253 Municipal Drive
Thorndale, PA 19372
January 12, 2017 7:30 PM
Call to order and pledge of allegiance.
Attendance – Cynthia Eshleman, President; Jennifer Breton, Vice President; John Contento, Commissioner; Joshua Young, Commissioner; George Chambers, Commissioner; Ms. Denne, Township Manager; Jeffrey W. McClintock, P.E., C.F.M., Township Engineer; and Margaret Driller, Recording Secretary.
Moment of Silence – Commissioner Eshleman called for a moment of silence for all first responders and military, all over the world.
Commissioner Eshleman announced that prior to tonight’s meeting, an Executive Session was held to discuss legal and personnel matters.
Citizens to be heard
Mrs. Illaria Steele, 411 Barley Sheaf Road, wanted to commend whoever was involved in the nice letter that they received from the fire department. The letter was very explicit, explained everything, and clearly asked for a donation to the fire department. Commented on the signage for volunteers and she wanted to know where the funding was for these items for the Fire Department. Commissioner Young stated that all of the recruitment for the volunteer fire department is being paid by a Federal Retention and Recruitment Grant from the government. The sign on Route 30, electronic sign and postcards were funded by the $98,000 grant and some of the volunteers who volunteer consistently are being paid with this grant. She also stated she was driving down G.O. Carlson on January 2nd and she was looked towards the golf course where the Barn at the far end where things are stored for the township, she noticed a pleasure boat with four guys, and the boat was being stored there at the barn. Who does it belong to and if it is being stored there and is the township being paid rent to store the boat in this location? The township manager will look into this boat being stored and speak with the owners to have it removed. At the meeting, held on Wednesday with Commissioner Young, in regard to tax rebates for our citizens of Caln Township a card to be presented to businesses, made for township residents for tax rebates would cost the township was going to be a dollar. She spoke with a man who stated he could get the cards made for $0.10 cents with the company he dealt with; she was hoping that someone got the gentleman’s name so the township could get the cards made thru this company. He seemed to be very knowledgeable and could give us insight to how this process could proceed. Commissioner Eshleman is stating that this gentleman was speaking about a card to be used at specific locations for one store and not being able to use it for all multiply establishments that would be giving a tax rebate and calculating it for the families. Ms. Denne and Abbie would look further into it and a company in New Jersey which could cover several businesses with a multiple reporting system that has a larger database. Commissioner Eshleman wants to make sure that they are talking about what is actually needed to have the tax rebates done from multiple sites. Commissioner Young is stating this would be the first program in the State of Pennsylvania for this NJ company and that they wanted to do more research to make sure this system works for Caln Township and to see if we could get a discount as being the first township to use their system. Mrs. Steele also commented that years ago the township had purchased a pretty silver coin that has the emblem of Caln Township on it and on the back of it stated that Caln Township was the center of Chester County. These coins were used as a gift to people and most women would retired and have given service for so many years to the township, the women would make a necklace with them and the men would have the choice of money clip or keychains and these were kept in the safety deposit box. These were made from the Franklin Mint and there should be 20 of these coins left. The township used to sell them for $10.00 and give them to people who have speakers who came to talk to the township. Commissioner Young stated that he had bought several and would check if there are more to be given out in the safety deposit box to be given out at this time.
Township Manager – Ms. Denne
The Township Manager stated that she is wants to be a little more formal with the process of setting more resolutions before the Board to record information for the history at of our meetings and the official action that was taken at each meeting. Cedarville Engineering Group, LLC is seeking the renewal of our Municipal Services Agreement. They will impose new fees from last year and this year and last year’s fees are attached to compare and to be noted in the packet. The costs increased by $1.00 on different services.
She has also received a request from the Rudy’s, 3525 Lincoln Highway in regards to the fees to be paid for conditional hearings. Mr. Rudy is stating that he was only allocated approximately one hour for the hearing on January 28, 2016 and that another hearing had to be continued on February 25, 2016. Mr. Rudy is requesting that the fees for the second hearing be waived as his hearing was cut short by time restraints which were placed on the January 28th meeting. The Board would instruct the township manager as to accept or reject this request.
