Duly advertised in The Pottstown Mercury and posted at www.schuylkilltwp.com
Board of Supervisors
Martha Majewski - Chair, Fred Parry – Vice Chair, Jim Morrisson – Treasurer, Mark Donovan
Susan Guerette was excused from this meeting.
William Brennan, Esq.-Township Solicitor, Madeline Harbison – Township Secretary, John Sartor. P.E.-Township Engineer
Other Township Representatives Present
Curt English – Schuylkill Township Planning Commission, Chief James Fetterman-Schuylkill Township Police Department, Nick Cinciripino-Schuylkill Township Roadmaster.
Appearing before the Board
Michael Sodl, P.E. Wilkinson & Associates, Inc.-Engineers for Valley Forge Meadows Company, Inc.
James Nolen, Principal – The Nolen Companies
Call to Order
The monthly public business meeting was called to order at 7:32 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance. The meeting was chaired by Supervisor Majewski. Supervisor Majewski announced that an executive session was held immediately prior to the meeting for Board deliberations on the Sedgley Farm Planned Residential Development Tentative Plan Application.
Paul Lemen Drive Capital Stormwater Management Project
Mr. Cinciripino briefly recounted the township stormwater survey and proposed remediation plan authorized by the Board two years ago for Oakwood Lane and Paul Lemen Drive. He then described the major issues exposed on Paul Lemen Drive after the June 10-11, 2018 storm, i.e. scouring, erosion and sinkholes, as witnessed by Supervisor Majewski and Supervisor Donovan. The Township Engineer added that this particular storm dropped 4 inches of rain in about 12 hours which resulted in 3.5 million gallons of water flowing down Valley Forge Mountain toward Paul Lemen Drive. Mr. Cinciripino stated that the proposed remediation plan for Paul Lemen Drive no longer appears to be feasible and said that he and the Township Engineer were bringing the issue to the Board for advice and direction on how to proceed with the stormwater remediation on Paul Lemen Drive. Discussion ensued regarding remediation measures. The Township Solicitor advised the Board that inclusion of remediation work on private property may have significant adverse financial impact on the Township and its taxpayers. Mr. Brennan said that some municipalities have instituted stormwater impact fees for stormwater remediation but that Schuylkill Township may not be to that point yet. Mr. Brennan suggested that the Township proceed with stormwater facilities remediation and upgrade work in the Township’s right-of-way and measure what improvement is achieved before proceeding onto private property. Mr. Sartor reminded the Board that several years ago, the Township Engineer was directed to begin work on the Paul Lemen Drive and Oakwood Lane erosion problems. In July 2017, the Paul Lemen Drive survey was completed but at that time Oakwood Lane took precedent. Mr. Sartor explained that the recent storm events have uncovered certain issues concerning the culverts underneath Paul Lemen Drive which may ultimately lead to failure of both the pipes and the road and, in his opinion, makes remediation on Paul Lemen Drive a priority. Discussion ensued regarding budget numbers and the probable scope of work. Mr. Sartor said he is exploring the possibility of obtaining grant monies to assist with the projects on Oakwood Lane and Paul Lemen Drive. Mr. Cinciripino suggested that at this time, the Roads Department should clean up the detritus and damage in the gully from the June storms as best as possible and that all Board members review the Paul Lemen Drive situation on site in order that an informed decision about future action be made. Mr. Sartor added that he and the Roadmaster could continue to review the situation, Board members should visit the site and the matter be revisited at a future meeting. The Board concurred.
