8 calls to cover Squad 19. Total calls for August were 85. Total EMS calls year to date are 608.

Training: Four drills/In-house training sessions held for 146 hours.

Other: WTVFD has designed a replacement for the 1986 Pierce Arrow Engine. Build of the new unit will begin in early November. Target delivery is scheduled for May, 2016.

A motion was made by Supervisor Buchanan to approve the Westfall Fire Department Report. The motion was seconded by Supervisor Bostinto and carries with all in favor.

Mill Rift Fire Department: No report submitted. No representative present. Chairman Melvin requested Secretary Hulse to advise the department to submit all reports due at the next Supervisor Meeting.

HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT:  Bill Schneider gave the report for August, 2015. He said the department worked on repairs from storm damage and shoulder work. Also, they worked on culvert pipe replacement on Cummins Hill and Heaters Hill. The Bluestone Boulevard culvert pipe replacement took place. Mr. Schneider stated the new truck has arrived. The department maintained the compost area and township property. They also cleared the township right of way for proper sight distances. The signs on Maple Avenue and Pennsylvania Avenue which were knocked over were replaced. Mr. Schneider said he ordered fifty tons of salt and will be ordering additional culvert pipe. He soon will be ordering three hundred tons of anti-skid.

BUILDING/ZONING REPORT: Michael Rendleman gave the report for August, 2015. There were 7 building permits which fees totaled $143,129.64.

Supervisor Buchanan moved to approve the report. Motion was seconded by Vice Chairman Dotey and carries with all in favor.

EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT: Mr. Ewbank was not present. Chairman Melvin read the report which is on file.

CORRESPONDENCE: On desk for review. 

OLD BUSINESS:  

  1. Bluestone Boulevard Stream Bank Stabilization: Discussion held.

A motion was made by Vice Chairman Dotey to approve the authorization of Kiley Associates to do engineering according to proposal dated June 18, 2015 in the amount not to exceed $7,225.00. The motion was seconded by Chairman Melvin and carries with three in favor and one opposition. Supervisor Buchanan was in opposition. 

NEW BUSINESS: 

  1. Penn DOT Representative-Mr. Ken Thiele: Mr. Thiele gave a presentation regarding the District 4-0 Budget and different areas of concern within the Township.

No action taken.

2. Annual Convention of Township Officials of Pike County-Friday, October 2, 2015: Discussion took place. 

A motion was made by Supervisor Buchanan to approve the attendance of the convention by Vice Chairman Dotey at a cost of $200.00. The motion was seconded by Supervisor Bostinto and carries with all in favor.

3. Road Line Painting: Discussion held. No action taken. 

4. Schedule Budget Meetings: The Board agreed to have two meetings this year. 

A motion was made by Supervisor Bostinto to schedule and advertise the meetings for October 14, 2015 and October 21, 2015 at 6:30 pm. The motion was seconded by Vice Chairman Dotey and carries with all in favor. 

SUBDIVISION REVIEW and ACTION: None to report 

EXECUTIVE SESSION: None

ADJOURNMENT: Meeting was adjourned at 8:10 p.m. on a motion by Supervisor Buchanan. Motion seconded by Supervisor Bostinto and carries with all in favor.

Respectfully Submitted,

 

Jodi Hulse

Secretary

Regular Meeting-November 2011

Westfall Township, Matamoras, PA

November 1, 2011

The regular meeting of the Westfall Township Board of Supervisors was held Tuesday, November 1, 2011,

at 7:00 pm. The meeting was held at the Township Building on Delaware Drive and LaBarr Lane, Westfall Township.

Those present were Chairman, James Muir; Supervisors, Vice-Chairman, Lester Buchanan, Robert Ewbank, Paul Fischer, Raymond Banach; Solicitor, Robert Bernathy and Secretary, Lisa Green. Also present were Scott Myer, Michael Rendleman, Bill Schneider, Chief Stewart, Christina Robin and approximately 18 members of the general public.

AGENDA: Supervisor Ewbank asked to add the revisiting of the zoning to Delaware Drive to the agenda. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer. Motion does not carry. Chairman Muir said there will be a change in the order of the meeting. The Westfall Service Center will be moved up first on the agenda. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to allow the change. Motion seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carried with all in favor.

Executive Session will be at the end regarding personnel.

 Public Comment: Christina Robin said it is her understanding the Orange & Rockland will not be paying a property tax. Do we know what type of tax they will be paying how much that will be? Attorney Klemeyer said they do not pay real estate tax they pay a utility tax and that is paid to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Supervisor Banach asked how that would benefit Westfall Township. Does the money get paid to Westfall? They are not aware at this time of how the tax money in lieu of real estate tax is divided. Christina Robin said we’ve had this question for a week since the zoning hearing board. When can we expect an answer? Mr. Klemeyer said once the site is constructed we will know.

MINUTES:  The minutes of October 4, 2011, regular meeting were reviewed and approved on a motion by Vice-Chairman Buchanan. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carries with all in favor.

The minutes of October 13, 2011 budget meeting were reviewed and approved on a motion by Supervisor Ewbank. Motion seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with four in favor and one abstention. Vice-Chairman Buchanan abstained.

Subdivision Review and Action:

 Orange & Rockland / Westfall Service Center:  Representative: Attorney, John Klemeyer

Attorney Klemeyer said that the township engineer has reviewed and approved the plans as well as the Zoning Hearing Board and the Westfall Township Planning Commission. Mr. Klemeyer said he would be happy to answer any questions as he has representatives with him from Orange & Rockland as well as the project engineer. Solicitor Bernathy said the Alternate Solicitor Anthony Waldron has reviewed this project, working in conjunction with the planning commission and he was part of that process. Vice-Chairman Buchanan asked what the conditions were. Solicitor Bernathy said they were stated in a September 22, 2011 letter from Planning with the following approvals needed   1) Zoning Hearing Board 2) Water Authority 3) Stormwater Calculations 4) Flagman be present with the movement of the poles in regard to comment #5 of the HRG letter dated September 21, 2011.  Vice-Chairman Buchanan moves to approve project subject to the stated conditions. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

Milford Landing Lot 1.04 Taco Bell / Bank: Representative: Attorney, John Stieh

 Attorney Stieh said that they are hoping to construct a Taco Bell along the right side of the Staples Mall. They have been before the Planning Commission. Solicitor Bernathy said there are two conditions for the project.

1) Letter of Capacity / design plans for water and design plans for sewer. 2) Different measures as far as traffic control device at Davita Drive: Including an additional “STOP SIGN AHEAD” and “STOP” lettering.  Which is actually going to be on the roadway. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the project subject to the stated conditions. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Ewbank. Motion carries with all in favor.

 TREASURER’s REPORT: Scott Myer said it has been a good year for Westfall. We are over 100% in income, and we are in line with expenses. Supervisor Ewbank moved to accept the report. Motion is seconded by Vice-Chairman Buchanan and carries with all in favor.

POLICE REPORT: Police Chief Stewart gave the report for September reporting 217 calls for service, with 7,538 miles patrolled. Chief Stewart said the overnight parking for Westfall Township is in effect for November 15th. Motion to accept the police report made by Supervisor Banach and seconded by Vice-Chairman Buchanan. Motion carries with all in favor.

FIRE DEPARTMENTS: Luis Bocaletti gave the Westfall Township Fire Department Report for October reporting 2 Landing zone, 3 MVAs, 1 wires down, 1 Auto Alarm, 7 Mutual Aid to scene, 1 River rescue. Supervisor Ewbank moved to approve report.  No report for Mill Rift. Motion is seconded by Vice-Chairman Buchanan and carries with all in favor.

HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT: Bill Schneider gave the Highway report for October reporting that they have been doing regular maintenance on the equipment and the compost area. He has worked on the highway budget. Mr. Ewbank and Mr. Schneider both met with a representative from FEMA and DEP and were given a permit to do the work on Pond Drive. They have ninety days in which to do the work. They’ve had some downed branches and ordered some 125 tons of salt and 50 tons of anti skid. Mr. Schneider thanked the fire departments for being out with them moving trees. Supervisor Ewbank moved to approve the Highway report. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

BUILDING /ZONING: Zoning Officer Mike Rendleman gave the October report stating that we issued five building permits, one electrical, four mechanicals, two sign and one zoning permit with total fees of $25,456. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the report, seconded by Supervisor Banach. Motion carried with all in favor.

CORRESPONDENCE: On dais for review.

 OLD BUSINESS:

 Act 47 Monthly Report: Solicitor Bernathy stated that as everyone knows as of March of last year the Federal Bankruptcy Court signed an order confirming the Townships bankruptcy plan as well as the Act 47 Recovery Plan which amounts to final disposition of the bankruptcy action. The township is operating within the confines of its budget and continues to meet its financial obligations. The township continues to provide essential services.

 NEW BUSINESS:

The Hiring of the Township Employee: Solicitor Bernathy stated Supervisor Banach showed him the ad for the job which stated that preference would be given to township residents. Solicitor Bernathy further stated that he did not have a chance to review the ad and feels an error was made and that the position should be re-advertised. He thanked Supervisor Banach for bringing it to his attention. Supervisor Fischer moved to re-advertise the position. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carries with all in favor.

Hiring of Township Engineer: Chairman Muir said we have two proposals from McGoey, Hauser and Edsall and Boucher & James. Chairman Muir asked for their rate schedules. Mrs. Green found a schedule for Boucher & James but not for McGoey, Hauser & Edsall. Vice-Chairman Buchanan said he didn’t understand why we were hiring an engineer he thought we hired HRG for the duration of 2011. Discussion followed. Supervisor Banach suggested re-advertising the position. This item will be tabled until the 21st of November.

Vice-Chairman Buchanan said he wanted to go back to the ad for the township employee and asked what is the problem with the township resident being preferred. Solicitor Bernathy said there would not be equal opportunity and there is no residency requirement in the 2nd Class Township Code.

Pond Drive Excavating: Bill Schneider said this will cost between $3,500 and $5,500. Chairman Muir asked if this was for removing the dirt as well. It does include the removal of the dirt. Chairman Muir asked about the distance, which is 500 feet. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the project. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Banach and carries with all in favor.

 Personnel Policy: Chairman Muir said we need a motion to revise our personnel policy to put in a clothing allowance of $500.00 per year per employee plus $150 per year for steel toe work boots. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the revision. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

 Heaters Hill Bids: Bill Schneider stated HRG would be working on a bid package. There are two culvert pipes that need to be replaced. This needs to be done sooner rather than later. The will cost approximately $65,000 – $85,000. Vice-Chairman Buchanan said basically it will cost $25,000 to get a package to go out to bid. Mr. Schneider spoke of a box culvert. Chairman Muir asked Mr. Myer if we had money in the budget to do this. Mr. Myer said we have the $20,000 but did not calculate all of what it would cost. Supervisor Banach asked if it would cost $125,000 minimum with pavement and other contingencies. Chairman Muir said this is something that has to be done. Supervisor Ewbank moved to approve the $20,000 to put together the bid package. Motion is seconded by Vice-Chairman Buchanan and carries with all in favor. Discussion was held on whether or not this was an emergency situation. Mr. Schneider and Supervisor Ewbank both stated that yes this is an emergency situation.

 Petition for Tax Increase: Solicitor Bernathy said you have before you the same petition that you had filed last year. The township is presently levying taxes for general purposes at last years court ordered rate of 15.7 % which is 1.7 % above the allowable 14 mils. Solicitor Bernathy said the Court can approve up to 5 mils which would total 19 mils, and the township is only asking for 15.7 mils. Mr. Myer said to clarify the taxes are not going up over 2011. It is the same as last year, however we still have to ask for court approval. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the petition. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Ewbank. Supervisor Banach is opposed. Motion carries with four in favor and one opposed.

 Cellular One Contract: Chairman Muir said we are paying approximately $50.00 per month for one phone and we can pay $63.97 plus tax for three phones. There is also the contract for the Air Card for the EMA computer at $48.00 per month. One for the Emergency Management Coordinator and one for the Zoning Officer. Vice-Chairman Buchanan asked how the service was. Mrs. Green said Mr. Bolles found the service to be comparable to Nextel. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the contracts. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Banach and carries with all in favor.

 Audit Proposal: Chairman Muir said there is a proposal from Dale Kirk in the amount of $4,800.00 to perform the 2011 Audit. This fee is the same amount as this past year’s rate. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the proposal. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Banach and carries with all in favor.

 Burning Ban: Chairman Muir asked that this be placed on the next meetings agenda. Solicitor Bernathy said the Planning Commission liked the proposed language of the Ordinance but there was discussion regarding the duration and location of burning and there should be deliberation on that. This item will be placed on the December 6th meeting agenda. Vice-Chairman Buchanan asked if the language will be changed by then. Solicitor Bernathy said the Supervisors need to come up with language. Supervisor Ewbank said the proposal is to ban burning in the parts of Westfall Township that are adjacent to Matamoras Borough, not the entire township. Supervisor Ewbank stated Matamoras does not burn and they should not be susceptible to the smoke that comes from Bell Manor or any of the areas that are highly populated and adjacent to Matamoras.

Landa Copertino said she doesn’t understand how she can split the township in two. It is like telling someone that you don’t want them sitting next to you. Mrs. Copertino also said that as of today no one has spoken to Matamoras about using their leaf vacuum. Vice-Chairman Buchanan commented that the board has not passed the burning ban yet and that he is opposed to any form of a ban.

Mr. Gregory said at the last meeting he questioned what to do about residents burning toxic refuse and what is the proper protocol and he was told to call DEP. Mr. Gregory called PA DEP and was told the DEP does not get involved with any residential burning issues. They solely get involved with Commercial burning issues. Further stating that it needs to be turned over to the township Supervisors. Solicitor Bernathy said we have a PA DEP Model Ordinance here which is an air pollution control ordinance that we have from the State. Solicitor Bernathy further said the Supervisors can adopt the ordinance and they need to do that for there to be enforcement action. The Supervisors will be discussing that at their upcoming meeting.

 Mr. Schneider asked if the township has an alternate engineer because the township has something that needs to be reviewed by an engineer for the Authority and it has been waiting. Chairman Muir asked if we could appoint McGoey, Hauser and Edsall. Solicitor Bernathy said absolutely. Supervisor Banach questioned who does the building reviews. Kelly Reynolds. Lisa Green will call Kelly Reynolds on the 2nd of November to see if he can review the floodplain permit.

Tax Abatement: Chairman Muir said we have a tax abatement for Marie Laurel who has had a trailer removed. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the abatement. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Banach and carries with all in favor.

Discussion followed regarding the advertisement for the new employee. The new ad will go in the paper on the 10th of November with applications due back the 17th of November. Hiring will take place at the special meeting on November 21st, 2011.

 

ADJOURNMENT: Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to adjourn at 7:52. Motion seconded by Supervisor Banach and carries with all in favor.

