The recessed meeting of Castle Shannon Borough Council was called to order at 7:00 P.M. in the Council Chambers of the Castle Shannon Municipal Center, 3310 McRoberts Road, Castle Shannon, PA 15234 by President of Council, Nancy J. Kovach.
The following elected officials were present: Council Members: K. Brannon, M. Cheberenchick, N. Kovach, J. O’Malley, D. Swisher, M. Warhold, D. Baumgarten, and S. Torris. The following appointed officials were present: T. Hartswick, Borough Manager; K. Truver, Police Chief; P. Vietmeier, Building Official; B. Fabbio, Jr. Council Person.
Ms. Kovach requested if there was other business that needed to be discussed before closing the 2013 year. Being none, Ms. Kovach officially closed the continued meeting of December 9, 2013. Mr. Warhold motioned adjourn; Mr. Cheberenchick seconded; all in favor; motion carried.
Ms. Kovach presented the gavel to Mayor Baumgarten who introduced District Justice David Barton to give the oath of office to the following elected officials: Council Members Michael Warhold, Michael Cheberenchick, Karen Brannon, Daniel Swisher, Tax Collector Shirley Torris, and Mayor Donald Baumgarten.
Judge Barton stated that it was a pleasure to be present at this meeting. All across Pennsylvania, on the first Monday of January, the officers of our judicial branch are called upon to administer the oath of office to those elected to serve in local government. The historical basis for taking oaths is making a pledge to a God to do the right thing or have his wrath rain down upon you. In medieval times, felons were prohibited from making oaths; and when they were convicted, they were branded on the palm of their right hand. This leads to the basis of why we raise our right hand when taking an oath.
The Pennsylvania Constitutional Convention of 1776 signed and raised their right hands to take an oath. By so doing, they were committing the crime of high treason against the crown. That was punishable by death.
Our legal system is derived largely by that of England. Persons assuming office have taken oaths since the earliest times. In the history of the law in England, the first mention of taking an oath was the coronation of King Edgar in 973. Great men and great women have taken essentially the same oath that the elected officials will take this evening. Judge Barton stated that one of most important aspects of local government as an elected official is to have the courage to make difficult decisions and have the patience to listen to colleagues and give mature consideration to competing view points and different ideas when reaching a consensus on how to proceed. Judge Barton proceeded to give the oath of office to Mayor Baumgarten, Ms. Brannon, Mr. Cheberenchick, Mr. Swisher, Mr. Warhold, and Ms. Torris.
Mayor Baumgarten opened the reorganization meeting for 2014 and declared the next order of business is the election of Council President for the next two years. Mr. Swisher nominated Ms. Kovach; Ms. O’Malley seconded. Being no further nominations, Mr. Baumgarten requested the borough manager cast a unanimous vote for Nancy Kovach as President of Council.
Ms. Kovach announced that the election of office for Vice President of Council for the next two years is open for nominations. Ms. Brannon nominated Michael Warhold; Mr. Swisher seconded. Being no further nominations, Ms. Kovach requested the borough manager cast a unanimous vote for Michael Warhold as Vice President of Council.
Ms. Kovach announced the following committee appointments:
Mr. Swisher motioned to approve the above appointments; Ms. O’Malley seconded; all in favor; motion carried.
Mr. Marvin Levin, Mr. William Grand, and Mr. Timothy Swisher to the Planning Commission for a four year term.
- Mr. David Ely and Mr. Jerry Seales to the Zoning Hearing Board for a three year term.
- Mr. Larry Swimkowsky and Ms. Shirley Nedzesky to the Civil Service Commission for a six-year term.
- Mr. William Reffner to the UCC Board of Appeals for a four year term.
Mr. Cheberenchick motioned to appoint Lennon, Smith, Souleret Engineering Inc. as the borough engineers; Ms. O’Malley seconded; all in favor; motion carried.
Ms. O’Malley motioned to ratify the manager’s submittal of Resolution #590 for Plan Revision for New Land Development for Shannon Transit Village; Mr. Warhold seconded; all in favor; motion carried.
Mr. Warhold motioned to approve the agreement between Castle Shannon and the Service Employees International Union Local 32BJ for a four year contract; Mr. Swisher seconded; all in favor; motion carried.
Mr. Warhold motioned to adopt Resolution #591 to appoint Ms. O’Malley as delegate to the SHACOG Franchising Authority Board and Ms. Brannon as alternate. Ms. O’Malley seconded; all in favor; motion carried.
Mr. Cheberenchick motioned to adopt Resolution #592 to appoint Mr. Warhold to the SHACOG Joint Rate Review Board with Ms. Brannon as alternate; Ms. O’Malley seconded; all in favor; motion carried.
Ms. Brannon motioned to authorize the appropriate officials to execute the participation agreement for the equitable sharing program with the U.S. Department of Justice; Mr. Cheberenchick seconded; all in favor; motion carried.
Mr. Warhold motioned to donate the surplus used bullet proof vests to the Salvation Army of Western Pennsylvania Emergency Disaster Services; Mr. Swisher seconded; all in favor; motion carried.
State Representative Dan Miller wished council well for the New Year, and stated that his office has enjoyed working with Castle Shannon Borough representatives. Representative Miller thanked the borough’s elected officials for serving the community and looks forward to working with the borough in 2014.
Mr. Warhold motioned to adjourn the reorganization meeting; Ms. Brannon seconded; all in favor; motion carried.