Public Meeting – Schuylkill Township Draft Pollutant Reduction Plan (“PRP”)
The public meeting on the Schuylkill Township Draft Pollution Reduction Plan opened at 7:55 p.m. Mr. Sartor, Township Engineer, presented the Board with the Draft PRP and the PRP Status Report which included a timeline for submission of the PRP to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (“PaDEP”) under the Township’s NPDES/MS4 permit, said Status Report is included herein by reference. Mr. Sartor explained that under its MS4 permit, Schuylkill Township is required to reduce its pollutants within the Valley Creek watershed. PaDEP has identified Valley Creek as being impaired for sediment only and the affected watershed encompasses only a very small area of the Township. Mr. Sartor reviewed the PRP map which highlights the subject watershed and Township municipal storm sewer facilities within that watershed. Mr. Sartor explained that the highlighted areas on the map were calculated by a PaDEP endorsed computer program. Mr. Sartor went through the Status Report, explaining the methods of calculation for sediment amounts to be captured and outlining the best management practices (“BMP”) identified to reduce the Township’s sediment load to Valley Creek. Mr. Sartor reviewed the PRP submission process and subsequent adherence to the sediment reduction requirements. Mr. Sartor advised that this July 5, 2018 public meeting opened the public comment period which would continue through August 6, 2018, and that the PRP submitted to PaDEP must show that all comments received were addressed by the Township. The PRP is available to the public for review on the Township website and in the Township administration office. Mr. Sartor concluded his presentation and opened the meeting to public comment.
Ellen Jantzen, 15 Galway Lane, asked if the Tredyffrin Township run-off to Valley Creek was accounted for in the Township’s figures. Mr. Sartor explained that PaDEP calculated the entire sediment load within the Valley Creek Watershed and then assigned reduction goals to affected municipalities for the portions of their storm sewer systems that discharge to Valley Creek.. Ms. Jantzen inquired whether the on-going erosion of Valley Creek was part of adjacent municipalities’ PRP. Mr. Sartor said that is not part of Schuylkill Township’s current obligation; it is only required to manage run-off from township-owned streets and storm sewer facilities. Ms. Jantzen questioned whether future developments would be required to minimize their run-off; Mr. Sartor replied that all new developments are required to adhere to Schuylkill Township’s Stormwater Management Ordinance which is based on a Chester County model ordinance approved by PaDEP. Ms. Jantzen asked specifically about the proposed Pohlig Builders, LLC development on the Reeves property in the township; Mr. Sartor informed Ms. Jantzen that Pohlig would be required to obtain its own NPDES permits from the County and PaDEP. Ms. Jantzen asked about future technology of stormwater management, specifically infiltration basins, and whether that would aid the Township in pollutant controls. Mr. Sartor replied that it was certainly possible; that at present BMP guidance documents from PaDEP are used to design infiltration basins which is the best available technology. If PaDEP provides improved BMPs; future developments will have to meet those regulations.
Marie McKnight, 20 Bantry Lane, asked if the infiltration basins in the Pohlig development have been approved; Supervisor Morrisson told her that tentative plan approval is still before the Board and is in process.
There being no further public comments, the public meeting was closed at 8:30 p.m.
Upon motion by Supervisor Parry, seconded by Supervisor Donovan, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township approved and accepted the Consent Agenda.
Board Member Reports
Planning Commission – Supervisor Donovan reported that the Valley Forge Meadows Company, Inc. presented a revised plan for its townhouse development on Pawling Road which would increase impervious coverage by about 2400 s.f.; the stormwater management facilities on the present plan is projected to be sufficient to accommodate the increase.
Phoenixville Regional Planning Committee – the Regional Comprehensive Plan continues to be reviewed. A public meeting is scheduled for August 29, 2018 at the Kimberton Fire Company.
Supervisor Majewski announced The Regional Multimodal Plan sponsored by Chester County has been completed. The plan may be reviewed on the Chester County Planning Commission website.
Supervisor Majewski asked the Township Solicitor to comment on the Valley Forge Sewer Authority lawsuit. Mr. Brennan advised the Board that the case had been scheduled to go to arbitration but was settled before arbitration. Mr. Brennan informed the Board that the Township’s portion of the settlement would be income neutral; it would not involve a cash outlay from the General Fund. The Township Secretary advised the Board that the Schuylkill Township representative on the Valley Forge Sewer Authority Board would be attending the August 1, 2018 Board of Supervisors meeting to provide an update on the matter.