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

Lisa A. Green

Secretary

Regular Meeting-October 2011

The regular meeting of the Westfall Township Board of Supervisors was held Tuesday, October 4, 2011, at 7:00 pm. The meeting was held at the Township Building on Delaware Drive and LaBarr Lane, Westfall Township.

 

Those present were Chairman, James Muir; Supervisors, Robert Ewbank, Paul Fischer, Raymond Banach; Solicitor, Robert Bernathy and Secretary, Lisa Green. Also present were Scott Myer, Michael Rendleman, Shawn Bolles, Bill Schneider, Karen Colaiaco, Landa Copertino, John Dalton, Bill Gregory, Chief Stewart,

and approximately 14 members of the general public. Vice-Chairman, Lester Buchanan was not present.

 

AGENDA: Supervisor Banach asked to re-advertise for the highway employee. Chairman Muir said he thought they had a number of applicants. Supervisor Banach questioned how many they received. Supervisor Ewbank said they received twelve applications and have narrowed them down to three, which will be interviewed later this month. The agenda was amended to move items 1-4 under new business to budget meetings which will take place October 13th, 20th and 27th at 7:00 pm. Agenda approved on a motion by Supervisor Ewbank, seconded by Supervisor Fischer. Motion carries with all in favor.

 

PUBLIC COMMENT: John Dalton said he would like to express a thank you to Westfall Township on behalf of the Pond Drive resident owners for the new road surfacing and shoulder work. Those on West Pond Drive also received new surfacing and shoulder work. He also wanted to thank Mr. Muir for letting him dispose of home waste during the week of Hurricane Irene. Mr. Dalton stated “in January 2010 I made a presentation on the subject of Earned Income Tax and Mr. Muir said they would take a look at it. To this day, the only comment on Earned Income Tax was made last October 2010 was by a sitting Supervisor who express objection to any EIT. To this day, I have not attempted to seek any feedback nor was there any feedback from those present when my presentation was last made. At this time, my comment is to never close the door until you fully understand that efforts to design such a form is an ongoing process. Since that presentation, I had continued to make improvements but stopped for other personal reasons. I am reluctant to continue to pursue and make further improvements or analysis on how this would be of benefit to Westfall township coffers simply because of the lack of encouragement or feedback from you supervisors. Again, my suggestion is this: Never close the door to good suggestions. Last May prior to the primary, a Westfall Tax-Payer & Westfall home owner out of the blue as me: “What is LST?” I was pleased to receive this question since then I continued to be mum for quite some time after I learned what it represented. I had previously done some research and satisfied myself on its representation. As you prepare yourselves to being work on the Westfall Township budget for 2012 later this month, I expect to see “Local Services Tax” completely spelled out in Place of a simple copout “LST” The Pike County Dispatch in November 2009 & 2010 did not indicate what “LST” represented. From now onward you will spell it out for clarity purposes to help out Joe or Jane Smoe.

 

Mr. Dalton continued by saying I am aware of one Westfall resident who has been in contact with another individual who in turn was in contact with a D.E.P. Official. The residents of Pond Drive are concerned with the rainwater flooding pond drive at the Ponds. Not too long ago, and I was told it was around three years ago, that some work was done in the stream bed at the time by Matamoras since they had the permit to do so. [Chairman Muir asked if this is the pond problem while seeking clarification. I explained that we were dealing with the powerful outflow from the Heaters Hill stream which was impacting the outflow drainage problem from the pond nearest to the Heater Hill stream. I further explained that unless we address this, we could have more serious problems later.] There is a need to re-address this vexing problem again and recently the D.E.P. official even offered to be present and meet with a contact person from Westfall. I have been told that the stream bed is Westfall’s. I have also been told it is Matamoras’. Regardless whose stream it is, both Matamoras and Westfall need to address the problems associated with it before it becomes worse than it currently is. Hurricane/Tropical storm Irene on August 28th, the rains of June 22, 2011, and many other notable and lengthy rainfalls have created havoc on Pond Drive. If we choose to ignore the flooding problem for the short term, I will be the one to stand up here to say: “I told you so!” We need to address this jointly with Matamoras before the Matamoras’ earth berm gives away 9 and this could happen/I am not saying it will since I am not an (environmental) engineer.) And Pond Drive becomes too flooded for emergency vehicles to traverse safely. Homeowners on West Pond Drive will also be at the mercy of such unforeseen weather conditions of severe rainfalls. Please give consideration of my comments here. My remarks also should be taken to heart by prospective candidate supervisors and other Westfall Township home owners. Chairman Muir thanked Mr. Dalton for his comments.

 

Supervisor Ewbank asked Bill Schneider if he would like to address the stream issue. Mr. Schneider said three years ago Matamoras had a permit to do work on the Pond. Matamoras is trying to obtain another permit. Supervisor Ewbank questioned if there are other issues with sewer pipe. Mr. Schneider said it is gas & water lines. Chairman Muir asked if it is a health and safety issue why can’t we just go in and do the work. Mr. Schneider said we have to ask D.E.P. Chairman Muir asked if we can reach into the stream. Supervisor Ewbank stated the stream is in Matamoras not in Westfall.

 

Karen Colaiaco of Stark Drive is very strongly in favor of having a burning ban for the whole township. Two main reasons is the health issue which is very bad with the leaves and smoke and she is very tired of smelling the smoke. Mrs. Colaiaco stated she has lived here for 27 years and she can’t go out on her porch because of the smoke traveling. It even comes into the house. Chairman Muir asked what are the opinions of her neighbors. Mrs. Colaiaco said she believes they are against the burning and she could probably bring them with her.

Supervisor Ewbank said it is on the Planning Commission agenda Thursday, October 13, 2011 at 7:00 pm.

 

Landa Copertino a resident of 62 years said she stood in front of a local business for 3 hours and has a list of residents in favor of burning and a list of residents who want to ban it and no one signed it. Mrs. Copertino said perhaps they could impose a one or two day a week burning ban. Or possibly get together with Matamoras and have leaves picked up and brought to the compost facility. Mrs. Copertino said there are too many elderly people who can not bring leaves to our facility. Chairman Muir said it may be a good idea to approach Matamoras and suggest that we use their equipment since they use our facility.

 

Bill Gregory of Delaware Drive asked how to prevent people from burning toxic substances and how do you stop them from burning it. Solicitor Bernathy stated it is an ordinance enforcement issue. Chairman Muir said we would have to catch them doing it. Solicitor Bernathy said Mr. Gregory or others would have to assist the township when going to court to testify and that is sometimes a problem. Solicitor Bernathy asked the enforcement officers if we have anything on record for enforcement. Shawn Bolles stated previous zoning ordinances had tried to get people on smoke leaving the property with the Title 25 DEP Regulation. This is hard to prove. Solicitor Bernathy said there is a State law but there is not a Township law. Mr. Gregory asked what does he do when he sees his neighbor burning toxic substances what does he do. He was instructed to call DEP.

Mrs. Colaiaco stated a burning ban would eliminate that. Discussion followed regarding what would happen if the burning were to take place on the weekend. Solicitor Bernathy instructed Mr. Gregory to record everything that transpires.

 

MINUTES:  The minutes of August 2, 2011, Public Hearing & Regular Meeting were reviewed and approved on a motion by Supervisor Fischer. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carries with all in favor.

