SWAN Newsletter #76

November 20, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP AUTHORITY MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

Change Orders – Change Orders for final adjustments to contract quantities for the two Linglestown Pump Station sewer contracts and the PC4B-6C sewer contract were approved.

Authority Budget – The proposed budget for the sewer authority for 2013 was presented for review. It anticipates a slight increase in revenues over this year’s amount and a decrease in the amount paid to Harrisburg for treatment of the two-thirds of the township’s sewage that is processed at their plant. It is unclear whether their sewer plant will continue to be operated by the city or whether the operation will be turned over to the Harrisburg authority. This possible change could affect the cost to the township. It is anticipated that the township will have to slowly raise sewer rates in future years but no increase is planned for 2013. The authority voted to approve the budget as presented.

Resolution #12-11 – This resolution is to establish the attorney fees for delinquent sewer account collections. When sewer bills are not paid on time the township sends a letter to the property owner to initiate the collection process and when that fails a collection agency becomes involved. The township has retained the firm of Modern Recovery as the collection agency. When that does not get results an attorney initiates legal proceedings and this resolution establishes his fee. The resolution was approved.

Township Reports – A status report was made on the current mini-basin sewer replacement construction projects. The year 2012 has been very busy and a large amount of work will continue through 2013. Bidding has been very competitive and unit costs are down to those last seen in 2006. The engineers did report however that the low bidding on projects does create a higher number of change orders that are submitted during construction for extras.

November 20, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PARK PLAN MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

This was the third meeting conducted by the planning firm of Simone Collins regarding township parks. The firm is in the process of creating a master plan for the development of a new township park on the site of the recently acquired Wolfersberger Tract east of Linglestown and the upgrading of the existing Koons Park in Linglestown.

The first meeting was in September and it was an information gathering session with the township committee that was formed to work with the planners as they develop the master plan. The committee includes the Parks & Recreation Board members and selected township board members and citizens. The township representatives provided their wish list as to what facilities they would ideally hope to have in the two parks. The second meeting was in October and was a public meeting which solicited input from interested citizens who use the parks and from neighbors of the two park locations.

This third meeting focused on representatives from the many sports organizations that use the parks for practice sessions and games. Their input mainly centered on the availability of fields for all the various active sports leagues that need to be accommodated. General concerns repeatedly voiced during the meetings included the need at Koons Park for the fields and courts to be rehabilitated, rest rooms to be improved, storm water problems to be addressed, and football and softball fields to be lighted. Suggestions for the development of Wolfersberger Park include playfields on the southern section and walking trails, a dog park, and a playground on the northern section. The major concern at Wolfersberger Park remains vehicle access. The only access will be from Wenrich Street to the west and that road would require major improvements to be considered safe for park traffic.

November 20, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

Financial Advisor – The board voted to appoint the firm of Susquehanna Group Advisors, Inc. to serve as Financial Advisor for the upcoming issuance of General Obligation Bonds. This new bond issue involves the refunding of a previous ten million dollar bond issue.

Cable Television – The Capital Region Council of Governments is organizing a review of the local cable television franchise. Fifteen neighboring municipalities are participating and the board voted to be involved in the review.

Fire Call Boxes – The chiefs of the three township fire companies have agreed on a minor amendment to the fire call box jurisdictional map. Public Safety Director David Johnson has concurred with the proposed changes and the board voted to approve them.

Sanitary Sewer Services – Resolution #12-34 would reduce the amount the township pays to the City of Harrisburg for sanitary sewer services. The consultants to the township’s authority have studied the figures and they recommend the reduction. The board approved the resolution.

Koons Memorial Swim Club – The swim club has secured the promise of a loan from Centric Bank for $11,500.00 to pay for badly needed repairs to the roof of their main building. The township has been asked to guarantee the bank loan as it has done before with no problem. The club’s finances are in good order and the board agreed to again cosign for the loan for this emergency repair project.

Bank Program – Resolution #12-33 would authorize the township’s participation in PNC Bank’s Easy Procure program since the township is a member of the PA School District Liquid Asset Fund. This change in the bank program would save the township money over the next few years and the board approved the resolution.

Real Estate Tax – Settlements have been reached regarding real estate tax problems on four properties in the township. Three are on Flank Drive regarding properties owned by Gateway General Partnership and the other one is in the Deaven Woods development on Plowman Ridge Road. The settlements have been approved by the county and the school district and the board voted to also approve them.

November 27, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS WORKSHOP – (5:30 PM – 8:40 PM)

Attended by Watson Fisher and Ted Robertson; Reported by Ted Robertson.

There was a lengthy discussion with representatives of the Townships Fire Companies regarding Paxtonia’s desire to withdraw from the Volunteer Firefighters Relief Association. Linglestown and Colonial Park’s refusal to accept two by-law changes proposed by Paxtonia precipitated the decision of the Paxtonia Fire Department. It was suggested that Colonial Park and Linglestown accept the by-law changes for a period of two (2) years. Both the Fire Companies agreed to take this proposal to their respective memberships for a vote.

