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The Borough of Lansdowne Pennsylvania The Borough of Lansdowne Pennsylvania

Lansdowne Borough Council General Meeting Wednesday — October 18, 2006

The Lansdowne Borough Council General Meeting was held on Wednesday, October 18, 2006, 7:30 PM in Borough Hall. Present were President Wayne, Ms. Coleman, Ms. Hill, Mr. Lee, Ms. Lustgarten, Mr. Urban and Mr. Wagner. Also in attendance were Mayor Young, Borough Manager Forrest, Borough Engineer Bevilacqua, Borough Solicitor Scott, Borough Treasurer Smith and Borough Secretary Henry. Police Chief Kortan and Fire Chief Young were absent.
President Wayne stated that the meeting was being taped by Comcast and would be aired on October 23rd at 7:00 PM on Channel 10.

Minutes – Ms. Coleman moved to approve the minutes of the September 20, 2006 Borough Council General Meeting. Mr. Lee seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Announcements and Presentations – Mayor Young swore in newly appointed fire police members Michael Boyce and Jim Cope.
Mayor Young read off miscellaneous calendar items; additional information can be found on the Borough web site.

Treasurer’s Report – Mr. Smith gave the monthly report for September, 2006. The ending balance for the General Fund was $1,668,055.71. Total General Fund receipts totaled $450,280.16 and total expenditures totaled $ 690,322.32. The total of all funds was $9,722,712.45. Mr. Smith mentioned that $63,226.28 had been received for fire insurance premiums, $35,000 from Portnoff Law Associates, $30,000 from the Code Enforcement Department and $82,000 in tax collections. Additionally, $11,000 has been collected in the sewer fund from tax collections. Mr. Smith pointed out that under Recreation Administration, item 451.700 "Capital Purchases", the $65,172.02 figure represented a contractor payment of $58,207.50 for Interboro Park and a contractor payment of $6,964.52 for the Gateway Park.

Engineer’s Report – Mr. Bevilacqua gave his report as follows:
I.2006 Road Program – Total cost of project is $87,117.15 which is approximately $6,000 less than the original contract bid amount of $92,998.35. It is recommended that 10% be withheld and a payment of $78,405.43 be made to the contractor.
II.Borough Hall HVAC Renovations – The installation of a water treatment system for $4,500 was approved at last month’s meeting. Mr. Bevilacqua mentioned that additional maintenance and operational expenses for the boiler would total approximately $10,400. These additional expenses cover gauges and thermometer replacement, installation of a draft inducer for venting of the water heater and boiler and installation of a circuit setter on the common feed line from the 2 circulating pumps. Mr. Bevilacqua recommended obtaining a maintenance agreement stating that with quarterly maintenance checks, this would provide 20-30 years of operational lift to the boiler system.

Solicitor’s Report – Mr. Scott stated his items would be discussed in executive session.

Mayor’s Report – Mayor Young stated her items would be covered under Committee reports.

Council President’s Report – President Wayne reported on the following two items:
I. Historic Preservation – The Steering Committee has recommended five different initiatives for Borough Council’s consideration: (1) create a demolition delay ordinance, (2) create a historic district that includes the central business district to be overseen by a local Historical Architecture Review Board, (3) establish a HARB to create design standards and review projects for compliance and make recommendations to Borough Council regarding building application, (4) establish a second historic district to include residential areas surrounding the first district, and (5) establish a new historic district on the National Register of Historic Places.
II. East Lansdowne Joint Code Enforcement – A meeting will be held on October 23rd, 7:00 p.m. in East Lansdowne regarding this issue.

