SWAN Newsletter #25
May 6, 2008
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP AUTHORITY BOARD MEETING (7:35 – 7:40 PM)
Attended by Watson Fisher, Darwin Aurand & Ted Robertson. Reported by Ted Robertson.
The Lower Paxton Township Authority Board met briefly to authorize resolutions 2008-07 & 08 that reimburse Penn DOT for roadwork involved with sewer repairs in the township.
May 6, 2008
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP SUPERVISORS MEETING (7:40 – 9:15 PM)
Attended by Eric Epstein, Watson Fisher, Darwin Aurand, Eileen Hurley & Ted Robertson. Reported by Ted Robertson.
The Managers Report for the regular Township Supervisors meeting included changes in the next two meetings. The workshop on the 13th of May will start at 4:00 PM. The next regular meeting will be held on the 19th of May rather than the 20th.
Under Old Business, the Supervisors rejected Ordinance 07-14 by a vote of 5-0. This ordinance amended the zoning designation of property known as Sportsman’s Golf Course from Conservation, Agricultural Residential and Institutional to Conservation and Institutional. Several residents of Forest Hills testified against the zoning change. Eric Epstein (SWAN Chairman) presented a balanced report opposing the change. Supervisor Bill Hornung suggested the Supervisors take another look at this property and come up with a zoning that will satisfy all parties. Eric’s letter to the Supervisors follows this report.
Under New Business, the Supervisors accepted the low bids for construction and electrical work involved in the improvements to the Beaver Creek pump station. It should be noted that a number of bidders responded and the total bid price came in at approximately $100,000 under the Township Engineers estimate.
Resolution 08-19 authorizing the submission of a grant application to the PA DCNR requesting funding to support the construction of a skate park in George Park was approved 5-0.
Resolution 08-20 authorizing the township to cooperate with Penn DOT for improvements to Nyes Road was approved 5-0. This much needed work along with the signalization of the Nyes Road/Locust Lane intersection is to be implemented in 2009.
Under Subdivision and Land Development, the preliminary/final land development (08-06) for Hoffman Ford Sales was withdrawn temporarily to try to come to an agreement on sidewalk issues.
May 6, 2008
Board of Supervisors
Lower Paxton Township
425 Prince Street
Harrisburg, PA 17109
RE: SWAN Testimony in Opposition to -Ordinance #07-14 Rezoning Application
I am testifying on behalf of the Stray Wind Area Neighbors (SWAN). We
are a coalition of Lower Paxton Township citizens and neighborhoods. The group
was formed after the sale of Stray Winds Farm in the fall of 2005. We meet once
a month on Monday evenings at the Epiphany Lutheran Church. The group’s
representatives attend Board of Supervisors, Planning Commission, Parks and
Recreation, Public Safety Committee, Authority Board, and Zoning Hearing
Board meetings, publishes a newsletter and maintain a web site. We are
committed to the following core goals:
• SWAN supports sensible development with adequate
• SWAN promotes safe communities through improved design for efficient
management of traffic.
• SWAN promotes sound conservation for the Paxton Creek Watershed,
surrounding wetlands and wildlife habitats.
• SWAN promotes natural assets to enhance the quality of life and provide
We believe in collaboration with developers and local government over
confrontation, and have invested in the new social partnership sponsored by the
Supervisors that will help Lower Paxton grow smart.
The proposed Rezoning Application by the Union Despot (“UD”)
Corporation is a step backward in both process and planning. We do believe there
is a need to view the big picture as well as take a micro snap shot from the view of
local residents. The request was tabled at the April 15, 2008, Supervisors
meeting to allow time for the residents in the adjacent developments to pursue
discussions with the developer. However, while we oppose the rezoning
application, we believe that the request can be revisited after an engaged
dialogue has occurred.
This rezoning request involves a large tract north of Linglestown Road.
The large portion of the 150 plus acre tract is zoned Institutional (IN). The
rezoning request involves 37 acres in the northern portion that would be rezoned
from Agricultural Residential (AR) to Institutional, and 13 acres that would be
rezoned from AR to Conservation (CO). The net gain; assuming the land is
developable, is up to 350 units.
Among the outstanding issues include (but may not be limited to):
proposed setbacks and transition areas between existing developments and
adjacent institutional use areas; there is no plan from the developer showing
how the plan would impact area residents; the request deviated from the
Comprehensive Plan; and, are were questions about potential water and sewer
SWAN believes that a request of this magnitude should have broad based
communal support. In addition, we need to utilize consistent measurement tools
for this process.
