News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents
8.1K views | +4 today
Follow
 
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
onto News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents
Scoop.it!

Upper Gwynedd Township Versus Wawa: A Lesson for Newtown Township?

Upper Gwynedd Township Versus Wawa: A Lesson for Newtown Township? | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

The legal battle over plans for a proposed Wawa fuel station and convenience store continued Thursday night and looks likely to remain ongoing for at least two more months.

 

The developer behind the Wawa began making their case to the township’s zoning hearing board Thursday night that the fuel station and convenience store should both be allowed, while the township and Merck will continue their arguments over the next two months.

 

“The use is the issue. We are not arguing that the township has not provided enough fueling locations. We’re arguing the use has not been provided for,” said land planning consultant Charlie Schmehl.

 

More recently, the township’s solicitor said in mid-July 2019 that the Wawa project is still the subject of a court fight and would need more testimony taken at the zoning hearing board level. That testimony continued at length Wednesday, with Schmehl and traffic engineer Joe Barron testifying on behalf of Wawa, and attorneys Jim Garrity and David Brooman opposing on behalf of the township and Merck respectively.

 

Testimony from the two witnesses took nearly three hours Thursday night, whit occasional interruptions for lawyers to confer or copies to be made, as the Wawa team argued the township’s current codes should, but do not, allow the convenience store and fuel sales as a single use.

 

“If the township’s position is right, and the only way that you can develop a convenience store with motor vehicle fuel sales is with a special exception for a ‘service station’ use — in other words, having two principal uses — then the ordinance, in our opinion, is exclusionary,” said Van-Luvanee.

 

Garrity argued on behalf of the township that the gasoline sales and convenience store are both allowed in the township, and both could be allowed under certain conditions: “What we have said is, either way, it requires a special exception. That is what didn’t happen here, and that’s why we took an appeal, and why we have so many appeals out there.”

 

“The applicant has the burden of proving the ordinance totally excludes — totally excludes — the proposed use. It clearly doesn’t,” he said.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Wawa wants to come to Newtown with a store in the OR (Office Research) district on the Bypass. Attorney VanLuvanee, representing the Wawa developer, proposed an amendment to the OR Zoning Ordinance that would specifically allow for a gas station/convenience store use. The Newtown Planning Commission balked and suggested that VanLuvanee's proposed amendment be scrapped and that the Township create its own version of the amendment (more on that here).

 

Upper Gwynedd Township is taking a different approach by arguing that the township allows for both uses, although not a combined use as desired by Wawa. It contends that a Wawa could seek a special exception under one or the other of those uses.

 

VanLuvanee has already said that Newtown may be sued because it does not allow for a combined use. But if Upper Gwynedd wins its case, then Newtown can make the same claim that a combined gas station/convenience store is allowed by special exception in zones that allow either gas stations or convenience stores. One such zone is the TC (Town Commercial) zone where Lukoil is located.

more...
No comment yet.
News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents
These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. Please click on the "From" link to access the full original article. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

John Mack, Running For Newtown Township Supervisor, Shares His Qualifications for the Job

John Mack, Running For Newtown Township Supervisor, Shares His Qualifications for the Job | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

In August 2016, I read a notice in the newspaper that the Township needed to fill a seat on the Board of Supervisors due to a resignation of one of the supervisors. I decided to apply for the position. Not being an experienced follower of Newtown Township politics meant that I was unaware that it was a quixotic attempt — the Board majority chooses someone of their own party. But I impressed the minority members during the interview process and they asked me to run for office in the 2017 election. The rest is history as they say! I received the most votes of any candidate — Republican or Democrat — for supervisor going back to 2007!

 

I hope to do even better in 2019!

 

Read more about my qualifications here…

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Newtown Township Approves Residents' Plan to Plant Native Trees in Roberts Ridge Park

Newtown Township Approves Residents' Plan to Plant Native Trees in Roberts Ridge Park | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

At the September 11, 2019, Newtown Township Board of Supervisors meeting, Elen Snyder – a resident of the Windermere development on Lower Dolington Road – presented a proposal to enhance the use, appeal and ecological health of Roberts Ridge Park and its watershed through native tree planting project(s).

 

Township Manager Micah Lewis – who was trained as a landscape architect – endorsed the plan, which the supervisors voted unanimously in favor of.

 

Donations will be collected from local residents, with an initial goal of planting 32 trees. “I am collecting donations from residents now and plan to start planting trees on Saturday, November 9, 2019,” said Ms. Snyder, founder of Friends of Roberts Ridge Park, a group of local residents.

 

The donation for each tree is $70, which includes deer protection, stakes, mulch, and a dedication plaque. “Education about native trees and how they help battle pollution and give a home to the insect community will be given to all of the kids (and grownups) at the time of planting,” said Ms. Snyder.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

I am very pleased that residents and local area environmentalists are supporting this plan. Not only does it provide a much-needed boost to the Township’s Pollution Reduction Plan, it also enhances the open space of the park for recreational activities such as flag football organized by residents and children's ‘Super Soccer Stars’ classes organized by the Township’s Parks and Recreation Department. It's a win-win for the Township, proving that there is such a thing as ROE – Return on Environment.