A letter was received from Coatesville Area School District from the Tax Assessment Office requesting an exemption of the 2014 Caln Township taxes of $7,850.16 from the real property taxes owed on Parcel 39-4-91, the Old Citadel building. The township has an exception at the same time and she is requesting that if we approve their exemption that they accept our exception at the same time. Commissioner Young asked the amount of the exception that our township has to the Coatesville Area School District? Our township currently owes $929.15 from the Toll Brothers property. Commissioner Eshleman does not want to pay our solicitor to have to go through the process of doing the review back. Coatesville Area School District fully admitted that their previous solicitor had made a mistake and their solicitor had dropped the ball on this cost in 2014. A discussion would be held later on in this meeting in regard to this topic per Commissioner Eshleman.
Ms. Denne stated that she has several volunteer applications that need to be reviewed and/or accepted. Two people have applied to the Recreation Board, and one has applied to the Historical Commission. Commissioner Eshleman is stating that she wants to interview all new applicants to all boards at this time and she does not want to just appoint them to the commissions. She wants to make sure that they know what they are volunteering for and if this is a right fit for the candidate and what their obligations are to the Board. Ms. Denne stated that we will have a liquor license hearing in January and that the interviews may have to take place at the February meeting. Commissioner Young stated that Parks and Recreation does not meet until March 2017 so if we wait to interview those candidates until later it would be fine. Commissioner Breton stated that the Board does not have to interview Noel Bernard as she was just interviewed for another position.
Commission Eshleman entertained a motion that we approve Ms. Noel Bernard to the Storm Water Advisory Committee, Moved by Commissioner Contento and seconded by Commissioner Breton. Motion carried 5-0.
A Liquor License Hearing is being requested on January 26, 2017 at 6:30 PM, requested by Turkey Hill on Bondsville Road to sell wine and beer at that location. Commissioner Contento asked will Turkey Hill as a store sell and serve liquor on the site. Commissioner Young is stating it will have a café portion and considering themselves as a restaurant, similar to what Wegman’s and Sheetz’s currently have in their stores. Beer and wine would be served, purchased and consumed on the site.
On Jan 19, 2017 there will be a 7:00 PM meeting for conditional use for WAWA.
Manager’s Report stated that significant savings were had with our general liability insurance for 2017. Budget Committee Meeting must be held to decide how to use the savings.
Ordinance # (2017-01)
Commissioner Eshleman entertained a motion to approve Ordinance # (2017-01) accepting the Cedarville Engineering Group, LLC 2017 Proposed Fee Schedule. Moved by Commissioner Breton and seconded by Commissioner Chambers. Motion carried 5-0.
Commissioner Eshleman started a discussion in regards to Rudy’s, 3521 Lincoln Highway Waiver Request with letter received. She did not recall any objections made to have the meeting rescheduled in February. Ms. Denne is stating that she can pull the actual costs for the second hearing; the decision could be made on what the costs were from the second hearing. Two hearings were held on the same night, and the issue was that the Board needed more information, questions were raised and information was not known the night of the first meeting. The township manager will need to go back to the transcript of the first hearing. The Board wanted more information from the applicant and the notes as there was a discussion about a request for a continuance. Some questions were raised and needed to be addressed at the second meeting as answers were not known at the first meeting. A fee is always assessed for the second meeting only the first meeting is covered by $1,000.00. Commissioner Eshleman wanted more information and what the actual cost for the second meeting and research will have it be done before any decision would be finalized in regards to this request. Commissioner Breton asked why is their costs for their second meeting? Mr. McClintock stated that the transfer from the Code office to the Engineering office made corrections to cover more than one hearing and added a second fee as several meetings became more expensive and the cost was not being recouped by the township. This will be reviewed at the next meeting as to costs that were incurred and the Board will make a decision at that time for this request.