Treasurer’s Report and Payment of Bills
Supervisor Morrisson, Treasurer, reported to the Board that as of June 30, 2018, the Township’s general fund shows a balance of $4,307,566.02. Mr. Morrisson reported that the Open Space Fund continues to grow and the Township’s Open Space Commission is actively pursuing opportunities for conservation of open space. Supervisor Morrisson reported that the bills for June 2018 have been reviewed and he recommended payment of these bills.
Upon motion by Supervisor Parry, seconded by Supervisor Morrisson, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township approved and accepted the Treasurer’s Report for the period ending June 30, 2018 and authorized payment of Township bills for the period ending June 30, 2018.
2017 Tax Collector Audit Report
Upon motion by Supervisor Majewski, seconded by Supervisor Parry, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township approved and accepted the 2017 Schuylkill Township Tax Collector Audit Report as submitted by Barbacane Thornton & Co., LLP as submitted on June 14, 2018.
Board Discussion Items
University of Valley Forge Zoning Hearing Board Application - Mr. Brennan, Township Solicitor, reported that the application would be before the Schuylkill Township Zoning Hearing Board on August 13, 2018 and asked if the Board wished to take a formal position on the matter. Discussion ensued regarding the various actions available and consequences thereof.
Upon motion by Supervisor Morrisson, seconded by Supervisor Donovan, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township instructed the Township Solicitor to appear before the Schuylkill Township Zoning Hearing Board on behalf of the Board to oppose the zoning relief Application of the University of Valley Forge.
Fair Share Fees Ruling – Mr. Brennan summarized a recent ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court in which the collection of “fair share” fees from non-union members by public sector unions was declared unconstitutional. Mr. Brennan advised the Board that he is reviewing the matter with the Township’s labor counsel.
Valley Park Construction Bid
Upon motion by Supervisor Parry, seconded by Supervisor Majewski, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township approved and authorized the Township Engineer, Gilmore & Associates, Inc., to issue a request for construction bids package through PennBid for the Township-owned Valley Park construction project.
Mr. Sartor asked the Board for guidance on the title to be placed on the plans, bid documents and the mandated sign to be placed on the property. The consensus of the Board was that the title should be Valley Park.
2018 ARLE Grant
Upon motion by Supervisor Parry, seconded by Supervisor Donovan, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township approved and authorized a matching fund amount up to 10% of the total award for a 2018 ARLE Grant application for traffic signal intersection improvements in the Township. The award is estimated to be between $10,000 and $18,000.
Natural Lands Land Use Ordinance Review Proposal
Upon motion by Supervisor Morrisson, seconded by Supervisor Majewski, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township approved and accepted the Natural Lands Land Use Ordinance Review proposal dated May 8, 2018.
Supervisor Donovan reported that information continues to be uploaded to the new site as well as some redesign work to better accommodate different information delivery vehicles.
Update Music Festival
Supervisor Donovan reported that the festival committee met at the Freedoms Foundation to walk the property and lay out the grounds plan. The acts have been signed and the committee is finalizing the participating vendors. Mr. Brennan advised Supervisor Donovan that the indemnity agreement should be executed by Chaplin’s and The Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge.
Resolutions / Ordinances
Nothing to report.
Subdivision / Land Development
Mr. Michael Sodl, P.E., on behalf of James Nolen, Nolen Companies, presented a revised Valley Forge Meadows Company, Inc. Proposed Townhouse Residential Development plan dated 09.27.2017 Revised 06.27.2018. Mr. Sodl explained that the 32-unit townhome development received approval in December of 2017 for units 22 feet wide by 51 feet deep. The units have been revised to be 24 feet wide and 50 feet deep, adding 78 square feet to each unit. The townhouse configuration are the same, all setback requirements, both property line and building separation, are still being met and the Township Engineer has acknowledged that the increased impervious surface resulting from the units’ increased square footage will work with the previously approved stormwater management plan.
