TOWNSHIP OF LOWER MAKEFIELD

BOARD OF SUPERVISORS

SPECIAL MEETING – PARK AND RECREATION ISSUES

MINUTES – FEBRUARY 27, 2007

 

 

A Special Meeting of Board of Supervisors of the Township of Lower Makefield was held in the Municipal Building on February 27, 2007.  Chairman Smith called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.  Secretary Santarsiero called the roll.

 

Those present:

 

Board of Supervisors:             Ron Smith, Chairman

                                                Greg Caiola, Vice Chairman

                                                Steve Santarsiero, Secretary/Treasurer

                                                Grace Godshalk, Supervisor

                                                Pete Stainthorpe, Supervisor

 

Park & Recreation Board:       David Fritchey, Chairman

                                                Henry Carpenter, Vice Chairman

                                                Patricia Bunn, Secretary

                                                David Gordon, Member

                                                Richard Jutkiewicz, Member

                                                Francis McDonald, Member

                                                Andrew Newbon, Member

 

Others:                                    Terry Fedorchak, Township Manager

                                                Donna Liney, Park & Recreation Director

Ernest Closser, Township Solicitor (left meeting in progress)

David Truelove, Township Solicitor (joined meeting in progress)

James Majewski, Township Engineer

Kenneth Coluzzi, Chief of Police

 

 

WELCOME REMARKS

 

Mr. Smith stated during the first meeting of the year of the Board of Supervisors he commented on the importance of quality of life issues, which includes Park & Recreation issues, and they have therefore called this special meeting. 

 

 

 

 

 

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OVERVIEW OF PARK AND RECREATION

 

David Fritchey, Chairman of the Park & Recreation Board introduced the other members of the Park & Recreation Board.  He stated the Park & Recreation Board is a group of citizens from the Township who have been appointed by the Board of Supervisors to act as an advisory group to the Board of Supervisors on issues regarding Parks and recreation.  He stated they identify Township needs, solicit citizen input, plan and design Parks with the assistance of the Township engineer and appropriate consultants, and advise the Board of Supervisors on all policy matters pertaining to Parks and recreation.  He added that the Board of Supervisors is the decision-making body which makes the final policy and Budget decisions concerning the Park & Recreation Operating Budget and capital projects.  The Board of Supervisors also makes the decisions about tax millage, sets Fee-In-Lieu formulas, and decides whether or not to float bond issues and purchase land. 

 

Mr. Fritchey stated the Park & Recreation Department headed by Donna Liney operates and maintains the Parks on a daily basis.  Ms. Liney and her staff receive Park use requests, issue Use Permits, and deal with the public on a day-to-day basis.  Mr. Fritchey stated the funding of the Park system is through the Park & Recreation Operating Budget which is approximately $1 million each year and pays for running the system.  90% of this comes from taxes and 10% comes from User Fees.  Capital projects are paid for either with Fee-In-Lieu money, donations, or money borrowed as a result of Bond Issues. 

 

Mr. Fritchey stated programming is done primarily by volunteer organizations operating in the Township including YMS, PAA, Lower Bucks Lacrosse, and Pop Warner Football.  The Township sanctions these organizations through an Application process. 

 

Mr. Fritchey stated currently the Township has one of the best Park systems in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania which adds significantly to the quality of life in the Township.  It provides recreation facilities which contribute to the health and welfare of all citizens particularly the youth in the Township.  He stated the system also adds to the property values in the Township. 

 

Mr. Fritchey stated the Park system includes Community Park in the area near the Township Building which includes tennis courts, basketball courts, Kids Kingdom, a picnic area, the Lower Makefield Township Community Pool, and a baseball complex, known as the Stoddard Complex, consisting of three 60’ baseline baseball fields.  Also in this area is the Oxford Valley/Roelofs Softball Complex consisting of three 60’ baseline fields for softball, bocce, and volleyball courts.  There is also a lighted softball field adjacent to the Pool. 

 

Mr. Fritchey stated every year they try to visibly improve the Township facilities. 

He stated in the last few years they expanded the covered seating area at the playground

 

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area in Community Park, and in 1999 opened the Oxford Valley/Roelofs Complex with three fields, restroom/concession building, bocce court, and parking lot.  He stated in 2000 they installed a covered pavilion and concrete flooring adjacent to Kids Kingdom.  In 2001, they heated all four pools at the Swim Complex.  In 2002, the Swim Complex was converted from gas chlorine sanitation to a new pump and filter system.  In 2003, they did restroom renovations to the Swim Complex .  In 2004, they added a restroom/concession building and dug-out improvements at the Stoddard Baseball Complex, and in 2005, they added dual slides at the Swim Complex.

 

Mr. Fritchey stated Macclesfield Park is a 90-acre athletic complex along the Delaware River near the border with Yardley Borough.  It contains two World-Cup size soccer fields with lights, two 90’ baseline baseball fields, and one 75’ baseline baseball field. 

It has two football fields, a large number of soccer fields, volleyball courts, children’s play area, and extensive parking capacity.  Recent improvements include the 1997 expansion into the rear 30 acres of field space with the addition of 260 parking spaces, in 1998 and 2000 the installation of two large-scale covered pavilions with concrete floors and picnic tables, in 2003 replacement of exercise and playground equipment, in 2003 and 2006 lighted additional fields, and in 2006 repaved the bikepath and widened the exit lane and updated the interior of existing restroom and concession areas and added shields to some of the lights to prevent unnecessary light onto adjacent properties.

 

Mr. Fritchey stated the Five Mile Woods Preserve is a nature preserve that protects a national coastal plain biome, and is one of the few remaining in the Eastern United States.  It contains an extensive trail system and an educational building.  Recent improvements include expanding the trail system which also made the facility more handicap accessible, classroom amenities, and the acquisition of an additional 13 acres in 2005. 

 

Mr. Fritchey stated there is an extensive bikepath system in the Township consisting of 25 miles of bikepaths.  There have been many linkages of areas in the bikepath system over the years. 

 

Mr. Fritchey stated the Makefield Highlands Golf Course was constructed and dedicated in 2004 and has been very successful.

 

Mr. Fritchey stated Memorial Park is a 63-acre park.  He stated there was a comprehensive plan done in the early 1990’s which identified the need for a community park as an essential addition needed to be added to the Park system.  He stated a community park was seen as a family park as opposed to an athletic complex.  The planner who did the comprehensive study indicated that it was essential to build a park of this nature and do so quickly because of the rapid development in the Township.  It is to be a family-oriented park which is to have approximately 50/50 ratio of active/passive recreation.  The intention is that this area would be for pick-up games, family picnics, etc. 

