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Franklin Supervisors approve tax relief for emergency workers

04/24/2017 02:44PM ● Published by J. Chambless

By John Chambless
Staff Writer

On April 19, the Franklin Township Board of Supervisors unanimously approved Act 172, which provides 100 percent of the EIT and 20 percent of municipal real estate tax relief for township residents who are active volunteers of fire companies and non-profit emergency medical services agencies.

The ordinance, which was introduced in February, has been enacted in townships across the region as a way of providing incentive for volunteering for fire and rescue services, which are declining in membership.

Township Solicitor Max O’Keefe opened the public hearing, and noted the ordinance was duly advertised. There was no public comment, and O'Keefe closed the public hearing. The board then enacted the ordinance, which amends Chapter 24 of the Code of Ordinances Taxation Special and adds a new Part 4, Volunteer Service Tax Credit and amends Part 1 Earned Income Tax.

Township Manager Joan McVaugh updated the board on zoning violations that have been occurring at 1620 New London Rd. According to a report from Zoning Officer Jeffrey Vogels of LTL Consultants, Ltd., “a complaint was received regarding the use of the property for a possible business, early morning noise from employees and their vehicles, as well as dust from their vehicles. The property is currently registered as residential and there is no record for a change of use for a business.

“A letter was issued March 9, 2016, requesting clarification of the use and the requirement for permits. Owner contacted the township and stated that proper applications would be submitted,” the report reads. “Applications have been received but additional information is required to make a determination. An additional complaint was received regarding the tenant allowing oil to be spilled onto the ground. The owner was contacted and was told this must stop immediately. He will speak to the tenant regarding this matter.

“On July l, 2016, DEP was notified via e-mail regarding the oil spill. ... DEP continues to monitor the site,” the report continues. “The owner's attorney met with the Board of Supervisors in early August. He was advised by the board and will make application for multiple uses of the property. As of Nov. 7, 2016, there has been no further action by the owner, but he stated by phone that an engineer has been on site, plans are in progress, and most of the engine repair business has been removed.”

Neighbors have reported that most of the noise that had been reported between 9 p.m. and 7 a.m. has stopped. An application for a conditional use for the property was received by the township on March 20, 2017.

The board unanimously appointed resident Shelly McCoy to serve as the township’s representative to the Avon Grove Library Board. McCoy is a librarian with 18 years of library experience. She discussed the relevance of the library in today’s electronic age, how the library serves as a resource for the public who otherwise do not have access to computers and that it is also a resource for those in need of career guidance and resume writing assistance. The board members thanked McCoy for her service to the township.

Updated information is available on the township's website, www.franklintownship.us.

To contact Staff Writer John Chambless, email jchambless@chestercounty.com.


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