Tag Archives: CAG

December 16, 2015 Meeting Minutes

7:30 PM to 9:00 PM
From the Boot – 110 East Butler Avenue

Compliments of Steve Maakestad

 Members in Attendance:  
Stephen Maakestad, Chair of EAC
Susan Johnsson,
Matt Cooley
Mary-Margaret Monser

Absent Members:
Charles Charlesworth
(One Vacancy)

Associates and Visitors in Attendance:
Susan Curry
Chris Raines
Next Meeting Date: Note: one-time change from normal third Wednesday
January 27th, 2016 at 7:00PM – 131 Rosemary Avenue, Auditorium

Action Items by Person:

· Steve Maakestad – .Annual Report to Council. Move items from garage to borough building with Susan Johnsson

  • Susan Johnsson – Move items from garage to borough building. Prepare invoice for WVWA membership
  • Mary-Margaret Monser – Organize TREEmendous Party
  • Chris Raines – Add photos from EAC events and monthly minutes to EAC web site
    Post updates to Facebook page. Design flyer and tickets for TREEmendous Party.

Susan Curry – Organize TREEmendous Party. Work on Edgewood Preserve project.

Matt Cooley – Assist with Edgewood Preserve project. Attend TREEmendous party.

Agenda Topics:

  1. Council/Committee Updates: The Edgewood Preserve Project was discussed. Borough Council approved a 20K contribution and will help facilitate the project and eventually take ownership of the protected parcel once sufficient funds are raised. Donations will be refunded if the fundraising falls short.
  2. Remaining 2015 EAC Budget Funds: Will be allocated for the Edgewood Preserve.
  3. Year End Review: Stephen Maakestad will present the year end review to Ambler Borough Council in January. Mary Aversa asked for a mini-campaign on reducing lawn chemicals.
  4. Fort Washington Business Alliance: The EAC joined the Fort Washington Business Alliance, which is a volunteer organization representing business and organizations in the Fort Washington area and neighboring communities. The Alliance meets monthly. The EAC endeavors to send two members to the meeting each month. The next meeting is at DeVry University. (January 21, 2016 at 11:30am)
  5. EAC Membership: Karen Polesir and Erin McKenna are considering joining the EAC in 2016.
  6. Tools in the EAC storage Garage: Steve Maakestad will call Susan Johnsson to arrange a time to move the tools to the borough building.
  7. TREEmendous Party: Details of the party were discussed including volunteers, flyer, tickets and publicity.

Items Postponed Until The Next Meeting:

  • Plant swap project
  • TMDL Phosphorous Update

The meeting was adjourned around 9:00pm.

Next Meeting Date:  January 27th, 2016 at 7:00PM (Usually 3rd Wednesday)

2007-06-12 Ambler Environmental EAC Minutes

Ambler Environmental Advisory Council   –   Minutes of Tuesday, June 12, 2007   FINAL


Attendance:     Members:     Jeremiah Couey, Chair

Susan Curry

Kimberly Koczan-Flory  [Absent – Conflict]

Peg Williams  [Leave of Absence, accidental injuries]

David Morgan

Rich Palumbo  [Absent – Conflict]

Charles Stewart

Associates:   Judy Baigis (Planning Commission)  [Absent]

Ron Ayres (Shade Tree Committee)

Visitors:       Susan Johnsson, Ambler Resident (Rose Valley Creek)

Ryan McFarlan, Edgewood Drive

Next Meeting:     Tuesday, July 10, 2007,  7:00 – 9:00, at Borough Hall  (usually 2nd Tuesdays, 7:00-9:00 PM)

                           Note:  Later Adjusted:  Next Meeting Tuesday July 31, 2007 (Combined July/Aug) 

1.  Introduction to Ambler EAC:  Jeremiah Couey and members introduced the visitors to the EAC and explored their interest thereof.  Susan Curry passed out the former “What is the Ambler EAC” (to be revised).

