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JULY 15, 2008
BETHLEHEM CITY COUNCIL MEETING
10 East Church Street – Town Hall
Tuesday, July 15, 2008 – 7:00 PM
2. PLEDGE TO THE FLAG
3. ROLL CALL
President Donchez called the meeting to order. Pastor Jason
Stewart of Christ Community Church offered the invocation
which was followed by the pledge to the flag. Present were
Jean Belinski, Karen Dolan, Joseph F. Leeson, Jr., Gordon
B. Mowrer, J. William Reynolds, and Robert J. Donchez, 6.
J. Michael Schweder was absent, 1.
4. APPROVAL OF MINUTES
The Minutes of July 1, 2008 were approved.
5. COURTESY OF THE FLOOR (for public comment on ordinances and resolutions to be voted on by Council this evening)
Dana Grubb, 2420 Henderson Place, inquired about the status of the items under Unfinished Business.
President Donchez affirmed there was a Public Safety Committee meeting on the Security Cameras proposal following which several points were addressed and a follow-up Committee meeting will be held.
President Donchez confirmed that, following the Committee of the Whole meeting on the Political Contributions proposal, Christopher Spadoni, City Council Solicitor, has been working on the draft and additional information was forwarded by Councilwoman Dolan. The issue will be addressed again.
Stephen Antalics, 737 Ridge Street, inquired about the status of Tabled Items under Unfinished Business.
President Donchez confirmed the items were tabled, can be removed from the Table upon motion of Council, and Tabled Items was added as an Agenda item when Council’s Rules were recently amended.
Mr. Antalics expressed his recommendation that the Resolutions
listed under Tabled
Items should be removed from the Agenda and destruction of records should be discontinued based upon existing technology.
President Donchez affirmed that, as explained by Council Member Schweder at the last City Council Meeting, the issue is being addressed and a final decision will be arrived at in the near future.
6. OLD BUSINESS
A. Tabled Items
1. Authorizing Records Destruction – Controller's Office
2. Authorizing Records Destruction – Bureau of Purchasing
3. Authorizing Records Destruction – Department of Water and Sewer Resources
4. Authorizing Records Destruction – Tax Bureau
B. Unfinished Business
1. Establishing Article 314 – Security Cameras
2. Political Contributions and Expenditures – Proposed Ordinance
A. City Solicitor – Tower Lease Agreement – TTM Operating Corp., Inc. – South Mountain Park
The Clerk read a memorandum dated July 3, 2008 from John F. Spirk, Jr., Esq., City Solicitor, to which was attached a proposed Tower Lease Agreement between the City and TTM Operating Corporation, Inc., to install and/or operate radio communications equipment on the tower located in South Mountain Park on South Mountain Drive according to the terms and conditions of the agreement.
President Donchez referred the request to the Parks and Public Property Committee.
B. Assistant City Solicitor – Gift of Real Estate from LVIP – Applebutter Road
A memorandum dated July 10, 2008 was received from Joseph M. Kelly, Esq., Assistant City Solicitor, to which was attached a proposed Resolution and Quit Claim Deed for property located in Northampton County on Applebutter Road that LVIP would be giving to the City as a gift.
President Donchez announced this issue will not be discussed this evening, since information is still pending.
A. President of Council
President Donchez, referring to a recent New York Times newspaper article about 3 D speed bumps that have been utilized by several communities with a positive effect, asked if the Public Works Department is aware of it.
Michael Alkhal, Director of Public Works, verifying the Department is aware of it, explained the feedback is that after a period of time motorists become accustomed to them and then ignore them. Mr. Alkhal added the Department would prefer to use the actual speed humps.
1. Administrative Order – Richard S. Horvath – Electricians’ Examining Board
Mayor Callahan reappointed Richard S. Horvath to the Electricians’ Examining Board effective until July 2011. Mrs. Belinski and Ms. Dolan sponsored Resolution 2008-116 to confirm the appointment.
Voting AYE: Mrs. Belinski, Ms. Dolan, Mr. Leeson, Mr. Mowrer, Mr. Reynolds, and Mr. Donchez, 6. The Resolution passed.
