Budget approved in East Marlborough as Walker steps down from supervisors
● By J. Chambless
East Marlborough Board of Supervisors president Cuyler Walker (center) was saluted for his 18 years of service to the board on Dec. 7.
By John Chambless
Cuyler Walker closed out 18 years of service on the East Marlborough Township Board of Supervisors on Dec. 7 with a meeting that addressed several of the issues he has faced throughout his tenure – budgets, traffic and construction in the township.
Walker was presented with a framed antique map of the township, and board member Richard Hannum thanked him for his 18 years on the board – 10 of which were spent as board president. “Your work on this board has been unparalleled,” Hannum said.
“It's been an honor to work with you,” Walker told the board. “And I'm grateful to the residents of the township who have allowed me to serve. I'm confident that the township is in good hands.”
The board approved a new ordinance that will limit truck traffic on Doe Run Road which has been causing damage to the pavement. The ordinance, drafted by township solicitor Frone Crawford, will bar trucks weighing more than three-quarters of a ton on that road between Route 926 and Oak Tree Road. There are exceptions for emergency vehicles, school buses or trucks delivering to homes along the road. Signs will be posted at either end of the detour, and the ordinance will be enforced by township police, with fines ranging from $75 for a first offense to $500 for repeated offenses.
The board unanimously approved the next Unionville Run For Our Sons benefit for muscular dystrophy, which will be held on April 16. But representatives of a new half-marathon race proposed for next October faced opposition from board member Bob Weer. The event would raise money that would be distributed among local charities, but Weer said the route – which begins at Kennett High School and extends up Route 82 to Unionville and back to the school – was too heavily traveled. “There's a lot of traffic running in that area,” Weer said. “I don't know ... this is just another run, and just another weekend of traffic. I feel very strongly that you should change your route.”
The representatives said that the route is still open to being altered, and that they would investigate routing it from the school to roads south of Kennett Square, which are less heavily traveled.
The board approved 2016 township budgets, which will not require a tax increase. Real estate taxes will remain at 1.05 mills for 2016 (for an estimated income of $716,000), the library tax is 0.183 of a mill ($121,164), the open space tax is 0.2 of a mill ($132,420), and the fire tax is 0.75 of a mill ($511,000). Details of the budget are posted at the township website.
After the regular meeting, there was a public hearing about a conditional use approval for a proposed 180-unit townhouse development on Schoolhouse Road. The hearing was largely organizational, and consisted of attorney John Jaros outlining the trail of paperwork and the names of the companies involved in the dispute.
A company called CJK Investments LLC has challenged the township over its application for the townhouses, which are proposed for the LI (Limited Industrial) district. “This is a 39.9-acre property between Walnut Street and School House Road, to the north of the Cherry Lane development,” Jaros told the board in his opening remarks, saying that the township's zoning laws allow such “multi-family dwellings” in the district.
Walker said that the township has changed the zoning ordinance after CJK Investments submitted their proposal last February, but Jaros said he would be proceeding with his case. “We realize the township might like a different type of product on this site,” Jaros said, indicating that the plans could be altered, “but the original application stands.”
The construction is estimated to be in three phases, and stretch over two to three years. Financing is in place for the project.
There were several parties to the case – neighbors of the proposed development – at the meeting, which became a tangled explanation of the various company names, dates when applications were submitted, and whether the township had voiced any concerns about the applications being deficient along the way. The next meeting on the matter will be held Jan. 11 at 7 p.m. in the township building.
For more information about the township, visit www.eastmarlborough.org.
To contact Staff Writer John
Chambless, email email@example.com.