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The Borough of Lansdowne Pennsylvania The Borough of Lansdowne Pennsylvania

Lansdowne Borough Council General Meeting Wednesday
March 18, 2009

The Lansdowne Borough Council General Meeting was held on Wednesday,March 18, 2009, 7:30 PM in Borough Hall. Present were President Coleman, Mr. Lee, Ms. Lustgarten, Mr. Schleigh, Ms. Silzle, Mr. Urban and Mr. Wagner. Also in attendance were Mayor Young, Borough Solicitor Scott, Borough Manager Totaro, Borough Secretary Henry, Police Chief Kortan and Borough Finance Director/Treasurer Bartley. Fire Chief Young was absent.

President Coleman stated that the meeting would air on March 23rd at 7:00 p.m. on Comcast channel 10 and RCN channel 52.

Approval of Agenda

The agenda was approved with no changes or additions.


Ms. Lustgarten moved to approve the minutes of the February 18, 2009 Council General Meeting as submitted by the Secretary. Mr. Lee seconded and the motion carried unanimously.

Announcements and Presentations

Mayor Young swore in Officer Kevin McDermott.

Treasurer’s Report

Mr. Bartley presented the February 28, 2009 report. The General Fund reflected a beginning balance of $71,973, revenues of $874,001, expenditures of $900,326 and an ending balance of $45,649. The Sewer Fund reflected a beginning balance of $347,836, revenues of $330 in interest, expenditures of $53,208 and an ending balance of $294,959. The Liquid Fuels Fund reflected a beginning balance of $107,495, revenues of $103.00, expenditures in excess of revenue of $5,248 and an ending balance of $102,350. The Capital Reserves Fund reflected a beginning balance of $118,854, revenues of $129.00 no expenditures and an ending balance of $118,984. The Non-Uniform Pension Plan reflected a beginning balance of $1,050,650, revenues of $17,064, expenditures of $30,862, a deficit of $13,798 and an ending balance of $1,036,851. The Police Pension Fund reflected a beginning balance of $4,717,359, revenues of $20,807, expenditures of $718,988 of which $602,000 is a decrease in investment value and an ending balance of $4,019,177. Mr. Bartley mentioned that January and February are typically low revenue months but tax revenues significantly increase in March.

Solicitor’s Report

Mr. Scott had no formal report and items for Executive Session.

Mayor’s Report

Mayor Young reported that Lansdowne Borough won first prize in the Pennsylvania Borough of News Website competition. Mayor Young reminded residents to remove their signs posted for garage sales, lost pets, help wanted, etc. after the event. Mayor Young mentioned that the Park and Recreation Board will be sponsoring neighborhood park cleanups throughout the summer and more information can be found in the upcoming newsletter. Mayor Young thanked the students of PennWood High School for their recent cleanup efforts in Hays and Hoffman Parks. April 5th is the date for the annual Hoffman Park Egg Hunt.

Council President’s Report

President Coleman welcomed Michael Schleigh as the newest Borough Council member. Mr. Schleigh is a practicing attorney who previously served as Lansdowne’s Auditor and currently represents Lansdowne on the Darby Creek Sewer Authority. President Coleman mentioned that new committee assignments will be made under action items. President Coleman mentioned some areas of the Borough that will be impacted by the new stimulus program: (1) a $32,000+ allocation was made to the Police Department for law enforcement; (2) PennDot received funds that will be used to install ADA ramps along the Baltimore Avenue corridor; (3) a list of projects was submitted to the County involving infrastructure items.


Public Safety

Ms. Coleman reported the Committee met March 11th and discussions are ongoing regarding signage for speeding issues. The next steps for the emergency access plan were also discussed and an additional 10-15 streets will be assessed for parking issues with public meetings with residents to follow.


Ms. Lustgarten reported that the Borough audit is nearing completion and is due by March 30th to the State. The next Finance Committee meeting will be held on April 6th at 7:00 p.m. in Borough Hall.