 

The minutes of September 6, 2011 Public Hearings & Regular Meeting were reviewed and approved on a motion by Supervisor Ewbank. Motion seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

 

TREASURER’s REPORT: Chairman Muir said we have the Treasurers Report in front of us and asked for a motion to approve the report. Supervisor Banach moved to accept the report. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

 

POLICE REPORT: Police Chief Stewart gave the report for September reporting 200 calls for service, with 5,203 miles patrolled. Chief Stewart said they also have a new Facebook site for the residents and new Nixle Alerts for text message or e-mail or both for whether there is an event going on in the township or a pending storm or road is blocked or police activity. Chief highly recommends signing up for one or both of those sites. Motion to accept the police report made by Supervisor Banach and seconded by Supervisor Fischer. Motion carries with all in favor.

 

FIRE DEPARTMENTS: Luis Bocaletti gave the Westfall Township Fire Department Report for September reporting 1 mutual aid structure fires, 3 auto alarms, 3 MVAs, 2 river rescues, 4 wires down, 9 pump outs, 1 Evacuation, 2 Spill controls, 2 car fire, 2 structure fire, 2 landing zone, 1 mutual aid structure fire. Total calls for month 33. EMS total of 45 calls for month. Luis mentioned the new addition to the firehouse and stated the groundbreaking ceremony will be held in a few weeks and to squelch a few rumors that have been going on the building is not being paid for with taxpayer money it is being paid for by donations and a state loan. Ken Zielazny gave the Mill Rift Fire Department report for September reporting a Car Fire at Wal Mart on 9/7, Tanker Maintenance on 9/7, Truck Fire on 9/8, Monthly Meeting on 9/8, Basement Pump Out on 9/8 & 9/11, Tanker Training 9/14, River Rescue #2 bridge 9/16, Equipment maintenance Compressors 9/21. Total man hours 39 and total equipment hours 9.5 for the month. Supervisor Banach moved to approve reports. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

 

HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT: Bill Schneider gave the Highway report for September reporting that they have had heavy rains from Hurricane Lee resulting in flooding and cleanup from the storm had to be performed. They have been performing regular maintenance on the township properties and vehicles. Mr. Schneider attended the Pike County Road Task Force Meeting, 9/19 assisted Nelson Tree Service with removing large dead tree on Heaters Hill, 9/20 Assisted Leeward with Blacktop on Pond Drive, 9/22 Cleared and trim right of way of down tree branches on Pond drive. Out checking ditches and drains for all heavy rains throughout the month. Regular maintenance and work on compost pile. 9/26 Remove large tree at the end of Phillips Lane, 9/27 shoulder work/tree down on Old Milford Road, 9/28 Trees, wires and pole down on Heaters Hill. Road closed for several hours for the cleanup with Orange and Rockland and Nelson Tree Service. Ordered 75 Tons of salt / 50 tons were delivered. We have some road-closed signs and an order will be put together for more. There is a lot of work to be done on the road shoulders before winter. Recent storms have slowed this down. Preparation for winter in continuing on roads, vehicles and sanders. Mr. Schneider said there are issues that have to be addressed that can not be put off. He has pictures to show the board. He has been working on the lighting on Reuben Bell Drive and the generator backup on Stella Street. They have replaced two culvert pipes on Glass House Hill. The pedestrian tunnel may be closed down by PennDOT. Mr. Schneider said when you speak about the burning ban the township really doesn’t have the manpower to go out twice a week to pick up leaves. They are not ready for winter yet. But will do what the Supervisors ask them do do.Chairman Muir asked how much money we are saving Matamoras by allowing them to use our compost facility. He feels it would be substantial. Supervisor Ewbank moved to approve the Highway report. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

 

BUILDING /ZONING: Zoning Officer Mike Rendleman gave the September report stating that we issued eleven building permit, two sign permits and four zoning permit with total fees of $4,115. Solicitor Bernathy mentioned that he had been discussing what authority if any township agents such as zoning officers or building inspectors have to enter private property without the property owners consent. Solicitor Bernathy said he has spoken with the Pennsylvania Association of Township Supervisors and had done research prior to doing that and he could not find any authority that gives our officers permission to enter private property with their permission. He has asked for written documentation of that for our records. Solicitor Bernathy said for this point forward he is advising the Supervisors and the employees while present that they should get that consent. Criminal trespass involves going on to someone’s property without getting a license or without privilege to be there. What some municipalities have done is to put language in the application of the permit indicating that if you’re going to apply to the township for a permit you are giving our employees permission to be on the property for purposes of inspection. That way Solicitor Bernathy can argue in court that we have a license to be on the property for purposes of inspection. Without that I’m advising the Supervisors and employees they do not have permission and they need to do so with court order. Chairman Muir asked what happens when Shawn gets a call for an inspection. Solicitor Bernathy said that is different, they are being invited. Mr. Bolles said they are able to walk up to the front door and knock on the door and get permission to go on the property. If they do not give permission we need to obtain a search warrant. Discussion followed regarding whether or not that would be possible. One resident asked what would happen if you had a written complaint. That would not make a difference. Solicitor Bernathy told everyone about the Castle Doctrine, Act 10 of 2011 which allows private property owners the ability to use deadly force if they are in fear. Supervisor Fischer asked if they needed to approve wording. Solicitor Bernathy said he asked Mike to come up with language for the Zoning Application. Supervisor Ewbank moved to approve the report. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor. Supervisor Banach said if it is going to go that route there should be a hold harmless agreement, so that if the inspectors go on private property uninvited and they get hurt they can not sue the landowner. Supervisor Banach said he believes they should walk up to the front door and knock, a police officer can not walk on property. Solicitor Bernathy said that is what we are doing from this point forward.

 

CORRESPONDENCE: On dais for review.

 

OLD BUSINESS:

 

Act 47 Monthly Report: Solicitor Bernathy stated that as everyone knows as of March of last year the Federal Bankruptcy Court signed an order confirming the Townships bankruptcy plan as well as the Act 47 Recovery Plan which amounts to final disposition of the bankruptcy action. The township is operating in the confines of its budget and continues to meet its financial obligations. The township continues to provide essential services. There are some outstanding issues with the Federal Master however they are being addressed.

 

NEW BUSINESS:

 

Shohola / Westfall Building Appeals Board: Solicitor Bernathy stated Shohola is requesting we consider a joint resolution establishing an appeals board, which would save both municipalities money by using the same board. There is a resolution to review. Supervisor Ewbank asked if this would replace the Zoning Hearing Board. Solicitor Bernathy explained that the Building Appeals Board is a separate board. Solicitor Bernathy questioned how many members we had on our appeals board. We only have two members. We need five. Solicitor Bernathy will reach out to Shohola Township.

 

SUBDIVISION REVIEW and ACTION:

 

EXECUTIVE SESSION: Called for potential litigation Westfall Town Center / Westfall Township.

 

ADJOURNMENT: Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to adjourn at 9:22. Motion seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carries with all in favor.

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

Lisa A. Green, Secretary

Regular Meeting-September 2011

The regular meeting of the Westfall Township Board of Supervisors was held Tuesday, September 6, 2011, at 7:36 pm. The meeting was held at the Township Building on Delaware Drive and LaBarr Lane, Westfall Township.

Those present were Vice-Chairman, Lester Buchanan; Supervisors, Robert Ewbank, Paul Fischer, Raymond Banach; Solicitor, Robert Bernathy and Secretary, Lisa Green. Also present were Michael Rendleman, Bill Schneider, Marge Tonkin, Roland McDonald, Gwen Federico, Tom Friend, Catherine Toussaint, Gregg Callaghan, Richard Mai, Elaine Shewchuk, Jack Shewchuk, Muriel Gargano, Larry Flansburg, Luis Bocaletti, Bob Melvin, Rollin Cook, Lisa Mickles, and approximately 29 members of the general public. Chairman, James Muir was not present.

