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The Borough of Lansdowne Pennsylvania The Borough of Lansdowne Pennsylvania

Lansdowne Borough Council General Meeting — May 21, 2008

The Lansdowne Borough Council General Meeting was held on Wednesday, May 21, 2008, 7:30 PM in Borough Hall. Present were President Wayne, Ms. Coleman, Mr. Lee, Ms. Lustgarten, Ms. Silzle, Mr. Urban and Mr. Wagner. Also in attendance were Mayor Young, Borough Solicitor Scott, Borough Manager Totaro, Borough Secretary Henry, Borough Finance Director/Treasurer Bartley and Police Chief Kortan. Borough Engineer Bevilacqua was absent.

President Wayne stated that the meeting would air on May 26th at 7:00 p.m. on Comcast channel 10.

President Wayne mentioned that a Victor Avery Memorial Fund has been established. Contributions to assist Mr. Avery’s family will be handled by Bobbi Harris and Jocanda Pannell at Borough Hall.

Approval of Agenda

The agenda was approved with the following additions: Mayor Young indicated that Christine DuBois will be making a presentation regarding the Lansdowne Library. Ms. Lustgarten will be making action item 2. President Wayne indicated that Visitor Comments will come immediately before Old Business. Mr. Scott indicated he had one item for Executive Session.


Ms. Lustgarten moved to approve the minutes of the April 16, 2008 Council General Meeting as submitted by the Secretary. Ms. Silzle seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Announcements and Presentations

Mayor Young and Chief Kortan presented Elisha McLawler with a certificate of appreciation for calling 911 regarding a burglary in her home. Her promptness resulted in the apprehension of two burglars who had also robbed a home in East Lansdowne.
Mary Lou Jennings, Tree Advisory Board member, introduced the winners of the Arbor Day Writing Contest. Ms. Jennings mentioned that a free Rain Barrel workshop will be held at the Price Lutheran Church on March 29th, 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.
Fire Chief Tom Young and Mayor Young presented Arnold Moore with a certification of appreciation for his help in saving the life of another fire company member who had suffered a heart attack. Fire Company member Jim Miller, who was not present, was also honored for his life saving efforts in this emergency situation.
Mayor Young introduced Christine DuBois, Library Board member, who spoke of the various activities that have been organized for children at the Lansdowne Library. A listing of all the library offerings and activities can be found at
or call the library at 610-623-0239, option #5.

Treasurer’s Report – Mr. Bartley reported a surplus of $1,701,000 in the General Fund as of April 30th, due primarily to the influx of tax revenues. The Sewer Fund reflects a surplus of $359,000 due again to the influx of sewer fees. The repair maintenance costs in this fund are under budget by $62,000. Mr. Bartley reported a deficit of $6,000 in the Liquid Fuels Fund as the funding has not yet been received. In the Capital Reserves Fund, expenses exceed revenues in the amount of $83,000 due to the purchase of a backhoe. Mr. Bartley reported a slight surplus of $5,801 in the Non Uniform Pension Plan and a deficit of $232,000 in the Police Pension Fund. The beginning balance of all funds year to date is $8,700,000 with revenues of $1,207,000 and disbursements of $2,466,000, reflecting a surplus of $1,740,000. Ending balance of all funds as of April 30th is $10,441,707.

Solicitor’s Report – Mr. Scott reported that the PA Commonwealth Court recently decided that routine municipal paving projects are now subject to prevailing wage and the case has been appealed to the Supreme Court with no decision reached as yet. If it is upheld, it will impact the amount of streets to be paved in light of budgeting numbers.

Mayor’s Report – Mayor Young mentioned that the summer Work Camp will again be held this year and applications are now being accepted for home repairs. The areas to receive services have been enlarged and will now include Lansdowne, Yeadon, Darby and possibly Colwyn. Mayor Young then read the calendar items.

Council President’s Report – President Wayne had no formal report.


Public Safety – Ms. Coleman reported the Public Safety Committee met on May 14th and continues to work on the emergency vehicle access plan. One street has been selected from the pilot perspective (Windermere Terrace) and various options will be explored, with feedback from the community and recommendations from the Borough’s emergency response team. Ms. Coleman reported that the third phase of the police hire has been completed. Ms. Coleman mentioned that data is being compiled regarding the Crime Prevention Plan and the Public Safety Committee is investigating the right focus that will most benefit residents. The next Public Safety Committee meeting will be held on June 11th. Mr. Lee asked if a study could be done regarding the absence of lighting along South Lansdowne Avenue between Baltimore Avenue and Providence Road and the speeding issue in the same area. Chief Kortan will put out the radar trailer in that area tomorrow.

Finance – Ms. Lustgarten had no formal report.

Economic Development – Mr. Wagner reported that the first show of the Lansdowne Movie Forum will be held on June 14th and more information can be found at Mr. Wagner reported that the Economic Development Committee met on May 20th and interviews have been conducted for potential opening on the Zoning Hearing Board. Other topics of discussion included a review of the problem property report and the historic district application. The Committee also discussed visiting the Darlington Arts Center to gather information for a potential arts center in Lansdowne. Mr. Wagner mentioned that the Farmers Market will open on May 24th and operate on Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. The next Committee meeting will be held on June 17th at 7:00 p.m. in Borough Hall.