Economic Development

Mr. Wagner reported that the Economic Development Committee had not met since the last televised meeting but will be meeting on March 26th at 7:00 p.m. Mr. Wagner mentioned that Cinema 169 will open on March 20th in the front area of the Lansdowne Theater on March 12th. Sofa Cinema will now be presenting their movies at Cinema 169. Mr. Wagner mentioned that the LEDC will be scheduling a public meeting to gather interest on organizing a food co-op. Mr. Wagner indicated that several Certificates of Appropriateness will be approved under action items. The aim of these certificates is to preserve and maintain the historic nature of the downtown area.


Ms. Silzle reported the Environmental Committee met on March 12th. The recycling diversion rate is 17%. Due to the downturn in commodities, Blue Mountain was paid $967 in January. The Committee is conducting an analysis of the ramifications of increasing recycling to once a week and reducing regular trash pickup to once a week with possibly increasing trash pickups to twice per week in the summer months. The Ardmore Avenue School recycling model program has met with enthusiasm and plans to launch it at some future date are being discussed. Recycling enforcement is also being investigated and apartments of 6+ units are being scrutinized. Also being explored are ways to increase composting interest among residents. Mr. Silzle mentioned that the Committee is looking at getting involved with The International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives, an association of local governments who commit to building sustainable development. Regarding wind power investment, the Committee decided not to pursue it at present as the yearly cost to the Borough would be about $13,000. The possibility of car sharing is also being explored. Car sharing is a program where a car can be borrowed on an hourly basis rather than having to buy a second car or take public transportation. Ms. Silzle reported that the Darby Creek Valley Association will hold its annual Darby Creek watershed cleanup on April 25th. Volunteers are needed. Also, Earth Hour will be held on March 28th, 8-9 p.m. This is a global event sponsored by the World Wildlife Fund wherein lights in millions of residences and businesses are turned off for one hour.

The next Environmental Committee meeting will be held on April 22nd at 7:00 p.m.

Ms. Silzle also mentioned that more than 100 million cell phones are no longer used annually and if all were recycled it would save enough energy to power 194,000 U.S. homes for one year. More information can be found at Mayor Young mentioned that cell phones can be brought into Borough Hall to be recycled and that recycling tonnage results will be published in the newsletter.


Mr. Urban reported that the Education and Recreation Committees did not meet this month and the next meeting will be held on April 21st at 7:30 p.m.


Mr. Lee reported that the Scottdale Road sewer lining project has begun. The Infrastructure Committee is also looking into getting quotes for installing air conditioning in the Twentieth Century Club. The next Infrastructure Committee meeting will be held on March 24th at 7:30 p.m.

Liaison Reports

1. Health Board – Mr. Schleigh reported that Board President Al Them will be resigning effective December, 2009. The Board is looking for replacement candidates.

2. Library Board – Ms. Silzle reported that Big Read starts in April and 200 free copies of The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers will be available at various sites throughout the Borough. The library’s web site will soon be launched and two new computers have been installed in the children’s library. Five more regular computers are schedule to arrive later this year. The Delaware County Library System is visiting to start work on fiber optic cable. The library is recruiting families for the 5K run/walk.


There were no communications.

Mr. Lee moved to suspend Roberts Rules of Order. Ms. Lustgarten seconded and the motion carried unanimously.


1. Kathy Kaufmann Resident of Lansdowne – As a representative of the Greater Gladstone Civic Association, Ms. Kaufmann mentioned that traffic issues at Gladstone and Walsh Road had not been addressed in Mr. Totaro’s response to them regarding a variety of Manor issues. Ms. Silzle indicated that the Public Safety Committee had discussed this issue and Chief Kortan will be implementing the necessary steps when the weather and the Public Works schedule permits.

2. Jack Covert – Resident of Lansdowne – Mr. Covert asked if other municipalities who use Scottdale Road for emergency access had been contacted about the closing. Chief Kortan indicated that several districts and municipalities had been contacted. Mr. Covert indicated that the crosswalk at Lansdowne Theater is not handicapped accessible. President Coleman indicated that the Public Safety Committee was aware of this situation. Mr. Covert questioned the location of the proposed food co-op. Mr. Wagner mentioned that this had not yet been determined and the first meeting is only to ascertain interest and gather information. Mr. Covert asked if staff would be reduced if trash pickup was reduced and if the recycling program would be eliminated. Mr. Scott indicated that any towns with a population of over 5,000 must have a recycling program. Mr. Covert mentioned that Senate Bill 70 might add additional taxes while eliminating property taxes and thought Borough Council should look into the issue. Mr. Covert mentioned that a hazardous materials collection will be held on March 28th in Marple Township. Mr. Covert asked if the Borough would look into doing a five year impact study on grants.

