Montgomery Township, Pennsylvania

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12-19-2016- Board of Supervisors Minutes

MINUTES OF MEETING

MONTGOMERY TOWNSHIP BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

DECEMBER 19, 2016

 

            At 7:00 p.m. Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera called to order the executive session.  In attendance were Supervisors Robert J. Birch, Michael J. Fox, Jeffrey W. McDonnell and Richard E. Miniscalco.  Also in attendance were Township Manager Lawrence Gregan and Township Solicitor Robert J. Iannozzi, Esquire. 

At 8:00 p.m. Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera called to order the action meeting.  In attendance were Supervisors Robert J. Birch, Michael J. Fox, Jeffrey W. McDonnell and Richard E. Miniscalco.  Also in attendance were Township Solicitor Robert J. Iannozzi, Esquire, Township Manager Lawrence J. Gregan, Police Chief J. Scott Bendig, Director of Fire Services Richard Lesniak, Director of Finance Ami Tarburton, Director of Administration and Human Resources Ann Shade, Assistant to the Township Manager Stacy Crandell, Director of Planning and Zoning Bruce Shoupe, Director of Public Works Kevin Costello, Director of Recreation and Community Center Floyd Shaffer and Information Technology Director Rich Grier.

            Following the Pledge of Allegiance, Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera called for public comment from the audience and there was none.

            Township Solicitor Robert J. Iannozzi announced that the Board had met in an executive session prior to this meeting and discussed two potential zoning hearing board cases, as well as three pending litigation matters.  The Board also discussed the Airport Square Shopping Associates matter and Mirabella case.  In addition, two matters of personnel, the Fire Union Arbitration and Police Union Negotiations were discussed. Mr. Iannozzi stated that these matters are legitimate subjects of executive session pursuant to Pennsylvania’s Sunshine Law.

            Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera made a motion to approve the minutes of the November 28, 2016 Board of Supervisors meeting, and Supervisor Michael J. Fox seconded the motion.  The minutes of the meeting were unanimously approved as submitted.

 

Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera recognized and commended Township resident Timothy Ruane for the successful completion of his Eagle Scout Project.  Tim stated that he is an Eagle Scout from Troop 547 in North Wales, PA and this past summer he undertook an Eagle Scout project to repair the fence at the Zehr Park Soccer Fields by installing a concrete post and wood rail fence.  Photos of the project were displayed.  Tim reported that over 35 scouts came out to assist him with the project, which took about six hours.  Supervisor Michael Fox commented that he remembered the day as he had been visiting the park and saw the work being done at the time.  Supervisor Fox stated that the project turned out really well and thanked Tim and his fellow scouts for their efforts.  Township resident Richard Roller stated that the scouts did an excellent job, but they could not have done it without the guidance and hard work of Township Public Work’s employee Greg Reiff.  Mr. Roller stated that he wanted to mention Greg Reiff because he has worked on a number of projects with the Scouts and he has always been responsive and is a pleasure to work with.  Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera recognized the list of individuals who assisted Tim with this project.  In addition to Tim Ruane, Joe Ruane, Ryan Morrissy, Kevin Morrissy and Sean O’Gara, who were all present this evening, the Board also thanked Jay Ruane, Maggie Ruane, Keith Morrissy, Katie Morrissy, Kevin Harte, Matt Harte, Richard Roller, Pete Loftus, Chris Loftus, John Joyce, Joseph Joyce, Susan Judge, Mark Kelly, Zach Rotzal, Ralph Price, Kevin Judge, Don Ortolani, Ben Ortolani, Connor Waters, Justin Caniz, Jake Pepe, Luke Pepe, Joe Deitzel, David McGee, Kyle Harr, Jared Uzdzienski, Brett Uzdzienski, John Deitzel and Matt Uzdzienski for their hard work and assistance.

 Director of Finance Ami Tarburton presented the 2017 Sewer Authority Budget.  The Budget is balanced and does not propose a rate increase again for 2017.  Board of Supervisors approval of the Authority Budget is required in accordance with Section 3 of the Operating Agreement between the Township and the Montgomery Township Municipal Sewer Authority.  Resolution #1, made by Supervisor Michael J. Fox, seconded by Supervisor Robert J. Birch and adopted unanimously, approved the Montgomery Township Sewer Authority Budget for the fiscal year 2017. 