For example, on February 13, 2008 at the Planning Commission
meeting, SWAN opposed a Rezoning Application presented by Laurel Ridge. This
rezoning request involves a 51.38 acre tract located on the south side of
Linglestown Road across from Forest Hills Drive. The tract is zoned R-2 Medium
Density Residential and the request is to change the zoning to R-3 Medium High
This tract contains an apartment and townhouse development that was
built around 1975, and consists of 187 units which was the first part of a twophase
project. The entire tract is now under new ownership, and the proposed
intent was to build the second part of the project including apartments and
townhouses. The 2006 zoning provisions were changed so that apartments are
not allowed in the R-2 zone. Without a change for this tract to R-3, the second
phase cannot contain any apartments.
The new owner’s, Multi-Properties, stated that other apartment complexes
in the township had been rezoned to R-3, and they wished to continue with a
combination of apartments and townhouses as had been the original plan. Multi-
Properties anticipated adding between 75 and 110 units in this second phase, and
stated that being able to build some apartments would take less land and result
in more available open space.
The Commissioners stated that they did not rezone this property because
they wanted to control the density of new development on this site. The public
expressed concern about additional housing units along Linglestown Road,
traffic problems, and infrastructure challenges.
The commission denied the request to rezone – consistent with the 2006 Comp Plan –
and their continued concern to manage density and traffic in this area.
In the intervening period, SWAN has met with the developer, a traffic
plan has been submitted, and the project’s manager has committed to open
space, continued dialogue, and slope protections on the banks of the Paxton
Creek. In any event, Multi-Properties may proceed with the project without
including apartments in the plan.
If traffic and density are valid concerns south of Linglestown
Road, those concerns should certainly be applied to IN rezoning to the
north of Linglestown Road.
The Comp Plan addresses the “Northwest Quadrant Community Planning
Unit” (“CPU”). The Plan states the desire to “Manage development densities and
limit land use conflicts throughout the CPU.” One of the chief “Strategies” was
to, “Maintain residential neighborhoods as the core land use. Designate new
residential development at low to medium densities similar to exiting
In addition, the Comp Plan does not indicate a robust desire for extensive
age restricted or saturated density in the northwest quadrant. Yet this project,
along with Stray Winds (238 age restricted units), Colonial Village (131 age
restricted units,) plus an abundant number of IN units available to Union
Deposit (10 units per acre), provide adequate IN and senior housing in this
region of Lower Paxton.
And, as was the case with the proposed workforce proposal, we need to
make we are insulated from any suggestion of Spot Zoning. On March 11, 2008,
at the Township Board of Supervisors Workshop meeting, Mark DiSanto and
officers of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks presented a proposal for
the re-zoning of approximately 60 acres of property at the Northeast corner of
Parkway East and Linglestown Road. This property has been owned by the BPOE
for 80 years. They were asking for a R-2 designation. The property is presently
AR. Surrounding properties are R-1. The Supervisors correctly encouraged the
Principals to look at alternative before invoking any expenses.
This type of density request, in the shadow of a DEP consent order, limited
EDUs, possible EPA remediation bill, storm water and I&E challenges, and sewer
reconstruction, must have widespread support from the folks who live near the
development as well as tax payers who may have to pay for the additional
Lets take a step back, review where we are, and see if this request can be
modified to balance the needs of local neighborhoods, taxpayers, and the
Eric Epstein, Chairman
4100 Hillsdale Road
Harrisburg, Pa 17112
May 7, 2008
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PARKS & RECREATION BOARD MEETING
Attended and reported by Watson Fisher
Heroes’ Grove This planned project in Brightbill Park will create a natural semicircular amphitheater for outdoor concerts and plays which currently happen on the basketball courts. Fill is being donated through the efforts of the Edward Black Company and will begin to arrive in the near future. Grading will then be done to begin the construction. Representative Ron Marsico is initiating a fund raising effort.
A meeting is being planned with representatives of Dauphin County, Lower Paxton Township, and other neighboring municipalities to begin to work out the questions as to who will own the facility, who will operate it, who will maintain it, etc. It will honor fallen heroes from the entire county so it is thought that it should be a county facility. However, since it is in the township, Parks and Recreation Department director Brian Luetchford feels it will be used mostly by township organizations and we should probably retain control of it. The planned meeting where he will represent the township will begin to address these issues.