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He stated the Park features pavilions with picnic facilities, and there is a plan for an arboretum throughout the Park along with bikepaths and hiking trails.  Since it has a Memorial theme, people are encouraged to donate trees and park benches which can be dedicated to family members and friends.  He stated it was agreed that the construction of the Garden of Reflection was appropriate for this Park, and it was constructed and dedicated last year.  Mr. Fritchey stated they have completed Phase I of this Park which includes grading and seeding, a first course wearing surface for a parking lot, two basketball courts, volleyball courts, and utilities into the site. 

 

Mr. Fritchey stated the Park & Recreation Board has made several recommendations for improvements to the Park system which have not yet been funded.  He stated these recommendations include a Community Center/Senior Center.  He stated they have urged the Board of Supervisors to find space for Senior Citizen activities on a permanent basis, and he understands this may be possible in the future.  He stated they have also long felt there was a need for an auditorium that would support concerts, dramatic presentations, art shows, art rooms, and music practice rooms which would help encourage development of  the arts in the Township.  He stated acquisition of a building with interior space suitable for these purposes would help accomplish all of these goals.

 

Mr. Fritchey stated with respect to Community Park, PAA has proposed to construct a year-round indoor batting facility; and the Park & Recreation Board has endorsed this proposal.  They have also asked the Township engineer to cost out the price to build a 90’ baseball field on the Samost Tract which is an area of land surrounding the water tower between the baseball and softball complexes.  With its acquisition by the Township it completes Community Park.  He stated they have had discussions for the past five to six years as to the best use of the Samost Tract, and the feeling at the current time is that the best use would be for baseball and tennis along with parking.  This would involve relocation of the mulch piles.  

 

Mr. Fritchey stated they consider the Swim Complex to be within Community Park.  There had been discussion about enclosing and winterizing the 25 meter by 25 yard competition pool,  but preliminary estimates on that project came in at more than

$2.5 million. 

 

Mr. Fritchey noted the location of the Snipes Tract acquired by the Township which is across the street from Quarry Hill School.  He stated the Park & Recreation Board has recommended that the Board of Supervisors approve Option C Sketch Plan which would call for a soccer complex at the tract which would help reduce some of the wear and tear at Macclesfield Park.  He stated the Plan for the Snipes Tract also includes a skate park which will provide a safe place for Township youth to participate in this activity.

 

Mr. Fritchey stated at Memorial Park, the Park & Recreation Board has recommended the next Phase of the project to include a skinned softball field with a back stop, play area,

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a roller hockey court, and additional parking.  There would be subsequent phases at this Park as well. 

 

Mr. Fritchey stated with respect to Macclesfield Park, YMS has proposed the installation of an all-weather turf field on at least one of the World Cup fields and has suggested that they would pay for this improvement in lieu of paying User Fees.  He stated the User Fees are a complex, philosophical subject.  He stated while the Park & Recreation Board embraces the idea of having an all-weather field, eliminating the User Fees would take away 10% of the Park & Recreation Department’s Operating Fund and would require filling in this shortfall most likely with a tax increase.

 

Mr. Fritchey stated the price of running the Park system goes up as they build more and more facilities, and the Operating Budget of the Park & Recreation Board will increase.  He stated there have also been concerns expressed about having some oversight and policing of the Park system possibly involving Park Rangers which would relieve this responsibility of the Police who have other law-enforcement duties throughout the Township.  He stated this would also increase the cost of running the Park system.

 

 

PRESENTATION BY TOWNSHIP ORGANIZATIONS

 

Lower Makefield Seniors Group – Ms. Ada Derr, President, stated they use the Lower Makefield Municipal Building six days a week.  She stated Pennsylvania has the second oldest population in the Nation.  She stated more than thirty years have been added to the human life span.  She added that based on demographics, the fastest growing segment of society will be the over-85 age group, although younger Seniors have also become a highly active demographic as well.  She stated the Lower Makefield Seniors was started by thirty-five Seniors who met in the Township Building on March 1, 1995.  They  have grown to 400 members.  She stated their programs are planned to fill the needs of the diverse Senior population.  She stated they have trips, parties, speakers, monthly movies, bocce games, art lessons, bowling, exercise classes, tax preparation, 55-Alive classes, and card games.  She stated according to the 2000 Census out of 32,681 Lower Makefield residents, 3,116 are Seniors aged 65 to 84 which is a growth of 58% and 267 are Senior aged 85 and older which is a growth of 10%.  Ms. Derr thanked the Lower Makefield Township Supervisors for recognizing the need to provide meaningful activities not only to the youth of Lower Makefield but also to Seniors who have long supported the community by including a Senior Center as part of the planned Community Center.

 

Mr. Sam Alvino, one of the original 35 Seniors who started the group, was present and stated approximately ten years ago he was elected to the Board of Directors and one of his assignments was to amend the By-Laws which were patterned after a profit-making Corporation and not a social level.  He was made part of a Committee to visit other Senior organizations to learn how they functioned.  He stated they learned that all the

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Seniors groups in Bucks County had their own meeting place to use all week and were not limited to certain times, nor did they have to assemble and disassemble the meeting place each time they used it.  He stated they also provided computer classes, art classes, ceramics, exercise classes and many other activities that were beneficial to the Seniors.

He noted billiards is very popular among Seniors, and space is required to provide this activity.  He stated the Lower Makefield Seniors group must schedule all their activities to make sure that the space is available.  He stated if they had a place assigned to the Seniors which was available all day, he feels they will be able to double their membership. 

 

Mr. Smith asked where the Seniors would be if the Lower Makefield group were not available.  Ms. Derr stated she assumes they would be sitting home or walking in the malls.  She stated they do have a very active group and have done a lot even without a building. 

 

Mr. Smith thanked Ms. Derr and her group for the great work they have done. 

Mr. Santarsiero stated they are actively working toward the possibility of a facility for the entire community including the Seniors. 

 

Ms. Tara Bane stated she feels this will continue to be a continuing need for the Township, and she feels they need to work toward a Center sooner rather than later.

 

Mr. Smith asked how many Senior Center facilities are in the surrounding communities, and Ms. Derr stated there are thirteen and every one was started by their Township. 

 

Mr. Santarsiero stated Mr. Bill Gibney recently wrote a letter to the Editor in which he expressed his disappointment that Mr. Santarsiero did not ask Governor Rendell for funds for a Senior Center when he met with him in December.  Mr. Santarsiero stated both he and Representative Steil had agreed prior to the meeting with the Governor that they were not going to ask him for funds for a Senior Center as the purpose of the meeting was to discuss funds for flooding issues, and they did not feel it was appropriate at the time to ask for funds for any other projects.  Mr. Santarsiero stated he feels the Board is all in agreement that they will ultimately find the resources to have a Community Center with an area for the Seniors, and they are working toward this currently.

