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Chester County Press

Kennett Township Police hires former Chester County corporal

01/27/2021 10:30AM ● By Richard Gaw

By Richard L. Gaw

Staff Writer

The Kennett Township Board of Supervisors addressed several issues of interest to area residents at their Jan. 20 online meeting, highlighted by the announcement that its police department has hired Brian Bolt as its newest officer.

A resident of southern Chester County, Bolt comes to the department after 12 years of service as a corporal in the Chester County Sheriff’s Office. He will begin his tenure in the township by enrolling in a field training officer program.

Bolt began his long tenure at the Sheriff’s Office in July 2008, and in 2010, he joined the K-9 Unit and was paired with Yukon, a one-year-old German Shepherd from West Germany. After graduating from the Vonder Haus Gill K-9 Academy in Ohio with certifications in explosives detection, tracking, patrol and article searches, the pair served side by side for the next nine years, earning top awards at U.S. Police Canine Association competitions.

With Bolt as his handler, Yukon specialized in patrol and explosive detection. After Yukon’s 2019 retirement and the discovery of his degenerative illness, the German Shepherd worked with veterinary science students at the Veterinary Science and Animal Science program at the Technical College High School (TCHS) Pennock’s Bridge Campus. Attending school in a wheelchair and special boots for traction designed by one of the TCHS students, he helped students learn to care for his paws, feed him and bolster his mental health. Yukon passed away last September.

Additional township business

In other township business, township manager Eden Ratliff told the board that the township is at the beginning stages of preparing environmental rehabilitation of the Spar Run Farm property that is likely to begin in February and March. The project will involve stabilizing the existing property and demolishing certain structures on the farm.

The township purchased the 103-acre property on Nov. 7, 2018 for the sum of $3.2 million, of which $1 million was paid for through a grant from the Mt. Cuba Center. The township’s intentions for the property -- which borders between Burnt Mill, Center Mill and Old Kennett Roads and abuts the Lord Howe Property, also owned by the township – will be to convert it to a passive recreation area with trails and open space.

The key goal of the project – which is being done in partnership with the Land Conservation Advisory Committee (LCAC) and The Land Conservancy for Southern Chester County (TLC) – will be to link it to the developing Kennett Greenway, a 14-mile trail design that will connect the township and the Kennett Square Borough to neighboring municipalities and trail networks.

In conjunction with the township’s plans for involvement in the Kennett Greenway, Ratliff introduced a new survey, now on the township’s website, that is now eliciting comments and suggestions from the general public for how they want the Greenway to be developed. He said the survey has already received over 360 responses, the data of which will be joined with several small-audience meetings the township is planning to schedule with local residents in the coming months.

The board gave authorization to Ratliff to extend a contract agreement between the township and the Delta Development Group, Inc. – originally finalized in May 2020 -- for an additional five months, for services not to exceed $17,500 over that period.

The township has been partnering with the company on grant writing submissions in an effort to secure funding that will go into the design, construction and facilitation of a roundabout at the Five Points intersection in the township.

Public Works Director Roger Lysle reported that over the holidays, the township’s recycling receptacle experienced an overload of items that led to several drop-offs being left in the parking lot, and a subsequent clean up by the township’s public works crew.

In the future, Lysle recommended that residents who wish to drop off recycled items do so only if the dumpster has the capacity to do receive items.

The board has also reappointed Tom Nale and John Haedrich to the Brandywine Valley Scenic Byway Commission for one-year terms that will end on Dec. 31, 2021.

To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, email [email protected].