There was continuing discussion of the Friendship Center’s operating losses over the past several years. It was suggested that the fiscal viability of the various sections in the Center be identified so that informed decisions can be made regarding changes in the Center’s operation.

Implementation of the consultant’s recommendations is on-going. It was suggested that the consultant be brought in to help guide the change process.

There was a discussion with the Financial Advisor regarding the refunding of certain bonds and the potential issue of additional debt for capital projects.

November 29, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP ZONING HEARING BOARD MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

Red Lobster Restaurant – Docket No. 1322 – This request for a variance is to be permitted to add one additional outdoor sign at their restaurant at 4300 Jonestown Road in the Commercial General Zoning District. The building is being remodeled and the proposed additional sign was not a letter sign but a 24 square foot lighted logo in the shape of a lobster. It would be placed above the front door facing Jonestown Road. The board voted to approve the additional sign.

Visionary Properties – Docket No. 1323 – The Visionworks optometrist and eye glasses store will be the new tenant in the corner space at the Colonial Commons shopping center at 5086 Jonestown Road. The corner space faces the highway and was previously occupied by Blockbuster Video. The shopping center is in the Commercial General Zoning District. One wall sign is permitted for a multi-tenant building but because this is a corner store the applicant made the case that a second sign was needed to adequately direct customers looking for the store. The request was approved.

Tattoo Parlor – Docket No. 1326 – This variance request was submitted by Steven Graehling who owns the storage/warehouse building at 901-B Crosby Street in what is now the R-2 Residential District. He has a potential tenant who wishes to open a tattoo establishment in part of the building but businesses are not permitted in a residential district. This area presently has commercial use properties including Mr. Graehling’s lawn business which occupies part of the building in question. Before there was a recent zoning change this area was in a business zoning district and the board felt that this area probably should be in a commercial zone. Neighbors have indicated their support for this request. The board voted to approve this variance.

Greendrop Realty LLC – Docket No. SE12-05 – This request is for a Special Exception for the Greendrop Company to be allowed to operate a Recycling Center at 5001 Jonestown Road in the Commercial General District. This property is at a prominent location and previously it was a used car lot operated by Sutliff Chevrolet. The non-profit operation benefits the Military Order of the Purple Heart by receiving and processing donated lightly-used clothing and small household items and selling them with the proceeds going to various charities. The operators assured the board that donated items will be processed promptly inside the building and shipped by their trucks daily to their various destinations. The board voted to approve this special exception.

December 4, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS WORKSHOP – (5:20 – 7:15 PM)

Attended by Watson Fisher and Ted Robertson; Reported by Ted Robertson.

The Supervisors held discussions with representatives of Community Life Team (Pinnacle) and South Central EMS regarding the provision of emergency health care services in the Township. It is anticipated that a selection will be made at the December 18, 2012 Supervisors meeting.

December 4, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING -(7:35 PM– 8:10 PM)

Attended by Watson Fisher and Ted Robertson; Reported by Ted Robertson.

OLD BUSINESS:

After a public hearing, the Supervisors unanimously approved Ordinance 12-10 authorizing an inter-municipal agreement with West Hanover Township for the replacement of the Old Jonestown Road Bridge over Beaver Creek. Lower Paxton Township’s share of $40,000.00 will be covered by a grant.

NEW BUSINESS:

The Supervisors unanimously approved the appointment of John Dougherty to the Friendship Center Board.

The Supervisors unanimously approved the high bid of $4611.00 by Caravelle Custom Cars for the purchase of four used Township vehicles.

The Supervisors unanimously approved action on deeds of dedication for two parcels 35-102-118 and 35-107-166 granting permanent easements to the Township Authority. These are Township owned parcels in the Forest Hills area.

December 5, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP GREENWAY COMMITTEE MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

HATS Presentation Committee member Roy Newsome and Parks & Recreation Department director Brian Luetchford made their power point presentation to the Harrisburg Area Transportation Study Committee on November 30th. They discussed the township’s Greenway Plan and the completed and proposed projects in the township. The HATS members expressed an interest in working with the township. The hoped for result was that there would begin to be an ongoing coordination between that regional planning organization and the committee on projects in the township where walkways and bikeways could be created. Of interest are future state road projects in the township. One that was mentioned was the planned repaving of sections of Linglestown Road.

Greenway Projects The signs planned for the Autumn Oaks Trail will be made by the VoTech students and installed in the spring. Work on the map identifying the private property owners along the Darlington Trail will continue. A similar map for the proposed Oak Park Trail is underway. Preliminary work will continue on planning for the Nyes Road trail, including making contact with the one private property owner whose property the trail will cross.

Committee Appointments – All committee members present agreed to continue to serve for the coming year.