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Do You Ever Wonder What Exactly Supervisors Do and How Much They Are Paid?

Do You Ever Wonder What Exactly Supervisors Do and How Much They Are Paid? | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

 

Those unfamiliar with the role of a township supervisor may wonder: What exactly do we do? Are we compensated for our efforts?

 

To answer the first question and as a matter of accountability, Newtown Township Supervisor John Mack decided to keep track of and report ALL his activities as a supervisor on a monthly basis. Here's his list:

 

  • attend required meetings
  • attend optional meetings
  • prepare for Board of Supervisors (BOS) meetings
  • travel to & from meetings
  • interact with residents
  • engage in other official activities

 

Yes, supervisors do get compensated for their time. Article VI, Section 606 of the Pennsylvania Second Class Township Code, sets the annual maximum compensation of township supervisors depending on the number of residents counted in the last census.

 

Find out what supervisor Mack makes per month and per hour based on time spent on official business…click here.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

5G DAS Wireless: Not in Our Back Yard or Front Yard, Say Doylestown Residents

5G DAS Wireless: Not in Our Back Yard or Front Yard, Say Doylestown Residents | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

… it came as a shock when the van Rijns [Doylestown residents] returned from work about six weeks ago to find an orange construction cone and spray-painted markings in one corner of their front yard. What was that? they asked.

 

The answer came in a call the next day to Doylestown Township Manager Stephanie Mason: Telecom infrastructure firm Crown Castle was putting a new 48-foot-tall small cell antenna [aka Distributed Antennae Systems or DAS] in their public right-of-way, replacing a lamppost. Four times taller than the existing lamppost as permitted, the pole would be topped with an antenna to broaden wireless coverage in the Doylestown Township area and could be upgraded to superfast 5G.

 

Welcome, homeowners, to the leading edge of the next telecom wireless wave: small cell antennas, many of which will go on existing utility poles but others that will need new poles.

 

Already there are more than 1,800 small cell antennas in Philadelphia — with thousands more expected in the city — and discussions over them have occurred in the Main Line towns of Lower Merion and Radnor. Telecom firms and companies such as Crown Castle could install more than one million small cell antennas over the next decade nationwide, even as homeowners fear lower property values and local government officials say they will lose zoning control over rights-of-way in their municipalities.

 

Using the public rights-of-way — as electric companies do — saves money for telecom companies that don’t have to buy land, and then have it properly zoned and permitted, for big cellular towers to broaden wireless coverage for more bars on smartphones. In support of small cell antennas, the wireless industry and local officials say that many residents would like more robust wireless coverage and fewer dropped calls.

 

Small cell antennas also will lead to super-fast 5G services. The Trump administration has said that the United States has to be a global leader in 5G, beating China in this key field. 5G service will lead to driverless cars, industry officials say. It also is expected to enhance telemedicine, giving caregivers many more ways to track and help patients. Wireless companies say they will offer high-speed internet services over super-fast broadband networks to compete with Comcast and other cable companies.

 

“We didn’t change the rules,” Township Manager Mason said, noting that Crown Castle applied for the permits for the small cell antennas in March. “The rules changed on us. This is in the right-of-way and we have been told that we don’t control that anymore.”

 

Related Stories:

johnmacknewtown's insight:

To help bring you up to speed on this extremely important topic, please go to the5Gsummit.com, and listen for free to what 40 highly regarded experts inclusive of scientists, medical practitioners and lawyers from around the world have to say on the 5G subject. Further, please look at the Bio-initiative Report 2012 (updated 2017) - A Rationale for Biologically-based Public Exposure Standards for Electromagnetic Fields (ELF and RF) bioinitiative.org and Physicians for Safe Technology – 5G Mobile Communications mdsafetech.org.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Middletown Loves Wawa! Approves Wawa with Gas Pumps on Lincoln Highway Less Than a Mile From Wawa on Trenton Road & Just 2 Miles from Wawa on Oxford Valley Road! 

Middletown Loves Wawa! Approves Wawa with Gas Pumps on Lincoln Highway Less Than a Mile From Wawa on Trenton Road & Just 2 Miles from Wawa on Oxford Valley Road!  | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

A plan for a new 5,000-square-foot Wawa with gas pumps has received the final green light.

The Middletown Board of Supervisors voted Tuesday evening to approve major final land development for the Wawa on East Lincoln Highway.

Wawa officials said the convenience store and gas station will have one main access point with a traffic signal on East Lincoln Highway across from the Penndel-Middletown Emergency Squad building.

The Wawa will have more than 60 parking spaces and a stormwater basin that will have trees planted around it. Access to township-owned woodland behind the new Wawa will also be allowed.