 

AGENDA: The agenda was approved on a motion by Vice-Chairman Buchanan, seconded by Supervisor Banach. Motion carries with all in favor.

 

PUBLIC COMMENT: Muriel Gargano commented that Cummins Hill Road was totally cut off with communication during the Hurricane Irene situation and questioned if there was a way that our emergency management could set up a rotation of contact to be passed along. Further stating they did not find information out for four days. Mrs. Gargano also said that there should be road closed signs. Saying that one time she went down the road and it was open and by the time she went to go back up the road was closed even after she was told it wouldn’t be. Radio doesn’t work because they do not get reception up there. Mrs. Gargano also said that there is a resident who loves to shoot his gun at night and the ordinance says up to 10:00 pm. She feels the board should change it to say after a reasonable hour. Vice-Chairman Buchanan asked the Chief if he knew anything about it. He did not and asked Mrs. Gargano where she lived advising her to call 911. Discussion followed.

 

Larry Flansburg asked if we have an emergency plan because it is really confusing when the road is closed and you can’t get out in either direction. Mr. Flansburg suggested being proactive instead of reactive and contacting Larry Oellerich to take a few of his trees down before they fall down across the wires. Mr. Flansburg added that he knows it is a State Road but it is our township.

 

Supervisor Ewbank said he understands Mrs. Garganos concerns about the roads being closed and communication, unfortunately Sunday there were several trees down on Cummins Hill Road. There was a PennDOT truck stuck up there who couldn’t go either way. He ended up cutting his way down the hill to Glass House Hill. There were cablevision and telephone wires on the road that people were driving over. The road was closed but people ignored the signs. Supervisor Ewbank asked Mrs. Gargano if she had phone service and said if residents do they need to call 491-5177, that is the Matamoras Emergency Management Office. The residents should also listen to 1630 am.  Discussion followed about the road closures and the possibility of notifying residents in the future of potential closures. Supervisor Ewbank said there were a lot of egos going back and forth between the fire departments, the Power Company and PennDOT and instead of working together they all had their own idea of how they wanted to do it. Further discussion followed about the communication difficulties and the storm troubles. Solicitor Bernathy stated there should have been more coordination at the County level, stating the people up there are basically landlocked.

 

Mr. Flansburg questioned if the township owned any road closed signs saying that he saw cones across the road and stating there should have been signs with the emergency management phone number on them.

 

Luis Bocaletti said the fire departments were working quite well together for the duration of the storm.

 

Bill Schneider said yes they do have road closed signs and they were out on Pond Drive and Glass House Hill. They were not on the State Roads. There were quite a bit of problems. They normally get criticized for going on a PennDOT road and they were there and did help. When the poles came in town they helped replace them. Mr. Schneider also stated the fire departments did work quite well together. Solicitor Bernathy questioned if there were any public service announcements made over that radio station. Supervisor Ewbank said they were notifying people on Monday of where to document storm damage and an update of what Orange & Rockland was doing. Noting was on the radio on Sunday.  Mr. Schneider said when trees were down on Sunday four crews were sent to take the trees down but they will not touch the wires because if someone touches the wire they will get electrocuted.

 

Bob Melvin said the simple answer would be to do reverse 911 call outs and set up a phone apparatus. He said it is very inexpensive and even if people don’t have phones you can put cell phones on it. If you can reach five or six individuals it would spread the word. It would be something to look at.

 

Gwen Federico says it looks like there is a pocket of isolated folks in the township and maybe a flyer or some other plan could get word out.

 

Another resident said they do not get 1630 but they do 1490 which used to give a lot of local information.

 

Rollin Cook said they used their smart phone to access all the local radio stations. Solicitor Bernathy said that the information needs to be on the station however for residents to benefit.

 

Supervisor Ewbank referred residents to call 570-491-5177, listen to am 1630 or www.matamorasema.com

Supervisor Ewbank wished to thank the Westfall Fire Department, Mill Rift Fire Department, Westfall Highway Department, and Bob Melvin stating they all pitched in and helped out.

 

Bob Melvin said that he also works with Orange & Rockland OEM Center, and Pike County Light & Power OEM Center and they had crews in from Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin and there mission is to get power to people as soon as possible. There was an urgency to get to Cummins Hill Road for access and they worked to get that, but they had 3500 individual jobs and they worked through that as best they could.

 

Lisa Mickles asked if we declared a State of Emergency. Supervisor Ewbank said that yes the Borough of Matamoras, the Town of Deerpark, the City of Port Jervis, Borough of Milford and the Township of Westfall all declared an emergency and Vice-Chairman Buchanan added that the State of Pennsylvania declared an Emergency on Friday afternoon, which encompasses all of Pennsylvania. Supervisor Ewbank stated the State of Emergency opens the door for Federal funding.

 

MINUTES:  The minutes of August 2, 2011 were tabled.

 

TREASURER’s REPORT: Scott Myer presented the Treasurers Report and said the report is positive. We have already collected 100% of income for the year and are below budget in expenses. Supervisor Ewbank said it sounds like Mr. Myer is doing a good job, to which Mr. Myer stated he is just reporting information. Supervisor Banach moved to accept the report. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

 

POLICE REPORT: Assistant Police Chief Stewart gave the report for August reporting 240 calls for service, with 4,412 miles patrolled. Asst. Chief Stewart said there were a lot of complaints about the power and everyone was trying to work together. He himself did not have power for five days. He said there were rumors that people were getting tickets of $500.00 for going through barricades and that is simply not true. One person was written a ticket for driving through an area where the power company was working and they almost ran someone over and that was the only citation written. Motion to accept the police report made by Supervisor Ewbank and seconded by Supervisor Fischer. Motion carries with all in favor.

 

FIRE DEPARTMENTS: Ken Zielazny gave the Mill Rift Fire Department report for August reporting wires down Bluestone Blvd on 8/4, Equipment Maintenance on 8/10, 8/17, 8/24 and 8/27, Monthly Meeting on 8/11, Public Service basement pump out on 8/16 & 8/28, wires down on 8/28 and a structure fire on 8/28. Total man hours 98 and 15 equipment hours for the month. Luis Bocaletti gave the Westfall Township Fire Department Report for August reporting mutual aid structure fires 4, 3 automatic alarms, 6 MVAs, 1 mutual aid for drowning victim, 2 river rescues, 3 wires down, 2 pump outs, 2 mutual aid pump outs, 1 standby, 1 car fire, 1 mutual aid water rescue, 1 car fire, 1 structure fire, 1 co alarm, total calls for month 29, total man hours 328. Standby for the storm 40 calls. EMS total of 57 calls for month. Supervisor Banach moved to approve reports. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

 

HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT: Bill Schneider gave the Highway report for August reporting that they have been performing regular maintenance on the township buildings, properties and vehicles. Met with PennDOT representatives about the pedestrian tunnel under 84. They sent down their bridge crew who worked on clearing the right of way of debris, trees and overgrowth and also worked on a drainage issue. Applied hot patch on Pond Drive in preparation for resurfacing. 8/11 road repair and work on compost pile with Matamoras DPW. 8/12 cut back grass and trimmed right of way on Roberts Lane. 8/15 opened ditches and removed tree from road, while monitoring flooding from heavy rains on Sunday. 8/16 kept drainage ditches open. Pond drive closed. 8/18 road repair on Fire Tower Rd. Prepare for culvert pipe replacement on Pond Drive. Attended Pike County Road Task Force Meeting. 8/22 check roads and clean ditches. Continue work on Pond Drive. 8/23 replaced culvert pipe on Pond drive. 8/25 began to prepare equipment for Hurricane Irene. 8/26 cleaned out drainage ditches, 8/27 responded to standby at highway department at 11:30 pm Saturday. Heavy rain started. 8/28 first called out by Pike County Comm Center at 2 a.m. for red lights out at K-mart, no power in the area. 2:30 called out for trees down and debris on Heater’s Hill. Numerous calls throughout the storm Sunday through Monday for emergency cleanup. Called in extra manpower on Sunday morning after dangerous conditions subsided somewhat. 13 hours. Trees down on mostly all township roads, wires down, power outages throughout. Cummins Hill and Mill Rift Road were for a time closed in both directions. Assisted PennDOT along with EMA Director Bob Ewbank and PennDOT foreman Scott Gillette with opening one lane on Glass House Hill for access to Mill Rift in one direction for emergency vehicles. Mill Rift road remained closed until the night of 9/1 with several poles and all wires down. There were flooding conditions on Pond drive which was also closed. 8/30-current and future- continued cleanup from the storm. 9/2 replaced culvert pipe on Decker Lane. Many thanks are to be given to the numerous township residents who pitched in and helped removed trees and branches from the roadways. Motion to approve the highway report made by Supervisor Fischer. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Banach. Motion carries with all in favor.

 

BUILDING /ZONING: Zoning Officer Mike Rendleman gave the August report stating that we issued one building permit, and one zoning permit with total fees of $2,204. Supervisor Ewbank moved to approve the report. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

 

CORRESPONDENCE: On dais for review.

 

OLD BUSINESS:

 

Act 47 Monthly Report: Solicitor Bernathy stated the Township continues to be compliant with regard to

the Bankruptcy Plan as well as the Act 47 plan and the Township continues to operate within its budget. As Mr. Myer has indicated we are slightly under budget. The township continues to provide essential services. There is a letter that we received from Federal Master Sandor that the Secretary has responded to on August 23, 2011.

NEW BUSINESS:

 

HometownPress / Greg Cook & Carlos Fernandez: Not present.

 

Ordinance # 155 Cummins Hill Speed Limit: Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve Ordinance # 155. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carries with all in favor.

 

Amend Zoning Ordinance: Vice-Chairman Buchanan stated this pertains to the Delaware Drive section from the property line of the Township which is over on the other side of the highway building to Kittatiny Canoes. Vice-Chairman Buchanan opened up discussion to the public.

 

Jack Shewchuk said he and his wife Elaine live at 1134 Delaware Drive and they submitted a letter to all the board members and do not want to be included in the C-2 Zone Change. They disagree with the zone change and want to hear from the board members as to the reasoning of the zone change. Supervisor Banach said he personally does not want it.

 

A resident asked if this means that there will be more septic trucks going by their houses. Solicitor Bernathy said that would be an expansion of a preexisting use and is generally permitted. The zone change will not affect that. Discussion followed as to whether or not Mr. Muir would be expanding his business or selling his property for other uses. The resident questioned if there is anything they can do to stop it.

 

Greg Callaghan said pretty much everyone on Delaware Drive is against the zone change. Mr. Callaghan said the trucks step on the gas right after passing over the bridge and the noise gets louder and louder. Gwen Federico of 1022 Delaware Drive said Pedestrian traffic is very dangerous, stating you take your life in your hands trying to walk down to the Avenues with no sidewalks. Catherine Toussaint of Matamoras said she was just made aware of this two weeks ago and was quite surprised and asked if an impact study on the effects that this is going to have on Avenue C, the small bridge that connects both Matamoras and Westfall Township. Mrs. Toussaint complained about the traffic and stench coming from Westfall Township and said Matamoras will have more of an impact than Westfall will on this change. Solicitor Bernathy stated that from a legal perspective we are required by law to provide impacted parties with notice via the newspaper and in addition when there is a zone change we are required by law to provide notice to people that were within a certain distance to the zone change. Or Mrs. Toussaint would have received a notice. Mrs. Toussaint questioned Mr. Bernathy as to where he lived and how he drove here tonight. Solicitor Bernathy said where he lived is not the issue and that Mrs. Toussaint has no standing at the meeting this evening. He is allowing a Matamoras resident to speak at a Westfall meeting and they were not required to notify her of the zone change. Mrs. Toussaint tried to drive home the point that people needed to drive through Matamoras to get to this section of Westfall Township. Solicitor Bernathy said the other laws do not address impact for adjacent communities.  Supervisor Banach said a good township board would do that. Mrs. Toussaint appealed to the board to consider the impact it would have on Matamoras Borough.

 

Larry Flansburg said he would like to go on the record to say that he is personally against it and he felt the lawyer that spoke at the last meeting summed it up pretty nicely by saying the road just can’t handle it.

Mr. Flansburg said the old adage goes “if it’s not broke don’t fix it”. Mr. Flansburg said the Skate Rink was handled was quite well that if you want to change the use of your property you come and get a permit and that should be the way it is done, not to change everyone’s property. Several people agreed.

 

Mr. Barnes said he felt that a everybody is pointing out the worst possible scenario in changing the zoning when there are a lot of uses that could be done with the land that will have very little impact. The trucks going by will continue to go by whether you change the zoning or not. Mr. Barnes said a restaurant or motel or housing would not affect the traffic much. Mr. Barnes stated that there is no plan to expand the sewer plant at this time.

Mrs. Shewchuk asked if a conditional use of a particular parcel be limited as far as build out scope is concerned versus C2 designation where a parcel owner can build out up to 70% of their property.  Solicitor Bernathy said a conditional use is something where from where a use is permitted, however the Supervisors after reviewing the application can attach whatever conditions they deem necessary for purposes of protecting health, safety, and welfare. So there is a lot more regulation that can be accomplished in a conditional use which is different from a zoning classification. So the difference is a conditional use is something that gives Supervisors discretion to add additional conditions that really aren’t set forth in the ordinance. Just under the general guise of health, safety and welfare. Mrs. Shewchuk asked if rezoning the area would set a dangerous precedent for a lateral expansion. Solicitor Bernathy said he did not believe so and explained that it would be difficult to develop these parcels due to the fact that they are probably in a floodplain. Not to mention that many other of the arguments that have been mentioned would have to be applied to the applicant. Discussion followed about the board being duty bound to comply with their ordinances. Supervisor Ewbank said isn’t it true that they would have to comply with the Park Service. Solicitor Bernathy said there are many other third party approvals needed. Mrs. Shewchuk asked why we are even changing it. Vice-Chairman Buchanan said we had a request by a resident to change it and it was sent to the planning board. Richard Mai said that he submitted a letter than he does not want to be included in the zone change. Solicitor Bernathy said there were two letters that were received that will be made part of the record from Mr.  & Mrs. Jack Shewchuk and Mr.  & Mrs. Richard Mai stating they did not want to be included in the zone change.

 

Mr. Callaghan said he feels that something was trying to get snuck by him. Solicitor Bernathy assured Mr. Callaghan that as the Solicitor for this township nothing would get snuck by him. The law said within a reasonable distance and we looked at the map and determined 1000 feet as the designation. Mr. Callaghan said they disagree with the 1000 feet. Mr. Friend asked how they decided on 1000 feet. Solicitor Bernathy said you could argue that it was an arbitrary number, that is what we came up with as to who would be impacted.

 

Marge Tonkin said she is a member of the Planning Board and the vote was two against and two in favor of commercial.

 

Mrs. Toussaint said no one knows what the plans are on the properties.