 

 

Pennsbury Athletic Association –  Mr. Mark Cook and Mr. Greg Morrow were present.

Mr. Cook thanked the Board of Supervisors and the Park & Recreation Board for all they have done for PAA.  He also thanked Mr. Fedorchak and Ms. Liney and her staff for their hard work.  He also thanked all the volunteers from PAA.  He stated they have 1,400 children in their program. 

 

 

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Mr. Greg Morrow thanked everyone for their support particularly Donna Liney who has been a good partner for their organization.  Mr. Morrow provided information and reviewed statistics on field usage.  He stated they use both Township and School fields.  He stated the Township fields are primarily used for the games and the School fields are primarily used for practice.  He stated a new Major League Division for 9 to 12 year old boys was created which will require a 70’ field, and this has been accomplished through working with Ms. Liney and her crew.  Mr. Caiola noted their numbers are very good for the 13 and 14 year-olds as children at this age level often lose interest.  Mr. Morrow stated part of the reason for the new 70’ Division was to make it more likely that these players would move into the older Division.

 

Mr. Morrow stated at the Babe Ruth and Senior Babe Ruth Level, there are 149 games per field being used for a Season which does not include Play-Offs, etc.  He stated this older age group is where they have a dearth of space.  They are very happy to hear that there will be some further development in this area.  Mr. Smith asked how many games should be played on a field, and Mr. Morrow stated he feels they should have a third less per field. 

 

Mr. Morrow stated the baseball community would like to see State-of-the Art facilities at every complex which would include dugouts, fences, scoreboards, press box, concession stand with restroom, grass in-fields for baseball fields, batting cages, lighted fields, proper-draining in-fields, and well-maintained grounds.  He stated they are also in favor of a centrally-located indoor facility.  He stated many of these items have been accomplished at the facilities.  He noted the hand-out showing each complex, what they have at the facility, and what is still needed.  He stated given the demands for fields for the older boys, they would like to recommend that there be an additional 70’ field as well as a 90’ foot field as well as the indoor facility in the area of Community Park. 

 

Mr. Stainthorpe asked if there are still drainage issues on the fields, and Mr. Morrow stated there is still a problem on Field 3 at Stoddard.  He stated there is also one spot on Field 2.  Mr. Stainthorpe stated there was extensive drainage work done at the softball fields, and Mr. Ray Fritchey advised that the in-field is a clay base and eventually it becomes like rock underneath, but they are continuing to work on this. 

 

Mr. Smith stated during the summer, there are also Tournaments, and he asked for specifics on these.  Mr. Morrow stated they have one of the largest softball Tournaments on the East Coast where college coaches come to look at the players.  Mr. Ray Fritchey stated it is a very good recruitment tool, and 72 teams come to this Tournament each year.  He stated this year they turned away 100 teams.  He stated multiple scholarships come out of this Tournament.  He stated softball at its highest level can be seen at this Tournament. He stated those attending also spend money in the community.  Mr. Fritchey stated PAA also has a Scholarship Program.

 

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Mr. Cook stated PAA is like any other youth organization which builds character and makes those involved feel good about themselves.

 

Mrs. Godshalk stated many years ago her husband was very involved in PAA as a coach, Manager, and President and they primarily used the School fields.  She stated since that time, the Program has come a long way with the help of the volunteers and the Township. She stated there are many demands on the Township.  She feels the Township and the organizations should look into a vehicle to fund a non-profit fund where people could contribute; and if they wanted to make a substantial donation, it would be tax deductible.  She feels companies may want to contribute as well.  Mr. Cook stated last year they had $24,000 in sponsorship money which provided a vital bridge between the money charged for Registration and the organization being able to provide the opportunities they do.  He stated he will take Mrs. Godshalk’s suggestion to their Board meeting.  Mr. Santarsiero stated the Board did permit advertisements at the fields which added a revenue stream.  He feels the Township also needs to be more flexible in helping the various organizations raise money creatively to help offset the costs of running the Leagues. 

 

Mr. Santarsiero stated they also need to do planning for the future.  He stated there was a reference made to the indoor batting facility.  He stated PAA came to the Board of Supervisors approximately two months ago indicating they wanted to construct an indoor facility which they would pay for, but were looking to the Township for the property. 

He stated the Board has asked the Park & Recreation Board to look at Community Park to see if the area where the mulch piles are currently located would be a good location for additional fields and possibly the indoor facility. 

 

Mr. Caiola stated baseball is now almost a year-round sport, and PAA puts together very good teams.  He agrees the Township needs to do what they can to help the organizations. 

 

Mr. Smith stated there will be a Referendum on the May Ballot for small games of chance which they hope will act as a fundraiser for all the groups.  He stated he hopes that the various organizations will support this. 

 

 

Lower Makefield Pop Warner Football – Mr. Joe Pfender, President, was present. 

He thanked Ms. Liney who has been very supportive as he has recently taken over the Program.  Mr. Pfender stated they are trying to increase their Lower Makefield participation.  He stated their numbers have grown over the years. He stated their biggest issue is field space.  They have 16 tackle teams and over 20 flag teams all of whom practice on two football fields.  He stated they are not a large organization like YMS and PAA.  He stated they are a non-profit organization.  They also offer scholarships.  He stated of the 30 starters for the Pennsbury Football Team, 20 came through the Lower Makefield Pop Warner Football Program.  Mr. Pfender stated beyond field space, they are also in need of storage space.  He stated they currently have a trailer located behind

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the Falls Township Building as there are Falls Township participants in the program. 

He stated they are discussing with them the possibility of opening up field space in Falls to take some of the pressure off Lower Makefield.  He stated because they are a smaller program, they were not sure it was advisable to send their players out of the Township although they are looking at Eleanor Roosevelt.  He stated there are also Newtown participants who have indicated they would look for space in Newtown as well. 

 

Mr. Pfender stated the Lower Makefield Program is one of the few Pop Warner Programs in the Country that is an in-house Program, and they do not compete.  It is an intra-mural program; and unlike every other Pop Warner Program, every player is guaranteed a starting position.   He stated the Program started in 1994.  He stated the opportunity to improve field space is their number one priority.  Mr. Pfender stated this year they are looking to add Cheerleading to boost their Lower Makefield Township numbers and to diversify the recreational opportunities.  Mr. Pfender stated Registration Fees are tied to Lower Makefield User Fees and equipment fees. 

