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Buckingham Township

Township Office
4613 Hughesian Drive
P.O. Box 413
Buckingham, PA 18912

Phone : (215) 794-8834
Fax : (215) 794-8837
contact@buckinghampa.org

Hours: Mon-Fri, 7:30 AM-4:00 PM

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Police Department: (215) 794-8813
Fax: (215) 794-9081 
police@buckinghampa.org -
(Not to be used for immediate police response) 

Hours: Mon-Fri, 7:30 AM-4:00 PM

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Phone : (215) 794-8836
Hours: Mon-Fri, 7:30 AM-4:00 PM

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Meeting Minutes And Agendas

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Board of Supervisors
12/19/2017 7:30 PM

Meeting Minutes

 

The regular meeting of the Buckingham Township Board of Supervisors was held December 19, 2017 in the Township Building, 4613 Hughesian Drive, Buckingham, Pennsylvania.

 

Present:        Maggie Rash                            Chairman

                        Paul Calderaio                         Vice-Chairman

                        Jon Forest                                Member

                        Dana S. Cozza                          Township Manager

                        Daniel Gray                              Township Engineer

                        Craig A. Smith, Esquire          Township Solicitor

 

Not Present:    John Ives                                 Bucks County Planning Commission

                           Tom Kelso                               Township Water/Wastewater Consultant

 

                       

Mrs. Rash called the regular meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. and led the Pledge of Allegiance.

 

PUBLIC COMMENT

 

Ms. Barbara Sheinmel, Bradford Circle, requested the township consider adopting a resolution to ban fracking, and provide it to the Delaware River Basin Commission (“DRBC”). She said she recently attended a DRBC meeting regarding fracking where they explained the urgency for municipalities to adopt a resolution as there are January hearings scheduled. If not opposed, the commission may allow water to be withdrawn from the watershed for use in other fracking locations and allow tainted water to be discharged back into the basin. Ms. Sheinmel provided a sample resolution for the Board’s reference. She also referred everyone to the DRBC website if they have questions or want to get involved.

 

Mr. Perry Myers, Taylortown Road, President of the Windsor Square Homeowners’ Association, was present along with many residents of the Windsor Square subdivision. Mr. Myers expressed that the community feels neglected by the builder (Orleans) and requests the townships’ assistance in helping them get the outstanding work in the development completed so it can be dedicated to the township. Mr. Myers said construction on the community started in 2006, the residents pay taxes, yet are unable to receive township services.

 

Mr. Myers requested the following items: (i) to know if Orleans is still active in the process; (ii) what security does the township hold for the development, and can it be used to complete the project; (iii) a current dedication punchlist along with a timeline for completion; (iv) how they can address the safety issues caused by the deteriorating gazebo, which is used by children as they wait for the school bus; (v) how they can get another speed bump installed; (vi) how to address the perceived safety concerns caused by not being allowed to mow the natural areas; and (vii) how to get the bike path maintained that extends outside of their community towards Upper Mountain Road. 

 

Mrs. Cozza said the township shares their concerns as there had not been communication from Orleans with the township for quite a while. In response to a recent township inquiry, the township was informed that a “consultant” has now hired by Orleans who is in charge of the dedication process and estimates it will be completed in the Spring of 2018. Mrs. Cozza confirmed Orleans is not currently in bankruptcy or out of business. Mr. Gray said he will provide the consultant’s contact information to Mr. Myers.

 

Mrs. Cozza said many of the outstanding items regard landscaping issues, which cannot be addressed until Spring. She also said completion of the project is secured with bonds, which are the most difficult for a township to pull in order to complete the improvements itself.

 

Mr. Gray confirmed the most recent punchlist was prepared in December 2016, and included landscaping issues, minor construction issues including the split rail fence, minor basin construction issues, and other small items. Mr. Gray said that was the last punchlist prepared and he will provide it to Mr. Myers, as he did the former homeowners’ association president, Mr. Keefe.

 

Mr. Gray said the gazebo is on land that may have been already turned over to the homeowner’s association, and maintenance or removal of the gazebo, may in fact be the homeowner’s association’s responsibility at this time. Mr. Myers said he would research this.

