SWAN Newsletter #115

December 15, 2015

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP AUTHORITY MEETING Reported by Watson Fisher

Bond IssueResolution #15-15 At the November 24th authority meeting and at the December 1st supervisors meeting, representatives from the Susquehanna Advisors Group presented final details on the township’s planned bond issue to finance needed sewer projects to be undertaken in 2016. The bonds will be paid off by the township from future sewer revenues. The authority voted to approve the formal agreement between the township and the sewer authority, covering the funding for the projects.

December 15, 2015

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING Reported by Watson Fisher

Annual Reorganization Meeting This required meeting will be held on Monday, January 4, 2016, at 7:30 p.m. to elect officers for the coming year.

BudgetResolution #15-29 The township’s 2016 budget has been developed by the supervisors over the last five months and was presented at this meeting for formal approval. It covers planned revenues and expenditures for the upcoming year. Township manager George Wolfe gave a brief overview of the balanced budget and the supervisors voted to give it final approval.

Compensation PlanResolution #15-30 At the previous week’s workshop session, Mr. Wolfe reviewed for the board the proposed 2016 compensation program for the 27 administrative employees who are not covered by a collective bargaining agreement. At this meeting, a pay increase of 2.5% for those employees was approved.

Public Works Site The board was asked to consider authorizing the township engineers to analyze the costs and considerations associated with revising the planned development project currently underway at the township property on the south side of Locust Lane. The current plan involves building an addition on the north side of the township’s Public Works building, but the adjacent home owners have lobbied to have the addition made on the south side of the building instead. They requested this change saying that the addition would be less noticeable from their homes and the operation would be less noisy. The addition is planned to be located on the north side of the present building because the land drops off on the south side of the building, making it more difficult to build it on the south side.

It was suggested that in order to consider this change, at a cost of $2,500.00, the township engineers would prepare a detailed report on the revised plan. And for an additional $1,000.00, they would prepare a colored architectural rendering showing the revised plan. The supervisors authorized the engineers to prepare the report and the rendering for their consideration.

Gale Drive Pump Station The project by the contractor, JP Environmental, LLC, to demolish this sewer station, which was just south of Linglestown Road, on the border with Susquehanna Township, is complete. Change Order No.1 to their contract, which reflected a savings to the township of $1,737.00, reflecting the need to use less material than was originally thought, was approved.

Shadebrook Cider Press Associates, the developers for this large housing and commercial development project, which is now under construction along Fairmont Drive, requested approval for a change to the previously approved project phasing schedule. The changes would have phase 2 being finished in 2017, phase 3 being finished in 2020, and phase 4 being finished in 2023. The supervisors approved the requested changes to the schedule.

GHD Agreement At their November 24th meeting the authority members reviewed the proposed agreement with GHD, their engineers, covering compensation rates for services in 2016. They postponed action on the agreement, pending resolution of several minor compensation issues. At this meeting, GHD presented a revised agreement responding to  the changes the authority requested, and the authority voted to approve the revised agreement.

Building Sewer ReplacementsResolutions #15-16-01 thru #15-16-45 These forty-five resolutions would authorize the condemnation for temporary construction easements to build sewer replacements in PC-4C/E. This is a standard legal formality to allow work to be done on private property in the Paxton Creek mini-basin. The resolutions were approved.

Mainline Sewer Replacements Resolutions #15-17-01 thru #15-17-09 These nine   resolutions would authorize the condemnation of permanent and temporary easements for mainline sewer replacements in PC-4C/E. This is a standard legal formality to allow work to be done on private property in the Paxton Creek mini-basin. The resolutions were approved.

January 4, 2016

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING Reported by Watson Fisher

Annual Reorganization Meeting The supervisors took action to elect officers and to make the following appointments for 2016: William Hornung, Chairman of the Board of Supervisors; Gary Crissman, Vice Chairman; William Hawk, Secretary; William Seeds, Treasurer; Robin Lindsey, Assistant Secretary and Assistant Treasurer; George Wolfe, Township Manager; Steven Stine, Solicitor; HRG, Township Engineers. They also made appointments to a number of township boards, committees and representatives to county and state organizations.

Regular Business Meeting

Hoffman FordConditional Use #16-01 This official public hearing, conducted by township solicitor Steven Stine, was regarding the auto company’s plan to construct an automobile repair  garage on property at 5300 Jonestown Road. The proposed building would be on property east of their existing large new car lot and showroom, on land that is zoned Commercial General. An auto repair garage is only permitted as a conditional use in this zoning district.

An adjacent property owner’s attorney objected to the plan and requested that his client, who was not in attendance, be allowed to read the transcript of the hearing before the board took action. When the lengthy public hearing was concluded, and it was determined that the court reporter’s transcript would be available for him to read by mid month, the board agreed to delay its decision on the matter until their business meeting on February 2nd.

Public AccountantResolution #16-01 This resolution was prepared to appoint a certified public accountant firm to audit the funds and accounts of the township for the 2015 fiscal year. The board voted to retain the firm of Zelenkofske and Axelrod, LLC, to provide this service.