 2.  Jeremiah Couey Resignation:  Jeremiah announced that, due to his impending move outside of the Borough, he will be resigning from the EAC at the end of August.  Although he will be staying active in Ambler, this was sad news to all.  An EAC vacancy will therefore exist after August.

3.  Borough Meeting Reports:  P/C:  Through Jeremiah, Kimberly Koczan-Flory reported that the Planning Commission has received a request from the Borough to consider a change in zoning for the block of Butler Avenue east of Race (opposite the Acme) from non-compliant Residential to Commercial, to match current use (former Del’s/pizza parlor, now Mexican grocery store, cleaners, etc.).  A lighting ordinance for developments will also be considered.

Council:  Jeremiah reports that no major environmental issues arose in Borough Council.

4.  Butler Avenue Trees:  Susan reported that the Borough has set aside $1,000 to replace four (4) failing street trees in now empty tree pits (3′ x 3′) along Butler.  David Morgan inquired about the delay in planting the tree on Butler required by the development of the new liquor store;  Susan will look into this with the Borough.  Proposed Tree Care Guidelines, targeting Butler Avenue trees in particular, will be developed by the EAC via email exchanges.  Formal training on proper pruning, to be given by qualified arborists (e.g. DCNR foresters), will be a component. NOTE:  Trees were planted the following day.

5.  Meetings and Borough Liaison Calendar (& Coverage):

∙  Monday, June 18, 8:00 pm – Borough Council Meeting  (Ryan McFarland)

∙  Tuesday, June 26, 7:30 pm – Planning Commission  (Jeremiah)

∙  Monday, July 2, 7:30 pm – Borough Council Committees  (Ryan, Susan)

∙  Tuesday, July 10, 7 pm, – EAC Meeting (later changed to Tuesday, July 31, 7pm)

6.  WREN Grant:  Susan Curry announced that fifteen (15) house appointments have been arranged, with five (5) completed.  The consultants are:  (arborists) Mike Burke, John Urban, Bill Craig, and Pete Williams;  (horticulturalists) Nancy Minich, Judy Simpson, Eva Monheim, and Chris Dartley.  The current fees offered are $75 for the arborist and $50 for the horticulturalist per house visit, whereas an amount of $75 per property was originally planned.  It was suggested that Susan ask consultants if they would accept a lower fee.  As a backup to cover costs, at Jeremiah’s suggestion, the EAC authorized that the remaining Tree Tenders Grant revenues of $842, now on deposit with the Borough, be transferred to the WREN Grant to support the riparian buffer strategy, which likely will include future grants.

7.  Riverkeepers Grant:  Susan Curry expects to seek funds to support a riparian buffer strategy in the Borough, especially focusing on Borough Park.  Adherence to the original Temple Ambler plan continues to be an issue, including enforcing mowing restrictions to encourage woodland growth.  Susan would like to have Nancy Minnick evaluate Borough Park and its borders as a basis for a grant proposal in 2008 or 2009.

8.  EAC Budget:  The budget has about $190 remaining, with a projected $100 for the Knight Park Ash tree branch assessment tentatively set aside.  $50 is projected for an Octoberfest table.

9.  Stormwater Financing Initiative Conference:  Anita Pieri has assured Susan that someone from the Borough will attend the conference detailing the requirements for participating in the Stormwater Financing Initiative originated by the PEC (Pa. Environmental Council).  Ryan will follow-up with Anita to learn who will be participating.

10.  Ambler Tree Tenders:   A pruning workshop and picnic in the park is planned for the Fall.

11.  Minutes of May 8, 2007 (R. Ayres, 06/11/07) were distributed and approved with a minor change (Item 13 – consultations expecting to take up to 1 hour (replacing “surveys”)

12.  Asbestos Site Citizens Advisory Group (CAG) Update:  (Susan Curry)  Sharon McCormick’s involvement with the asbestos issue has prompted the EPA to initiate creation of a CAG.  The EPA has arranged for a facilitator, Melinda Holland of South Carolina, to become involved in establishing the CAG.  She will be hosting a public information meeting on June 28, at which point she will also be interviewing attendees as prospective members of the CAG.  Rich Palumbo and Charles Stewart have expressed interest in participating.