 

Mr. Zaborsky, Springtown Road, questioned if the homeowners were to complete the outstanding issues themselves, could they be reimbursed from the township held security, or is there legal recourse in case Orleans refused to reimburse them. Mr. Smith advised that if the township called the funds, the bond company would likely deny the call and a lawsuit would have to ensue to get the money. Thereafter, while unusual, the township has in the past reached an agreement where it made the security available to the homeowner’s association for project completion. However, Mr. Smith emphasized that Orleans and the bonding company would likely need to be brought into a lawsuit to so proceed. Mr. Smith advised it is usually a quicker, cleaner and better process to get the developer to complete the work, if you can do so.

 

Ms. Seiler, Springtown Road, asked if the township can change their policy and not accept bonds as security. Mr. Smith said the Pennsylvania Municipalities Planning Code specifies the type of security the township must accept.

 

Mr. Stadelmaier, Stockton Road, said he was present for this same conversation five years ago.

 

Ms. Cohen, Springtown Road, said there are many dead trees that she has concerns about falling. Mr. Gray said the Landscape Review Consultant worked with Orleans and identified trees on Orleans’ property versus the neighboring properties. Orleans is responsible for trees on Orleans’ property. He said the neighbors have been sent notices regarding the dead trees on their properties. Mr. Gray said if a dead tree is in an area over which the township has ownership and threatens adjoining properties, then it will be removed by the township.

 

Ms. Cohen reported a safety concern regarding the grass that is not supposed to be mowed in the conservation area abutting her property, stating there are snakes that live there, so she mows it. Mr. Gray said it is not to be mowed, and the purpose is to restore the area to a natural meadow state in order to encourage natural species survival. Mr. Smith said it is a deed restriction on the property, not a zoning issue.

 

Mr. Harris, Springtown Road, requested the township be more assertive in putting forth a deadline for improvements to be completed. Mr. Smith advised that is fine, however if the deadline is not met, ensuing litigation may take years to resolve, actually delaying the process. Mr. Forest noted that a Toll Brothers development took 20 years to reach conclusion.

 

Mr. Stadelmaier questioned the speed hump, saying traffic comes through at 45mph on Redbarn Road. Mrs. Cozza said there is a process in order to get speed humps installed by the township, with the first item being the road must be dedicated to the township, which has not yet happened. Mr. Gray said he would provide Mr. Perry with the process for his records.

 

Mr. Gray agreed to keep in communication with Mr. Perry as the community contact person, and to provide him with the requested items and contacts in order to work together towards completing dedication of Windsor Square.

 

Mr. Calderaio thanked the community members for attending the meeting and asked they keep in communication with the township to work together towards completing the process.  

 

PRESENTATION OF THE 2018 PROPOSED BUCKINGHAM TOWNSHIP BUDGET

 

Mrs. Cozza offered a PowerPoint presentation explaining the Board of Supervisors' proposed 2018 budget. She explained the budgeting process, saying that the department heads all met individually with the Board of Supervisors and the Board reviewed the proposed budget for each department during prior work sessions. Mrs. Cozza explained that this presentation is usually shown when the Board considers providing its approval for the budget to be advertised and posted, which was done during the Board’s November meeting, however this year the presentation is being shown again this evening, on the night the budget is scheduled for its final hearing and proposed adoption.

 

Mrs. Cozza announced that for the 20th year in a row Buckingham Township would have no general fund tax millage increase, and produced a balanced budget with revenues equaling expenditures, after end-of-year transfers.

 

Mrs. Cozza emphasized that Buckingham Township is proposing that taxes remain the same in 2018, with no increase. The millage will remain at 4.0 mils; with 3 mils going to open space purchases; .75 mils split between the three volunteer fire companies; and .25 mils to emergency services.

 

Mrs. Cozza displayed a chart which showed surrounding municipalities’ tax amounts, with Buckingham Township having the lowest tax in the vicinity.

 

Mrs. Cozza reported out of each dollar a township resident will pay in 2018 real estate taxes, the school district will receive 82 ¢, the county receives 15 ¢ and the township only receives 3 ¢.

 

The entire Board thanked Mrs. Cozza and Mrs. Pistory, Finance Department Director for continuing to do a great job managing the finances of Buckingham Township.

 

BOARD’S ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

Mrs. Rash made the following announcements:

-  Red Cross Blood Drive: Monday, December 26, 2017, from 12-5 p.m.  Call 215-794-8834 and  

    make your appointment.