Linglestown Rotary Clock The clock now located on the north west corner of the town square was a gift from the club with some help from other groups and individuals. At this meeting, the ownership of the clock was officially turned over to the township, but the Linglestown Rotary Club will continue to be responsible for its maintenance.

Hutch Junk Yard The renewal of this company’s license was approved by the board.

York Excavating This firm is doing the site work for the addition to the township’s Public Works building on Locust Lane. It was determined that there would need to be a second water line from United Water Company’s main run into the building to provide water for the expanded fire suppression system. York Excavating Company submitted a change order proposal, Change Order #1, in the amount of $47,280.00, to do the work to install the new line. The board voted to approve the change order.

Doli Construction Corp. This company is doing a storm water project for the township which was scheduled to be completed in 2015, but now needs to be extended until April 20th of 2016. Change Order #2 to allow the work to be extended until April was approved.

Humane Society  The board considered the extension of their Municipal Domestic Animal Protective Service Agreement with the Harrisburg Humane Society through the year 2016. The agreement mainly covers the society’s collection of stray animals. The board voted to approve the agreement.

January 6, 2016

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING Reported by Watson Fisher

Annual Reorganization Meeting The commissioners voted on the election of officers for 2016. They elected Fredrick Lighty, Chairman; Steve Libart, Vice Chairman; and Roy Newsome, Secretary. They also approved the meeting dates and times for the year.

Regular Business Meeting

4920 Jonestown Road Presentation and action on the Preliminary/Final Land Development Plan for the proposed project at this location was tabled at the request of the applicant. This was the only item of new business on the agenda for this meeting.

Comprehensive Plan The township plan has not been formally updated since 2004 and the  commissioners and staff are now beginning work to bring it up to date. It was reported that at their December 2015 meeting, the commissioners and the township staff were working to finalize a format for using a computer program to accomplish that large task.

At this meeting they continued that effort. They resolved that all commission members would work with Microsoft Word to record their suggested changes and updates. The members and staff are also working with the engineering firm of Gannett Fleming for recommendations on some of the details. There are a great number of maps of the township that have been updated over the years showing land use, developments, flood plains, recreation facilities, etc. and they are considering which of those should be included in the final plan.

Like the Zoning Ordinance and other township official plans, this plan covers a wide range of matters, and work to update it properly has just begun.

January 6, 2016

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP GREENWAY COMMITTEE MEETING

See Parks & Recreation Board report.

January 6, 2016

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PARKS AND RECREATION COMMITTEE MEETING Reported by Vera Stuchinski

Hodges Heights Park – Land Update/Development Plans – George Zimmerman (Fineline Homes) has a parcel of land at Nyes & Conway Roads for sale. He suggested to George Hartwick that it would be suitable for the township to develop as a park for Hodges Heights. Drawbacks were discussed: the price seems high, and not much of the parcel would be suitable for activities due to the grade.

Parks & Recreation Ordinances (Chapter 132) Signage – The Board should review & revise the ordinances prohibiting all but informational signage. Naming rights could be a means of bringing in needed funds for the Friendship Center.

Board Vacancy/Friendship Center Representative – Tom George, member of the Parks & Recreation Committee and liaison to Friendship Center, recently resigned these positions. A suggestion was made to advertise for a person who will fill both vacancies.

Arts Council Activities – The Lower Paxton Variety Band will play at the Community Dance on 1/23. Proceeds will benefit the Freddie the Frog replacement project.

Greenway Committee Report – The committee is planning dates for trail maintenance by volunteers.

Possibility Place – New playground equipment has arrived and is in storage.

Heroes Grove – Phase 1 is complete. Opening day is 6/17.

January 12, 2016

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS WORKSHOP SESSION Reported by Watson Fisher

Capital Area Soccer Association This organization has developed a plan to construct a permanent building to be located in Paxtonia between George Park and Ranger Fields. It will contain a concession stand and will provide storage space for CASA’s equipment. It will replace several temporary buildings presently at that site. After the Parks and Recreation Board had worked with CASA to develop an acceptable building plan it was forwarded to the supervisors for their action. At this meeting the supervisors voted to approve the plan.

New Hope Church A representative from this church, located at 584 Colonial Club Drive, and a representative from the Advanced Training Programs, Inc. presented a preliminary plan to construct a recreation center on land adjacent to the church. The proposed plan is for the Advanced Training Programs company to purchase a seven acre tract of land from Shades Nursery fronting on Colonial Club Drive located just north of the church’s property, build a recreation building and some play fields with parking on the land, and operate a recreation center in cooperation with the church’s programs. The property is in the R-1 Low Density Residential zoning district.

The supervisors generally supported the plan but commented that there could be a slight conflict of interest with the ongoing programs at the township’s Friendship Center. However, that was not enough for them to make any serious objections to the plan. The supervisors did explain the approval process the applicant would need to go through, including preparing a land development plan and complying with the zoning requirements, but they indicated that the township would probably support the plan. This was an initial presentation of the planned project and the applicants will expand on it and will present it to the township at a future meeting.

Classic Community At meetings, the previous two months, several residents living in homes in phases 4 and 5 of the Quail Hollow housing development complained to the supervisors about this developer leaving some streets unfinished and about clogged storm drains. It had been explained that the township is not legally able to use any of the developer’s improvement guarantee funds to do work on the completion of the streets until July of this year.

