Lansdowne Borough Council Business Meeting
November 4, 2009
The Lansdowne Borough Council Business Meeting was held on Wednesday, November 4, 2009, 7:30 PM in Borough Hall. Present were President Coleman, Ms. Lustgarten, Mr. Schleigh, Ms. Silzle and Mr. Wagner. Also in attendance were Mayor Young, Borough Solicitor Scott, Borough Secretary Henry, Borough Manager Totaro, Police Chief Kortan and Borough Finance Director/Treasurer Bartley. Councilmen Smith and Urban were absent as well as Fire Chief Young.
Approval of Agenda
The agenda was approved with the following change: Ms. Lustgarten will make Mr. Smith’s motions in his absence.
Ms. Lustgarten moved to approve the minutes of the October 7, 2009 Business Meeting as submitted by the Secretary. Mr. Wagner seconded and the motion carried unanimously.
There was no public comment.
REPORTS AND DISCUSSION
A. Finance Director/Treasurer Joe Bartley – Mr. Bartley had no formal report and indicated there were sufficient funds on hand to meet current obligations.
B. Solicitor Bob Scott – Mr. Scott had one item for Executive Session.
C. Borough Manager Craig Totaro – Mr. Totaro gave updates on the following:
1. Hoffman Park – 20 volunteers were present on October 24th to perform the invasive foliage cleanup.
2. HVAC vent system is currently being cleaned and the project is expected to end later this week.
3. Leaf collection is on schedule.
4. The Baltimore Avenue tree planting will be held on November 21st.
5. The Lansdowne Avenue lights will be replaced next week for the holiday season.
6. There will be a public meeting on November 16th regarding the Marlyn Park Master Site Plan.
7. There was a request for a color selection for the traffic light poles that are part of the signalization project. The consensus was to opt for black for the galvanized poles with the color of the ornamental poles to be determined. Mr. Wagner suggested looking into the purchase of ornamental poles if there is additional money in the Capital Reserves Fund.
D. Police Chief Dan Kortan – Chief Kortan mentioned that today is the cutoff date for applications to the Civil Service Sergeant promotion. There were five applicants out of a potential eight. The written test will be held on December 3rd. Chief Kortan indicated that the speed humps on Scottdale Road will soon be removed for the winter season. Officer Brown will be the liaison between the Police and the Town Watch group. Chief Kortan clarified that if a resident comes into Borough Hall with a parking ticket but renews their parking permit for the new year, one ticket only will be voided. Meter parking will be suspended for December and will be announced at the next General meeting. Chief Kortan questioned the disposition of an old police car. Mr. Scott indicated that sealed bids have been accepted in the past and needs to be advertised once. Borough Council approval is necessary for accepting the bids. Chief Kortan mentioned that emergency 911 phones are being collected for distribution to Borough residents in need. More information can be found on the Borough web site. Mr. Scott questioned the status of the Civil Service regulations. Chief Kortan indicated that the same standards are used as for entrance to the police academy. Chief Kortan will follow up with Joe Stevenson of the Civil Service Commission but he does not expect any major changes to the regulations.
E. Fire Chief Tom Young – No report was given in Chief Young’s absence.
F. Mayor’s Report – Mayor Young mentioned that Chief Young will be doing some research on the emergency services tech program. Mayor Young indicated that she recently joined some anti-illegal gun groups. Mayor Young mentioned that a ‘Preserve America’ sign will be placed at the entrance to the Borough.
G. President’s Report – President Coleman reported that a communication was received from author
Laurie Hull asking if she could include the Twentieth Century Club in her upcoming color paranormal
book. She would also like to conduct a paranormal investigation at the Club for no cost. After a brief
discussion there was a consensus to allow her requests. Mayor Young mentioned that Lansdowne has
been previously mentioned as a ‘ghost’ town in other publications.
1. Public Safety – Mr. Schleigh reported that the November 11th scheduled meeting conflicts with
the Veterans Day holiday and he would like to officially cancel November’s Committee meeting. Mr.
Schleigh will also be assisting Officer Brown with training for the Town Watch program.