3. Maryann Surla – Resident of Lansdowne – Ms. Surla mentioned that one way signage is needed on various Borough streets. Ms. Surla mentioned that the crosswalk sign is periodically missing in front of the Lansdowne Theater. Ms. Surla felt that the Borough may be spreading itself too thin with various outward projects and should only focus on what can sustain Lansdowne.

4. Charles Jeffers – 13 Willowbrook Avenue – Mr. Jeffers felt that Willowbrook Avenue is a top performer in recycling efforts. Mr. Jeffers felt that a path needs to be cleared at the 109 bus stop at Baltimore and Lansdowne Avenues during snowfalls. Mr. Jeffers reminded residents to unplug any unused appliances to save energy.

5. Anthony Campuzano – 40 West Albemarle Avenue – In his capacity as President of the UAA, Mr. Campuzano mentioned that a fundraiser will be held on April 25th at 7:00 p.m. at the Twentieth Century Club. Mr. Campuzano thanked the Lansdowne Allied Youth Council for their $500 contribution and the Gladstone Civic Association for their contribution to the UAA. Ms. Silzle reiterated that individuals, not taxes, pay for the July 4th festivities and asked residents to consider contributing to the cause.

Borough Council Member Responses:

1. Mr. Schleigh mentioned that as a new Borough Council member, he will make himself available (work schedule permitting) to address any resident concerns on Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the Regency Café.

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

Old Business:

1. Blue Mountain Recycling Contract – Mr. Totaro indicated that a letter has been drafted by several municipalities regarding tipping fees. Mr. Lee questioned the contingency if Blue Mountain shuts down and asked that Mr. Totaro look into exploring other alternatives. Mr. Totaro indicated that Accurate Recycling wants to create a single stream recycling plant on Union Avenue and Upper Darby will be using this facility. The Borough is currently awaiting Upper Darby’s DEP application. Mr. Lee felt that residents should be strongly encouraged to protest this proposed site. President Coleman clarified that Borough Council as a whole is concerned with this issue and is looking closely into the matter. Mr. Urban felt that concerns should be voiced immediately. Mr. Scott will draft a resolution opposing this plan and putting all parties on notice. The Environmental Committee and Borough Manager will track the status.

2. Marlyn Park Master Site Plan Committee – A study committee of 7 members is required. Borough Council will get back to Mr. Totaro with any suggestions.

New Business

1. Lansdowne Avenue Banner – Mr. Totaro reported that the Rotary Club in partnership with the YMCA wants a first event banner for their 5K run. The new ordinance has a time limitation for taking down the banner and a $500 deposit requirement and requested that this fee be waived for this event only.Mr. Lee moved to waive the $500 fee for the Rotary Club/YMCA 5K Run banner placement over Lansdowne Avenue. Ms. Lustgarten seconded. After further discussion, Mr. Lee amended his motion to include waiving the fee for all historic groups until the Zoning Ordinance is revised. Ms. Lustgarten seconded. The motion carried unanimously.

2. Downtown Street Trees – Ms. Silzle reported that an ordinance is being proposed to amend Chapter 305 of the Lansdowne Code entitled “trees” to prohibit any person from removing or cutting down any tree located within the public right of Baltimore Avenue, Lansdowne Avenue and one block extending off Baltimore or Lansdowne Avenue. Mr. Scott indicated that the new restriction should be consistent with where trees are currently allowed to be planted between curb and sidewalk. the language should be identical in Sections A and B regarding boundaries. Mr. Lee felt that the goal is to protect the newly planted trees and other Borough trees could be addressed at a future date. Mr. Scott will include the following restricted boundaries in the revised ordinance: Owen to Union, Stewart to Nyack, Rigby, Maple, South Wycombe, Highland, Legion terrace). Mr. Scott will revise Section 1, subsection B and postpone revising Section A. Mr. Lee moved to advertise the ordinance as amended to define the boundaries. Ms. Silzle seconded. The motion carried unanimously.