Ordinance # (2017-02)
Commissioner Eshleman stated that she wanted to move the discussion to the CASD Request for Tax Exoneration. Commissioner Eshleman entertained a motion to approve the request for Ordinance # (2017-02) Coatesville Tax Exoneration, and it was seconded by Commissioner Breton. Discussion was held to approve or not approve this Ordinance. Commissioner Eshleman is stating that it is not a fair bargain to give them a tax exoneration of $7.850.16 while we will only get a tax exoneration for Caln Township of $929.15. The township would not do it for other individuals for which this would have occurred. She does not want to set a precedent for this tax exoneration. If we were to approve this we would want our tax exoneration in kind per our solicitor. Commissioner Contento asked if the property was the old Citadel property that was bought and is there any legal basis as to grant a tax exemption for the organization. Since the property was bought after April 15th the taxes are still due to our township. Ms. Denne stated that paperwork must be filed before January of that year so that they would not pay the taxes. The property was bought on January 9, 2014. They forgot to file for the exemption, in 2014 after May. They were exempt from 2015 and moving forward. Solicitor costs will have to address this issue and to correct this and we do not want to pay these fees. By purchasing the building it took $7000 away from our township taxes indefinitely and CASD has given more expenses to Caln Township as they have decreased their police department. The Board did not approve Ordinance # (2017-02), Motion denied 5-0.
Ordinance # (2017-03)
Our township went out to bid for our liability insurance for 2017. The township manager has approved the costs. There was a significant savings created with Mr. Wilson, Ms. Denne and the insurance company’s help. The savings for the township for this year was $165,000. Commissioner Young stated that the fire truck was not fully insured, it was insured for only $250,000 after it was purchased for $500,000. Ms. Denne stated that Mr. Wilson has looked over all expenditures and has saved the township a good amount for our insurance coverage. Ms. Denne is very pleased that Mr. Wilson checked that the new fire truck was not fully insured and had it added correctly to our insurance. Commissioner Eshleman entertained a motion to approve Ordinance # (2017-03) ratifying the Township Manager to accept and bind Insurance Proposals presented by Brown and Brown Insurance for 2017. Moved by Commissioner Contento and seconded by Commissioner Young. Motion carried 5-0.
Ordinance # (2017-04)
Commissioner Eshleman has worked with Ms. Denne to compose a list of all Volunteer Fire Police Officers to be accepted by the Board of Commissioners. There were five officers not present to be sworn in at the meeting but she will accept the listing given. Commissioner Eshleman entertained a motion to approve Ordinance # (2017-04) recognizing the listing of Volunteer 2017 Fire Police Officers. Moved by Commissioner Contento and seconded by Commissioner Young. Motion carried 5-0. The listing was returned to the township manager to be accepted by the township and to be filed. Commissioner Young is stating that all firefighters are being cross trained as a Firefighter and Police Officer to use every officer to the best of their abilities.
Township Engineer – Mr. McClintock
Lincoln Highway Traffic Signals: Mr. McClintock indicated PennDOT has hired a consultant to review the traffic signal timings along Lincoln Highway from the City of Coatesville to the Lincoln Highway/US 30 intersection in East Caln Township. As part of that effort, there were inefficiencies noted that have been adjusted, resulting in an increase in efficiency travelling the corridor by approximately 20%. It was noted that some of the side streets, such as Barley Sheaf and Municipal Drive, were adjusted to allow for more green time along Lincoln Highway, resulting in a longer wait to get a green light on the side street. Mr. McClintock noted he spoke with PennDOT about revising the timing to only have this condition occur during peak times, and that revision was made. He asked for anyone having issues or concerns to let him know. There was mention of some other signal issues that needed to be looked at, namely the lack of a left turn arrow from NB Thorndale Marshallton-Thorndale on one occasion, the lack of a left turn arrow from NB Bondsville on one occasion, and some other delays at Barley Sheaf during non-peak times. Mr. McClintock indicated he will convey these issues to PennDOT for a response. There was also discussion about the long delay to receive a green coming off the bypass ramp at Reeceville heading Eastbound, as well as the timing issues that were encountered with the Humpton signal over the last several weeks. Mr. McClintock will work with PennDOT, their consultants, and our signal controller vendor to resolve these issues.
Annual Traffic Signal Maintenance Contract: Mr. McClintock presented the Board of Commissions with a proposal to renew Signal Service Inc.’s contract for 2017. Commissioner Eshleman entertained a motion to approve Signal Service Inc.’s contract for the year of 2017 at the cost of $6,750.00 for preventative maintenance and approve the hourly rate sheet (Attachment C) to the proposal. Moved by Commissioner Breton and seconded by Commissioner Chambers. Motion carried 5-0.