2. Finance – Ms. Lustgarten reported that the Finance Committee met on November 2nd regarding the preliminary 2010 budget. There is still $40,000 more in expenses over revenues. Information is still pending regarding the police contract, salaries, health insurance and worker’s compensation costs, etc. Mr. Scott indicated that an unbalanced budget can be advertised but only a balanced budget can be adopted. Mr. Scott also indicated that if money is taken out of the Sewer Fund in excess of the overhead allocation it would have to be treated as a loan to be repaid. Ms. Lustgarten mentioned that there was also a $53,000 credit due to the Darby Creek Sewer Authority. Ms. Lustgarten indicated that the current proposal is for a 2% sewer fee increase ($8.00 more per household) and a 4% real estate tax increase ($39.00 per household increase).
3. Economic Development – Mr. Wagner reported that Pam Albee was interviewed for a position on the HARB and has extensive knowledge of Secretary of the Interior rules. Mr. Wagner mentioned that the Borough’s TV intern presented his preliminary power point presentation but background music needs to be investigated. Mayor Young suggested that the Reorganization Meeting be televised. Mr. Wagner mentioned that landlord Damon Moyer had been invited to the Economic Development Committee meeting to talk about the positive aspects of the Borough’s east side. Mr. Moyer was extremely positive about the neighborhood in several respects but the drug activity continues to be a negative. Revitalization efforts will continue in this area. President Coleman asked the status of the Arts Board. Mr. Wagner indicated there were about 4 commitments and additional individuals are also being contacted.
4. Environmental – Ms. Silzle had no formal report. The next Environmental Committee meeting will be held on November 12th.
5. Education – No report was given in Mr. Urban’s absence.
6. Infrastructure – No report was given in Mr. Smith’s absence. Mr. Totaro mentioned that the road paving was completed today.
1. Gladstone Manor Island Improvements – President Coleman indicated that the Manor Association had previously presented a list of items they wished to carry out throughout the year and some of the items dealt with the island care and electricity. The Borough had already committed $1,000 toward the cost of installing water on the island. Discussions have been held with the Association regarding moving forward with the funds already received. There is a possibility that Rep. Micozzie may be funding some of the electrical work and underground wiring. Mr. Schleigh mentioned that during a recent Park and Recreation Committee meeting, issues were raised regarding parking and handicapped accessibility ramps and if the island would be made into a park-like setting. Mr. Schleigh indicated that the Gladstone Association was in agreement regarding public use of the island. Borough Council members agreed to go forward with the project as long as all is done properly with the required permits and fees.
1. 2010 Committee Structure and meeting agenda outline. President Coleman presented some
highlights of the proposed changes. The Education Committee would be eliminated but a
Community Relations Committee would be added with Janet English as the Chair. The other
Committee Chairs remain the same. Liaisons would continue to keep Borough Council informed
of the Board’s activities. Mr. Schleigh questioned the role of the Educational Service Agency
under the Public Safety Committee’s oversight. Mr. Scott indicated this was set up to employ
crossing guards without having to pay their unemployment during the summer. Mr. Bartley
indicated that the Borough is billed erroneously at times regarding this particular unemployment
1. Ms. Lustgarten moved to authorize payment of bills for period. Ms. Silzle seconded. The motion carried unanimously.
2. Ms. Lustgarten moved to execute the H20 PA Grant agreement between the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development and the Borough in the amount of $303,544. Ms. Silzle seconded. The motion carried unanimously.
3. Ms. Lustgarten moved to adopt Ordinance 1247, an ordinance of the Borough of Lansdowne amending Chapter 187 of the Code of the Borough of Lansdowne adopting required regulations of the Federal Emergency Management Agency and its updated flood insurance rate map. Ms. Silzle seconded. The motion carried unanimously.
4. Ms. Lustgarten moved to advertise 2010 budget and make it available for Inspection. Ms. Silzle seconded. The motion carried unanimously.
5. Mr. Wagner moved to execute an amendment to the existing LEDC-Borough Agreement to allow the farmers market the use of the borough parking lot on November 21, 2009. Ms. Lustgarten seconded. The motion carried unanimously.
Mr. Schleigh moved to adjourn to Executive Session to discuss personnel and
litigation issues. Ms. Lustgarten seconded. The motion carried unanimously. The meeting adjourned to
Executive Session at 9:12 p.m.
No motions were made upon reconvening to Pubic Session.
Ms. Silzle moved to adjourn the meeting. Ms. Lustgarten seconded. The meeting
adjourned at 9:35 p.m.
Barbara Ann Henry