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The Borough of Lansdowne Pennsylvania The Borough of Lansdowne Pennsylvania

Lansdowne Borough Council General Meeting
Wednesday – October 15, 2003

The General Meeting of the Lansdowne Borough Council was held on Wednesday, October 15, 2003 at 7:30 PM in Borough Hall. In attendance were President Campuzano, Mr. Council, Mr. Burke, Mr. Borgman, Mrs. Fryer and Mr. Smith. Also in attendance were Mayor Young, Solicitor Scott, Borough Manager Forrest, Borough Engineer Bevilacqua, Borough Secretary Henry, Chief Kortan, Treasurer Asciutto, Fire Chief Young and Code Enforcement Officer Travers. Mr. Klingler was absent.

President Campuzano announced that the meeting was being taped by Comcast and would air on Monday, October 20th , 7:00 PM on Cable Channel 10.

Minutes

Mr. Burke moved to approve the minutes of the September 17, 2002 General Meeting. Mr. Council seconded and the motion carried with a correction by Mr. Smith. Mr. Smith abstained from the vote.

Presentations and Announcements

Mayor Young presented the Lansdowne Caring Citizen Award to Tom Young, Jr. for helping to rescue two neighborhood children caught under a fallen tree.
Mayor Young introduced Dave Bochanski who served as a student ambassador in the People to People Program in Australia and New Zealand. Mr. Bochanski thanked the Allied Youth Council for their grant of $500 and gave an overview of his experiences during the trip.
Mayor Young announced that the Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra will perform on October 17th at the Upper Darby Performing Arts Center.
Mayor Young announced that Paul Jeremiah will appear at the Lansdowne Folk Club on October 23rd.
Mayor Young announced that the Community Council Education group will meet on October 23rd, 7-9 PM at Penn Wood High School.
Mayor Young announced that the Ladies Auxiliary will hold their Craft Fair on October 25th at the fire house from 9-3 PM.
Mayor Young urged residents to vote on November 4th.
Mayor Young announced that St. John’s Church will hold their holiday bazaar on November 15th.
Mayor Young announced that the 2nd annual No Place For Hate Snowflake gathering will be held on November 21st.
President Campuzano thanked Suni Best for her Halloween pumpkin carving depicting Lansdowne’s logo, the Sycamore tree.

Treasurer’s Report

Mr. Asciutto reported that total General Fund revenues for September amounted to $134,207.31 and total expenditures amounted to $544,162.24.
Mr. Asciutto reported that the September ending balance for all funds was $8,663,144.35.
Mr. Asciutto reported that the ending balance for the Police Pension Fund was $5,777,903.78. The ending balance for the Non-Uniform Pension Plan was $574,339.95.
Mr. Burke moved to accept the Treasurer’s Report as read. Mr. Smith seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Engineer’s Report

Mr. Bevilacqua reported that his items will be covered under Committee reports.Solicitor’s Report – Mr. Scott stated his item will be discussed in Executive Session.

COMMITTEE REPORTS

Council President’s Report

President Campuzano reported that there were no follow up items from last month’s general meeting.

President Campuzano announced that the 5th annual Halloween Party will be held on November 2nd from 12-3:30 p.m. at the Twentieth Century Club.

President Campuzano urged residents to vote on November 4th.

President Campuzano thanked the fire department, police department, Borough crew and staff for all their work in cleaning up after the recent hurricane.

Economic Development

Mr. Council reported that the recent Lansdowne Arts Festival was a great success with about 1,000 attendees. Mr. Council thanked all who helped with this event and stated that next year’s festival will be held on September 17, 18 and 19.

Finance and Administration

Mr. Council stated that the budget process is going forward and he will be meeting with Department Heads today.

Municipal Services

Mr. Burke reported that the W. Stratford Avenue sewer line replacement has been completed with the exception of a few remaining items that will be completed next week.

Mr. Burke reported that Sucher & Co. Will be starting the 2003 Road Program on October 20th with an expected completion of 30 days from that date.

Mr. Burke stated that all bids have been rejected regarding cleaning the Borough’s sewer lines and new bid advertisements will start after January 1, 2004.

Mr. Burke reported that 151 Glentay inlet was completed yesterday. The road maintenance project will be completed within the next few days.

Mr. Burke gave the recycling report for August:

  • Cans- 2.36 tons
  • Newspapers-39.29 tons
  • Glass-None

Public Safety

Mrs. Fryer gave the Police Report for September: 579 incidents, 924 parking tickets,8,207 miles traveled.