 

Mr. Caiola asked the number of players in the Program, and Mr. Pfender stated in the Tackle Program they had 350 players last year, and in the Flag Program which is for five to seven year olds, they had 250 participants.  He noted they are at the two fields every night of the week.  Mr. Caiola stated both his sons went through the Tackle Program and everyone involved loved the fact that everyone who plays gets a starting position. 

He stated while it is hard to grow such a program, he feels what they are doing is great. 

 

Mr. Pfender noted the number of people making use of the lit fields at Macclesfield Park. 

He stated Eleanor Roosevelt is not lit. 

 

Mr. Stainthorpe stated he would encourage them to stay with their philosophy of providing a good experience for their players and not be too concerned about having huge numbers.  Mr. Smith stated John Kuebler, a former member of the Park & Recreation Board, instilled that philosophy some time ago.  Mr. Caiola stated it shows how good their program is when 20 of the 30 starting players at Pennsbury High School came through this program.  Mrs. Godshalk congratulated them on bringing these players to the Pennsbury School District. 

 

Mr. Pfender stated their main problem is where they have nine to ten teams on one field for practice.  Mr. Santarsiero stated they have a very successful program; and for the number of players they have, the Township needs to provide more than two fields.

 

 

A short recess was taken at this time.

 

 

 

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Yardley Makefield Soccer Club – Mr. Roger Deininger, President, was present. 

He thanked the Board of Supervisors, the Park & Recreation Board, Ms. Liney, and

Mr. Fedorchak who have helped their organization.  He stated they are a large organization and appreciate all the help.    Mr. Deininger stated their motto is “Excellence Through Development.”  Their program is for 3 ½ to 18 years old.  Their largest growth is in the 3 ½ to 5 year olds.  He stated they also have a Co-Ed Division for teenagers who are coming back to the sport, and this has resulted in a surge in the older group as well.  He stated YMS is part of the EPYSA which includes everything east of State College.  This includes over 310 youth organizations, and YMS was recently ranked Number 5 in the State as a Youth Soccer organization. 

 

Mr. Deininger stated their volunteer membership consists of 12 Board positions and over 200 coaches throughout their program.  He stated they run a full fall schedule and a full spring schedule.  Their In-House Program is 10 weeks in the fall and 10 weeks in the spring.  The Travel Program is essentially year round.  They have approximately 1600 players in the fall and 1600 in the spring.  He stated YMS is in good financial standing.  Through fund-raising efforts and cost controls they are able to meet their financial requirements.  In 2006 their largest expense was to Lower Makefield to whom they paid approximately $59,000 including User Fees, Lighting Fees, and Tournament Fees. 

 

Mr. Deininger stated their main venue is Macclesfield Park which is a great facility and is one of the nicest facilities on the East Coast.  He stated depending on the season, it varies as to how many soccer fields they have available to them.  He stated Edgewood School is the next most-used facility.  He stated 25% of their membership uses Edgewood School because Macclesfield Park cannot handle the number of children particularly in their

Pee-Wee Program.  He stated they have 400 to 450 children playing at Edgewood School.  He stated they also use Quaker Penn Park in Falls Township as well as Heacock Park which is used by their In-House Program.  Mr. Deininger stated they need more lit fields for games and practices.  He stated because of the high numbers equally in the fall and spring, they are not giving the fields the opportunity to rest.  He stated Macclesfield Park is maxed out, but they have no option but to overuse Macclesfield.  He stated the plan for the Snipes Tract is very acceptable to YMS.  He stated the initial drawing in June, 2004 was acceptable as well as all the subsequent revisions.  He stated they have met with the Park & Recreation Board, the Planning Commission, and discussed the Snipes Plan with most of the Supervisors as well.  He stated it has now been 2 ½ years from when it was initially proposed, but there has not been any further movement with the exception of the drawings. 

 

Mr. Deininger stated they would also like a turf field at Macclesfield Park, and they feel YMS will probably have to pay for this entirely.  He stated they need to have a facility such as this particularly for practice.  He stated they are looking at Field C at Macclesfield Park with some overlap into Field D.  It is key that it be a lit field. 

He stated most of the new facilities are now turf fields.  He stated many Townships in

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New Jersey have turf fields.  He stated they recognize that they would probably have to fund the turf field entirely, and are looking for the support of the Park & Recreation Board and the Board of Supervisors.  He stated this would reduce the wear and tear on the fields.  He stated currently YMS rents turf time at Mercer County Community College.  He stated they are able to use this type of surface almost year round, and it has been indicated that it is a safer surface than grass. 

 

Mr. Deininger stated YMS was founded in 1979 as Yardley-Morrisville Soccer.  At the request of the Lower Makefield Board of Supervisors some years ago, they changed their name to Yardley Makefield Soccer.  They would like to make it truly a Lower Makefield program and have all practices and all games in Lower Makefield.

 

Mr. Stainthorpe stated YMS is a great group, and like all the organizations they have needs which the Board of Supervisors will have to prioritize.  All Supervisors congratulated YMS on their excellent program.  Mr. Santarsiero stated it is hopeful that during Budget time, they will be able to approve construction of the Snipes tract in 2008. 

 

Mr. Deininger stated they have an annual boy’s Tournament which is Columbus Day Weekend and attracts 285 teams with a waiting list of 125 teams.  It is listed at the Platinum level and is the second highest rated boy’s Tournament in the United States.

The girl’s tournament is held Mothers Day Weekend and draws 165 teams.  Both Tournaments are run by the volunteers.  Mr. Deininger stated they also run scholarship programs.   The youth that have gone through their program become trainers, referees, and help out with the younger players.  YMS also runs camp, and the older players come back to assist the professional trainers.

 

Mr. Smith stated he was a past President of YMS and feels they have done a great job.  Mr. Smith stated he feels it is important that the Township partner with the organizations to get things done.   He stated he is pleased to see that YMS is stepping up to find a way to install an artificial turf field.  He stated he also feels the Township needs to take the next step to see that this can be done.  Mr. Deininger stated YMS recognizes that if they do something for YMS, they will have to do it for the other users as well. 

