Police chief asks board to update, incorporate township ordinances
● By Lev
By Richard L. Gaw
New Garden Township Police Chief has asked the New Garden Board of Supervisors to work with him to enact and fine tune ordinances related to noise, alarms and disorderly conduct in the township.
Speaking before the board at its Sept. 22 meeting, Simpson referred to two two model ordinances – one on noise and the other on disorderly conduct on premises – that were given to the board, which he said provide a frame of reference for how these ordinances can be worded and eventually enacted in the township. Simpson also requested that the township's current alarm ordinance be updated.
“I'm here before you this evening to tell you that the police department is going to be after you to help us add another tool in our tool box in order to do our jobs,” Simpson told the supervisors. “It's about finding the right words, black-and-white words that are usable, enforceable, and prosecutable. Certainly New Garden Township has grown dramatically, and our ordinances have failed to keep up with our growth.”
Simpson said that a closer review of these ordinances will better enable his department to deal with unique problems that present themselves in the community.
The board voted in favor of having Simpson and Township Solicitor Vince Pompo study both the current alarm ordinance, and the two model ordinances for noise and disorderly premises.
Acting on Simpson's recommendation, the board denied a request by the Chester County Department of Corrections to be permitted to use the new firearms range adjacent to the New Garden Flying Field. On Simpson's recommendation, the board voted to grant permission to the City of New Castle Police Department and the City of Newark Police Department to use the firearms range.
Simpson gave the supervisors an update of the feasibility study currently being done by the Pennsylvania Department of Economic Development that explores the possibility of establishing a regional police force in the area. The study has been completed, Simpson said, and will be shared at a private meeting on Oct. 15 with representatives from the New Garden Police Department, the Kennett Square Police Department, the Kennett Township Police Department and the London Grove Township, each of whom are participating in the study.
Simpson said that the police department is the recipient of an award by the Domestic Violence Center of Chester County, for its efforts to support victims of sexual violence. The awards ceremony will be held Oct. 7 in West Chester.
In other township business, Don Peters of the New Garden Township Open Space Review Board gave a presentation that provided an update of activities at the Landenberg Junction Trails, which was the recipient of two grants in 2013 – a Green Region Open Space grant from PECO, and a grant from the Dockstader Foundation. In recent months, a large volunteer team, under the direction of Shane Morgan from the White Clay Creek Watershed Committee, have upgraded the trail considerably, adding $1,700 worth of native plants, bushes and trees; new wooden fencing; parking for six vehicles at the foot of the trail opening; graded both the upper and lower railroad beds along the trail; and cleaned up several ponds along the trail.
Peters said that the remaining tasks for the trail include installing a storage shed; designing and installing an information kiosk; and continuing to clean up the trail. An official opening day event is scheduled for next spring.
The board agreed to a mediation process as a means of moving forward on the stalled progress of the Hawks Glen Subdivision, a 21-acre planned subdivision at Chester Springs Road and Bancroft Road. Mary Ann Rossi, an attorney representing the builder, suggested the process, to help resolve legal differences related to the subdivision between she and township solicitor Vince Pompo.
The board voted in favor of a request by the homeowners of the Harrogate South development to dismantle a Tot Lot play area in the development. Supervisor Richard Ayotte, a Harrogate South resident, said that three-quarters of the residents in the development do not want the play area, for the primary reason that it is not being used.
A request by the Kennett Consolidated School District to be exempt from having to pay the township's fire hydrant tax was tabled until a future board meeting. Supervisor Steve Allaband suggested that when the topic is next on the agenda, that a representative from the school district be present.
The township has finalized the wording on a referendum that will be included on its November voting ballot, tasks township residents if they would be in favor of establishing an annual dedicated library tax for the Bayard Taylor Memorial Library, beginning in 2015. The referendum will ask township residents if they would be willing to pay an increase of 0.0927 mills in real estate tax – translated to $37.08 per household – toward the library, annually.
To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.