-  The Buckingham Township Administrative Offices will be closed December 22nd and December    

    25th. The offices will also close at 3:00 p.m. on December 29th, and all day on January 1st, 2018.

-  The December 27, 2017 Board of Supervisors’ meetings are cancelled.

-  The Annual Board of Supervisors’ Reorganization and Regular Business Meeting and                   

    Work Session (if needed), will be held Tuesday, January 2, 2018 at 7:00 p.m.

-  The Annual Board of Auditors’ Reorganization Meeting will be held Wednesday, January 3,

    2018 at 6:00 p.m.

-  For the 11th year in a row, Buckingham Township has received an Award of Financial Reporting  

   Achievement by the Government Finance Officers Association for its Comprehensive Annual   

   Financial Report (CAFR).

 

 PAYROLL and BILL LIST

 

Consideration of approving Payroll for the weeks ending November 26, 2017 and December 10, 2017, and the Bill List for the meeting of December 19, 2017.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forest to approve Payroll for the weeks ending November 26, 2017 and December 10, 2017, and the Bill List for the meeting of December 19, 2017,in the total amount of $961,361.55.

 

The motion carried unanimously.

 

MINUTES

 

Consideration of approving draft Supervisors’ Minutes of the November 15, 2017 Work Session and November 15, 2017 Regular Business Meeting.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve, as most recently presented, the draft Supervisors’ Minutes of the November 15, 2017 Work Session and November 15, 2017 Regular Business Meeting.

 

The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of accepting various Departmental Minutes and Advisory Body Minutes.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto accept the following Departmental Minutes and Advisory Body Minutes:

 

- Code Enforcement Monthly Statistical Report – November 2017

 

The motion carried unanimously.

BUSINESS

 

Consideration of accepting the Request for Extension to the allowable review time under the provisions of the PA Municipalities Planning Code to December 1, 2018, for “PA Biotechnology Center”, Township File LD 2017-02.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto accept the Request for Extension to the allowable review time under the provisions of the PA Municipalities Planning Code to December 1, 2018, for “PA Biotechnology Center”, Township File LD 2017-02. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of accepting the Request for Extension to the allowable review time under the provisions of the PA Municipalities Planning Code to July 2, 2018, for the “Hirsch Property”, Township File LD 2017-03.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto accept the Request for Extension to the allowable review time under the provisions of the PA Municipalities Planning Code to July 2, 2018, for the “Hirsch Property”, Township File LD 2017-03. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of accepting the Request for Extension to the allowable review time under the provisions of the PA Municipalities Planning Code to January 2, 2019, for “Leaver Cable Funeral Home”, Township File LD 2017-04.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto accept the Request for Extension to the allowable review time under the provisions of the PA Municipalities Planning Code to January 2, 2019, for “Leaver Cable Funeral Home”, Township File LD 2017-04. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of accepting Request for Extension to the allowable review time under the provisions of the PA Municipalities Planning Code to January 2, 2019, for the “Swank Tract”, Township File LD 2017-01.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto accept the Request for Extension to the allowable review time under the provisions of the PA Municipalities Planning Code to January 2, 2019, for the “Swank Tract”, Township File LD 2017-01. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Resolution No. 2340, A Resolution of the Township of Buckingham, County of Bucks, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Prohibiting the Location of a Category 4 Licensed Facility within the Township.

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Resolution No. 2340, A Resolution of the Township of Buckingham, County of Bucks, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Prohibiting the Location of a Category 4 Licensed Facility within the Township.

Mrs. Ridgway asked what this matter regards. Mr. Smith said it is to prohibit mini casino’s from coming into Buckingham Township.

 

The motion carried unanimously.

Consideration of approving Resolution No. 2341, A Resolution of the Township of Buckingham, County of Bucks, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Fixing the Earned Income Tax Rate, Local Services Tax Rate, and the Realty Transfer Tax Rate for the Fiscal Year 2018.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Resolution No. 2341, A Resolution of the Township of Buckingham, County of Bucks, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Fixing the Earned Income Tax Rate, Local Services Tax Rate, and the Realty Transfer Tax Rate for the Fiscal Year 2018. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Resolution No. 2342, Fixing the Real Estate Tax Rate for the Fiscal Year 2018. 