December 5, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PARKS & RECREATION BOARD MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

Dog Park – At last month’s meeting two representatives from the dog park located in Kohl Park asked the board to allow them to install concrete pads at the entrances to the two fenced-in dog run areas. The pads could be either precast pavers which could be installed in one day or poured concrete which would require that the park be closed for three days. The materials would be supplied by the dog park group but they would need labor help from the township. There was not a quorum at the previous meeting so no decision could be made. At this meeting the board voted to allow the work to be done and agreed that the dog park group could decide whether to use pavers or poured concrete.

Heroes Grove – Some funds have been raised to date by the group planning the proposed amphitheater project in Brightbill Park but more are needed before any significant work can be started. Plans are to apply for a state grant and to request help from the National Guard in the form of labor. This board will ask for directions from the township regarding who would be responsible for maintenance and who would establish policies and procedures for the facility if it is constructed.

Wolfersberger Park – The owner and operator of the Linglestown Paintball business leases land on the tract that will become township property in January when the township makes the final payment. He asked the board what procedures he needs to follow to continue to operate his business on what will then become park property. He was told that the lease agreement he has with the present owner will continue to be in effect with the township for now and that the township will prepare a new agreement in the near future. He was advised that it would be quite a few years before any park development would be started and that even then he would probably be able to continue to operate his business there.

Action Plan – At the beginning of 2012 the board had an outline plan for tasks and actions they planned to accomplish in the coming year. The yearend review at this meeting showed that almost all of the items were addressed during the year.

December 11, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS WORKSHOP – (6:00 PM – 9:00 PM)

Attended by Watson Fisher and Ted Robertson; Reported by Ted Robertson.

The Supervisors discussed the selection of a provider for emergency health services. Comments appeared to favor South Central EMS as the provider. A decision is anticipated at the December 18th, 2012 Supervisors meeting,

A request to amend the preliminary/final subdivision plan for Deaven Woods was presented by the developer. The request was to eliminate the inner circle sidewalk on an over-sized cul-de-sac in the development. The developer will have to get approval of all existing property owners in the development before the Supervisors can take action.

Representatives of Cider Press Associates, LLC, proposed a concept Master Plan for the Shadebrook development, a TND at the intersection of Fairmont and Cider Press Roads. Key changes are: (1) a reduction in density from 318 to 259 units by eliminating town houses; (2) less intervention in wetland areas. Developer’s discussions with DEP are ongoing.

A representative of Triple Crown, Inc. proposed to change the yield plan as it is applied to the Residential Cluster zoning district. This would allow a density of 496 units on the Stray Winds Farm property. Response from the Supervisors appeared to be negative. Mr. Wolfe proposed a solution which would bring the density to 449 units which is what SWAN and the Supervisors originally agreed to. The Supervisors requested input from SWAN concerning this request.

Representatives of the Community Engagement Committee outlined goals and objectives for the Committee for the Supervisors approval.

A Representative of the Heroes Grove Memorial project presented a request for an application for military Innovation Readiness Training (IRT) support (PA National Guard). This will be on the agenda for the December 18th, 2012 Board of Supervisors meeting.

The Village of Linglestown Committee presented a list of nine items to be completed as their final action. This item will be on the agenda for the December 18th, 2012 meeting.

The Supervisors reviewed the priorities for storm water projects for 2013. An engineering study for the Earl Drive drainage area is included. There was further discussion of funding for future storm water projects.

There was a final review of the proposed Lower Paxton Township budgets. The operating budget is balanced at a little over eighteen million dollars. This item will also be on the agenda for the December 18th, 2012 meeting.

December 12, 2012

LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

Additions to Memorial Eye Institute – Preliminary/Final Land Development Plan #12-23 – This submission is for three small additions to the office building at 4100 Linglestown Road. The 5.19 acre lot is in the Business Campus zoning district. The only question involved the owner’s request for a waiver not to be required to build sidewalks along the Linglestown Road and Dover Road frontages. The commissioners approved the plan with the requirement that a sidewalk be built along Dover Road but deferred the requirement that a sidewalk be built along Linglestown Road until such time as sidewalks are built on more of the neighboring properties along that highway.

Community General Osteopathic Hospital – Preliminary/Final Land Development Plan #12-25 This project will provide a new hospital entrance and a new parking lot at the south end of the main hospital building. The old outdated semi-private rooms called the “Cottages” will be demolished to provide a convenient area for a new parking lot. Also an adjacent old ambulance entrance at that location will become a new visitor’s entrance. The commissioners voted to approve the plan.

The commissioners also discussed with the hospital representative the long term need to improve vehicular access to the campus if possible. The I-83 Union Deposit Road intersection is in line for a possible upgrade by the federal government and a more direct access from Union Deposit Road to the hospital could be considered if and when that project should move forward.

Family Day Care Home for Holly Brookin – Special Exception #12-06 – This request was withdrawn.

Kendale Oaks – Final Subdivision Plan, Phase IV #12-24 – This request was withdrawn.