Mrs. Fryer gave the Fire Company report for September: 39 alarms, 18 hours 16 minutes time in service, $4,000 in damages and 449 fire fighters responding with an average of 12 respondees per minute.

Zoning, Planning and Code Enforcement

Mr. Smith reported that demolition work is slated for 132 Bartram and 56 S. Union Avenues. The Simpson Gardens construction is ongoing.

Mr. Smith reported that his Committee is working on a new Property Maintenance and Minimum Housing Code and Zoning Overlay for the Central Business District. This will be presented to Borough Council for consideration and adoption by year’s end. The Code Department is also working on budgetary items for the 2004 budget.

Mr. Smith gave the Code Department report as follows: 66 permit applications, 19 certificates of occupancy, 7 plumbing permits, 9 commercial inspections, 62 notices sent, 16 citations issued. Fines collected from District Court amounted to $3,465.00.

Mr. Smith expressed his appreciation to the Council members for their understanding of his recent out of town business commitments.

Parks and Recreation

Mr. Borgman stated that the Recreation and Park Committee will now be meeting on the 3rd Monday of each month.

Mr. Borgman stated that he had met with Mr. Bevilacqua regarding the Skate Board Park specifications.

Mr. Borgman reported that the Tree Advisory Board has finished its annual park survey and will be removing dead trees and replacing other trees in Belmont and Marlyn Parks.

Mr. Borgman stated that the Radio City Christmas trip is scheduled for December 7th.

President Campuzano congratulated Mr. Rap Curry as the new basketball coach for Pennwood High School.

Mr. Council moved to suspend the Rules of Order. Mr. Smith seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Visitors

Linda Bergel
E. Windermere Terrace

Ms. Bergel asked how the Skate Park would be funded, what percentage of Lansdowne residents would be using it, what the hours would be and if the insurance premiums would increase. Mr. Council stated that the park will not be open during school hours, on Sunday morning or at night. Mr. Borgman stated that the paving would be financed by the Borough and the equipment would be financed by donations with the cost being approximately $25,000.00. Mr. Borgman stated it will be an open park with no restrictions on who uses it. The insurance premiums will not go up if the park is opened as an unmanned park. Mr. Borgman also stated that the park would be closed while funerals and weddings are being held at St. Philomena’s. Mr. Council stated that taxes pay for every park in the Borough.

Donna Crane
71 E. LaCrosse Avenue

Ms. Crane stated that she was recently injured from a falling tree at 77 E. LaCrosse Avenue which is a vacant property. She asked who was responsible for maintaining this property and expressed concern that more trees on vacant properties could fall and injure residents. Mr. Smith stated he was aware of this property but the owner will not sell it and the property has been cited for many violations. Mr. Scott stated that Mrs. Crane would have to contact her homeowner insurance carrier for help with her personal injuries. Mr. Scott stated that Code Enforcement Officer Travers should be contacted for code violations. Mr. Smith stated that the Borough is also subcontracting with another service in this regard.

John Callaghan
13 W. Greenwood Avenue

Mr. Callaghan asked that the Borough not join with Yeadon Borough’s Code enforcement department, fearing that Lansdowne would lose control over code issues. Mr. Smith stated that the Borough is not subsidizing Yeadon and is not combining the code enforcement budgets for Lansdowne and Yeadon. Lansdowne’s code enforcers only work for the Borough and not Yeadon. President Campuzano stated that the code enforcement in Lansdowne is going well due to Calvin Bonenberger’s 30 years of expertise in code enforcement. The Borough can cancel this arrangement with Yeadon at any time. Mr. Council stated that by using a variety of inspectors, both time and money is saved because 23 separate certifications are required under the new State Code law.

Jack Covert
232 Jackson Avenue

Mr. Covert asked Borough Council to consider contributing $1000.00 to the Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Covert stated that tickets are available at the library for Celebration Theater and Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra events.

Mr. Covert stated that the CCE is discussing changing the way School Board members are elected. Mr. Covert urged local residents to run for the School Board in order to effect change in the William Penn school district and asked Borough Council’s support of the CCE.

Mr. Covert gave his support to the Fire Company’s decision in the siren issue.

John McKelligott
107 Gladstone Road

Mr. McKelligott stated that Calvin Bonenberger’s interaction with the Simpson Gardens code issues was superb but feared that sharing control of code enforcement with Yeadon could be a potential problem in that Lansdowne might not be well served by outsiders exercising control over the Borough’s code enforcement issues. Mr. Smith stated that the current arrangement is working extremely well and Lansdowne can withdraw from Yeadon at any point. Mr. Council stated that Yeadon and Lansdowne are similar communities in a variety of ways and Lansdowne is not giving up control but only sharing a single resource. Mr. Forrest stated that the Yeadon venture has been focused and helpful but the Borough has the final say in its code issues.