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Resolution No. 2342, Fixing the Real Estate Tax Rate for the Fiscal Year 2018. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Resolution No. 2343, Authorizing the Establishment of Checking, Savings and Investment Accounts and Designating Various Institutions to Serve as Depositories for the Funds of the Township in 2018.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Resolution No. 2343, Authorizing the Establishment of Checking, Savings and Investment Accounts and Designating Various Institutions to Serve as Depositories for the Funds of the Township in 2018. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Resolution No. 2344, Township Secretary’s Certification of the 2018 Budget Preparation & Publication.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Resolution No. 2344, Township Secretary’s Certification of the 2018 Budget Preparation & Publication. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Resolution No. 2345, Appropriating Specific Sums Estimated to be Required for the Specific Purposes of the Municipal Government, Hereinafter Set Forth, During the Year 2018 and Adopting the Annual Budget Reflecting These Amounts.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Resolution No. 2345, Appropriating Specific Sums Estimated to be Required for the Specific Purposes of the Municipal Government, Hereinafter Set Forth, During the Year 2018 and Adopting the Annual Budget Reflecting These Amounts. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Resolution No. 2346 for the purpose of Amending the 2017 Budget.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Calderaioto approve Resolution No. 2346 for the purpose of Amending the 2017 Budget. The motion carried unanimously.

Consideration of approving Resolution No. 2347, A Resolution of the Township of Buckingham, County of Bucks, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Electing to Reduce the Member Contributions to the Police Pension Plan Administered by the Pennsylvania Municipal Retirement System (PMRS) to Three Percent from the PMRS Police Pension Plan Five Percent for the Year 2018.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Calderaioto approve Resolution No. 2347, A Resolution of the Township of Buckingham, County of Bucks, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Electing to Reduce the Member Contributions to the Police Pension Plan Administered by the Pennsylvania Municipal Retirement System (PMRS) to Three Percent from the PMRS Police Pension Plan Five Percent for the Year 2018. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Resolution No. 2348, A Resolution of the Board of Supervisors of Buckingham Township, Bucks County, Pennsylvania, Confirming the Acceptance of Certain

Rights-of-Way of Redwood Court, and Cold Spring Creamery Road; Accepting Dedication of Open Space “A” (TMP 06-059-051); Accepting a General Utilities Easement, Restricted Open Space Easements and a Restricted Open Space/Detention Basin Easement All in The Development Known as Cornell Tract Phase II.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Resolution No. 2348, A Resolution of the Board of Supervisors of Buckingham Township, Bucks County, Pennsylvania, Confirming the Acceptance of Certain Rights-of-Way of Redwood Court, and Cold Spring Creamery Road; Accepting Dedication of Open Space “A” (TMP 06-059-051); Accepting a General Utilities Easement, Restricted Open Space Easements and a Restricted Open Space/Detention Basin Easement All In The Development Known as Cornell Tract Phase II. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of recommending approval of the Stipulation regarding the Tax Assessment Appeal between Ravid Lahaska, LLC c/o Cohen Equities NY LLC and Bucks County Board of Assessment Appeals, for Tax Parcel # 06-016-015.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve the Stipulation regarding the Tax Assessment Appeal between Ravid Lahaska, LLC c/o Cohen Equities NY LLC and Bucks County Board of Assessment Appeals, for Tax Parcel # 06-016-015.

 

Mr. Smith explained this stipulation regards Penn’s Purchase, whose owner appealed their tax rate, Bucks County and Central Bucks School District agreed on a reduced tax amount, and Buckingham Township is stating it is not opposed to the settlement.

 

The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving the Grant of Easement between Biltmore Properties, LP and Buckingham Township on TMP# 06-009-010; the Grant of Easement between Bruce L. Kimbel and Patricia Cole, and Buckingham Township on TMP# 06-009-011; and the Grant of Easement between Rene K. Johnson and Karen V. Johnson, and Buckingham Township on TMP# 06-008-044 for use by the Furlong Water System.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve the Grant of Easement between Biltmore Properties, LP and Buckingham Township on TMP# 06-009-010; the Grant of Easement between Bruce L. Kimbel and Patricia Cole, and Buckingham Township on TMP# 06-009-011; and the Grant of Easement between Rene K. Johnson and Karen V. Johnson, and Buckingham Township on TMP# 06-008-044 for use by the Furlong Water System. The motion carried unanimously.

