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August 27, 2012

The following elected officials were present: K. Brannon; M. Cheberenchick; N. Kovach; J. O’Malley; D. Swisher; M. Warhold; D. Baumgarten. Council Member V. Smith and S. Torris were absent. The following appointed officials were present: T. Hartswick, Borough Manager; Police Chief K. Truver; P. Vietmeier, Codes Official; D. Biondo, Solicitor.

The minutes of the August 13, 2012 council meeting were presented. After a correction to the minutes regarding P. Vietmeier who was not present at the previous meeting, Ms. O’Malley motioned to approve the minutes; Mr. Warhold seconded; all in favor; motion carried.

Ms. Kovach opened the public comment section of the meeting. Being none; the public comment section was closed.

Bid Openings:
Nothing to report.

Public Hearings:
Nothing to report.

Civil Service Commission:
Nothing to report.

Real Estate Tax Collectors Report:
Nothing to report.

Council Committee Reports

Public Relations/Communications:
Ms. Brannon posted information regarding the recent burglaries on the borough’s Face Book. Ms. Brannon is planning other activities with regards to a possible borough Leprechaun mascot.

Ms. Kovach appreciated Chief Truver’s suggestion of keeping your car alarm with you at bedtime to scare off possible intruders on your property.

Public Works/Building and Grounds:
Mr. Hartswick stated the borough road paving program will begin on September 10th.

Public Safety/Fire:
Ms. O’Malley acknowledged that Chief Truver will be giving out Mayor’s Good Citizenship awards at the September 24th council meeting in reference to the Asti Pharmacy attempted robbery.

Chief Truver has piloted a virtual neighborhood Next Door sponsored by National Night Out. Several virtual neighborhoods have already been started and will be moderated by Chief Truver. Mr. Warhold asked if there was a disclaimer regarding posting personal information. Residents are invited via email to join the neighborhood Next Door program. Ms. Brannon will post a message on Face Book to obtain email addresses of residents with an interest in joining the program.

Mr. Hartswick will be planning a 2013 budget meeting in early September.

Community Activities/Planning & Codes:
Mr. Warhold expressed his frustrations regarding the procedure and policy that the borough is required to follow when a resident is cited for borough code compliance issues. There are multiple delays and rescheduling of cases at the district magistrate level which prolong compliance with the citation.

The Public Works Department has been maintaining the grass cutting in various vacant homes in the area, and in turn the borough puts a lien on the property for the costs.

Mr. Warhold announced the historical photo book of Castle Shannon will be released October 1st. He is very impressed with the outcome.

Ms. Brannon spoke with Myrtle Avenue Elementary School principal Mr. Arcuri regarding the possibility of incorporating the history of the Castle Shannon book in their lesson plans and promoting it to their parents. A few books will be donated to the teachers to use in class.

The TreeVitalize program is moving forward, and the grant application for the trees will be completed on Wednesday by Mr. Bennett and Mr. Hartswick. The original idea for planting some trees on James Street will be followed.

Mr. Warhold stated the Castle Shannon Revitalization Corporation golf outing is September 14th with approximately 100 players and 35 tee sponsors. Golf shirts in various sizes have been ordered for the players.

Ms. O’Malley announced that the library book sale will be held in September followed by the flea market in October.

The new children’s librarian Taylor Reed-Young has been hired, and the library board meeting is scheduled for September 6th.

Ms. O’Malley stated the library audit lists a discrepancy with the number of board members. Ms. O’Malley will have a meeting with Ms. Muha to discuss the library by-laws.

Editorial Board:
Article deadline is September 14h for the winter newsletter.

Nothing to Report.

Municipal Associations:

Allegheny County Boroughs Association:
Nothing to report.

Allegheny League of Municipalities:
Nothing to report.

South Hills Area Council of Governments:
Mr. Hartswicks recommended the demolition of 951 Arch St. by Stash Trucking for $8,000.00 with participation to be determined by Allegheny County. Mr. Warhold motioned to accept the bid from Stash Trucking for the demolition of 951 Arch St; Ms. O’Malley seconded; all in favor; motion carried.

Ms. Kovach veered away from the agenda to welcome Mr. Nate Nevala from Congressman’s Tim Murphy’s Office. Mr. Nevala stopped by to address council on news and updates. A bill was passed through the house for the 911th base to stay open due to the fact there was a discrepancy on the numbers. The Air Force is not revealing data to the congressman or any other state or federal agency asking to see the economic impact it would have on Southwestern Pennsylvania. Base closure will be stopped under this bill until Congress reviews the situation. Ground breaking for the new commissary will take place in Moon Township, and the current facility in Oakdale will remain open until the new one is operational. The commissary provides veterans or retired service members with the opportunity to purchase groceries and goods at discounted prices.

Ms. Kovach questioned whether there was grant money available for the boroughs. Mr. Nevala responded that green space through the Department of Energy has funding available; but funds are not being released until the federal budget is passed. At the state level, grant money is available for county tourism from the local share of revenue received by the slot machines. With no more questions from council, Ms. Kovach thanked Mr. Navala for coming to the council meeting and sharing the congressman’s information.

Police Pension:
Nothing to report.

Non-Uniformed Pension:
Nothing to report.

Junior Council Person:
Nothing to report.

Earned Income Tax Collector's Report:
Nothing to report.

Engineer's Report:
Nothing to report.

Manager's Report:
Mr. Hartswick reported the Shannon Station project developer is moving forward with his grant for improvements to Castle Shannon Boulevard and requested assistance in facilitating meetings to get PenDot’s required approvals. The first meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, August 29th at 9:00 a.m.

A meeting with Dollar Bank regarding the Neighborhood Assistance Program was discussed last week. This would be a component of the CSRC’s efforts.

The MS-4 (Major Separate Storm Sewer System) permit requirements for the TreeVitalize Program has its own section for re-permitting with the EPA and DEP and would be overseen by Tim McClelland of Lennon, Smith, Souleret Engineering. As a requirement, council would have to take a more active role in terms of training to develop and implement employee training programs and educational outreach to public employees. Council members would be required to attend classes pertaining to the MS-4 permits beginning March 2013. Further information is forthcoming.

Mayor's Report:
Mayor Baumgarten voiced his concerns after reading Mr. Warhold’s violation example from property at 3708-3710 Poplar Avenue dating back to 2008. The structure was deemed unsafe and condemned by Judge Barton; but many continuances due to the question of title and ownership have left this example unresolved. Mayor Baumgarten would like to see the process sped up.

Mayor Baumgarten attended a council meeting in Oakdale where a couple of properties were condemned at a hearing conducted by their solicitor prior to the council meeting. The building official was called upon to be a witness about the properties in question. The authorization was given that very night to take it down.

Ms. Kovach suggested council have a meeting with Judge Barton to voice their trepidations about his policy and procedures. Ms. Kovach would like to earmark funds in the 2013 budget for condemnation of unsafe structures.

Mayor Baumgarten also clarified that Chief Truver and Mr. Vietmeier had to leave the council meeting due to an emergency. A vehicle careened into a house on the 3700 block of Rebecca Street.

Planning Commission:
Nothing to report.

Solicitor's Report:
Nothing to report.

Keystone Oaks:
Nothing to report.

Zoning Hearing Board:
Nothing to report.

Mr. Warhold brought in the rough draft of the book of Castle Shannon for council members to peruse.

Ms. O’Malley thanked Mr. Hartswick for giving council members a weekly report of activities to keep everyone informed. Ms. Brannon offered to post events on the borough’s Face Book.


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