the last meeting (April 4, 2016) a representative from the Hankin Group
was in the audience. He was there waiting for the final escrow to be
released for the Weatherstone development, the largest development in
West Vincent Township. Since it is the final escrow, every last
requirement by the township must be checked and approved before this
money is to be released.
While the Township has a new engineer,
the former Township engineer (Carroll Engineering) has been retained
for the completion of Weatherstone, since they have monitored it for
many years and have the full expertise on the history of the project.
This was done to make sure that a firm with an intimate knowledge of
this project would protect the Township to the fullest. At the meeting,
is was stated that Carroll Engineering inspected the entire final phase
and recommended for the release of the funds. It sounds like that
Engineer Ken Yerger either missed some things or somehow forgot that
there was a lawsuit against West Vincent Associates (Hankin's Company
for this job) and West Township. Both Hankin and West Vincent lost the
suit. The Court decided modifications need to be performed to the
ground next to Westover Lane, including installation of a berm and lots
of trees. There was a question about the obligation of work being
performed. The settlement is attached. Go out and look at the area and
compare. This obligation has been brought up several times over the
last year at the Township meetings and FORMER Township Manager always
insisted that the improvements absolutely would be completed in order
to get the final escrow. Did the former administration drop the
ball? No one yet knows this answer.
What does this mean?
After a final escrow, most builders shut down the straw corporation
that built the development, leaving no entity or persons to take to
court. The new Township attorney just explained this technique when
discussing an issue with Toll Brothers at a Township meeting a few
weeks ago (March 21, 2016). Listen to about 3 minutes of this section
of the video: https://youtu.be/dFLpb4ewME4?t=1464
the Hankin Corporation's company (called West Vincent Associates)
dissolves upon completion, they are off the hook. But two entities were
named in the lawsuit. The other was West Vincent Township. The County
Court can force the Township to complete the job at a huge cost to the
taxpayers. Read the settlement, found here: http://weatherstonelawsuit.blogspot.com
read the drawing on the last page. It clearly shows everything that
MUST be done, yet is it? Is the flagstone pedestrian path installed? I
haven't found it. Was the 3 foot berm installed during the
construction of lots F through I? I can't see any berm in this picture
but I think Lot "I" is the lot with a white fence on the property. If
the picture is Lot "I", the berm should be easy to see.
There is a hill but not what is defined as a berm in the zoning ordinance. Here is a snapshot of the definition:
appears the former Engineer is working to make a mistake worth at the
very least, tens of thousands of dollars to the West Vincent taxpayer.
One member of the audience stated that the former firm has a history of
making mistakes. One might question why the Engineer sent the approval
letter to the Hankin Group and not the Township. The letter was then
forwarded to the Township by the Developer. Did Carroll Engineering
forget who they work for?
Here is the subject listed on the Agenda:
To see the video of the discussion, go here: https://youtu.be/KxsEM-AYxX4?t=2630
It is about 10 minutes long and very informative. You may want to watch it. After all, this is your tax dollars.
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