 

 

Lower Bucks Lacrosse – Mr. Lew Sears, President, was present with Ms. Lisa Huchler-Smith.  Mr. Sears stated their first Kick-Off Meeting was held last week and 300 people were present.  Mr. Sears stated they have been in the area since 1993 when they started with 3 coaches and 30 players.  They doubled their membership every three years and are now at 550 players with 37 coaches.  He stated currently they have 17 boy’s teams in Grades K through 8 and 11 girl’s teams in Grades K through 8.  He stated the High Schools have recently instituted a Varsity Program.  Mr. Sears stated they use fourteen fields in three Townships – Middletown, Falls and School fields in Lower Makefield.  They do not use any Lower Makefield Township fields.  They are a feeder program for

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Pennsbury, Neshaminy, and Truman.  He stated for this year they anticipate spending $5,000 for field use. When they utilized 4 fields at Macclesfield Park in 2005, they paid $9,000 for field use.  Mr. Sears stated 55% of the boys in their program are from Lower Makefield and 90% of the girls are Lower Makefield residents.  He stated because of the User Fee Schedule in Lower Makefield which is $12 for residents and $24 for

non-residents, they have had to look into other alternatives.  He stated if they were to pay even $12 for all 550 players, they would still be looking at fairly significant User Fees. 

 

Mr. Sears stated even though they are not using the Township fields, they plan to bring Lacrosse back into Lower Makefield where the majority of their players reside.  He feels there is support in the Township to bring Lacrosse back to the Township.  He stated in order to do so, they are proposing to dissolve Lower Bucks Lacrosse as an entire entity into something that maps more closely the School Districts and make it a more Lower Makefield-centric organization.  They intend to have a Pennsbury and Neshaminy Lacrosse Program in the next year or so.  He stated they currently use 17 fields so for the Pennsbury Division they will need 9 fields, of which they expect 5 would be Township fields.  He stated they feel they are at a point where those outside of the Township are at a sufficient size that they will be able to cut the Program in half.

 

Ms. Huchler-Smith stated she coaches the Girls Lacrosse and it is a learning League.  She stated everyone gets an opportunity to play.  She stated they play at the Middle School fields where the fields are not in good shape and there is no restroom.  She stated they would like to play on Lower Makefield fields.   She stated the exposure at Macclesfield Park with all the different sports being played is excellent.   

 

Mr. Caiola asked what other fields apart from Macclesfield Park have been used in the past and asked about the possibility of using the Heacock fields.  Mr. Sears stated while they like the exposure at Macclesfield Park, they are flexible as to where they could go.  He stated Heacock does have some advantages.

 

Mr. Stainthorpe stated his son played Lacrosse and it was an excellent motivational program.  Mr. Sears stated their program builds character and gives the players a structured activity. 

 

Mr. Smith stated he feels they are seeing a theme of character, leadership, and teamwork which is the primary benefit in sports; and all of the user groups are providing this. 

 

Mr. Jutkiewicz stated he is involved in U. S. Lacrosse at the National level and is a National trainer.  He stated they go into the inner cities and provide opportunities for children who have no money to play Lacrosse. He stated last year they started a program in Trenton which is very successful and Lower Bucks Lacrosse has invited the Trenton players to come and play against them in Lower Makefield. 

 

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Yardley Makefield Tennis – Mr. Mike Cremeans, President, was unavailable this evening.  It was also noted that Ms. Lisa Sherman who was also involved in the Program has moved.   Ms. Kitty Parin was present representing the United States Tennis Association (USTA).   She stated tennis provides another choice for children in the community, and they can continue to participate in this sport late in life as there are still people playing in their eighties and nineties.  She noted Township resident, Lauren Rossi, went to States as part of the Pennsbury School District; and she was trained at Yardley Makefield Tennis. 

 

Ms. Parin stated the Schuyler courts in Lower Makefield are badly in need of repair and they also need to provide restroom facilities.  She stated the USTA does provide Grants, and the Township could apply for help with repairing the courts. 

 

Ms. Liney stated Mr. Cremeans has indicated that they have 500 players.  She stated they do crack fill the courts annually.  She stated there are fourteen courts in the Township.   They are targeting developing a new Complex across the street from the Municipal Building.

 

Ms. Parin agreed to provide information on Grant money.

 

 

FIELD USER GROUPS

 

Yardley Men’s Baseball – Dave Diaz was present and stated they have been playing for 20 years and are comprised of two teams that play in an over-38 Adult Baseball League.   

They are affiliated with the Men’s Adult Baseball Leagues (MABL) which is a National Baseball Association.  He stated Yardley Men’s Baseball is an opportunity for adult men to continue to play baseball.  He stated they play a 28-game season beginning in April and running through September.  Their home games are at Macclesfield A.   They have approximately 40 adults approximately half of which are Lower Makefield residents. 

He stated they would support any initiative associated with new fields.  He thanked the Township for their help, particularly Ms. Liney.

 

Kol Emet Softball Program – Jason Simon was present and stated they have two adult Men’s Softball teams comprised of 40 men living in Lower Makefield.  They participate in a Softball League that primarily plays their games in Ewing Township, NJ.  They are an ASA-sanctioned Softball League.  He stated he would like to see the Township move forward with adult use of facilities in the Township.  He stated the Township only has four fields that are sanctioned for softball use – the Pool field, and the three fields at Oxford Valley/Roelofs.  He stated the fence lines at Oxford Valley/Roelofs are not long enough to accommodate their program; and because of this, they cannot use those fields despite the fact that they are empty Sunday mornings.  He stated last year the Pick-Up League and PAA did allow them to use the field behind the Pool.  He suggested that as

February 27, 2007                                                       Board of Supervisors – page 14 of 23

 

 

the Township moves forward with additional facilities in the future, he would like them to consider softball fields similar to those in Ewing Township which have longer  baselines which accommodate both the girls’ softball and men’s softball Leagues.  He also stated that if the Township builds such fields, his group and others would be willing to pay to use the fields and pay the Permit Fees. He stated they would also have the potential to host Tournaments as well which could help support some of the Youth programs in the Township.  He stated the School District facilities are sub-par and are not desirable fields.   Mr. Simon stated Lower Makefield is a top-tier Township, and they should have top-tier facilities for youth and adults.

 

Mr. Smith stated there is a cost to all of these requests and stated there are other ways to raise revenues besides User fees.  He stated the Board of Supervisors must consider this in the future.  Mr. Simon stated he understands that the fields at Oxford Valley/Roelofs were built with taxpayer money; and he is suggesting that if they are going to build facilities in the future such as at Memorial Park, that they build them appropriately with fences but put them in a place where it could support both the PAA softball requirements as well as his program.

 

Mr. Stainthorpe stated Memorial Park will help fulfill some of these needs as the idea is not to Permit those fields for the Leagues but to have them available for the use of the residents and for pick-up games.  Mr. Simon stated usually it is suggested that his League play at a non-fenced-in field, but he is suggesting that there can be World-Class facilities as suggested by PAA accommodated in one field.

 

Mr. Closser left the meeting at this time.  Mr. Truelove joined the meeting at this time.

