Kennett Township holds organizational meeting
01/09/2018 11:27AM ● Published by Richard Gaw
Just moments after he raised his right hand before Magisterial Judge Daniel Maisano to be sworn in to his second term as Kennett Township supervisor, Scudder Stevens was renamed as the board's chairman, as the township kicked off its business for 2018 at an organizational meeting held on Jan. 2.
Stevens, who was first elected to the board in 2012, ran unopposed this past November and was elected to his second term on the board. Stevens and Hoffman join Dr. Richard Leff as members of the three-person board. Stevens was also appointed as the township’s voting delegate to the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors.
Stevens, Hoffman and Leff were among the many names read by Township Manager Lisa Moore at the meeting, who have been appointed to various township departments and committees for 2018.
“There a lot of names that have been read,” Stevens said. “These are your fellow residents, and there is a lot of work being done in the township, and it’s because of people, like these, who are volunteering. It’s the oil that makes this township work.”
The board also passed several resolutions for 2018, including setting its reimbursement rate for millage incurred by township officials; its consulting fee rate for all consultants who work with the township; and subdivision and land development application fees, conditional use application fees and building and permit fees. The board also passed the tax structure for the township for the year, which will be increased to reflect a vote reached late in 2017 to help pay for increased emergency services to township residents.
The supervisors also adopted the township’s 2018 contracts with the Longwood and Kennett fire companies.
Moore also listed several of the township’s accomplishments in 2017, which included preserving 68 acres of open space; completing the construction of a dog park, gazebo and trails in Barkingfield Park; enacting a traffic impact fee ordinance that enables the township to charge a fee to developers that helps assist in the cost of traffic improvement initiatives; working with the Kennett Square Borough in hiring a new joint economic development director, who will be charged with initiating the goals highlighted in an economic plan for the township and the borough; continuing to spearhead efforts to make the township a major hub for the study and promotion of indoor agriculture, including the sponsorship of an indoor agriculture conference in Philadelphia; installing three sidewalks in the township; and finalizing the establishment of an emergency management commission that includes five other local municipalities and three fire companies.
Representatives from several township committees gave updates on the progress of their respective groups. They included the Kennett Trails Alliance; the township’s Planning Commission; its Safety Committee; its Historic Commission; the Kennett Library Board of Directors; the Kennett Area Park Authority; the Land Conservancy Advisory Committee; the Brandywine Valley Scenic Byway Commission; and the township’s Sustainable Development Office.
The meeting also introduced Nathaniel Echeverria, the newly-named director of Economic Development for the Borough of Kennett Square and Kennett Township, who said he looks forward to putting the plan in place, beginning in 2018.
Police Chief Lydell Nolt gave an oral and video presentation about the incorporation of body cameras, which he said will be worn by township police officers beginning this month – technology that Nolt said would benefit both the department and the community.
“The use of the body cameras is another step in the department’s ongoing initiative to provide the community with transparent law enforcement services,” Nolt said. “The camera builds integrity in every interaction between the community and the law enforcement officer. The value we gain from the individual documentation of incidents ensures our community that we’re recording [police] incidents as accurately as possible.”
Nolt said that the township will now one of five or six police departments of the 44 units in Chester County to use body cameras. The department has budgeted $1,000 for each body camera, which includes cost, training and storage.
In other township business, Jillian Ehren was sworn in as the township’s new auditor, and Elysia Simmons was sworn in as the police department's newest officer. Simmons becomes the department’s seventh full-time officer.
To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, email email@example.com.