Upon motion by Supervisor Parry, seconded by Supervisor Majewski, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township granted conditional final land development approval to the subdivision plan titled “Valley Forge Meadows Company, Inc. Proposed Townhouse Residential Development, Schuylkill Township, Chester County”, Tax Parcel 27-6-1217 as prepared by Wilkinson & Associates, Inc., and dated September 27, 2017 and last revised June 27, 2018. Final approval is conditioned upon adequately addressing all comments in the Gilmore & Associates, Inc. review letter dated June 28, 2018 to the satisfaction of the Township Engineer.
Mr. Brennan asked Mr. Nolen if he was still the builder on the project; Mr. Nolen said it has not been determined at this time.
Phoenixville Area School District Early Learning Center (“ELC”) – Escrow Release #10
Upon motion by Supervisor Parry, seconded by Supervisor Guerette, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township approved and authorized Escrow Release No. 10 for the Phoenixville Area School District Early Learning Center in the amount of seventy-one thousand, nine hundred seventy dollars ($71,970.00) as recommended in the Gilmore & Associates, Inc. letter of June 19, 2018 (File No. 13-12010T1). The amount remaining in the escrow account will be $168,030.00.
Supervisor Parry questioned whether monies are available for replacement landscaping at the ELC. Mr. Sartor said that of the remaining escrow of $168,000, about $80,000 in retainage in Township security to ensure plantings are replaced.
Mr. Mraz, Meadow Brook Lane, expressed his concerns about the condition of the landscaping at the ELC and whether adequate monies would be available for replacement trees and shrubs.
Phoenixville Area School District Middle School – Escrow Release #5
Upon motion by Supervisor Parry, seconded by Supervisor Guerette, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township approved and authorized Escrow Release No. 5 for the Phoenixville Area School District Middle in the amount of two hundred eight-seven thousand, six hundred fifty-four dollars and three cents ($287,654.03) as recommended in the Gilmore & Associates, Inc. letter of June 19, 2018 (File No. 09-05070T1). The amount remaining in the escrow account will be $53,214.35.
Agenda Items for July 26, 2018 Work Session
The following items will be discussed at the Board of Supervisors’ July 26, 2018 work session:
Mr. Sartor confirmed that he would only be reporting on remediation in the township right-of-way.
The Township Solicitor is excused from the July 26, 2018 Work Session.
Hunting in Valley Park
Upon motion by Supervisor Morrisson, seconded by Supervisor Parry, and unanimously passed, the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township approved and authorized deer archery hunting (Antlered and Antlerless) by Mr. Michael Bauer, resident of the township, solely within the boundaries of township-owned Valley Park from September 15 - November 24, 2018 and December 26, 2018 - January 26, 2019 under the rules and regulations of Schuylkill Township and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Game Commission.
Ellen Jantzen, 15 Galway Lane, expressed her concern about traffic in the Weyhill development. Ms. Jantzen said that in spite of the 25 MPH speed limit signs installed, there is still a significant amount of speeding cut-through traffic during rush hour and asked if additional traffic calming remedies could be pursued. The Board instructed the Township Secretary to forward to Ms. Jantzen the Township’s Traffic Calming Policy and Procedures.
Nothing to report.
There being no further business before the Board, the meeting was adjourned at 9:50 p.m. upon motion of Supervisor Majewski, seconded by Supervisor Parry and unanimously agreed by the Board of Supervisors of Schuylkill Township.
Next Board of Supervisors’ Meeting
Board of Supervisors Work Session...................................... Thursday July 26, 2018 at 7:30 P.M.
Board of Supervisors Regular Business Meeting.................... Wednesday August 1, 2018 at 7:30 P.M.