2. Administrative Order – Merl J. Turzanski – Electricians’ Examining Board
Mayor Callahan reappointed Merl J. Turzanski to the Electricians’ Examining Board effective until July 2011. Mrs. Belinski and Ms. Dolan sponsored Resolution 2008-117 to confirm the appointment.
Voting AYE: Mrs. Belinski, Ms. Dolan, Mr. Leeson, Mr. Mowrer, Mr. Reynolds, and Mr. Donchez, 6. The Resolution passed.
3. Administrative Order – Marilou Cummings – Fine Arts Commission
Mayor Callahan reappointed Marilou Cummings to the Fine Arts Commission effective until July 2011. Mrs. Belinski and Ms. Dolan sponsored Resolution 2008-118 to confirm the appointment.
Voting AYE: Mrs. Belinski, Ms. Dolan, Mr. Leeson, Mr. Mowrer, Mr. Reynolds, and Mr. Donchez, 6. The Resolution passed.
9. ORDINANCES FOR FINAL PASSAGE
10. NEW ORDINANCES
A. Approving Application – 2008 Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG)
Mrs. Belinski and Ms. Dolan sponsored Resolution 2008-119 that authorized the execution of the grant award documents for an $11,153 Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant to be used by the Police Department to update computers and electronic devices, and to purchase bicycle parts and equipment needed to maintain the Police mountain bikes.
Considering Resolutions as a Group
Mr. Mowrer and Mr. Reynolds moved to consider Resolutions 11 C through 11 H as a group. Voting AYE: Mrs. Belinski, Ms. Dolan, Mr. Leeson, Mr. Mowrer, Mr. Reynolds, and Mr. Donchez, 6. The motion passed.
C. Certificate of Appropriateness – 10 East Church Street
Mr. Leeson and Mr. Mowrer sponsored Resolution 2008-120 that granted a Certificate of Appropriateness to replace commemorative concrete pavers at 10 East Church Street.
D. Certificate of Appropriateness – 516 Main Street
Mr. Leeson and Mr. Mowrer sponsored Resolution 2008-121 that granted a Certificate of Appropriateness to change the color of the front door at 516 Main Street.
E. Certificate of Appropriateness – 36 Wall Street
Mr. Leeson and Mr. Mowrer sponsored Resolution 2008-122 that granted a Certificate of Appropriateness to repoint the brick facades using a colored mortar at 36 Wall Street.
F. Certificate of Appropriateness – 510 High Street
Mr. Leeson and Mr. Mowrer sponsored Resolution 2008-123 that granted a Certificate of Appropriateness to construct a rooftop mechanical enclosure at 510 High Street.
G. Certificate of Appropriateness – 20 Wall Street
Mr. Leeson and Mr. Mowrer sponsored Resolution 2008-124 that granted a Certificate of Appropriateness to change the paint colors at 20 Wall Street.
H. Certificate of Appropriateness – 36 Wall Street
Mr. Leeson and Mr. Mowrer sponsored Resolution 2008-125 that granted a Certificate of Appropriateness to install black iron railings at 36 Wall Street.
Voting AYE on Resolutions 11 C to 11 H: Mrs. Belinski, Ms. Dolan, Mr. Leeson, Mr. Mowrer, Mr. Reynolds, and Mr. Donchez, 6. The Resolutions passed.
I. Authorizing Tower Lease Agreement with T-Mobile –
(Tabled at July 1, 2008 City Council Meeting)
Mrs. Belinski requested that the Resolution continue to remain on the Table because there has not been the opportunity yet to obtain a response from Lehigh Valley International Airport regarding whether or not the cell tower to be located in Clearview Park is in the flight path, and also from the Bethlehem Area School District. Mrs. Belinski stressed she thinks it is very important to notify the School District because the cell tower would be located close to Clearview Elementary School.
President Donchez, obtaining the consensus of the Members of Council, stated that the Resolution will remain on the Table.