Director of Finance Ami Tarburton reported that the operating agreement between the Township and the Authority requires Board approval of all Tapping Fee Agreements entered into by the Montgomery Township Municipal Sewer Authority during 2016.  Resolution #2, made by Supervisor Michael J. Fox, seconded by Supervisor Robert J. Birch and adopted unanimously, approved the following Montgomery Township Municipal Sewer Authority’s Tapping Fee Agreements with Mark’s Jewelers, 2 EDU’s, Hatfield Basin and Michael and Linda LLC, 1 EDU, Hatfield Basin.

Director of Finance Ami Tarburton presented the final 2017 Montgomery Township Budget.  She reported that the Board had held four public workshop meetings on the budget and approved the Preliminary Budget on November 14, 2016.  Mrs. Tarburton presented the final budget information and stated that no revenues or expenses in the proposed Final Budget have been increased more than ten percent in the aggregate or more than twenty-five percent in any major category over the approved Preliminary Budget.  Resolution #3, made by Supervisor Robert J. Birch, seconded by Supervisor Michael J. Fox, and adopted unanimously, adopted the 2017 Montgomery Township Budget as presented on November 14, 2016. Resolution #4, made by Supervisor Robert J. Birch, seconded by Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera and adopted unanimously, approved the Tax Levy Resolution with a total of 1.49 mills, and establishes the Homestead Exclusion amount for 2017 at $30,000.  Resolution #5, made by Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera, seconded by Supervisor Robert J. Birch and adopted unanimously, established the street light assessment rates for 2017. 

            Director of Finance Ami Tarburton reported that each year the Board of Supervisors adopts a resolution denoting the categories of the fund balances as required by the government Accounting Standards Board (GASB) Statement No. 54 are to be reported on the annual audited financial statements.  Resolution #6 made by Supervisor Robert J. Birch, seconded by Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera and adopted unanimously, classified the Township’s fund balances in accordance with the Governmental Accounting Standard Board Statement No. 54 as described in attached Exhibit A.

            Director of Finance Ami Tarburton reported that several projects and activities have occurred during 2016 that require amendments to the 2016 budget in order to accurately reflect these revenues and expenditures.  The proposed amendments include:  1) General Fund adjustments for legal services expenses which reported higher than budgeted due to ongoing labor disputes and police contract negotiations; 2) Fire Protection Fund for increased legal expenses due to labor disputes, labor contract negotiations, and Act 111 arbitration proceedings; and 3) Debt Service Fund, for an increase of principal payments by $445K to fund final payment of principal on the 1999 G.O. Bonds and the 2012 G.O. Bonds. Resolution #7 made by Supervisor Robert J. Birch, seconded by Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera and adopted unanimously, approved the 2016 Budget Amendments to the General Fund, Fire Protection Fund and the Debt Service Fund.

Director of Finance Ami Tarburton reported that the Township has received a proposal from Maillie, LLP to prepare the Audited Financial Statements for the period of December 31, 2016 at a cost of $25,000 for the Township, $2,500 for the Fire Department of Montgomery Township (FDMT) and $2,500 for the Fire Department of Montgomery Township Relief Association, totaling $30,000.  Maillie, LLP has performed the audit of the financial statements of the Township, the FDMT and the FDMTRA for 2013, 2014 and 2015, as recommended by the Finance Committee.  Maillie, LLP has provided excellent service, responds promptly to all questions or concerns, and produces an accurate, professional final report.  Resolution #8 made by Supervisor Richard E. Miniscalco, seconded by Supervisor Robert J. Birch and adopted unanimously, accepted the proposal from Maillie, LLP to perform the annual audits of the financial statements of the Township, FDMT and FDMTRA for the period ending December 31, 2016, at an annual cost of $30,000 in accordance with their proposal dated October 25, 2016.

Director of Recreation and Community Center Floyd Shaffer reported that during the last few months, the membership fee structure of the Montgomery Township Community & Recreation Center (Mont CRC) has been reviewed by the Mont CRC Advisory Committee.  At the November 9th meeting, the Mont CRC Advisory Committee unanimously approved a recommendation for the new fee structure to be presented to the Board of Supervisors for their approval.  The new structure is designed to simplify the current system of membership fees for individuals, households, and businesses effective 1/1/2017.  Special consideration is included in the schedule in the form of credits for current members whose prepaid annual memberships and monthly memberships are approaching their renewal anniversaries during the first few weeks of 2017.  Resolution #9 made by Supervisor Michael J. Fox, seconded by Supervisor Jeffrey McDonnell and adopted unanimously, approved the Montgomery Township Community and Recreation Center 2017 Membership Fee Schedule.