Committee Reports

I.Finance and Administration – Ms. Lustgarten reported that the 2007-2008 budget has been the focus of recently held staff meetings. Three additional public budget meetings have been scheduled for October 19th, October 25th and October 30th at 7:00 p.m. in Borough Hall.
II. Public Safety – Ms. Hill reported that two national emergency response courses will be given on November 4th at the Fire House. Ms. Hill gave the Police Report for September: 799 incidents, 114 motor vehicle violations, 44 traffic violations, 25 adult arrests, 10 juvenile arrests, 519 parking tickets issued, 6,919 miles traveled.
Ms. Hill gave the Fire Company report for September: 43 alarms, time in service: 19 hours 20 minutes, 113 miles traveled, 398 firefighters responding, $4,000 damages/loss.
III. Ad Hoc Committees
A. Lighting – Mr. Wagner reported that the next meeting will be held on November 2nd, 7:30 p.m. to start the process of establishing a pilot program in the Borough. Mr. Wagner mentioned that the Girl Scouts will be assisting in identifying lighting areas for accuracy on the master list and in creating a map of all existing lights in Lansdowne.
B. Signage – Ms. Coleman reported that at the last Committee meeting the discussion centered around business district area signs. Recommendations will be forthcoming for Borough Council.
C. Recycling – Mayor Young reported that at the last Committee meeting the discussion pertained to the best options for recycling. The most favored method was single stream, wherein all recyclable are put into one container. Discussions are still pending for determining the number of pickups, hiring of sanitation personnel, etc. and these issues will be brought up at the next Council meeting.

IV. Members of Council
A. Joe Urban – The Park and Recreation Board met October 16th to discuss a spring event to make up for the cancelled Park Day movie night. Tree work is being done in Belmont Park. The Scottdale Road closing event went well and discussions will be held to determine a repeat event next spring. Additionally, bids are being received for replacing the Hoffman Park pavilion roof. The next meeting of the Park and Recreation Board is scheduled for November 20th at 7:00 p.m. in Borough Hall.
B. Sharon Coleman – Regarding the Neighborhood Revitalization Strategy, the next issues to be considered are the multi-conversion grant from the County and forming an advisory committee. Additionally, a work group camp is being formed that will comprise about 400 teenagers who will be working in Lansdowne during July 29 – August 4, 2007 to repair 70 targeted homes.

Communications – No communications.

Mr. Lee moved to Suspend the Rules of Order. Ms. Coleman seconded and motion
carried unanimously.


Frank Ganz 181 W. Albemarle – Mr. Ganz questioned why parking is not allowed overnight on Borough streets. Mr. Smith replied that this is to allow emergency vehicles accessibility. Mr. Ganz mentioned that parking on both sides of certain smaller Borough streets is a safety issue and inhibits emergency vehicles from quickly responding. Mr. Ganz cited West Albemarle Avenue between Mansfield and Eldon Avenues as particularly troublesome for vehicle maneuverability and safe visibility. Ms. Hill stated that the Public Safety Committee has been discussing this issue and plans to have some neighborhood meetings to discuss possible remedies. Mr. Ganz asked if recycling can be made mandatory. Mayor Young stated that it is state law and that the Recycling Committee will address issues surrounding how and what to recycle.

Jack Covert 232 Jackson Avenue – Mr. Covert mentioned that the Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra is starting its 62nd season and will be holding 5 concerts this year. Mr. Covert mentioned that Lansdowne residents should consider using Stephano’s gas station when purchasing gas. Mr. Covert questioned the status of the School District election process.
President Wayne stated that no response has been forthcoming from the School District on this issue. Mr. Covert brought up the signage issue in Lansdowne and the possibility of forming a Town Watch. Mr. Covert also asked if a cost benefit analysis had been done regarding recycling and that recycling once a month would generate more cost savings.

Charlie Jeffers 13 Willowbrook Avenue – Mr. Jeffers mentioned that the pedestrian crossing signs are missing from in front of Wildman Arms Apartments on Baltimore Avenue. Mr. Jeffers asked what constitutes a historic residence. President Wayne stated that a historic site survey prepared in 1983 was updated and the places listed in the survey are in a book that will soon be made available.

Len Wert 221 N. Lansdowne Avenue – Dr. Wert stated his disappointment with Borough Council’s voting down the 2007 referendum question of liquor sales in Lansdowne, citing that not allowing finer restaurants a liquor license will hinder the Borough’s vision for a revitalized business district. Dr. Wert commended Mr. Lee and Mr. Urban for voting against other Borough Council members regarding this issue.

Tony Campuzano 40 W. Albemarle Avenue – Mr. Campuzano in his capacity as Chair of the Lansdowne Democratic Committee urged residents to vote on November 7th. Mr. Campuzano mentioned that the County has combined the 5th and 6th precincts and voting will be held in the gym at the Ardmore Avenue school, Berkley Avenue entrance. Mr. Campuzano mentioned that the historic town clock will soon be reinstalled on Lansdowne Avenue. Mr. Campuzano stated that parking on Albemarle Avenue is a serious matter and that Borough Council should perhaps consider alternate days for restricted parking.