Koons Park Improvements At a previous meeting representatives of the Linglestown Football Association discussed the need to repair the center of the football field at the park and asked for help from the township with the project they estimated to cost about $10,000. Mr. Luetchford reported that his department would be receiving bids soon for a less involved repair project using some existing compost to be mixed with topsoil to repair the area. The association would then be responsible to irrigate the field. He also reported that the association had finally removed their storage shed in accordance with the township’s earlier request.
It was noted that it is not known at this time if the Koons Park pool will be open this season. No membership applications have been sent out and there is no word if any will be.
Park Ballfield Requests The department has collected the game and practice schedules from almost all of the sports organizations that request the use of the township’s playfields. Schedules must be submitted with proof of insurance before field assignments are made for the year.
George Park Premier Construction has almost completed their construction work on the park’s pavilion and inline hockey rink. Roadwork at the park entrance was going to be handled as a change order to Liberty Excavator’s present contract but the estimated cost is too large for the department to be comfortable having it as a change order so the work will be rebid in combination with other roadwork later in the year.
A leak was discovered in the new water line along the entrance drive that will serve the bathrooms at the pavilion and for irrigation of the fields. Finding the exact location of the leak so it can be repaired has been difficult. A question has been raised if the 2″ water line that was installed following the design recommendation will have adequate pressure for the toilets and irrigation and it is possible that a booster pump may be needed.
Greenway Plan & Committee Final comments on the plan from the township boards and staff have been sent to the consultants, Simone Collins. They will be included in the final edition of the Greenway Plan, which will then be distributed.
The Board of Supervisors approved a resolution authorizing the creation of a new Greenway Committee following the recommendation of the Parks and Rec Board. That recommendation was to have five committee members, one each from the Board of Supervisors, the Parks and Rec Board, the Planning Commission, and the Shade Tree Commission, and one member at large. The Parks and Rec Board requested that they be the group that would select applicants, interview them, and choose the at large member.
Autumn Oaks McNaughton Homes, the developer of Phase 1, has chosen to make a fee-in-lieu-of payment to the township to meet their recreational facilities requirement instead of donating land. That payment will be reduced by an amount representing their expense to provide an additional 4′ of macadam, 2′ on each side, to create a 5′ wide macadam bike path on both sides of Patton Road from the southern end of the Patton Road realignment north to Continental Drive and an 8′ wide limestone dust walkway from Patton Road through the development northeast to the power line from which a trail extends up the mountain connecting to the Darlington Trail.
The 8′ width of the walkway is wider than normal but is in accordance with the recommendation in the Greenway Plan for walkways. The township’s engineer, HRG, has provided an estimate of approximately $31,500 for this work, which will be presented to McNaughton for their review. Mr. Luetchford stated that they may well feel that their cost will be higher than that and the number will have to be negotiated.
May 8, 2008
PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE MEETING (7:00 – 7:45PM)
Attended by Watson Fisher and Ted Robertson. Reported by Ted Robertson.
Under Old Business, the status of the three new pieces of fire equipment approved by the Supervisors is as follows: Linglestown has received its pumper. The units for Colonial Park and Paxtonia will be in by the end of this year.
Plans for the Public Services Picnic at Koon’s Park June 12 at 5:00 PM are moving forward.
The Service Award Program is looking at two alternatives. As soon as the actuarial determinations are made, a plan will be selected. This plan will start retroactively on January 1, 2008 with a minimum age of 62 years.
Chief Bair was asked to look into a basketball court lined on a public street in Heatherfield. The Committee voted to suspend the July and August meetings. A brief meeting will be held prior to the picnic on June 12.
MAY 13, 2008
SPECIAL BUSINESS MEETING
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
Attended and reported by Watson Fisher. Chairman Hawk was absent.
The sole purpose of the meeting was to take action on the bids for the collection of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) and Recyclables.
The present contract for the collection of MSW and recyclables will expire at the end of June and bids were received on May 7 from three bidders for a new five-year contract with the township. Township Manager George Wolfe presented an analysis of the bids, which included a base bid and a variety of alternates. The alternates included having a company called RecycleBank take over the collection of recyclables, the hauler adding optional leaf waste collection, the hauler adding mandatory leaf waste collection, and the hauler adding emergency leaf waste collection. These alternates resulted in eight options for the awarding of the contract, which the supervisors needed to address.