Action Items:

1. Ms. Lustgarten moved to approve bills for the period. Mr. Lee seconded. the motion carried unanimously.
2. Ms. Lustgarten moved to adopt Resolution 2009-8, a Resolution regarding application to the County Council of Delaware County for an allocation of County Liquid Fuel tax Funds. Mr. Lee seconded. The motion carried unanimously.
3. Ms. Silzle moved to execute agreement between the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Education, Office of Commonwealth Libraries, and Lansdowne Borough for a grant in the amount of $24,300 to replace Lansdowne Library roof. Ms. Lustgarten seconded. The motion carried unanimously.
4. Mr. Wagner moved to accept the HARB’s revised Certificate of Appropriateness 2009-01, for 29-37 N. Lansdowne Avenue, Awning Replacement and Installation Modifications. Ms. Lustgarten seconded. Discussion: Changes include adding a logo and making the awning non- retractable and hung at a different height. Mr. Lee and Mr. Urban expressed concern with the HARB approving changes that were not approved by Borough Council. Mr. Wagner mentioned that the HARB was meeting tomorrow night with the Economic Development Committee to clarify to the applicants and themselves what the expectations are and how to expeditiously follow them. President Coleman felt that the details were sufficient enough as outlined in the HARB’s minutes attached to this particular Certificate. Mr. Lee indicated that new applications should be made for any changes and any re-submissions, complete with pictures.the motion carried with a voice vote with Mr. Lee dissenting.

5. Mr. Wagner moved to accept the HARB’s revised Certificate of Appropriateness 2009-02, for 12 S. Lansdowne Avenue, Facade Improvements (modifications of slate roofing material). Mr. Lee seconded. Discussion: application was present with material being changed from copper to slate; no pictures provided.The motion carried unanimously.

6. Mr. Wagner moved to accept the HARB’s revised Certificate of Appropriateness 2009-03, for 30 N. Lansdowne Avenue (Farmer’s Market Shed Modifications). Ms. Silzle seconded. Discussion: Application is present. Mr. Lee felt that a better looking shed could be had and the current shed was not an appropriate representation for the town.President Coleman called for a roll call vote. the motion carried 4-3 (Aye votes: Coleman, Lustgarten, Silzle, Wagner. Nay votes: Schleigh, Lee, Urban).

7. Mr. Wagner moved to accept the HARB’s Certificate of Appropriateness, 2009-04, for 14 N. Lansdowne Avenue (State Farm Insurance Signage).Ms. Silzle seconded. Discussion: Application is present requesting no awning and a carved wooden sign with the State Farm logo.The motion carried unanimously.

8. Mr. Wagner moved to accept the HARB’s Certificate of Appropriateness, 2009-05, for 23 S. Lansdowne Avenue (Hoff Communications Facade Improvements). Ms. Silzle seconded. Discussion: Application is present requesting several architectural modifications. The motion carried unanimously.

9. Mr. Wagner moved to accept the HARB’s Certificate of Appropriateness, 2009-06, for 25 S. Lansdowne Avenue (Hoff Communications Facade Improvements). Ms. Lustgarten seconded. Discussion: Applicant may not be able to afford all requested modifications due to not knowing the underlying structural material. Application will be resubmitting the application. Mr. Wagner tabled the motion.

10. Mr. Schleigh moved to adopt Resolution 2009-9 a Resolution relating to Borough Council Committees. Mr. Lee seconded. The motion carried unanimously.

11. Ms. Lustgarten moved to adopt Resolution 2009-10, a Resolution relating to the destruction of records. Mr. Lee seconded. The motion carried unanimously.

Executive Session

Ms. Silzle moved to adjourn to Executive Session to discuss litigation matters. Mr. Lee seconded and The motion carried unanimously. the meeting adjourned to Executive Session at 10:14 p.m.

Public Session

there were no motions 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 10:30 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Barbara Ann Henry
Borough Secretary

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