 Director of Planning and Zoning Bruce Shoupe reported that the Township Engineer and Township Landscape Architect, along with Township staff, have reviewed and are recommending the release of the surety bond and end of the maintenance period for the Montgomery Chase Subdivision – LDS#616A.  The current amount of the escrow is $10,562.33, held as a Surety Bond.  Resolution #10 made by Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera, seconded by Supervisor Michael J. Fox and adopted unanimously, authorized the release of the Maintenance Bond and the end of the maintenance period for Montgomery Chase Subdivision – LDS#616A.

Director of Planning and Zoning Bruce Shoupe reported that the plan for the Preliminary/Final Land Development for Condo Unit #5, located at 640 Cowpath Road, LDS #687, was approved by the Board on March 28, 2016.  The property is located at Five Point Plaza within the (S) Shopping Center Zoning District.  The applicant proposed to develop Condo Unit #5, adjacent to BJ’s Warehouse Club.  The applicant believed that a waiver had been granted for perpendicular parking along the store front of this project, however, Traffic Planning and Design has determined that a waiver had not been granted for this property.  Resolution #11 made by Supervisor Michael J. Fox, seconded by Supervisor Robert J. Birch and adopted unanimously, reaffirmed the Preliminary/Final Land Development Plan approval and waiver request for Condo Unit #5, 640 Cowpath Road, LDS #687.

Resolution #13 made by Supervisor Robert J. Birch, seconded by Supervisor Michael J. Fox and adopted unanimously, approved construction escrow release #2 in the amount of $3,712.95 for #M-15-73 – Starbuck’s – 776 Bethlehem Pike. 

Resolution #14 made by Supervisor Michael J. Fox, seconded by Supervisor Robert J. Birch and adopted unanimously, approved the submission of an application for the 2016 Tree City USA Recertification and 2016 Growth Award.

Director of Planning and Zoning Bruce Shoupe reported that developer, WB Commons, LP, had previously entered into a Tri-Party Agreement with Montgomery Township and KNBT Bank to provide security for public improvements required to be installed as part of the WB Commons development.  The developer is proposing an Amendment to the Tri-Party Agreement to replace KNBT Bank as escrow agent with Meridian Bank, which is permitted under the Land Development Agreement.  Under this agreement, KNBT Bank would be released upon the complete execution of this Third Amendment and the posting of escrow funds with Meridian Bank to the satisfaction of the Township Solicitor.  Resolution #15 made by Supervisor Michael J. Fox, seconded by Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera and adopted unanimously, approved the replacement of the Land Development Surety for WB Commons, LP - LDS #610A.

Township Manager Lawrence J. Gregan reported that on October 7, 2015, Governor Wolf approved an amendment to the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code. The amendment, known previously as House Bill 33, provides for the appointment of up to three (3) alternate members to the Township’s Planning Commissions for a term of four (4) years. Resolution #16 made by Supervisor Michael J. Fox, seconded by Supervisor Robert J. Birch and adopted unanimously, approved Ordinance #16-302- Amending Chapter 34 of the Township Code, Planning Commission, adding Section 34-9 making provision for appointment of the Alternate Members on the Township Planning Commission. 

Township Manager Lawrence J. Gregan reported that the Township Real Estate Tax Collector has requested that the Tax Certification Fee be increased from $25 to $30.  The original fee of $25 has been in place since originally adopted by Ordinance 125 on November 25, 2991.  A proposed ordinance has been created amending the Township Code, Chapter 209, Article VI, Section 209-76(B) Taxation/Tax Certification Fee, to increase the Township’s current $25.00 Tax Certification Fee to $30.00.  Resolution #18 made by Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera, seconded by Supervisor Robert J. Birch and adopted unanimously, authorized the advertisement of proposed Ordinance #17-303 – Amending Chapter 209, Article VI, Section 209-76(B) Taxation/Tax Certifications/Fees for consideration at the January 3, 2017 Board of Supervisors meeting.

            A motion to approve the payment of bills was made by Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera, seconded by Supervisor Michael J. Fox, and adopted unanimously, approved the payment of bills as submitted.

            Under other business, Supervisor Michael J. Fox made a motion and Vice Chairman Candyce Fluehr Chimera seconded the motion to authorize the execution of the settlement stipulation between Airport Square Shopping Center LP and Montgomery Township Zoning Hearing Board, et al., subject to confirmation of the proposed water tank’s height to the satisfaction of the Township Solicitor.  The motion passed unanimously.

Township Manager Lawrence J. Gregan thanked the Board of Supervisors and staff for a very good year. There being no further business to come before the Board, the meeting adjourned at 8:38p.m.