Ms. Dolan, referring to the two issues about which Mrs. Belinski is concerned and the memorandum received from Ralph Carp, Director of Parks and Public Property, suggested perhaps it should be requested that the School District and Lehigh Valley International Airport be contacted before the next City Council Meeting so the matter can be moved forward.
Mr. Carp indicated the matter will be taken care of.
12. NEW BUSINESS
Rescheduling 1st Meeting in August
Mr. Leeson and Ms. Dolan moved to reschedule the next City Council Meeting to Tuesday, July 29, 2008 at 7:00 PM from Tuesday, August 5, 2008 that occurs during Musikfest.
Voting AYE: Mrs. Belinski, Ms. Dolan, Mr. Leeson, Mr. Mowrer, Mr. Reynolds, and Mr. Donchez, 6. The motion passed.
Committee Meeting Announcements
Mr. Leeson announced a Finance Committee meeting on July
23, 2008 at 4:30 PM in the Mayor’s Conference Room on
various budgetary transfers and adjustments, and the proposed
Gaming Local Share Account.
Ms. Dolan announced a Public Works Committee meeting on August 20, 2008 at 7:00 PM in Town Hall for updates on the Water Filtration Plant and Freemansburg Trunk Line.
Blast Furnaces - Former Bethlehem Steel Corporation
Mr. Leeson, reinforcing the positive remarks made by President Donchez about the presentation from Jeff Parks, President of ArtsQuest, at the Committee of the Whole meeting prior to this evening’s City Council Meeting, inquired who is going to take care of the blast furnaces at the former Bethlehem Steel Corporation property and pay for their upkeep. Mr. Leeson recalled that when he chaired the committee to negotiate the creation of Bethlehem Works and the Bethlehem Commerce Center some engineering studies had been done showing that parts of the blast furnaces would start falling off if maintenance work was not done on the blast furnaces. Highlighting the fact that it could be a public safety hazard, Mr. Leeson inquired about the matter.
Mayor Callahan advised he has no new information to share regarding the rehabilitation or restoration of the blast furnaces. Mayor Callahan pointed out that in the developers agreement there was a provision related to the blast furnaces not being demolished. Affirming the City does not own the blast furnaces, Mayor Callahan indicated there are no plans in place for their immediate restoration or rehabilitation. Mayor Callahan continued on to say there are plans to light the blast furnaces in some fashion for the opening of the casino. Mayor Callahan added he does not know whether the amount of resources needed for the blast furnaces has been quantified. In further response to Mr. Leeson, Mayor Callahan noted that title to the land where the blast furnaces sit is a partnership between BethWorks Now and Sands Casino.
Mr. Leeson, pointing out that the City has invested $8 million in building infrastructure on the property owned by BethWorks Now, as distinguished from the Sands BethWorks project, wondered whether the owners of the western part of the former Bethlehem Steel Corporation property could be invited to give an update to the Members of Council.
President Donchez, confirming that a tour of the Sands BethWorks project for the Members of Council is in process of being scheduled, noted that an inquiry will be made about including the western portion in the update.
Mr. Mowrer queried if it would be appropriate to ask Jeff Parks, President of ArtsQuest, about the blast furnaces since the structures seem to be a part of the organization’s project at the BethWorks site in South Bethlehem.
President Donchez affirmed that a letter will be drafted.
13. COURTESY OF THE FLOOR
John Ladics, Kaywin Avenue, explained he has noticed that parts of the Greenway are starting to be used by the public for off-street parking and abandoned vehicles. Mr. Ladics asked who is responsible for taking care of the Greenway, and whether the vehicles can be removed.
Mayor Callahan, advising that the issue of cars on the Greenway has been occurring since the City has owned it and it is difficult to enforce, stated the City is in process of notifying the individuals who are illegally using the Greenway to let them know they can be ticketed and fined.