13.  Recycling at Ambler Downtown Events:  David Morgan proposed that recycling (of beverage containers, etc.) become a part of events held in Ambler’s downtown (e.g. Auto Show, Octoberfest), to demonstrate Ambler’s commitment to recycling.  This concept will be explored further.


[End]                                                                                                                                    [R. Ayres +EAC,  07/31/07 ]

2007-05-08 Ambler Environmental EAC Minutes


Ambler Environmental Advisory Council   –   Minutes of Tuesday, May 8, 2007   Approved


Attendance:     Members:     Jeremiah Couey, Chair

Susan Curry

Kimberly Koczan-Flory

Peg Williams  [Leave of Absence, accidental injuries]

David Morgan

Rich Palumbo  [Absent – Conflict]

Charles Stewar

Associates:   Judy Baigis (Planning Commission)

Ron Ayres (Shade Tree Committee)

Visitors:       [None]

Next Meeting:     Tuesday, June 12, 2007,  7:00 – 9:00, at Borough Hall  (usually 2nd Tuesdays, 7:00-9:00 PM)

1.  Meetings and Borough Liaison Calendar & Coverage:

∙  Thursday, May 17, 7:00 pm – Tree Tenders meeting at Susan Curry’s

∙  Monday, May 21, 8:00 pm – Borough Council Meeting

∙  Wednesday, May 23, 7-9 pm – Energy Independence, Upper Dublin Twp Building (Jeremiah)

∙  Tuesday, May 29, 7:30 pm – Planning Commission

∙  Monday, June 4, 7:30 pm – Borough Council Committees

∙  Tuesday, June 12, 7 pm, – EAC Meeting

∙  Monday, June 16, 8:00 pm – Borough Council Meeting

2.  Minutes of April 10, 2007 (J. Couey, 05/08/07) were distributed and approved with 3 minor corrections requested by Susan and Kimberly.

3.  EPA Asbestos Community Advisory Group (CAG):  Rich Palumbo has been following the emails, which are leading up to a meeting date.  EPA will provide an independent, qualified facilitator for the group.

4.  Borough Council Update:  Jeremiah attended both council meetings.  The Boiler House and Station House Square development plans were approved.  The Artman Home plan was approved, despite no sidewalks or connectors to interior walkways.  Regarding the “triangle” property at N. Main and Tennis, the request for a variance to accommodate a low-impact non-profit was withdrawn due to parking restrictions imposed by the borough (only 2 available on-site).  Judy Baigis reported a setback variance was approved for a property on Daniel Drive.  Judy also clarified that the variance for the Copernicus Society for the “triangle” property was not granted because the borough requires more parking spaces for office vs. residential use;  Council would have considered modifying the R2/R3 ordinance for low-impact use, but the additional 2 parking spaces required could not be leased from neighbors, thus moot.  Judy notes that day time parking in that area is monopolized by Orsini’s auto repair and towing.

5.  Stormwater Financing Initiative:   Susan reports that as a result of EAC action, the borough will participate in the stormwater financing initiative assessment (sponsored in conjunction with the Wissahickon Watershed Partnership), which could lead to the identification of grants or other funding sources for stormwater remediation.  Bill Brown (of EEMA, consultants to the WWTP) was very interested and spoke in support of the assessment.  The assessment was not addressed specifically in the engineer’s report, but Anita Pieri confirmed intent to participate.  The assessment requires a great deal of technical information.  The deadline for completing the assessment has been extended until August 2007.

6.  Zoning Hearing Board Alternate Vacancy:  Susan is potentially interested in applying for appointment to this vacancy which will be open in about 2 weeks;  two other resumes have also been submitted to Council.