The RecycleBank alternate involves a company, which supplies each customer with a large bin for recyclables. The bin is weighed on the truck at each collection and each customer earns bonus points based on the amount of material recycled. The points can then be redeemed at any of a number of stores in the area. The added cost to the customer is about $4 a month but it was stated that the bonus points for an average family of 4 are worth about $20 a month. If this alternate is accepted RecycleBank would become a subcontractor to the successful hauler.
The low responsible bidder for the base bid was Waste Management with the cost for the first year of $15.95 per month increasing each year to $17.10 for the fifth year. With the alternate including RecycleBank the low responsible bidder was Penn Waste with the cost of $19.50 per month for all five years. Bids for the addition of mandatory leaf waste for Waste Management were from $.72 to $.86 per month over the five years and for Penn Waste were $1 per month for the five years. The added cost for the optional leaf waste program for Waste Management were from $6.50 to $7.69 per month over the five years and for Penn Waste was $12 per month for the five years. The bid cost to the township for emergency leaf waste for after storm clean up from York Waste was $7,500 and from Waste Management was $20,000.
Staff’s conclusions were that the low bidder for the base bid which would be a continuation of the services we have now is Waste Management. The low bidder with the RecycleBank alternate is Penn Waste. The low bidder with the addition of mandatory leaf waste is Penn Waste. On the bids with the addition of optional leaf waste the staff was unable to determine a low bidder.
The major decision to be made seemed to come down to whether or not to accept the alternate to include RecycleBank. The negatives to this option were that even the small increase in the monthly rate would generate a negative response from some citizens, the procedure to redeem the bonus points might not appeal to everyone, and it would be necessary to publicize a new recyclable collection system. The positives were that the bonus incentive should motivate more people to recycle more which will be environmentally responsible, customers will benefit from the bonuses, and the increased quantity of recyclables will result in larger subsidy payments to the township. That increase is estimated to be in the range of $150,000 per year.
Because of the closeness of the bids, the importance of the decision to the residents, and the absence of Chairman Hawk, the supervisors voted to defer action on the matter until their next regular business meeting, which will be at 7:30 pm on Monday, May 19, 2008.
May 13, 2008
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS WORKSHOP SESSION
Attended by Ted Robertson and Watson Fisher. Reported by Watson Fisher.
Meeting to Discuss EIT Collections This joint meeting hosted by Lower Paxton Township included representatives from the Central Dauphin School District, Paxtang Borough, Penbrook Borough, Dauphin Borough, Swatara Township, West Hanover Township, and Middle Paxton Township. It was held to hear from effected bodies as to their intentions regarding having the Capital Tax Bureau continue to be their Earned Income Tax Collector.
The Lower Paxton Township supervisors opened the discussion by stating that they had for some time been considering changing to another collection bureau because of a number of ongoing problems with Capital Tax, which were not being adequately, addressed. It was stated that if a change were going to be made Capital Tax would have to be so notified by June 30, 2008, with the change then being implemented on January 1, 2009.
Central Dauphin School District’s superintendent stated that they intended to leave Capital Tax, that they had had preliminary meetings with several other bureaus, and that their board had authorized a letter be prepared notifying Capital Tax of their decision. Swatara Township stated that they had lost confidence in Capital Tax and in all likelihood they would be making a change also. Paxtang Borough, Pennbrook Borough, and West Hanover Township reported that as of now they planned to stay with Capital Tax. Dauphin Borough and Middle Paxton Township stated that they as yet had made no decision.
LP supervisor David Blain indicated that the township had sent correspondence to Capital Tax regarding the ongoing problems without a satisfactory response or any significant changes. He said that there are two other collection bureaus in our area, Berkheimer Tax Associates of Bangor and Central Tax Bureau of Bridgeville, which had better technology than Capital Tax. He was concerned a change would involve a slow transition period but that either bureau would be faster with distributions and more reliable in the long run. It was stated by many that it was not the clients’ responsibility to try to fix Capital Tax’s problems.
There was a general feeling that the ideal situation was to have one bureau handle all collections in the area. The school district said that their decision had been made with the mistaken understanding that most of the others would also be changing. Mr. Blain indicated that he thought Lower Paxton Township would like to work with at least the school district and Swatara Township to agree on a collection bureau if possible.
The meeting resulted in everyone having some understanding of the current climate and the intentions of most of the parties involved. The need for timely decisions was noted.