Mr. McKelligott questioned the ongoing inspection and safety issues of the skate board park when it is built and the Scottdale Road proposal for changing the traffic pattern. President Campuzano stated that the Borough will maintain the skate board park with a focus on safety. Mayor Young stated that equipment will be bought that has minimal maintenance issues. As a member of the Republican Party in Lansdowne, Mr. McKelligott voiced the party’s opposition to the skate board park stating that this open space should be saved for bringing in businesses and developers who will contribute to the long term economic development of the Borough. Mr. McKelligott felt that Hoffman Park might be a better choice for the skate board park. Mr. Council stated that this issue had already been discussed and Hoffman Park had been rejected due to the traffic issues. Also, every piece of equipment that would be put in the skate board park is portable and can be relocated.

Mrs. Fryer stated that the Scottdale Road proposal contained several choices but that at present none have been selected. Mr. Council stated that an application has been submitted to PennDot for funding and a more serious traffic study would be necessary if funding is provided.

Robert Choate
3 Scottdale Road

Mr. Choate expressed his approval of one way traffic on Scottdale Road. He suggested that the entire road be closed in order to establish a wildlife sanctuary. Mr. Choate stated that the "No Trucks" sign on Scottdale Road is being ignored.

Edith Bassie
70 Sayers Avenue

Mrs. Bassie thanked the Recreation and Park Board for maintaining Hays Park.

Mrs. Bassie thanked the code enforcement officers for their advice about water in her basement. Mrs. Bassie stated that a recently sold house on Nyack Avenue had an ant infestation problem.

Joe Heath
55 W. Greenwood Avenue

Mr. Heath questioned the long term status of the fire siren.

President Campuzano stated that the status remains unchanged and the Finance Committee is investigating the price of beepers.

Mr. Heath questioned the fire code in Simpson Gardens. President Campuzano stated that the entire building is being built satisfactorily to code.

Mr. Heath asked about the final disposition of Reservoir Park. President Campuzano stated that some safety issues have to be addressed first but the hope is that it will be open for residents in the next two years.

Janice Small

73 Nyack Avenue

Ms. Small asked if anything can be done to stop speeding vehicles along Nyack Avenue and if a stop sign could be put at the corner of Sayers and Nyack Avenues. Chief Kortan will investigate the matter and stated that a traffic requirement survey is needed by PennDot if a stop sign is to be installed.

Vince Scorsaffi

20 W. Stratford Avenue

Mr. Scorsaffi stated that dirt and soot continues to be a problem on Stratford Avenue and asked when the milling work will start. Mr. Burke stated that Sucher is now doing the paving work and the milling work will start next week. Mr. Burke stated he would keep checking on the soot problem.

Mr. Scorsaffi asked if the noise from the skate board park would be contained during funerals and weddings at St. Philomena’s. President Campuzano stated the noise would be controlled.

Old Business

None.

New Business

Mrs. Fryer moved to reject all bids for resurfacing the fire house engine bay floor. Mr. Council seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Council moved to approve Smith Barney as the investment consultant to the Lansdowne Borough Police Pension Plan, subject to the review and approval by the Borough Solicitor of the Client Agreement and related documents and appointing the Borough Manager as the agent in police pension matters. Mr. Smith seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Council moved to approve and execute the contract with Urban Partners for the Lansdowne Area Redevelopment Plan. Mr. Smith seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Communications

  1. Letter from Rev. David Benz of St. Philomena’s Church dated 9/21/03 thanking whoever was in charge of the Teen Concert held in the Highland Avenue parking lot during the recent Arts Festival.
  2. Letter from Helen Bowes of W. Albemarle Avenue dated 9/25/03 thanking the Borough for the timely cleanup after the recent hurricane.
  3. Letter from Monique Moody of 108 W. Stratford Avenue regarding damage to her car.

Bills

Mr. Council moved to authorize payment of bills for the period. Mr. Smith seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Executive Session

Mr. Council moved to adjourn to Executive Session to discuss a litigation matter. Mrs. Fryer seconded and the meeting adjourned at 9:41 PM.

There were no motions made during Executive Session. Upon reconvening from Executive Session, Mr. Burke moved to adjourn the public meeting, seconded by Mr. Council. The motion carried unanimously and the meeting adjourned at 9:51 PM.

Respectfully submitted,
Barbara Ann Henry
Borough Secretary

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