Mary Toulouse, 1528 West Market Street, notified the Members that she and her neighbors have a great concern about the Zoning Hearing Board. Ms. Toulouse advised that a property in the Elliott Heights section of the West Side near the railroad tracks and towpath was recently purchased by a developer, although people apparently did not know he was a developer at the time. The developer wanted to build up to 24 condominiums on the property on which there is currently an approximately 100 year old brick house. Because of the slope of the property, the developer had to ask the Zoning Hearing Board for an interpretation of the Zoning law. Ms. Toulouse continued on to explain the City Engineer had stated that the proposed number of housing units could not be built on the property. The neighbors were not notified there was going to be a Zoning Hearing Board meeting. However, almost 30 residents came to the meeting. Ms. Toulouse highlighted the fact that the entire area is all single family residences. Ms. Toulouse pointed out the developer took his own measurements regarding the slope without any verification, and brought a new map that the City Engineer and the Zoning Officer did not have a chance to examine. Ms. Toulouse advised that the City asked for more time in the matter, and the homeowners asked the Zoning Hearing Board to give the City more time. However, the requests were turned down, and the Zoning Hearing Board rendered a 2 to 1 vote on the item. The residents were told they could appeal but they discovered it would cost $10,000 for an attorney. Ms. Toulouse emphasized the residents thought that by purchasing homes in the City they had a right to be represented by the Zoning Hearing Board but find out otherwise, and added the people bought their homes there and put their life savings into them. Ms. Toulouse questioned how can this happen. Ms. Toulouse, mentioning she has seen this happen a few times, observed that developers feel confident they can buy any property they want and maybe they will get the laws changed in their favor.
President Donchez, affirming that the Zoning Hearing Board members are nominated by the Mayor and approved by City Council, highlighted the fact that the Zoning Hearing Board is an independent, quasi-judicial and quasi-legislative body who interprets the City zoning laws. President Donchez pointed out that the Zoning Hearing Board, and the Planning Commission, are important and powerful bodies that make decisions.
President Donchez asked that a copy of the minutes be forwarded to the Members of Council regarding the matter.
Christopher Spadoni, City Council Solicitor, stated the Zoning Hearing Board is a quasi-judicial body that is an arm of the court, is independent, and there is to be no meddling in the Zoning Hearing Board. Attorney Spadoni pointed out the Board hears various matters including variances and special exceptions to the Zoning Ordinance or conditional uses. Attorney Spadoni acknowledged the only remedy, as mentioned by Ms. Toulouse, that is somewhat onerous is to take an appeal. Attorney Spadoni verified that City Council does not have control or influence in Zoning Hearing Board matters as it would be totally improper in their deliberations since they are an independent board. Attorney Spadoni informed Ms. Toulouse that the Zoning Hearing Board appoints a solicitor to advise them appropriately under the law.
Ms. Dolan commented that the more she hears about the Zoning Hearing Board’s decision in this matter the more she does not understand how the decision was arrived at. Ms. Dolan wondered what Council can do.
Attorney Spadoni noted that Council can appeal a decision of the Zoning Hearing Board. However, Attorney Spadoni highlighted the fact that there is a specified timeframe within which an appeal can be filed which starts after a decision is rendered.
President Donchez asked Attorney Spadoni to research the issue and the law, and confer with the citizen regarding the timeframe.
Elliott Heights; Stratford Park; Trucks Idling
Bill Scheirer, 1890 Eaton Avenue, thought the decision in the Elliott Heights matter was rendered after the May Zoning Hearing Board meeting, and the Solicitor came up with the decision on July 7 so that the 30 day appeal period would expire August 7.
Mr. Scheirer observed that larger lots in West Bethlehem are perhaps a little cheaper than in Northeast Bethlehem, and remarked that West Bethlehem is in danger of losing its small town appeal. Mr. Scheirer said there was meeting concerning Elliott Heights at Rosemont Lutheran Church attended by 40 people.
Mr. Scheirer noted that the development planned at Stratford Park, located between Sixteenth Avenue and Stratford Street between Union Boulevard and Route 378, is scheduled to go before the Zoning Hearing Board next Wednesday.
Mr. Scheirer, referring to the issue of trucks idling, said he found out that some truckers may come from Route 22 to Route 378 and park in the Lowe’s parking lot on Eighth Avenue and rest there for several hours with the truck engines idling. Mr. Scheirer related that at a Planning Commission meeting there was a general concern about the problem, and it seemed there was a consensus to make a request to City Council to adopt an Ordinance limiting the idling of engines.