Community General Osteopathic Hospital A representative of the hospital gave the supervisors an update on the current plans for the expansion of the hospital in the foreseeable future. They include the addition of an imaging and cancer center associated with the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, bringing the current MRI department that is in a separate building into the hospital proper, adding on to the existing doctors’ office building, and rearranging the parking areas to improve access to the buildings. A possible future project would be to add one or two floors over the original part of the hospital and to create a second level connection to a new parking level above a portion of the existing parking area. The presentation was made to keep the supervisors informed as to the hospital’s ongoing planning.
Public Works Department Representatives from the township’s Public Works Department made a presentation of their initial efforts toward developing a formal mission statement and action plan for the employees and activities of their department. The plan will be similar to what has been done by several other departments in the township. The supervisors were impressed by the scope and content of the effort to date. When finished the board will be asked to adopt a formal resolution accepting the plan.
Kendale Oaks A fire in a new house in this development was initially traced to the front porch light and the developer, E.G. Stolzfus, Inc., sent a letter to the residents not to use their front porch lights. The residents have been trying to get the matter resolved but the insurance company is now involved, litigation is pending, and they have not received any further information on the matter. It appears that the light was properly installed and the residents want the developer to assure them that their porch lights are safe to use. The developer has been unwilling to formally state that. The board was able only to get the developer to agree to send another letter to the residents updating them on the current status of the matter.
Level of Service Awards Program The LOSAP program will award annual payments to members of the township’s three fire departments based on their position and their number of years of service. Siegel Actuaries prepared a report showing possible payment plans. The supervisors chose a plan, which will be included in the formal resolution to be acted on in the near future. The township will be applying for a federal grant to help fund the program.
Autumn Oaks Francis and Joel McNaughton from McNaughton Homes discussed with the supervisors several items relating to this development. Regarding the proposed realignment of Patton Road which will be an off site improvement, there were two continuing questions reviewed, the timing of the realignment project and who would be responsible for obtaining the permits for the road construction.
On the timing question McNaughton suggested that the developer be required to have the work finished before Phase 3 of the project was begun. The supervisors said they would prefer to have the requirement based on the actual number of homes completed. It was agreed that the roadwork would be completed by the time 126 units of the 203 total units were finished.
On the permit issue McNaughton said they would do the design and construction work but they wanted the township to obtain the permits. The supervisors said their engineer, HRG, recommended that the township should not be the one to obtain the permit since they were not responsible for the actual work. On this matter it was agreed that it would be resolved at a meeting to be scheduled that would be attended by McNaughton Homes, HRG, township manager George Wolfe and township solicitor Steve Stine.
The other item discussed was the recreation requirement for the development. McNaughton restated their intent to pay the fee-in-lieu instead of contributing to the township land that was suitable for recreation. They said they would also build a 4-foot wide walkway from Patton Road through the development northeast to the trail along the power line that runs to the top of the mountain. The width of the trail was discussed since the Parks & Rec Board recommendation was an 8-foot wide walkway consistent with the Greenway Plan. Mc Naughton suggested a 6-foot wide walkway.
Not discussed was the P&R Board’s understanding that as part of the Patton Road realignment project 5 foot wide macadam bicycle paths would be added on each side of the road north to Continental Drive. The P&R Board also understood that the cost of providing the walkway and the bike path would be subtracted from the fee-in-lieu payment. These matters will need to be resolved.
May 14, 2008
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PLANNING COMMISSION MEETING
Attended and reported by Watson Fisher
Curative Amendment – Noise Ordinance, Ross Schell Mr. Schell requested the passage of an amendment to the Noise Ordinance to increase the decibel levels allowed by the ordinance in a residential district. This request was prompted by a noise problem that started about three months ago when his neighbors began to be bothered by periodic loud noises from his son’s automobile engine and car radio. When they were not able to settle the problem between them one of the neighbors contacted the township.
Since the noise restrictions are part of the zoning ordinance a code enforcement officer responded but was unable to resolve the problem. The police were then called and they have been to the house five times over the intervening period. They took readings of the sound levels but took no formal action since the noise level problem is a code matter and not a police matter. The code enforcement officer then sent a letter to Mr. Schell stating that he was in violation of the code and warned him of possible legal action if the noise level was not reduced.
Mr. Schell then filed to have a curative amendment adopted to change the ordinance. His request was to increase the allowable decibel levels and/or establish a length of time the noise level could exceed the allowable level before it became a violation.