 

ESCROW RELEASE

 

Phillips Tract (Surrey Hill), Township File SA 2002-06A

Release #13, Site

$246,526.31 recommended for release

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve the Escrow Release to “Phillips Tract (Surrey Hill)”, Township File SA 2002-06A, Release #13 Site, in the amount of $246,526.31.

The motion carried unanimously.

 

ADDITIONAL BUSINESS

 

Consideration of Granting an Emergency Connection to the Public Wastewater Systemsubmitted by Christopher Woroniak, 3775 Cold Spring Creamery Road, TP# 6-4-41. Consideration of Granting an Emergency Connection to the Public Wastewater System submitted by Margo Ostrowski, 3783 Cold Spring Creamery Road, TP# 6-4-43.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Granting an Emergency Connection to the Public Wastewater Systemsubmitted by Christopher Woroniak, 3775 Cold Spring Creamery Road, TP# 6-4-41,and Granting an Emergency Connection to the Public Wastewater System submitted by Margo Ostrowski, 3783 Cold Spring Creamery Road, TP# 6-4-43.

 

Mrs. Cozza noted this completes the granting of emergency wastewater connections for three adjacent properties along Cold Spring Creamery Road, as recommended by Graham Orton, Director of the Water and Wastewater Department and also the Bucks County Department of Health. She explained these are smaller lots unsuitable for any other wastewater solutions, and by connecting all three at the same time the cost will be reduced. The third property was granted connection during a previous Board of Supervisors meeting. 

 

 The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Payment of Outstanding Invoices owed by “Stoneymead”, Township  File SA 98-05, in the amount of $38,364.05 to Buckingham Township.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Payment of Outstanding Invoices owed by “Stoneymead”, Township File SA 98-05, in the amount of $38,364.05 to Buckingham Township.The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Payment of Outstanding Invoices owed by “Verrichia Tract”,  Township File SA 2006-04, in the amount of $5,670.46 to Buckingham Township. 

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forestto approve Payment of Outstanding Invoices owedby “Verrichia Tract”,Township File SA 2006-04, in the amount of $5,670.46 to Buckingham Township.The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of approving Payment of Outstanding Invoices owed by “Pat McVan”, Township File SA 1995-05, in the amount of $119.00 to Buckingham Township.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Forest to approve Payment of Outstanding Invoices owedby “Pat McVan”, Township File SA 1995-05, in the amount of $119.00 to Buckingham Township. The motion carried unanimously.

 

Consideration of submitting a letter to the Board of Assessment Appeals Office stating Buckingham Township has no objection to the reassignment of former Tax Map Parcel numbers 06-018-167-001 and 06-018-158-012 to the present Tax Map Parcel 06-018-158-012 reversing a prior deed of consolidation filed by the property owner, per the property owners’ request.

 

Mr. Forest read aloud a letter stating his excusing and abstaining from participation in this matter due to the participants being his parents. The letter will be made a part of these minutes.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr.Calderaio to approve the submission of a letter to the Board of Assessment Appeals Office stating Buckingham Township has no objection to the reassignment of Tax Map Parcel 06-018-158-012 to the former Tax Map Parcels 06-018-167-001 and 06-018-158-012, per the property owners request.

 

Mr. Smith explained that the property owners, Gerald and Kathleen Forest, previously consolidated two parcels into one, and have now decided to reverse the consolidation back to the two original parcels for estate planning reasons. Mr. Smith explained the County requested a letter of confirmation from the Board of Supervisors stating they have no objection to this reassignment.

 

Mrs. Rash called the vote: Mrs. Rash voted “aye”, Mr. Calderaio voted “aye”. The motion carried.

 

Mrs. Rash made a motion, seconded by Mr. Calderaio to adjourn the meeting at 9:00 p.m.  The motion carried unanimously.

 

Approved by the Board of Supervisors on the 2nd day of January, 2018.

                                                                                                         Buckingham Township Board of Supervisors

          

                                                                                                         ______________________________________

                                                                                                         Maggie Rash, Chairman

                                                           

                                                                                                        ______________________________________

                                                                                                        Paul Calderaio, Vice-Chairman

 

                                                                                                       ______________________________________ 

                                                                                                       Jon Forest, Member

 

Attest:

 

_____________________________

Dana S. Cozza, Secretary

 

Minutes respectfully submitted by Lori Wicen. 

   

View Meeting Minutes prior to June 23, 2009