 

Christine Robin said we should preserve the only peace and beauty that the township has left.

 

Mr. Barnes said his original plan when he bought the property was to put in senior housing and he doesn’t believe it will impact that greatly. The reason he needs the zoning change is to increase the density. Vice-Chairman Buchanan asked how much property Mr. Barnes owned. Mr. Barnes answered thirteen acres. Vice-Chairman Buchanan said the main properties affected are the Westfall Township properties, Mr. Barnes properties, Kittatiny, and Mr. Muir.

 

Attorney Schneider said the board does not allow certain uses that aid in economic developing stating that when Mr. Jones business changes he needs to sometimes change and if he needs to come in for a variance his burden of proof is almost impossible. He has to go to the Zoning Hearing Board, he can’t have a self imposed hardship and it’s almost impossible to get. He wants the board to be aware of the rights that Mr. Jones has to utilization of his property and the benefit it will give the municipality.

 

Mr. Shewchuk said when Kittatinny clear cut their property it had a devastating effect on his property and downstream.  Mrs. Robin said changing the zone will place us on the defense and put a chink in our armor.

Tom Friend said he is the closest house on the road on Delaware Drive and he is totally against any extra traffic on Delaware Drive.  Antoinette Kubie said the live on Delaware Drive and they do not want any more septic trucks. Mrs. Kubie said they cannot even hear their television with the windows closed due to the septic trucks.

 

A resident asked what was the rush to have it done so quickly. Vice-Chairman Buchanan said it has been going on for months.  Rollin Cook asked what is the benefit to the people.  Supervisor Fischer said there are residents that want to see the zone changed and they are still people.  Mrs. Banach said we already have senior housing in the township. Stating that you can’t buy property and then change it. Further stating people have inherited property or have owned it for years and now you want to change what they have.

 

Mr. Barnes said he does not want to change their property at all.

 

Mr. Gregory said he wants to remind the board that at the last meeting they heard from an expert witness that did an assessment who said in his opinion rezoning the properties on Delaware Drive would have an adverse impact. Mr. Gregory said he thinks the board should consider that in their decision.

 

Supervisor Fischer said there was also other testimony that went against that.

 

Mrs. Shewchuk said when she received her information from the Attorneys office it meant nothing until she received the map. They then divided up the properties by residential and commercial properties by the canoe liveries, Pike County Environmental, the Township, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. They than looked at the acreage which was residential vs. acreage in the other properties and it was actually 175.56 acres for the residential properties and 80.35 for the business, township, and state properties which is actually a 2:1 ratio. Mrs. Shewchuk said as a residential owner she feels she is being ganged up on by special interests vs. residential property owners and asked if anyone wanted to speak to that. Solicitor Bernathy stated there was a long process that the township went through for the preparation of the comprehensive plan and there were studies that were conducted and comments that were received. When you talk about impact it has to be a Township impact not just an area impact and part of the comprehensive plan that Solicitor Bernathy encourages Mrs. Shewchuk to look at has a lot of maps that break down the zones available that are left for commercial development. And those zones are very limited. So there’s very limited area left for purposes of generating tax base. The township is in need for increase tax revenue, with that comes increase services, so one of the things the supervisors looked at is to provide for more commercial development vs. increases property taxes. So the board is trying to strike a balance.

 

Supervisor Banach asked how commercial property is taxed and stated that commercial property is taxed at the same rate. Stating that Solicitor Bernathy is just spending our money. Supervisor Banach further stated that they have a $1,000,000.00 Police Department. Supervisor Banach said that the township went from a 2 man police department and one Wal Mart to a 9 full-time 3 part-time department. Supervisor Banach said we have a letter from Larry Flansburg with 80 names of residents who do not want this change and the room is full for the second month in a row. He feels it is the board’s duty to say that we do not need this and he is going to make that motion.

 

Mrs. Shewchuk said at the August 2, 2011 meeting the people showed up concerned about the three lane and this is a two lane road. This is a big concern for the residents especially if senior housing comes in.

 

Another resident is concerned his property value will go down with increased traffic.

 

Dave Jones said there are other uses that won’t necessary increase traffic. The state may need to work on the road. They may need to be fair to the businesses.

 

Mr. Gregory asked what businesses would not bring in more cars.

 

Mr. Jones said there may be more cars.

 

Mr. Barnes said this area is the best stretch of area for Westfall but no one has access to it because it is private property. Stating that along with senior housing is the possibility to put in a park to access the river.

 

Mrs. Shewchuk said there is a beautiful park 3 miles from here in Matamoras. Do we know that a park will be built here in this area?

 

Ms. Federico said if there is senior housing this area floods and that would be a large amount of people to be concerned with.

 

Supervisor Fischer stated we monitor the river and begin to evacuate at 12 feet.

 

Larry Flansburg said that 90% of the people in the township are against it and when the Supervisors vote that what they should take into consideration because the Supervisors work for the residents.

 

Vice-Chairman Buchanan asked where are the 90% stating he heard from about 10 people maybe 100 total out of 2400 residents.

 

Supervisor Banach moved that no change to the zoning takes place. Motion seconded by Supervisor Ewbank. Supervisor Fischer and Vice-Chairman Buchanan are opposed. Tie vote, motion does not carry.

 

September 11, 2011 Memorial Service / Town of Deerpark: Vice-Chairman Buchanan read a letter from Flo Santini inviting the board to the memorial service.

 

PennDOT Winter Services 5 Year Municipal Agreement: Roadmaster Bill Schneider recommended approval. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the agreements. Supervisor Ewbank seconds the motion. Motion carries with all in favor.

 

Schedule Budget Meetings: Budget meetings will be scheduled for October 13th, 20th, and 27th; at 7:00 pm. Fire and Police will come to the first meeting.

 

Milford Water Authority in Westfall Township re: Orange & Rockland: Discussion was held regarding the Milford Water Authority bringing water into the township for Orange & Rockland. Solicitor Bernathy asked how the water was getting into the township. Are they using a township right of way or a PennDOT right of way. Vice-Chairman Buchanan asked if there were any objections from the board if they were not using a township right of way. There were no objections.

 

Correspondence from Michael Sandor dated August 11, 2011: That has been responded to in the August 23, 2011 letter.

 

Resignation of Lester Buchanan: Supervisor Ewbank read the letter of resignation from Lester J. Buchanan resigning his position from the Westfall Highway Department effective 3:00 pm, December 21, 2011. Mr. Buchanan said it has been a pleasure working with Roadmaster Bill Schneider and serving the citizens of Westfall Township. Supervisor Banach moved to accept the resignation. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor. Supervisor Banach suggested advertising the position. Vice-Chairman Buchanan said he spoke to Bill Schneider and he feels we should hire by December 1, 2011 to have an overlap of 3 weeks to get the new employee familiar with the new job before Mr. Buchanan leaves. Vice-Chairman Buchanan said right now we only have one application. We will advertise in the Pike County Dispatch and place this on the website. The rate of pay will be $15.00 per hour, full-time, health benefits for individual, CDL required.

 

Burning Ban: Supervisor Ewbank has a proposed ordinance from the Pennsylvania DEP Model Air Pollution Control Ordinance that he would like to place on the next meeting for public hearing. Solicitor Bernathy questioned if Supervisor Ewbank would like to send that for any type of recommendation to the Planning Commission. Supervisor Ewbank said they could but he would like to get together with Solicitor Bernathy first

to fine tune it, stating that it would only apply to areas of Westfall Township that are adjacent to the borough of Matamoras. The board will send this ordinance on to Planning. No advertising will take place yet.