President Donchez confirmed that this evening the Members of Council received a memorandum sent from John F. Spirk, Jr., Esq., City Solicitor, in response to Mrs. Belinski’s questions about Stratford Park.
City Vehicles – Use by Employees
Dana Grubb, 2420 Henderson Place, informed the Members that since May 19, 2008 a Housing Inspector’s position has remained unfilled at the busiest time of the year, and asserted nothing has been done to get the position filled that he stressed is irresponsible management. Mr. Grubb said he was told by someone that Michael Palos, Chief Housing Inspector, recently worked 22 consecutive days and usually until 9:00 p.m. each day. Mr. Grubb observed this dedication and superior level of performance and service to City residents should not surprise anyone about Mr. Palos. Mr. Grubb stressed that housing code compliance and the public welfare is at stake, and revenue is lost. Mr. Grubb added the other day the part-time Inspector was rushed by ambulance to the hospital with chest pains. Exclaiming that not filling the position is disrespectful and shows a lack of concern, Mr. Grubb stated the Bureau is behind in everything including regulated rental and home sales inspections to handling complaints. Mr. Grubb said Mr. Palos’ family is extremely concerned about the demands the situation is placing on Mr. Palos as are his friends. Stating that the Inspector’s position should have been filled 60 days ago, Mr. Grubb said a qualified and hard-working person should be found so that the public welfare and safety of the City are no longer being compromised.
President Donchez, acknowledging the importance of the position as well as the generation of revenues, asked if the position is vacant and if so what is the timeframe for filling it.
Mayor Callahan, affirming that the importance of the position is recognized, and commending Mr. Palos for his work ethic, advised that a suitable candidate is in the process of being identified. Mayor Callahan advised the position will be filled in short order.
Robert Pfenning, 2830 Linden Street, referring to the $4 million non-recurring revenue in the 2008 Budget from the developers of property in the Route 33 corridor, noted that one of the parcels has been sold. Mr. Pfenning asked if the organization who bought the parcel is going to pay twice as much or will some revenue be missing.
Mayor Callahan confirmed that the City has already received $2 million in February and $2 million will be received by the end of the year. Mayor Callahan, affirming that under the agreement the costs travel with the property, advised the change in ownership will have no impact on the revenues to be received.
Mr. Pfenning asked what is the criteria for encroachment permits and how many have been issued. Mr. Pfenning asked how wide sidewalks have to be open in business areas. Mr. Pfenning asked if permits are issued for signs on sidewalks and what is the criteria. Mr. Pfenning asked who paid for the construction work involved in the bulb-out on Main Street in front of the restaurant at 546 Main Street.
Michael Alkhal, Director of Public Works, confirmed that the City issues encroachment permits, and right of way usage permits. Mr. Alkhal advised that guidelines are applied that meet the needs of the applicant as well as maintaining public access. The minimum passageway required is 6 feet. Mr. Alkhal affirmed that his office can supply Mr. Pfenning with the criteria. Mr. Alkhal informed Mr. Pfenning that the permittee paid for the bulb-out on Main Street in front of the restaurant at 546 Main Street. Mr. Alkhal further notified Mr. Pfenning that when the City receives the plans from Apollo Grill for a sidewalk pavilion they will be evaluated, and a permit would be issued if is possible to allow the project.
Eddie Rodriquez, 1845 Linden Street, stating there is an enormous amount of graffiti at the Minsi Trail Bridge and at Riverport on the Fahy Bridge side, said it is getting out of hand and must be stopped. Explaining that an individual climbs on top of buildings and over fences, Mr. Rodriquez asked the Members to deal with the issue of cameras. Mr. Rodriquez also remarked that gangs in the City including the Latin Kings and the Bloods are out of hand and must be stopped, and stressed again that cameras are needed. Mr. Rodriquez highlighted the fact that the City of Allentown uses cameras. Mr. Rodriquez complimented the Dispatchers in their handling of calls. Mr. Rodriquez expressed his concern about the safety of pedestrians crossing the streets, or those in wheelchairs, especially in light of the casino project when it opens. Mr. Rodriquez stressed that motorists are driving too fast. He added that enforcement of laws is needed. Mr. Rodriquez agreed with Mr. Ladics’ earlier comments about the Greenway as well as abandoned vehicles in the City and asserted the issue must be addressed. Mr. Rodriquez informed the assembly that this past weekend four cars were parked in the vicinity of the railroad tracks at Adams Street but only one was ticketed because it was too far out in the street while the others were not because they were on the Greenway space. Mr. Rodriquez asked for better signage for parking.
