SWAN Newsletter #50

September 20, 2010
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PLANNING COMMISSION WORKSHOP MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

The purpose of this meeting was to continue the work on the Preliminary Plan required by the enabling legislation leading up to the creation of the Business Improvement District (BID) along the Route 22 business corridor. The district’s purpose is to make a variety of improvements to benefit the businesses. As stated in the draft program under development by the commissioners, “Projects to be undertaken by the CCBID (Colonial Corridor Business Improvement District) would include specific physical improvements, marketing, promotion and communication activities and planning/strategy research and development for the district. All activities would be under the direction of the Board of Directors of the CCBID.”

At this meeting the draft of the required proposed budget for the first fiscal year was discussed and revised. On the income side of the budget the allowed annual assessments of all the business owners in the district was calculated. This amount can not exceed the estimated cost of the proposed improvements for the year. The expenses side of the budget was broken down into three items, Salaries & Benefits, Printing & Advertising, and Beautification.

During the discussion some items were added and estimated costs under all three categories were increased. A fourth item, Traffic Control, was not included since nothing was expected to be done in this area in the first year. It was agreed that the district’s staff would consist of a part time Executive Director and a full time Administrative Assistant. It is expected that they would be housed in a small office in the township building.

The board of directors would consist of five, seven, or nine members as required by the legislation and would initially be appointed by the township supervisors and would serve for one year. After that it is required that at least one board member be appointed by the township.

The draft first year budget as revised was approved by the commissioners. A draft of the required by-laws has been prepared and will be reviewed at the October workshop meeting. A letter will be sent to the business owners in the proposed district to advise them of the status of the project since the last public meeting.

September 21, 201
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING
(7:30 PM – 8:25 PM)

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

Under Old Business: Resolution 10-26 was withdrawn. This resolution authorized the taking of an easement for a storm sewer through the property of Michael J. Pinci. Mr. Pinci stated that the spring on the property had historical significance and would be affected by the easement. Apparently this was the first indication to the Supervisors regarding the historical significance of the property. The Supervisors allowed for the discussion of the storm water problem and possible alternate solutions to take place under a restricted time frame.

Under New Business: The Supervisors approved the proposal of Brown and Brown to handle the property and liability insurances for the Township.

The Supervisors unanimously approved Resolution 10-27 accepting the 2011 MMO’s for the police and non-uniformed pension plans.

The Supervisors unanimously approved change order #2 for the energy improvement contract with A.P. Williams, Inc., for the Public Works Building in the amount of $1,049.00.

Under Subdivision and Land Development, the Supervisors voted 5 – 0 to approve the preliminary/final subdivision plan for Lot 141 in the Estates of Forest Hills, Phase 7 (10-7). This is simply a consolidation of 3 lots into 2 lots with no development to take place.

September 21, 2010
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP AUTHORITY BOARD
(8:40 PM – 9:20 PM)

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

This meeting was called to further discuss the proposed solar farm project. An alternate plan to include Swatara Township as a partner in the project was discussed. This was done to try to overcome the net metering issue which apparently requires single ownership of the meters. The Supervisors decided to temporarily halt due diligence procedures on the project. Apparently there is a bill in the State Legislature concerning the Renewable Energy Credits (REC’S). If and when such a bill if passed, the Supervisors may want to re-open discussions on this project.

September 22, 2010
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP GREENWAY COMMITTEE MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

Officers With the recent resignation of the committee chairman and the appointment of three new members it was necessary to elect new officers to serve for the remainder of the current year. Rogetta Harris was elected chairman and Priscilla St. Jacques-Glusko was elected vice-chairman. A new election will be held at the beginning of 2011.

Brochure Further work is being done on the preparation of a Walking Opportunities Brochure. A revised draft of the brochure was presented and discussed. Further changes were agreed to and an updated draft will be presented at the October meeting. Parks & Recreation Department Director Brian Luetchford advised the committee that before the effort is finalized it needs to be reviewed by the Parks & Recreation Board, the township manager and the supervisors.

Sidewalks Individual committee members have been studying different portions of the township to identify priority locations where the closing of gaps in the existing sidewalk, bikeway and walkway trail systems could be filled. Several locations were identified. One was access between Lingle and Kohl Parks and the CD East High School and on to the Vo Tech School. Another was from Kings Crossing Park along the power line in both directions. Another was along Houcks Road north from the CD Middle School. Work on this last location could be considered in conjunction with the planned repaving of Houcks Road in this area.