 

Mr. Fritchey stated when Oxford Valley/Roelofs was built, it was built primarily as a girl’s facility.  He stated ten years ago there was not much of a demand for adult softball.  He stated he feels what is being discussed is an emerging constituency.  Mr. Simon stated the fields in Ewing can accommodate both needs.

 

Mrs. Godshalk stated this evening there have been comments made about the Pennsbury fields being inferior, and she suggested that they talk to Pennsbury to see if there could be a bargain put together such that the Township would upgrade the fields as this would be less expensive than building new Township fields on land already owned or having to acquire additional land.  Mr. Fritchey stated he agrees that this may be possible, but questions the practicality of this since the School District has not done a good job of maintaining their fields.  He stated if the Township were to give them money to do this, the Township would have no way of controlling what they would do with those funds.  He stated he has not seen any reciprocation of interest by the School District in terms of partnering with the Township.  Mrs. Godshalk suggested that they talk to them about this as if there were a Contractual Agreement, the Township would have some control. 

 

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Mr. Caiola stated once the School’s baseball/softball season is over, Pennsbury has no commitment to maintain the fields; and the Township would still want to use them beyond that time.  Mr. Caiola agreed with Mr. Simon that as the population of the Township changes, there is going to be a need to have bigger and better fields and ones that can serve more than one purpose. 

 

Mrs. Godshalk stated she felt the Township could maintain the fields once the Schools are closed.

 

 

Township Pickup Softball – Mike Morlath was present and thanked the Township,

Park & Recreation, and Ms. Liney for their cooperation over the years.  He stated for over fifteen years, this group has been Permitted to play softball at 8:30 a.m. on Sunday at the Pool field.  He stated although they are considered a pick-up League, they have an informal organization and most of the participants come via word-of-mouth.  He stated they have men of all ages playing.  They advertise on the Township TV channel to invite new residents and those not already associated with an organization to get involved.  He stated they collect money to buy bats and balls.  He stated they are hopping that with the growth of the Township, there will still be a place for them to play.  He stated they have had the same time slot and the same field for the last fifteen years.  He stated they also help maintain the field.  He stated they normally have between 15 and 30 individuals show up to play softball on Sunday, and they would like the Township to continue to consider them in the future. 

 

Mr. Smith stated he feels it is important that the Township make sure that there is always a place for non-League organizations. 

 

Mrs. Godshalk stated she would like to see programs for women as well.  Mr. Morlath noted that on their TV notice, it does not state it is only for men.

 

Mr. Newbon stated Memorial Park will have fields available for pick-up games. 

Mr. Morlath stated their group does play one day a week at the same time.  He stated his concern would be if his group were to show up at the same time that a family would like to have a reunion at the same location.

 

 

GROUP PROPOSALS FOR RECREATION ENHANCEMENT IN THE TOWNSHIP

 

Community Pool Facility - Mr. Dave Fabbri and Mr. Rich Eisner were present representing the Lower Makefield Swim and Dive Team.  Mr. Eisner stated the Community Pool is one of the finest pools in the area.  Mr. Fabbri stated their Team has grown tremendously.  He thanked Ms. Liney for all her help.  Mr. Fabbri stated they have

 

 

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over 300 on their Swim and Dive Team and they compete in the Suburban Aquatic League.  They field two Teams and are at the limit for the number they can have on a Team.  He stated they need to practice in advance of when the Pool opens.  They have their Meets in the evenings on Tuesdays and Thursdays and Invitationals on the weekends.  He stated they have a short season.  He stated they do need to recruit competent coaches.   They try to keep Registration Fees at a minimum.  They use the LMT Invitational as a fundraiser to offset costs.

 

Mr. Stainthorpe stated the Pool is 100% funded by those using the Pool and no taxpayer funds go into this facility.  He stated he has been personally involved with the Swim and Dive Team and it is a great program.  He stated his son made the Olympic trials and swimming got him into Yale University and all this started at the Lower Makefield Township Pool. 

 

Mr. Fabbri stated the eight and under age group is fueling their growth, and this requires a lot of additional coaches and instruction in the Pool.

 

Mr. Dave Gordon stated they are spending a lot of time acknowledging the great work of all the fall and spring sports as those are the ones that require fields.   He stated he does not want to forget the winter sports in the community, and he noted the Pennsbury Aquatic Club,  Pennsbury Falcon Wrestling, the Pennsbury Falcon Cheerleading Squad,  and Pennsbury Youth Basketball programs all of which are also outstanding organizations.

 

 

Ultimate Frisbee Football - Mr. Jim Tragone thanked the Park & Recreation Board and the Board of Supervisors for hosting this meeting.  He stated he has been involved with YMS for many years and thanked Ms. Liney for all her help.  Mr. Tragone stated he met the young people involved in Ultimate Frisbee Football when he was involved in YMS as they were playing on the field at Heacock.  He stated those involved had no adult supervision, and they were doing everything themselves.  He stated he watched their game and then met one of the parents who advised that the group was having a problem with field space.  He discussed the matter with Mr. Smith and Ms. Liney to see if the Township could make fields available for this group.  He stated they have 55 members, 52 of whom are from Lower Makefield.  He stated they compete in a Pennsbury Ultimate Frisbee Football League. 

 

Noah Saw, Captain of the Boy’s A Team was present and thanked the Board for the opportunity to speak.  Paige Maloney, Captain of the Girl’s Team, stated she has been playing for three years originally as part of the Co-Ed Team.  She stated they started a Girl’s Team last year.  Other members present introduced themselves.

 

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Mr. Saw stated the Team was started in 1998 by seven Pennsbury School District students.  He stated even though they are called “Pennsbury,” they have had no support from the School District although they have tried numerous times to get field times and transportation to and from their numerous Tournaments.  He stated they play in the Philadelphia High School Ultimate Educational League which includes 30 Teams.  He stated they help get new Teams up and running through this organization.  He stated they schedule their own Tournaments all over the East Coast.  They have traveled as far as Winnipeg, Canada.  They raise their own money through sales and hosting Tournaments at Mercer County Park.  He stated they are the four-time Philadelphia City Champions and two-time State Champions. Mr. Saw stated all of this has been done without a coach and with limited adult support, noting that his father is their chaperone and helps when he can.  He stated they have expanded to two boys’ teams and a girls’ team.  They have 55 members, 52 of whom are Lower Makefield residents.

 

Mr. Saw stated they need a place they know they will be able to play on in the future.  They are looking for one or two fields.  They need a field the length of a football field, but not as wide.  He stated they play based on “The Spirit of the Game,” which is a Code founded on respect for the sport and respect for your opponents.  The players call their own fouls, and this creates an atmosphere of camaraderie and responsibility among the Teams.  He stated since most of the Teams are student run, it is very unique. 