Borough Council comments to visitors:

  1. Kevin Lee – thanked Dr. Wert for his comments and state that the Liquor Ad Hoc Committee had spent many hours researching the liquor sale question. Borough Council does not have the final say in this matter and the community can gather petitions to put the question on the referendum.
  2. Sharon Coleman – stated that the Signage Ad Hoc Committee is looking into the business district signage issue in terms of size, relevancy and standards, the parameters of which will be put in a forthcoming ordinance.
  3. Mayor Young – stated that the most recent Borough newsletter has a section on Town Watch programs and the means are now in place for starting these watches.

Ms. Coleman moved to Reinstate the Rules of Order. Ms. Lustgarten seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Old Business

1. Borough Hall Boiler – Ms. Lustgarten moved to authorize payment of the additional funds for the maintenance and operational items as previously discussed under the Borough Engineer’s report. Ms. Coleman seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

New Business

1. Planning Commission Appointment – Mr. Lee moved to appoint Thomas Lehman to the Planning Commission. Ms. Hill seconded and the motion carried unanimously.
2. Demolition Delay ordinance – an ordinance to amend the codified ordinances of Lansdowne borough by creating a new chapter thereto entitled "historic structure demolition permit requirements", establishing public policy and purposes, definition, demolition permit requirements, a demolition permit application process, review procedures and describing penalties and remedies for violation. – Mr. Lee moved tosubmit this ordinance to the local and County Planning Departments for review and recommendations. Ms. Hill seconded and a roll call vote was taken. The motion carried unanimously.

Action Items

1. Ms. Lustgarten moved to authorize payment of bills for period. Ms. Coleman seconded and the motion carried unanimously.
2. Ms. Hill moved to enact Ordinance 1220, an ordinance of the Borough of Lansdowne creating a historic district, defining its limits, requiring that persons apply for a Certificate of Appropriateness prior to commencing certain work within the historic district, providing for the appointment of a Historical Architectural Review Board (HARB) to give recommendations to the Borough Council regarding the issuance of Certificates of Appropriateness in connection with the granting or refusal of permits for the erection, alteration, restoration, reconstruction, demolition or razing of any building within the District and for appeals from such refusals and providing for the notification to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) of the adoption of this ordinance and obtaining from PHMC a certificate as to the historical significance of the historic district. Mr. Lee seconded and a roll call vote was taken. The motion carried unanimously.
3. Ms. Hill moved to enact Ordinance No. 1218, an ordinance of the Borough of Lansdowne, prohibiting persons from maintaining disorderly properties and imposing penalties for violations thereof. Mr. Urban seconded. A discussion ensued regarding changing certain provisions of the ordinance regarding number of citations and pulling the Borough out of the position of meeting with the landlord. Mr. Lee moved to amend the Ordinance, seconded by Ms. Lustgarten. The motion carried with a voice vote. A discussion then followed regarding the amended language. Mr. Wagner voiced his concern over the limited amount of time for a landlord to respond to violations. Other Council members voiced concerns over the wording of the ordinance, U&O issues, landlord/tenant lease clauses, landlord accountability and acceptable number of citations before meetings are mandated. Mr. Lee moved to table this Ordinance until the next Borough Council meeting. Ms. Lustgarten seconded and the motion carried unanimously. Solicitor Scott will do further research and issue another version.
4. Ms. Hill moved to hire replacement Circulation Assistant for the Library, for 6-1/2 hours per week, at a rate of $8.25 per hour. Mr. Lee seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Executive Session – Ms. Coleman moved to adjourn to Executive Session to discuss one real estate matter and one personnel matter. Ms. Lustgarten seconded and the motion carried unanimously. The meeting adjourned to executive session at 9:55 p.m.

Public Session – No motions were made upon reconvening to Public Session.

Ms. Coleman moved to adjourn the meeting, seconded by Mr. Lee. The motion carried unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 11:30 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Barbara Ann Henry
Borough Secretary

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