President Donchez advised that he met last week with a Member of Allentown City Council and the issue of cameras was discussed. The Allentown City Council Member was pleased with the cameras and the results so far. Allentown has about 80 cameras throughout the City, and the goal is to get about 200 cameras over the next year. President Donchez asked for a tour to see where the cameras are located in the City of Allentown, and to find out how they work in conjunction with the communications center. President Donchez advised that he will meet with Police Commissioner Miller and Deputy Commissioner Bedics on the matter after he obtains more information.
Security Cameras; Engines Idling
Louise Valeriano, 3114 East Boulevard, thought that cameras would be a wonderful idea and very helpful with law enforcement. Turning to the issue of trucks idling, Ms. Valeriano recalled that in the late 1980’s there were a large number of tour buses in front of the Hotel Bethlehem and across the street that were idling for sometimes two hours. Ms. Valeriano further recalled that a rule was passed to limit the idling of the buses, and thought it could be applied to trucks.
President Donchez noted that the matter will be checked and a copy forwarded.
Jameel Memon, 1626 West Union Boulevard, explained he looked for a house in a peaceful neighborhood in Bethlehem and selected to buy his house on West Union Boulevard. Mr. Memon advised he was surprised to know the City is considering rezoning property in the vicinity of Stratford Park and the developer wants to build multiple houses. Mr. Memon asked the City to please not change the Stratford Park area, currently zoned Institutional, to commercial or residential. Mr. Memon questioned how and why was the plot destroyed, and why the City maintained the lot.
Rosanne Fox, 826 Sixteenth Avenue, advised she lives adjacent to Stratford Park and was told by the neighbors when she moved there that the area was going to be a park and wondered whether the City had heard it was also an Indian burial ground.
President Donchez affirmed that a copy of City Solicitor Spirk’s correspondence on the matter would be forwarded to her.
John F. Spirk, Jr., Esq., City Solicitor, noting that he reviewed details with Mr. Scheirer for 3 hours last Friday afternoon, advised the Barker tract of land was purchased from Blue Ridge Real Estate Company this year, and Blue Ridge had owned it since 1917.
Ms. Fox, noting that taxes were not paid for 80 years, felt the City should have the property. While acknowledging there was a reversion clause, Ms. Fox pointed out the land has been used as a park, there are trails there, people walk there and make use of it. Ms. Fox asked if the City is fighting this.
President Donchez commented that the response from Attorney Spadoni would be available by the next City Council Meeting, and would be forwarded.
Ms. Fox added that, after the trees were cut down, the wild life that had been there were seen on the nearby streets and Route 378, and the City was contacted regarding the matter.
Five Minute Time Limit; Traffic Lights; Main Street Restaurant; and Greenway
Stephen Antalics, 737 Ridge Street, observed that an individual this evening spoke for 5 minutes and then was allowed to speak again after comments from the Table, and remarked a precedent is being set and the rules are being violated.
Mr. Antalics asked if the blast furnaces become a safety hazard are the people who own them free to tear them down, or is there a commitment to preserve them as a historical monument. Mr. Antalics emphasized if there is no legal recourse then an important historic monument is lost, and stressed this should have been thought out before agreements were signed.
President Donchez, noting that in the letter received from The Venetian it does not specifically mention the blast furnaces, commented it is a good question and an answer will try to be obtained.