 

Mr. Stainthorpe asked about the physical requirements needed; and Mr. Saw stated the use cones to mark the field, and there are essentially just two end zones that mark the field.  They are 70 yards apart, 25 yards deep, and the field is 25 yards wide.  While lines would be nice, they are not necessary.  Mr. Stainthorpe stated he feels this use could be accommodated at Memorial Park.  All Supervisors were in agreement that the Township should accommodate this group, and Mr. Saw was asked to contact Ms. Liney to work on how they should proceed.

 

Mr. Caiola asked how funds are raised given the distance being traveled for Tournaments, and Mr. Saw stated they sell T-Shirts and candy and also use their own funds.  The School has permitted them to sell candy at the School.  Mrs. Godshalk stated her son played Pennsbury Ice Hockey for eight years and received no support from the School District.  Mr. Caiola invited them to again attend Community Day to provide a demonstration.

 

Ms. Bunn congratulated them on taking it upon themselves to start this organization.   She stated since many of the players are Seniors, she hopes they will return to the Township after College and be the leaders of the future in the Township.  Ms. Bunn stated the recreation needs are changing, and the Township needs to remember that the fields they are using today are not the ones that they will need in the future.

 

 

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Off Leash Dog Area – Mr. Michael Clagett was present with Mr. Jim Bray.  Mr. Clagett thanked the Board of Supervisors for the opportunity to make this presentation.  He stated he is only making a preliminary presentation as this is only at the very beginning stages.  They will need to form a committee and do more research before they can present a more serious proposal to the Township.  Mr. Clagett stated Mr. Bray and his wife started an effort to do this approximately eight years ago, but it did not get very far at that point since it was ahead of its time.  He stated in the interim a number of communities have put together dog parks so that they now can draw on their experience. 

 

Mr. Clagett stated a dog park would be a fenced-in area where dogs can be let off their leash.  He noted many dogs are in need of this facility and it would be very beneficial to them socially, emotionally, and physically.   He stated they plan to look into how many dog owners are in the community, and they plan to put out a survey to determine the interest.  He stated the park would also provide benefits to the dog owners as it results in exercise for the dog owners as well and adds a social aspect as it provides an opportunity to meet other dog owners.  He stated this would also provide a benefit to the taxpayers who are not participating in other recreation activities such as soccer and baseball. 

 

Mr. Clagett stated the dogs would have to be licensed and those using the park would also have to clean up after their dog.  He stated this promotes responsible dog owners.  He stated it has been shown that a dog park results in fewer dogs being let off leash in other parks in the Township and residential neighborhoods.  Mr. Clagett stated it also provides a good outlet for single and disabled people. 

 

Mr. Clagett stated a facility should have fencing and gates and many parks have separate areas for large and smaller dogs.  They should also have some shade, posted rules and regulations, a water supply, an area for dog owners to sit, clean-up bags, and trash cans. 

He stated the dog parks are self-policing.  Mr. Clagett stated other communities have found that it is important to find a good location that is convenient, but not too close to residential neighborhoods and that there be adequate parking.  They need good fencing and lay out with fencing being six feet high going down into the ground one to two feet.  Some dog parks have indicated there should not be any 90 degree corners.  He added a good surface material is needed and mulch is better than grass.  They should also provide for emergency vehicle access. 

 

Mr. Clagett stated they recognize they will need to address the effect on the surrounding community, aggressive dog behavior, dog waste, dogs in heat, irresponsible dog owners, and Township liability. He stated they have looked into Township liability already, and found that the Township would not be liable. He stated in Pennsylvania the law is very clear in that dog owners are responsible for their dogs.  He noted a letter provided by an attorney in this regard.

 

 

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Mr. Clagett stated they would have to form an Association to run and monitor the dog park, and they feel they would need at least ten active members.  He stated they would plan the park, raise funds for construction, and running the dog park and managing the membership.    He stated cost would depend on the facility built, and he estimated it could cost from $30,000 to $75,000.  Annual maintenance costs would be between $7,000 and $11,000.  Funding could come from fundraising, corporate sponsors, grants, dues, and Township support.  He stated many groups have built their own parks with no funding from the Township other than the Township providing the land.

 

Mr. Clagget stated their next steps would be to form a Committee, determine the number of Township residents interested, and present a detailed Plan to the Township.

 

Ms. Tara Bane stated she is a dog owner and would like to have such a park in the Township but feels the costs seem high.  She stated she lived n a Township where there was a dog parks and they did have to register the dogs and the licensing fees helped fund the dog park.  The dogs also had to show proof of vaccination.  Mr. Clagett stated they feel they would need three to four acres of land.  Ms. Bane stated she does not feel it would need to be that large and one acre would probably be sufficient. 

 

Mr. Smith stated he agrees they should put out a survey to see how many people are interested in such a facility.  He stated he feels this use would serve a broad age range of Township residents.  He stated he feels Mr. Clagett’s group needs to take the next step and form a Committee.

 

Mr. Bray stated he feels the park could be between one to ten acres.  He stated it is possible to use land that is not really suitable for any other purpose.  He stated there are 3,000 to 5,000 dogs in the Township.

 

Mr. Stainthorpe stated he has been in a dog park in Berkley, California and would be open to hearing more about this for the Township. 

 

Mrs. Godshalk questioned how they could keep people from other areas out of the dog park in Lower Makefield.  She stated eight years ago when this was previously discussed, she got more letters from people against this idea than she had for any other issue. 

Mr. Bray stated he feels there is now a groundswell for this.  He agreed that there are questions, but they will be able to get answers for them. 

 

Ms. Bunn asked if it is a Township requirement to license your dog, and Chief Coluzzi stated you need a license from the County. 

 

 

 

 

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Garden of Reflection – Ms. Ellen Saracini and Ms. Tara Bane were present.  Ms. Saracini thanked everyone for their continuing support for the Garden of Reflection and Macclesfield Park.  She stated they are looking forward to the fountains being turned on again in the spring.  She stated last year the Memorial Committee planted sixty donated evergreen trees throughout Memorial Park.  They also planted trees up the avenue to the Memorial and landscaped around the flagpole.  They continue to receive plant donations and are getting more trees donated for the Park.  They have been working with the Township to create a shade tree arboretum adjacent to the Garden of Reflection area which will preserve the integrity of the Memorial as well as set aside an area where people can sit in the shade and relax as well as create shaded areas in the Park.  She stated the Garden of Reflection is contributing granite pieces for a patio near the comfort station.  She stated they would like to incorporate a children’s area which would be a “secret garden” which is a living maze.  Ms. Saracini stated they are starting a campaign for benches which anyone can purchase at the Committee’s cost in memory of someone.  She stated there will be eighteen inside the Garden and they will continue with benches through the Park.  They are also looking into Grants for a play area in the Park, and they will keep the Township advised on this.  They hope the construction of Memorial Park continues.  They plan to have the fountains turned on sometime in April.  She thanked the community for the love and support they have rendered the Garden of Reflection.  She stated this has allowed them to build a place which has enhanced the Township.

