The Moore Township Planning Commission met on February 25 for their monthly meeting. The board went through the reorganization for positions with John Becker as chairman, David Frey as Vice President, and Jason Harhart as secretary.
Aqua America Pennsylvania is moving forward with their plans to replace two water tanks at the Christian Springs and Evanwood Station properties. The water tanks on the properties did not meet the updated property requirements and will be increasing in size. Evanwood’s tank will be expanding to 15,000 gallons and Christian Springs will be expanding to 20,000 gallons. Both tanks are currently underground but are being moved to aboveground. The tanks will also have eight-foot high fences installed around them for safety reasons. Evanwood and Christian Springs met the requirements the Zoning Hearing Board previously required. The Planning Commission granted them conditional approval to go to the Board of Supervisors in April to further their plans.
Mark Wagner, owner of lots located downhill from the Christian Springs well, raised concerns to the Planning Commission board about the project plans. His concerns were in regards to how the tank and the barbed wire installed on the fence will look. Aqua America explained it is not coiled barbed wire but rather three straight strands, which are much more aesthetically pleasing. Wagner continued to express concern about the lack of swales and screening around the tank and the safety issues this will cause with surrounding properties. “I’m not opposed to the project,” Wagner explained. His concern was how to keep stormwater off surrounding properties and avoiding flooding if the tank falters. Aqua America doubts this will be an issue. There was no requirement for screening with this project. “I would have commented on it if it were necessary,” stated township engineer, Kevin Horvath.
The board went on to discuss the Fire Damaged Home Ordinance. This ordinance allows residents who have fallen victim to house fires to post a temporary house up on their property (e.g. trailer). In order to be approved to post temporary housing, residents are required to go to Zoning officer Jason Harhart so he can decide whether they are approved. If approved, residents will be issued a one-year permit that can be extended if Harhart sees necessary. A security in cash, a letter of credit, or a bond would be necessary for this request. Board members suggested the resident be required to present $5,000 if they wish to put up temporary housing. Planner Joseph Santostefano did not feel that requiring $5,000 from residents is fair. He cannot imagine asking an individual who just lost everything for money. “The bank then has $5,000 against you, keeping you in a dire situation,” Santostefano stated. “If we are making someone guarantee $5,000, it is $5,000 less than they will have for borrowing credit,” he added. Becker explained the board is requiring residents to put up this $5,000 if they want to live in the temporary structure but will be reimbursed once they clean up their property and move forward with rebuilding. Asking $5,000 for temporary housing will help save residents from having to switch townships and potentially change school districts while also pushing them to clean up their property and continue with reconstruction. Before making a motion, Becker wanted to ensure Santostefano was on board with the decision to approve the plans of requiring $5,000 from residents. After much discussion amongst the board, Santostefano said he was.
Meals on Wheels is looking for help throughout the year and with their Township and County Officials Day on March 20, as a part of their 17th Annual March for Meals. If you are interested, please contact Keri Young, Director of Volunteer Services at 610-691-1775. You must RSVP by March 9.