Zoning Hearing Board; Stratford Park; Police Protection for Events
Bill Kovatch, 1736 West Union Boulevard, expressed his opinion that the Zoning Hearing Board is not interested in the people who live in the area of a request made to the Board, and the public’s interest is not being looked after. Mr. Kovatch thought the Mayor should perhaps talk to the Board or give them the direction that the people who live in the area in question should be given a say in zoning matters. Otherwise, cases will be rubber-stamped and it will not help the people.
Mr. Kovatch, focusing on the Stratford Park issue, stated
that the back taxes that were not paid by Blue Ridge Real
Estate Company for 80 years should be sought for both the
City and the County. Mr. Kovatch further asserted the City
should be compensated for cutting the grass and doing work
on the property.
Mr. Kovatch asked who paid for the Police protection during the visit of the Dali Lama to Bethlehem at Lehigh University, and will the City be compensated for police and fire service. Mr. Kovatch stressed that the City should be compensated because he does not want his tax dollars being used for that activity.
Mayor Callahan, noting the Police Commissioner is not at the meeting this evening, commented that it was probably handled similar to other events where the Police Officers are paid Roster Duty.
Greenway; Curbside Pickup of Yard Waste
Andrew Prickler, 1843 Willow Park Road, Bethlehem Township, noting he is a City employee and also owns a waste hauling firm in the City, advised he spent four days in a row cleaning up the Greenway after the City received the property. Mr. Prickler pointed out the two worst areas were in the area of the Banana Factory and Third and Hobart Streets, and added there was a dump truck parked along the Greenway. Mr. Prickler agreed that enforcement of trash issues is needed. Mr. Prickler commented that the Recycling Bureau wants the control over solid waste to be transferred from the Health Bureau to the Recycling Bureau, and to incorporate yard waste into the curbside recycling program. Noting this will affect his business, Mr. Prickler advised that people contract with him to haul yard waste that he takes to the City’s Compost Center. Mr. Prickler stated that curbside collection of yard waste will add to blight in the City, truck traffic, and noise. Mr. Prickler, questioning how scheduled garbage pickup days in the City will be addressed for commercial establishments, pointed out that sometimes he services a restaurant three times a week. Mr. Prickler highlighted the fact that grass clippings, that are the largest amount of yard waste, are not included in the collection but yet under the DEP definitions grass clippings are to be included with yard waste collection. Mr. Prickler stated that in the event this affects his business he will take action.
State Police Horses - Musikfest
Wade Haubert, FOP President, Star Lodge 20, 77 West Broad Street, commended the Mayor and his staff for getting the State Police horses for duty at Musikfest in August. Officer Haubert advised it has always been a great tool for the Police from an Officer safety standpoint, and can do more to control crowds than a large number of Police Officers.
Mrs. Belinski affirmed that she sent a memorandum to John F. Spirk, Jr., Esq., City Solicitor, questioning the history of Stratford Park. Mrs. Belinski, reading from Attorney Spirk’s response, noted it was explained that City-owned land was conveyed to the City Blue Ridge Real Estate Company on July 25, 1929 exclusively for park and playground purposes with a provision that if the property was not so used, it would revert to Blue Ridge Real Estate Company. There is litigation currently ongoing concerning whether that property should be deemed to have reverted to the grantor or their successors. The City is defending that litigation, and maintains that the property has not reverted. The City is attempting in the ongoing litigation to reserve that portion of Stratford Park that was received from Blue Ridge Real Estate Company. The other portion of Stratford Park that was received by the City from Robert and Elizabeth Klotz and Edwin and Hattie Bregenzer on December 22, 1921 with a similar reverter clause if the property was not used for park and playground purposes. The City has been contacted by the heirs of Klotz and Bregenzer. There is n litigation pending yet, but if there is the City will defend its right to the land. Mrs. Belinski confirmed that City Council has to vote on any sale of City land.
Attorney Spirk clarified that the first sentence in the paragraph was not read, and what Mrs. Belinski read about were the two tracts adjacent to the Barker tract. Attorney Spirk confirmed that the City never owned the Barker tract.
President Donchez suggested that Council wait until the response is received from City Council’s Solicitor prior to the next Meeting.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:30 p.m.