 

Mrs. Godshalk noted the presence of Liuba Lashchyk, the architect of the Garden of Reflection.  Mrs. Godshalk stated it has been her pleasure to work on the Committee. 

 

 

Five Mile Woods – Mr. John Heilferty, Park Naturalist, was present with Mr. John Lloyd, Chairman of the Friends of the Five Mile Woods.  Mr. Heilferty thanked the Township for their support.  He stated the Township has long been a supporter of passive recreation noting that in 1978 the Township passed a Referendum to purchase the Five Mile Woods.  He stated Township costs would have increased had this site been developed as housing. 

Mr. Heilferty thanked the Friends of the Woods and Ms. Liney and her crew for their support. 

 

Mr. Lloyd thanked the Board of Supervisors and the Park & Recreation Board for the support they have given the Woods over many years.    He stated the Friends are a small but active organization that is dedicated to the preservation of the Woods.  They just held their Annual Meeting and set their schedule for the year.  They have monthly work days from March through November and also have two Open House events.  The first will be held on April 22 and there will be one on September 9.  These events feature guided walks through the Woods with professional and amateur naturalists.  He stated the Five Mile Woods is a stellar example of what a Township can do and stated there are not many Townships which have a 300 acre nature preserve. 

 

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Ms. Bunn stated she is very passionate about preservation, and Mr. Heilferty has been very helpful to her sons who are involved in Scouting.  She stated Mr. Heilferty does a tremendous amount of work at the Woods.

 

Mr. Stainthorpe stated he uses this facility regularly and would encourage the Board to attend one of the Open Houses as there is a lot to see if you are with an expert to show it to you.  He stated one of the paths has been so wet that it is impassable, and he recommended a boardwalk in this area.  Mr. Heilferty stated they do have a lot of Eagle Scouts who use the Woods as a location for their Eagle Scout projects, and trail maintenance is one of the areas where they always need work.  He stated they do not want to boardwalk everything, but there are certain areas where they could use more boardwalks. 

 

Mr. Heilferty stated they have also hosted the Roving Nature Center for many years, and they provide programs for approximately 400 to 500 children each year.  He stated they also make the facility available to School and Scout groups.  He stated he has also started a local group called the Frog Squad.  

 

Mr. Heilferty asked that the Board keep in mind that not every family has active recreation needs; and as they continue to plan Park and Recreation facilities Township-wide, they would ask that they consider passive activities throughout the Township. 

 

Mr. Smith suggested that they spend an hour in the Five Mile Woods on the next Park & Recreation Road Tour.  Mr. Fritchey stated while they have visited the educational building, they have not walked the Woods.  Mr. Heilferty also suggested that they attend one of the Open Houses. 

 

Mrs. Godshalk stated she has been advised by a number of women that they felt the area was less than inviting and she would like the overgrown area in the front cleaned up.

Mr. Heilferty stated Mrs. Godshalk did speak to him about this, and they did do some tree pruning.  He stated they also get comments from others who have indicated they would not want to see the area cleared so much as it is more natural if there is less clearing.  He stated they do want to make sure that it is a safe situation.  He stated whenever they have had security problems, Chief Coluzzi and his staff have been very responsive. 

 

 

PUBLIC COMMENT

 

Mr. Smith asked that Chief Coluzzi speak on the value of Park and Recreation activities in the community.  Chief Coluzzi stated it is evident the importance law enforcement puts on activities for youth, noting particularly the Police Athletic League.  He stated when he was first appointed Chief of Police in Lower Makefield he spoke before YMS and  discussed the importance of keeping children active and the need for the community,

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Police, the schools, and the parents to come together in this regard; and he is pleased to see the effort being put forth.

 

Mr. Matt Maloney thanked both Boards for recognizing the Ultimate Frisbee Football group as he is familiar with some of the people involved in this organization.  He stated he feels the Township is doing something that Pennsbury failed to do which is recognizing a group of students doing the right thing. 

 

Ms. Virginia Torbert thanked the Chairman for having this meeting and calling attention to these important Park and Rec issues.  She stated this relates to the quality of life in the Township, and she hopes that next year they will find the money to construct the fields needed, particularly at the Snipes Tract so that they can relieve some of the pressure on Macclesfield Park and make room for some of the other recreation needs they have in the Township.  She stated the Board of Supervisors now needs to step up.

 

Mr. Dave Dillio asked if the Township has any plans to repair the tennis courts. 

He stated the court surfaces are deplorable.  He stated he would like the Township to build a new facility.  He stated he plays in Mercer County Park and there are many Lower Makefield residents playing at that location.  He stated tennis players are willing to pay if they are playing on quality courts.  Mrs. Godshalk stated for many years she has been recommending that they hire a young person to work during the summer monitoring the courts to ensure that there is a fair system in play for people who wish to use the courts.  She stated they could have a small user fee to pay for that individual working at the courts.  Mr. Stainthorpe stated in the community where he previously lived, you had to buy a badge to play on the Township courts.  He stated it was not expensive, and they did have someone at each court ensuring they had a badge and signing in those playing so that people were not monopolizing the courts.  Ms. Liney was asked to have the Park & Recreation Board consider this.

 

Mr. Newbon stated Middletown Township does have a Park Ranger to police their facilities, noting that this has been discussed for Lower Makefield to enforce proper use of the fields and limiting those who do not belong on the fields.  Mr. Smith stated there has been discussion over the years of numerous non-residents who do not pay taxes or user fees monopolizing the fields particularly at Macclesfield Park, and he feels they should look into the legality of  this.   Mrs. Godshalk stated this is difficult to enforce since the Township received State funds.  Mr. Truelove was asked to look into this again.

 

Mr. Smith thanked all those who attended the meeting this evening or watched the meeting from home.  He stated the groups have come forward and made their presentations and he feels it is now time for the Board of Supervisors to act and do their best to put into the Budget things which have to be done and make the hard decisions on how to move forward to address the many needs of the Township to maintain and enhance the quality of life in Lower Makefield Township.

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There being no further business, Mr. Santarsiero moved, Mr. Caiola seconded and it was unanimously carried to adjourn thee meeting at 11:25 p.m.

 

                                                            Respectfully Submitted,

 

 

                                                           

 

Steve Santarsiero, Secretary