Environmental – Ms. Silzle reported that the focus of the Committee’s May 14th meeting was meeting with Mary Lou Jennings, chair of the Tree Advisory Board, to discuss possibly establishing a shade tree commission and to work on a draft of a shade tree ordinance. Ms. Silzle indicated that the recycling survey results have not yet been tabulated. Ms. Silzle reported that April 2008 recycling numbers are up 3% from March 2008 and up 5.7% from April of 2007 but the diversion rate is only around 12.5%, down from the January 2008 figure of 16%. Ms. Silzle indicated that the Committee is looking to put out more recycling bins throughout the Borough to encourage more recycling and some portable recycling containers will be purchased for use at such locations as the Twentieth Century Club. The next Environment Committee meeting will be held on June 26th at 7:00 p.m. Ms. Silzle indicated that every 4th meeting will be an evening meeting to facilitate discussions with Mary Lou Jennings and Barry Malone. Ms. Silzle briefly reported on the use of CFLs, or compact fluorescent light bulbs. These bulbs use 75% less energy than normal light bulbs, last 10 times longer and save $30.00 each over the lifetime in energy costs. EPA statistics indicate that if each home switched only one bulb to a CFL, the country would save $600 million in energy costs and 800 cars worth of gas emissions.

Education – Mr. Urban reported the Education/Recreation Committee met last night and discussed a variety of topics:

  1. Possibility of instituting a summer jobs program for the Borough’s youth;
  2. Hiring a recreation program coordinator to assist Geri Staiber in running the recreational programs;
  3. Battle of the band dances, establishing community gardens;
  4. Upgrade of parks to improve the recreational offerings in the Borough.

The next meeting for the Education/Recreation Committee will be June 17th at 7:30 p.m. The Park and Recreation Board met on May 16th. Movie Night will be on May 31st, 8:00 p.m. in Hoffman Park. Featured movie will be “Ratatouille”. The Board also discussed establishing a memorial for Victor Avery and further information will be forthcoming. The Board is looking for more pricing information before making any recommendations regarding hedges in Sycamore Park. The Board will be replacing a broken slide in Belmont Park for a cost of $1,185.32. Also discussed was whether or not to replace the sign at Belmont Park that had been badly vandalized. Regarding Marlyn Park, 3 to 5 trees need to be removed. The next Park and Recreation Board meeting will be held on June 16th at 7:00 p.m.

Infrastructure – Mr. Lee had no formal report. The next Infrastructure Committee will be held on May 27th at 7:30 p.m. to discuss the Scottdale Road sewer project.

Liaison Reports

1.Library – Ms. Silzle reported that air conditioning in the Bany Room, family room and director’s office will be inoperable during the summer. Bids will be put out for a new compressor/heat pump. Additionally, the roof needs repair and the Library Board is considering applying for a mini Keystone Grant that would cover ½ the cost. Ms. Silzle also mentioned that free wireless access will soon be available in the library.
2. Mr. Wagner mentioned the opening of the Farmers Market this weekend and a seasonal produce guide will be available.


There were no communications.

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


Jack Covert Resident of Lansdowne – Mr. Covert thanked Chief Kortan for his help in rectifying the car/driveway overlap problem that was previously mentioned. Mr. Covert felt that Borough Council should consider having free parking on Saturday in the business district. Mr. Covert felt that the idea of a Town Watch program should be investigated. Mr. Covert warned that another wave of school district regionalization is looming in some small communities and asked Borough Council to be on guard. Mr. Covert mentioned that it is misleading to have the $500,000 Tax Anticipation Note put under tax revenues in the budget as it is a loan and asked whether it had been repaid. President Wayne indicated it had not yet been repaid. Mr. Covert questioned where the budget reflected the purchase of 20 Lansdowne Court. President Wayne stated it had been reflected in last year’s budget.

Charles Jeffers 13 Willowbrook Avenue – Mr. Jeffers mentioned that the pedestrian crosswalk signs are still misplaced. Mr. Jeffers mentioned that a recycling can is needed for the corner in front of the Lansdowne Diner. Mr. Jeffers felt that residents should stay longer for Council meetings rather than leaving after the presentations. Mr. Jeffers indicated that if people unplugged just one unused appliance, the country would save a substantial amount in energy costs.

Anthony Campuzano 40 West Albemarle Avenue – Mr. Campuzano in his capacity as President of the UAA mentioned that the July 4th parade will be held on July 4th at 9:00 a.m. and the fireworks will be held that night, weather permitting. Rain date is July 5th. Mr. Campuzano indicated that the UAA is struggling with lower numbers in sponsorship, contributions and volunteers, citing a $6,000 loss from last year. Mr. Campuzano mentioned that the Fund Drive will start in June and asked for volunteers to help in the collection efforts. Mr. Campuzano thanked Eagle Bank for their sponsorship this year.

Comments from Borough Council Members: There were no comments.

Mr. Wagner moved to reinstate the Rules of Order. Mr. Lee seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Old Business

No items for Old Business.

New Business

No items for New Business.

Action Items:

1.Ms. Lustgarten moved to authorize payment of bills for period. Mr. Lee seconded and the motion carried unanimously.
2.Ms. Lustgarten moved to advertise the sale of three borough vehicles: 1981 GMC bucket truck; 2 1995 Chevrolet pick ups. Mr. Lee seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Executive Session

Ms. Silzle moved to adjourn to Executive Session to discuss a personnel issue. Mr. Wagner seconded and the motion carried unanimously. The meeting adjourned to Executive Session at 9:18 p.m.

Public Session

No motions were made upon reconvening to Public Session.


Mr. Lee moved to adjourn the meeting, seconded by Mr. Wagner. The motion carried unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 9:50 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Barbara Ann Henry
Borough Secretary

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