Here is the documentation of the West Vincent Township Meeting
of January 3, 2012. As you can imagine, this took quite a bit of
time to compile and had to be done listening to an iPod
recording since the video of the meeting (as well as the two
previous meetings) is not yet on the website. By the way, West
Vincent still has only a handful of minutes on the website for
2010 or 2009, even though they are clearly listed as links on
the Township website. Click on ANY of the dates, chance are you
will get nothing. The minutes "mysteriously" disappeared shortly
before the General election of 2011 with the delivery of the new
website and the audience was told (according to the township
video) they would be back up soon. I suppose it is like
everything else run by this administration. Offer information,
but don't really deliver.
Here is what I can tell you about the January 3, 2012 meeting:
1.The PUBLISHED Agenda available at the meeting was 14 items.
The actual meeting was 16 items, according to Ken Miller. These
were not arbitrary add-ons, the extra items were on the list
that Ken Miller was reading. Number 16 was Clare Quinn's Health
benefit package. I still can't figure out what Number 15 was.
Why were the last two not listed?
2. In the Committee appointments, Pam Brown was re-appointed to
the Environmental Advisory Committee. That's great. She can
advise people how to build an oversized house on Environmentally
preserved land. She was NOT re-appointed to the Open Space
Advisory Board most likely because she filled a chunk of her
township paid Open Space with a giant and illegal (by the
current Zoning) house that she considers a cottage.
3. The Township Meetings are finally scheduled for twice a month
(Just a few years ago it was every Monday, last year it was 3
Mondays per month). Twice a month is often enough for meetings
and another can always be established and advertised if needed.
Just think of the money that can be saved in attorney bills!
4. Township Manager Jim Wendelgass' salary was increased from
$99,784.61 to $103,277.07 for the year. Add his benefits package
and it totals a whopping $132, 280, according to the adopted
5. The highly experienced Supervisor Clare Quinn and keen eyed
Attorney Supervisor David Brown voted for a motion to approve
two Treasurers bonds($1,000,000 & $2,000,000, note attached
Minutes from 2011). The proper execution is to pick one OR the
other. The error was caught by Michele Thomas and the motion had
to be rescinded and re-voted , selecting one bond. There were
THREE lawyers at the front table. David Brown, Alan Greenwood
and James Wendelgass. The MBA in the audience caught the error
and corrected the Board.
6. Public comment was not allowed for any of the Reorganization
process, unlike previous years. Refer to the 2011 minutes
7. Maria Jacobs asked if the list of appointments was listed on
the (Township) website. Clare responded “Yes it is”. No, it's
not. Jim Wendelgass stated, “It will be after tonight”, but he
didn't say when. It may be someday, but not today as the
Township minutes are still taking 5+ weeks to appear.
8. Michele Thomas noted that the Agenda stopped at the Bills
List (#14) and asked when opportunity for Public comment on
Non-Agenda items would be. Ken Miller said, “Actually we're not
doing that this meeting. There is one more item on the agenda.”
When Thomas pressed the issue, Clare Quinn stated the following.
“The organizational meeting is not our regular Township
meeting.” Counsel Alan Greenwood corrected the highly
experienced Clare Quinn by stating, “Actually, it is a regular
meeting but typically it's limited to this.” No, typically it is
not. What was being stated is clearly UNTRUE. January 3, 2011
minutes are attached to this e-mail for the readers review. It
is clear that LAST YEAR a regular meeting followed the
9. At this meeting they did change the schedule to the 2nd and
4th Mondays of every month, they did not list in the schedule
the 3rd of January as a special or “re-organizational only”
meeting. The Board of Supervisors can indeed field questions if
they so choose and in fact, by presenting the bills list and
Clare's raise (ADDED BENEFIT PACKAGE), they were having a
“regular” meeting. Bills Lists and the giving of Free Health
Care are not any part of a the once a year reorganization
meeting of the township. To do such business, they should have
closed the meeting and opened up a separate meeting, just as is
done for hearings.
10. Michele Thomas asked what the new changes were to the
zoning changes to be adopted at the Township meeting on Monday,
January 9. It seems that the zoning changes that Clare said
would be changed no further were indeed changed. Alan Greenwood
stated they changes were “minor”. Jim Wendelgass stated that he
"recalled" that the changes were typographical. Clare Quinn
stated “I don't believe there were any other changes than those
typographical things”. She also said: "I don't know what they
are, so I can't tell you”. Tom Helwig stated, “So exclusively
Counsel that made the changes and yet, even Alan Greenwood did
not know what the changes were, nor could he determine it from
reading the document. and nobody knows anything about the
changes”, to which Clare Quinn stated, “Correct”. What? Nobody
read the changes on the Board and they are voting on them next
week. Clare didn't read them and yet believed the changes were
merely typos and stated she didn't know what they were. When
will these people give a completely honest answer or at least
know what they are talking about? Clare is one of highly
experienced new Supervisors?
I believe a typographical error is a misspelled word. While
these changes probably have no effect on you, look at the
changes and see if that is the case, I think you will be
I have stated in a previous e-mail, these changes are most
likely to do with the 1000 + acre Dietrich property. Making
these new changes probably has something to do with the rumors
of its impending sale and manipulation of the zoning for some
The NEW changes are shown here and are more than simple typos.
See Pages 16, 17, 18, 20, 26, 28-34, there may be others
11. Clare Quinn wrote a letter requesting to be covered by
Township Insurance. Tom Helwig said he saw no need for it and
Attorney/Supervisor David Brown said “Tom, it's a matter of
right as I understand it under State law”. Helwig corrected
Brown stating it must be voted on and Brown said it does not.
Township Manager/Attorney Jim Wendelgass stated that it is his
understanding that it does not need to be approved, it is State
Law........they(the Supervisor) are allowed to it (Health
Benefits) under State law. Attorney/Supervisor David Brown asked
Attorney Alan Greenwood if that was correct and Greenwood said
“Yeah, it is a 'Right'”. The Board then voted and approved it.
There are two things to note in this very expensive decision.
One, it was voted on proving that Tom Helwig was correct and
Attorney/Supervisor David Brown was not. If the Board did not
have to vote on the issue, they would not have. Two, while a
Supervisor has a “right” to Health Insurance, it is the Township
that decides how much it will cover. It could be 100% paid by
the township or to put the Supervisor on the policy, at the
Supervisor's own cost. That right of determination is specified
in the PA Second Class Township Code. For anyone who want to see
the rules, simply Google PA Second Class Township Code.
Three attorneys, all bearing half truths and one is a
Supervisor. Good luck with your new Supervisor, West Vincent,
seems like you are getting more of the same, just like I
predicted. You are off to a good start!
To see my
previous mailings please click on http://tinyurl.com/westvincentinfos
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