Bill List – General Check’s # 39186-39309
Mrs. Illaria Steele had a question about 2 phone reimbursements for personal phones that are used by two employees. There are several other personnel who are reimbursed for their phones throughout the township. These personal phone plans save our township money and it saves the township at least $25 to $30 dollars a month.
Commissioner Eshleman entertained a motion to approve the Bill List - General Checks # 39186 – 39309. Moved by Commissioner Breton and seconded by Commissioner Chambers. Motion carried 5-0. Commissioner Young abstained from voting on check #39226.
Board and Commissions Updates – summary by applicable Board Liaison
Park and Recreation – The board will not meet until March 2017.
COG – Commissioner Young stated that there will be a new President to the Regional Emergency Management Group. Commissioner Young has resigned from this committee and new officers will be installed in 2017, Commissioner Young was not sure if the meetings will stay at our building or move to another location.
Municipal Authority – Dogwood – Scott, 3 variances are still not completed.
DARA – Meeting to be held on Monday, Commissioner Young will move from Treasurer to Vice Chairman.
Fire Board – Commissioners and Fire Company will have a meeting with manager for appropriations for tax purposes. Ms. Denne will set up this meeting on the calendar.
Planning Commission – Meeting will be on Tuesday at 7 PM for the Comp Plan. The New Comp Plan has not been published on the website; it is still in draft form and has not been presented to the public or the Board of Commissioners. Comments from the Board will come back after the final version is completed. The Comp Plan is being reworked in sections and it will be reviewed at the Committee Level before it will be put out for public comment. The Plan has to be presented to the public so they can comment for the review but it is still in draft. The Board has not seen the Comp Plan, and will want to review before it will be shown to the public as they will have to execute it in the future. A public information meeting will be held after the Comp Plan is completed and once the draft is completed.
Historical Commission – Meeting on the 18th, received a request from the State’s Representative as to the status of the grant application that was applied for in November 2017, we are still waiting for it to go through at this time.
Zoning Hearing Board – No Report
Questions were raised by citizens about light bills on their street when the light does not work on their street. Commissioner Eshleman is asking Abbie and Ms. Denne to let citizens be able to respond out on the website if their street lights are not working. There is a street light tax for certain sections of the township, as properties were created by the HOA had come to the township to have light poles put in. Most light poles in the township are now working and have had lights replaced as needed. Lights in the township are numbered on the pole. Why does the State of PA have fees for street lights? Some homes wanted street lights so homeowners now have assessments to each property owner for the lights on their streets. Mrs. Steele asked why the lights were on during the daytime hours this past week and they were on to fix the five lights which were out, and currently all the lights on Lincoln Highway were all fixed. There are numbers on the poles now so that the lights can be fixed. Lights in the township have an actual number for the pole, public poles belongs to the HOA.
The township will accept resignations from the historical commission of Ms. Lois Demchak and Doreen Jacoby. Commissioner Eshleman entertained a motion to accept and approve the resignations of Ms. Lois Demchak and Doreen Jacoby from the historical commission. Moved by Commissioner Breton and seconded by Commissioner Chambers. Motion carried 5-0. The township is asked to accept resignations from the Parks and Recreation Board of Ms. Joyce Cruise, Victoria Cloud and Illaria Steele. Commissioner Eshleman entertained a motion to accept the resignations of Joyce Cruise, Victoria Cloud and Illaria Steele from Caln Township’s Park and Recreation Board. Moved by Commissioner Breton and seconded by Commissioner Chambers. Motion carried 5-0. Commissioner Young is requesting that interviews be held at 6:30 PM at the next meeting for all the volunteers who want to be appointed and if they cannot be finished at this time then it can be moved to the meeting in February.
A question was asked to the Board of Commissioners when the Officer of the Year Award would be presented to Officer Ashe. Ms. Denne stated it will be in the month of February but the date has not been decided.
Commissioner entertained a motion to adjourn the January 12, 2017 meeting at 8:30 PM. Moved by Commissioner Young and seconded by Commissioner Brenton. Motion carried 5-0.
Respectfully Submitted by,
Margaret Driller Recording Secretary