7.  Planning Commission Update:  Charlie Stewart reported:  the Artman Home was passed to Council;  the Boiler House was passed to Council, with the parking lot issue delayed (developer will take possession Sept. 1, 2007 and expect to finish April 2008);  and, the home/professional use of the N. Main “triangle” property was discussed (see above).  Judy Baigis expressed concern that escrow to insure future parking needs at the Boiler House might be excessive (~ $100,000), but LTK has committed to serve as a future parking alternative.  Judy also reported that 35 N. Main St. (Toto’s) removed a planting area in front and installed brick pavers, resulting in violation of impervious surface limitations;  the code enforcement officer, in a demonstration of restraint, is not likely to issue a citation.  Judy correctly notes that failure to deal with little issues can ultimately lead to bigger problems.

8.  Stream Clean-up Recap:  Kimberly reported that 30+ volunteers participated in a great and fun clean-up.  She suggested that next year’s meeting place be closer to targeted areas, such as the N. Main St. Triangle or the Acme.  The boy scouts are able to cover a larger area..  An Adopt-a-Creek approach was proposed, e.g. Bud Wahl’s adoption of Rose Valley Creek in Borough Park from Hendricks to Ridge.  Susan Curry proposed expanding into Upper Dublin along Tannerie Run and Rose Valley Creek.  Stan Ropski, Upper Dublin EPAB chair, was unable to coordinate a clean-up.  Jeremiah reported that a major clean-up occurred on the Fletcher property, where debris from Butler Pike and the adjoining Seven-Eleven end up in the Tannerie Run valley.  Kimberly suggested a letter to both Fletcher’s and to 7-11, as a source (suggesting more trash cans), which Jeremiah will undertake.  Susan Curry suggested an additional trash repository site on Valley Brook, 3 driveways down from Hendricks, where substantial debris is routinely found.   Susan may try to contact the code enforcement officer to request tile and tub debris removal from one site.

9.  April 14 Community Planting:  The event was very successful, and all are thanked for their participation.  Jeremiah has a pump mechanism ready to facilitate watering at Knight.  The Borough officially applauded Jeremiah and the EAC for their great work.

10.  EAC Budgets:  Jeremiah distributed the EAC and TreeVitalize Budget, as of May 3, 2007.  Suggestions for use of the remaining $842 TreeVitalize balance are invited prior to the June council meeting.

11.  Fungal Growth on Ash in Knight Park:  David Morgan noted that the Borough may be at risk for a potentially hazardous branch exhibiting fungal growth on the large Ash tree in Knight Park along Bannockburn.  This was apparently identified as a potential hazard by DCNR foresters Tim Dugan and Ralph Campbell on April 14, 2007.  Another branch exhibiting similar growth was removed some years ago, but there was no sign of loss of structural integrity in the removed branch parts, according to Ron Ayres.  Susan suggested asking an independent arborist to evaluate the degree of hazard.  The EAC agreed to pay up to $100 for a consultation.  Susan will send a letter to Jimmy Wack.

12.  EAC Priorities for the Future:  Discussion was begun on future priorities for the EAC.  Some areas discussed were:  riparian buffer assessment, riparian buffer ordinance, involving Delaware Riverkeepers with stream restoration, maintaining focus on stormwater issues, Borough Park erosion-control plantings on north side of creek.

13.  WREN Grant:  David reported that his surveying was in progress, with 5-8 PM seemingly best for homeowners, and the consultation taking “up to 1 hour”.  Susan wants to complete 20-30 assessment consultations by June.  Copies of Ambler’s Streamside Property Guide (Ambler AEC, April 2007) were available.

14.  “What is the EAC” brochure is being updated by Susan Curry;  the draft will be circulated for input.

15.   Home Town News:  HTN will be published in October and April.  Discussion ensued on possible environmental education topics, such as recommendations to homeowners on deicing salt products, drain cleaners, detergents, etc.


[End]                                                                                                                                              [R. Ayres,  06/11/07 ]