Nyes Road Several months ago the committee toured a portion of the area along Nyes Road and Nyes Run where it is possible to develop a walking trail. Some of the property is owned by the township, some is a sewer right of way and some is where the Kendale Oaks development is committed to provide an easement for a trail. Contacts will be made with the developer and with adjacent landowners to advise them of the plan. An offer has been made to have some planning and clearing of the area done as an Eagle Scout project.

September 23, 2010
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP ZONING HEARING BOARD MEETING
(7:00 – 7:30 PM)

Docket No. 1287 was a request for a variance from the side yard set back requirements in an R2 zoned district for a garage.

Since the applicant wanted to reduce the minimum set back by one foot, and also avoid placing the footer directly over the sewer line, the variance was granted by a vote of 3 – 0.

October 5, 2010
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
(7:35 – 8:40 PM)

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

Under New Business, the Supervisors voted unanimously to accept the proposal of Zolonkoski-Axlerod to perform the annual audit of the Township and the Authority for the years 2010, 2011 and 2012 with an option for 2013 and 2014.

A Joint Agreement of Recognition between the Township and AFSCME Council 90 for the sewer employees’ collective bargaining unit was accepted by a vote of 5 – 0.

Addendum #2 to the lease agreement between the Township and Pinnacle Health for the Friendship Center West Annex was approved by a vote of 5 – 0.

Under Subdivision and Land Development the Preliminary/Final land development plan for the Holy Name of Jesus Church expansion project (10-08) was tabled to resolve issues regarding the retention basin and access roads.

The Supervisors unanimously approved the extension of the Stray Winds Farms bond at its existing value without the nominal 10% increase.

October 6, 2010
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP GREENWAY COMMITTEE MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

St. Margaret Mary Church A representative from the parish reported to the committee that he was spearheading an effort by the church to development a walking path around the perimeter of the new church property on Paxton Church Road. It would be a wood chip path for public use and would connect to their new macadam walkway along Paxton Church Road. It would also connect to the lighted path planned in the proposed Stray Winds Farm development on the other side of Crums Mill Road. Most of the church property is in Susquehanna Township. He was only looking for a positive response from the committee which he got.

Brochure Work is ongoing on the development of a Walking Guide Brochure to advise the citizens of the township about the existing trails and other walking opportunities available in the township. A revised draft was presented and was essentially approved with minor changes. When finalized it will be printed in house for distribution and a somewhat expanded version will be available on the township’s web site.

Prince Street Repaving The committee is exploring opportunities to possibly include sidewalks and/or bikeways in conjunction with the repaving project scheduled in the near future along a portion of Prince Street. This could also include the designation of a bikeway on one of the streets connecting Prince Street and South Houcks Road. The initial investigation revealed that there would be difficulties in locating a sidewalk on either side for the length of Prince Street where repaving is planned. Also, on streets with on-street parking it was not clear how to avoid a safety problem with the designation of a dedicated bikeway along the edge of the street. An effort will be made to see how this has been handled at other locations where bikeways are delineated along public streets.

Sidewalks Committee members have been reviewing different areas of the township to identify priority locations where the addition of relative short sections of sidewalks or trails could connect neighborhoods, routes to schools or shopping centers, etc. Without funds available to actually do any identified project it was decided to table this effort for now. With the indication that Phase 1 of the large Shadebrook project might be getting underway it was suggested that a focus on the area around that development, primarily a pedestrian connection to the sidewalks at the Dauphin County Vo-Tech School, would be worthwhile.

Nyes Road At last month’s meeting the possibility of creating a trail along Nyes Run south of Union Deposit Road was again discussed. It was thought that the Kendale Oaks development had designated an easement along the stream for a trail and it has now been confirmed with the developer that the easement exists. Unfortunately the recent road construction project has reduced the space available for the trail and it appears that several foot bridges crossing the creek will now be needed. The committee plans to walk the area on November 20th to evaluate the possibility of creating a trail along the creek.

October 6, 2010
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PARKS & RECREATION BOARD MEETING

Attended and reported by Watson Fisher.

Heros Grove The initial earth moving portion of the outdoor amphitheater project at Brightbill Park is expected to begin soon. The erosion and sedimentation control plan has been approved and active fund raising by the veterans’ organization will begin. Nothing in the way of detailed plans has been submitted to the Parks & Recreation Department for their review and/or approval and the above information was submitted to the board only as an update. After the project is completed the township will be responsible for the maintenance of the amphitheater. The P & R Department will advise the supervisors of its many concerns as the project develops.