 

SUBDIVISION REVIEW and ACTION:

 

Monroe Optical Land Development Plan

Preliminary / Final Phase – Preliminary for Phase II: Solicitor Bernathy stated a letter has been received from Planning that a motion was made and carried at their August 23, 2011 Planning Commission meeting to recommend approval subject to the conditions listed on the aforementioned letter. (Attached and made part of the record) Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve Monroe Optical based upon the listed conditions. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Banach and carries with all in favor.

 

Mill Rift Cemetery / Haney Minor Subdivision Plan: Solicitor Bernathy said similarly you have a motion from Planning at their August 23rd meeting to recommend approval of this submission with the recommendation of the applicants request for a modification to be approved upon the condition they submit the waiver request in writing which they have done. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to approve the Subdivision. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Banach and carries with all in favor.

 

ADJOURNMENT: Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to adjourn at 9:22. Motion seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carries with all in favor.

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

Lisa A. Green

Secretary

Regular Meeting-August 2011

The regular meeting of the Westfall Township Board of Supervisors was held Tuesday, August 2, 2011, at 10:10 pm. The meeting was held at the Township Building on Delaware Drive and LaBarr Lane, Westfall Township.

Those present were Chairman, James Muir; Vice-Chairman, Lester Buchanan; Supervisors, Robert Ewbank,

Paul Fischer, Raymond Banach; Solicitor, Robert Bernathy and Secretary, Lisa Green. Also present were Michael Rendleman, Bill Schneider, Marge Tonkin, and approximately 16 members of the general public.

AGENDA: The agenda was approved on a motion by Vice-Chairman Buchanan, seconded by Supervisor Banach. Motion carries with all in favor.

PUBLIC COMMENT: Marge Tonkin asked how we are doing on the burning situation. Stating she is tired of smelling garbage and she does not believe it is coming from her neighborhood. The board stated they are still working on it.

 

MINUTES:  The minutes of June 7, 2011 regular meeting were approved on a motion by Supervisor Ewbank. Motion is seconded by Vice-Chairman Buchanan and carries with all in favor.

MINUTES:  The minutes of July 5, 2011 regular meeting were approved on a motion by Vice-Chairman Buchanan. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Banach. Supervisors Ewbank and Fischer abstain. Motion carries with three in favor and two abstentions.  

TREASURER’s REPORT: Chairman Muir asked the board to read the treasurers report at their leisure.

POLICE REPORT: Police Chief Stewart gave the report for July stating 263 calls for service, with 6,341

miles patrolled. Chief Stewart said there have been a lot of bike thefts in the area and encouraged residents to register their bikes with the police department. Supervisor Banach asked how many patrol cars do the officers take home on a regular basis and questioned if the cars that are turned over are sold or given away when they buy new. Chief Stewart said there are three cars that are taken home and the cars are sold to the highest bidder. The Chief also mentioned that they are running speed checks on Delaware Drive. Motion to accept the police report made by Supervisor Fischer and seconded by Supervisor Banach. Motion carries with all in favor.

FIRE DEPARTMENTS: Bill Schneider gave the Mill Rift Fire Department report for July reporting 52 man hours and 9.5 equipment hours for the month. Luis Bocaletti gave the Westfall Township Fire Department Report for July reporting total calls for month 32, total man hours 275. Supervisor Banach moved to approve reports. Motion is seconded by Vice-Chairman Buchanan and carries with all in favor.

HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT: Bill Schneider gave the Highway report for July reporting that they have been performing regular maintenance on the township buildings. On 7/7 they met with PennDOT representative to establish black top bid package for Pond drive, 7/12 Pot Hole Repairs/hot patch on Maple Ave, Stella Street, Blue Ridge Ave, and Elizabeth Street, Continuing maintenance and repairs on all equipment, shoulder work on Cummins Hill, Glass House Hill and Heaters Hill Roads. Clearing of culvert pipes and drainage ditches throughout the township, installed new stop sign on Glass House Hill. Maintained compost area, met with representatives for black top bids, 7/19 cleared tree blocking road in Pond Eddy, 7/20 Installed new culvert pipes on Heaters Hill assisted by Matamoras DPW for traffic control, 7/21 attended Road Task Force meeting, 7/22 started installing the 25 MPH signs on township section of Cummins Hill Road, 7/25 met with PennDOT representative about a drainage issue at the pedestrian tunnel under 84 to Rose Lane. 7/29 Finished installing rest of 25 MPH signs on Cummins Hill Road to Mill Rift. 7/29 Called out by Comm Center at 5:36 for tree on wires on Stella Street. Power out and red light out. Generator hooked up to power the red light. Orange and Rockland was called. Tree was cleared out, red light back on and power restored at 11:36. Vice-Chairman Buchanan thanked the Matamoras DPW and Councilman Stevens for their assistance.

BUILDING /ZONING: Zoning Officer Mike Rendleman gave the July report stating that we issued two building permits, one sign permit, and one zoning permits with total fees of $952.52. Mrs. Green mentioned that the township received a $31,000.00 building permit fee from Wal Mart for a remodel that hasn’t been entered in the system yet. Supervisor Ewbank moved to accept the building/zoning report. Motion is seconded by Vice-Chairman Buchanan and carries with all in favor.

CORRESPONDENCE: On dais for review.

 

OLD BUSINESS:

 

Act 47 Monthly Report: Solicitor Bernathy stated that as he has reported on a monthly basis as of March 2, 2010 the Federal Bankruptcy Court signed the order confirming the Township’s bankruptcy plan as well as the Act 47 Recovery Plan which amounts to final disposition of the bankruptcy plan. The Township is operating within the confines of its budget and continues to meet its financial obligations. The Township continues to provide essential services and is otherwise compliant with the Recovery Plan, which has been approved by the Bankruptcy Court on March 2, 2010. At this point Solicitor Bernathy said he believes all non-monetary obligations of the plan have been met and with the Supervisors permission he would like to contact the state to delete the monthly report from the agenda.

NEW BUSINESS:

Road Bids:  Supervisor Ewbank said we have four bids.

Locust Ridge:  $142,182.55 for 1.5 inches 9.5 millimeter super pave.

Leeward Construction $93,202.00 for same

Hanson Aggregates: $120,620.00

Wayco $103,885.85

Vice-Chairman Buchanan moves to accept the Leeward Construction bid in the amount of $93,202.00. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Ewbank. Motion carries with all in favor. Chairman Muir asked Bill Schneider if that is where he was expecting the bids to come in at. Bill said yes it was.

Requests for Proposals Engineers: Chairman Muir stated we have received two proposals one from McGoey, Hauser and Edsall and one from Boucher and James. Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to table this item. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Fischer and carries with all in favor.

 

Resolution 2011-3 / Act 537 Plan: Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to adopt the Act 537 Plan. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carries with all in favor.

 

Resolution 2011-4 / Rose Lane Component 3M: Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to adopt this Planning Module. Motion is seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carries with all in favor.

Ordinance for Cummins Hill Speed Limit: Solicitor Bernathy stated we have an ordinance regulating the maximum speed limits on portions of Cummins Hill Road as posted, and prescribing penalties for the violation thereof. We need a motion to advertise the ordinance. Supervisor Ewbank moved to advertise the ordinance for public hearing on September 6, 2011 at 7:00. Motion is seconded at Vice-Chairman Buchanan. Motion carries with all in favor.

ADJOURNMENT: Vice-Chairman Buchanan moved to adjourn at 10:29. Motion seconded by Supervisor Ewbank and carries with all in favor.

Respectfully submitted,

Lisa A. Green

Secretary