Planning Commission Chairman Fredrick Lighty explained to Mr. Schell that for the commission to recommend approval of a Curative Amendment the person making the request needed to prove that the ordinance was invalid concerning the item in question and that he had not done that. It was also pointed out that the allowable decibel levels in the ordinance follow the federal HUD standards exactly. The commission recommended that the proposed amendment not be approved.
Rezoning Request – Crums Mill Road/Doehne Road This request brought by the township is to rezone two lots on the west side of Crums Mill Road at Doehne Road which currently have split zoning. Part of each lot is R-1 Low Density Residential and the remainder is BC Business Campus. The request is to rezone each one to all R-1 to simplify the zoning. There is a house on the northern lot and the intent is to build a house on the southern one. The commission recommended approval of the request.
Harold Rudy – Preliminary/Final Subdivision Plan #08-08 This plan is to combine two small lots on the east side of Nittany Lane south of Locust Lane and west of the township’s highway department complex into a single buildable lot. The lots are zoned R-1 Low Density Residential. The resulting 100-foot by 150-foot lot is below the minimum R-1 lot size but at their meeting on January 31, 2008 the Zoning Hearing Board approved a variance to that requirement. The commission recommended approval of the plan.
Greenway Committee Roy Newsome will be the Planning Commission Board member who will be a member of the newly recreated Greenway Committee.
May 19, 2008
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING (7:35 – 9:10 PM)
Attended by Watson Fisher and Ted Robertson. Reported by Ted Robertson.
Under Old Business, the Supervisors voted 3 to 2 to award the collection of solid waste and recyclables to Waste Management for slightly more than $13,000,000 for a five-year contract. This will include a voluntary leaf waste collection at an extra cost for those participating. The Recycle Bank program was not included because of the extra cost to all residents for this program.
Under New Business, Mr. Kalim Bhatti gave a brief presentation on behalf of the Muslims for Peace Conference to be held at the Farm Show Complex June 21, from 3:30 to 6:00 PM. Dinner is included and you can RSVP by calling 202-380-2083
Resolution 08-22 authorizing the Chairman to notify the Capital Tax Collection Bureau of the Township’s intent to withdraw from the Bureau was passed 5-0.
A public hearing was held for Conditional Use 08-02, which was a request from Giant Food Stores, LLC to operate a full dispensing facility at the Point Mall along Union Deposit Road. This plan originally included a car wash, which was dropped after negative comments from the Planning Commission and residents. The Conditional Use 08-02 was adopted by a 5-0 vote.
Resolution 08-21 reaffirming the Emergency Operations Plan of Dauphin County was passed 5-0.
Under Subdivision and Land Development, the preliminary/final land development plan for Hoffman Ford Sales, Inc (08-06) was approved 5-0.
May 20, 2008
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PLANNING COMMISSION WORKSHOP MEETING
Attended by Ted Robertson and Watson Fisher. Reported by Watson Fisher.
This meeting was a continuation of the April 21, 2008 workshop meeting, which initiated a discussion regarding the possibility of creating a Business Improvement District (BID) or districts within the township. The creation of such a district is allowed by state law under the “Neighborhood Improvement District Act”. The purpose of the district is to provide improvements including beautification, advertising, and traffic control, with the goal of enhancing the business climate to benefit existing commercial establishments and to attract new commercial development.
When the township selects a specific area as a possible BID the area needs to meet the requirement that it is a “limited geographical area comprised of real property which is used for any for-profit activity involving trade and traffic, or commerce in general.” It also needs to be in a commercial zone. For it to be so designated not more than 40% of the property owners in the area can actively object to the designation. Improvements would be paid for by proportional assessments from all businesses in the district.
At the first meeting the commissioners decided to designate the Route 22 corridor as the first and probably only BID in the township. At this second meeting they used a zoning map and aerial photographs to outline the proposed boundaries of the district. They reviewed the commercial establishments property by property on the north side of Route 22 from Colonial Road east to beyond Mountain Road and set the proposed boundaries. At the next meeting scheduled for Monday, June 16, they plan to outline the similar boundary on the south side of the highway to complete the boundary of the proposed district.
Following that the commissioners will begin the process of developing a preliminary plan for the proposed improvements and will then contact all property owners within the district to introduce them to the plan. If they are able to get the required agreement with the property owners in order to proceed they will then be able to set up a management association as required by law and can then begin to implement the plan.