Paintball The licensing agreement allowing the operator of the Linglestown Paintball operation to continue to use 39 acres of the Wolfersberger Park property has been completed except for the amount of the rental fee. The board will give the operator the agreement to approve before requesting that the supervisors establish a suggested fee amount. To be fair to the operator this matter needs to be resolved as soon as possible since his current lease expires at the end of the year.

Wolfersberger/Koons Park Planning The grant application for funding for the planning of the future parks project is being reviewed by DCNR. Its possibility of being approved is marginal. The first public meeting regarding the planning process is scheduled for 7:00 pm on November 17th at the municipal building. This will be an informational meeting to advise the public what is involved in the development of the new park and the possible revisions to the existing park. It needs to be understood that because of the lack of funds, park planning will be the only thing that will be happening in the foreseeable future. Additional public meetings will be held to solicit input from the citizens as formal planning begins.

Greenway Committee The new committee chairman Rogette Harris gave the board an update on the many various projects the committee has underway. At the present time these include the planning for a possible new trail along a portion of Nyes Run and the development of a brochure with information about the existing trails and other walking opportunities in the township.

Unauthorized Use of Park Property Parks & Recreation Department Director Brian Luetchford advised the board that there are an increasing number of incidents where park properties are being used by for-profit organizations and individuals in violation of the intent of the township ordinance. These incidents do not involve the sale of goods, which is clearly covered in the ordinance, but involve the sale of services such as use by fitness organizations, sports clinics, etc., which are for-profit operations and which are not specifically addressed in the ordinance. Mr. Luetchford suggested that the ordinance be amended to address this problem but because of the gray areas between for-profit and not-for-profit sports operations he will need to carefully word the draft of the proposed change.

October 12, 2010
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS WORKSHOP
(6:10 PM – 10:20 PM)

Attended by Watson Fisher and Ted Robertson. Reported by Ted Robertson.
Absent: Bill Seeds

The discussion of waiver requests for Pleasant Meadows (Parmer Trust development at Locust Lane and Fairmont Drive) was continued. A suggestion was finally made to make most of the roadways in the development one way with the exception of the entrance and the cul-de-sac. This appeared to satisfy both parties and also may resolve the “fee in lieu of” recreational facilities problem.

There was a continuing discussion of the BC-1 storm sewer system easement through the Pinci property. Mr. Pinci presented documentation identifying the spring on his property as a historical site. After a heated discussion among the neighbors, Sam Robbins offered a solution that appeared to satisfy all concerned. This will involve DEP’s approval. Stay tuned!!

The two primary points of contention for the Holy Name of Jesus preliminary/final land development plan continue to be the fencing of the retention pond area and the PENNDOT Highway Occupancy Permit requirement for site triangles for off-site entrances to the Parish property.

Representatives of Spring Creek Hollows and Charter Homes presented documentation showing the negative effect of the proposed solar farm on their respective properties. This may be a moot subject.

There was a long discussion concerning sanitary sewer improvements in the PC-2C mini-basin between Fox and Catherine Streets. Several residents were opposed to the removal of trees in the sewer easement area. Also, some structures have been built in the sewer easement area. Discussions will continue concerning proposed alternatives.

The Chiefs of the Townships Fire Companies presented a request to the Supervisors to increase the Townships Fire Protection tax which is presently at 0.24 mils. The Supervisors will take this into consideration.

October 14, 2010
LOWER PAXTON TOWNSHIP PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE
(7:00 PM – 7:45 PM)

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

Under Old Business, the Committee’s Mission Statement is expected to be presented to the Lower Paxton Township Supervisors at the October 19, 2010 meeting for approval.

The Truss Marking Ordinance needs some approvals before being presented to the Lower Paxton Township Supervisors.

The PA Gaming Grant applications on the part of the three Fire Companies and the traffic signal Pre-emption Device Grant are still in process.

Mr. Johnson stated that both lanes in Linglestown will be open November 1, 2010.

The Committee decided to request a meeting of the Fire Chiefs, Dave Johnson and George Wolfe to determine the best way to present the request for increased funds for the Fire Departments.

The next Public Safety Committee Meeting is tentatively scheduled for December 9, 2010.