At this meeting it was reported that the developer had responded to the township’s letters by saying that they will hire contractors to do snow removal and clean the catch basins and the debris on the undeveloped lots. However, it was reported that the only work that had been done since the previous meeting was the cleaning of some storm drains. The supervisors said they would again send a letter to the developer requesting them to respond in ten days and to again address the problems. They also will ask the county officials to do an inspection of the roads in these two phases of the development.

Dauphin County Land Bank Township manager George Wolfe continued to review with the supervisors the intergovernmental cooperation agreement and memorandum of understanding regarding this project. The agreement will provide for the county Land Bank Authority to work with the township in dealing with the maintenance and resale of abandoned properties which are mostly residential. The supervisors indicated their agreement with the matter and they plan to approve it at their next business meeting.

Lower Paxton Township Sestercentennial Committee Mr. Wolfe initiated a discussion regarding the observance in 2017 of the 250th anniversary of the formal founding of the township in 1767. The supervisors agreed that they would spearhead the planning of a celebration but they felt that it needed to be a one day event only, not an extended one such as the recent one honoring the founding of Linglestown. It could include a parade, sporting events, a concert, evening festivities, etc. They suggested that a committee be formed by the township to organize the event and stated that some township funds would be available. They also suggested that several of the group of Linglestown residents led by Polly Murphy, who organized the Linglestown celebration, be contacted for advice in planning the event. The supervisors plan to have a formal resolution, prepared for action on forming the committee at their next meeting.

Miscellaneous   Mr. Wolfe mentioned to the board two items that they will be asked to consider at their next business meeting. One is Act 42 of 2015, authorizing the appointment of alternates to the Planning Commission. There presently are no alternates to fill in if some commission members are absent, and they are allowed to have up to three alternates. The supervisors agreed to having one alternate, and a resolution to that effect will be acted on at the next supervisors’ meeting. The other item was approving the Arts Council agreement with the Lower Paxton Township Variety Band. The band is not paid but the township does provide them with liability insurance. A formal contract is not required but he feels there needs to be a signed memo of understanding between the Arts Council and the band.

He also mentioned that there will need to be discussion at the next supervisors meeting, regarding the formal litigation process that is underway involving the township’s construction project at the Public Works building on Locust Lane. It involves the location of the addition to the building, which was planned to be on the front of the building, and which the residents request be located on the rear of the building.

January 19, 2016

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING Reported by Watson Fisher

Traffic Signals Township manager George Wolfe reported that PennDOT will be  installing adaptive traffic signals on Route 22 through the township, as far east as Shannon Drive. The new equipment will adjust the timing of the signals to automatically respond to changing traffic volumes. This will result in some longer waits on side streets empting onto Route 22 during the rush hours.

Lower Paxton Township Sestercentennial CommitteeResolution #2014-11 The 250th anniversary of the township’s founding will be celebrated next year, and this resolution was passed, establishing the formation of a committee to organize an event recognizing it. The board had agreed that the celebration would be a one day event, and at this meeting they decided that there would be a nine person executive committee formed as soon as possible. They intend to encourage citizens who are interested in helping organize the event to come forward to work with the committee. The township will put notices on their web site and in the local paper announcing that.

Planning CommissionResolution #16-08 At their workshop meeting, the previous week, the supervisors discussed whether or not to appoint one or more alternates to the commission. There currently are none and if some of the members are absent it might not be possible to take action on plans. They agreed that there should be one alternate appointed and at this meeting they voted to make that change.

Dauphin County Land Bank   The supervisors had agreed at their workshop meeting to approve an agreement with the Dauphin County Land Bank Authority, the local school district and neighboring municipalities regarding the maintenance and resale of abandoned properties in the township. This agreement will provide for help to the township in dealing with this matter and the board voted to approve it.

Municipal RecordsResolution #16-03 The state governs how long townships are required to retain certain records. The board voted to destroy some of those records that were dated from 2008 to 2013.

Sanitary SewerResolution #16-07 This resolution was to amend the county’s Sewage Facilities Plan to allow the township to redirect sanitary sewer flow from the Beaver Creek system to the Paxton Creek system. A recent odor problem had required a change, GHD engineers had analyzed three options, and it was determined this was the best one. The supervisors voted to approve the resolution.

Heroes Grove The first phase of construction of this outdoor amphitheater project at Brightbill Park is almost complete. Change Order #4 is an addition of $3,383.00 to the contract with ECI Construction, LLC for several changes to the electrical dimming system. The total construction cost of the project remains below the approved budget. The township is handling the payments but none of the funds are township funds. The board approved the payment.

RIII Construction, Inc. This company’s contract is for repairs to the sanitary sewer in the Beaver Creek 3A and 3B mini-basins. Change Order #3 to their contract, in the amount of $89,218.00, covers additional costs for work in the Lockwillow Avenue and Ridgeview Drive area. Serious problems with residents’ sump pumps and water collecting on properties have required unforeseen additional work by the contractor. The supervisors approved the change order.