The location for the new Wawa is on a busy roadway, close to heavily-trafficked I-295, and not far from Route 1. It sits under a mile from the Wawa on Trenton Road and just 2 miles from the Wawa with gas station on Oxford Valley Road, both in Middletown.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Plans announced for first ever Environmental Film Fest in Newtown Borough

Plans announced for first ever Environmental Film Fest in Newtown Borough | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

The first-ever Newtown Environmental Film Festival will be held on the evening of Thursday, Sept. 19 at the historic Newtown Theatre. The event will feature several short environmentally-focused films, a panel of experts, craft beer sampling, light fare, and a free native-plant raffle.

Tickets for the film festival are available online at TheNewtownTheatre.com or at the box office one hour prior to the event for $10.

The evening will kick off at 6:30 p.m. with socializing and beer sampling from Newtown Brewing Company, a member of the Audubon Society’s Brewers for the Delaware River Association.

At 7:30 p.m., several short films will be screened that highlight issues such as the impact of people on bird migration, our connection to the Delaware River, and the importance of native plants in keeping water clean and providing habitat for birds.

Following the film screening, a panel of experts will discuss these issues and how area residents can help protect local resources. Confirmed panelists include moderator Beth Brown, Audubon Pennsylvania’s Director of the Delaware River Watershed Program; filmmaker Bruce Byker James; Diane Smith, Director of Education for the Bucks County Audubon Society; Zack Greenberg, Senior Associate for The Pew Charitable Trusts; and Steve Meserve, Owner of Lewis Fishery in Lambertville.

Newtown Township and Newtown Borough officials will also be present to share news about local efforts to increase the use of native plants. Several attendees will win the native plants that are part of the pop-up native plant garden that has been installed outside the theatre for this event.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Related Story:

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Date Set for Another Hearing on Wegmans in Lower Makefield. Will the 2nd Time Be the Charm?

Date Set for Another Hearing on Wegmans in Lower Makefield. Will the 2nd Time Be the Charm? | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Lower Makefield residents will get their chance to voice their support or displeasure for a proposed development that includes a Wegmans grocery store.

 

A hearing to amend a zoning ordinance to establish a “mixed-used overlay district” around a 36-acre property near Shady Brook Farm will be held at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 9 at Pennwood Middle School, 1523 Makefield Road, township officials announced Friday.

 

On Aug. 12, the planning commission voted to continue the last hearing after hundreds of residents packed the township building with many opposed to the proposal by Shady Brook Investors LP and ELU DeLuca Yardley LLC. The plan they have dubbed Prickett Run at Edgewood calls for stores, apartments and amenities along with the Wegmans.

 

On the day of the hearing, several attendees received a flier in the mail from an unidentified sender warning that “Lower Makefield is for sale” since the proposed ordinance would “change our zoning for big box retail, apartments, warehouse, stores ... whatever.” [Read “Lower Makefield Residents Jam Hearing to Protest Proposed Ordinance Amendment to Allow Wegmans & Apartments on Stony Hill Road Near Shady Brook Farms”; http://sco.lt/7p3iBE]

 

During the meeting, several residents said that they are worried that the development would bring even more traffic to the heavily traveled road near the Newtown Bypass. Many said that the township doesn’t have room for more development.

 

Developers want to amend the current ordinance* to bring the 100,000-square-foot supermarket, 55,000 square feet of retail space and 200 apartments less than than a half mile from Route 332 at the corner of Stony Hill and Township Line roads. Along with the supermarket and retail space, Prickett Run would include a “community gathering area” featuring a clubhouse, courtyard, splash fountain and amphitheater, said Vince DeLuca, of DeLuca Homes.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

* This should be of interest to residents of Newtown Township for several reasons, one of which is that the developer is seeking an ordinance amendment to allow this use in zone that currently does not allow it. Similarly, Newtown Township is grappling with a developer who requested that Newtown amend its OR (Office/Research) zoning ordinance to allow a Wawa combination gas station and convenience store to be built on the Bypass. It’s unclear where that is headed. (read “The Newtown Township Planning Commission Stymies Path Forward for Wawa - For Now” and “What's Next for Ordinance Amendment to Allow Wawa on Newtown Bypass?... It's Complicated!”]

 

On a lighter note, What’s wrong with the site rendering displayed at the top of this scoop?

 

The 3 pigeons seen in the lower left are not found here. In 2017, there were 288 rock pigeons, the species of pigeon that's most commonly found in cities, reported to have been seen in Philadelphia. Personally, I have NEVER seen a pigeon in Bucks County and especially not in Lower Makefield or the entire Newtown Township area. And I know what a rock pigeon looks like – I come from NYC!

 

Obviously, this rendering was made by someone who lives in NYC. If it were made by someone local, those birds would have been Geese. And we all know what Geese leave behind!

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by johnmacknewtown from Public Health & Safety
Scoop.it!

Gov. Wolf Says PA is NOT Going Too Slow to Set Safe Limits for PFAS in Drinking Water as He Announces $3.8M to Help PFAS-contaminated Communities

Gov. Wolf Says PA is NOT Going Too Slow to Set Safe Limits for PFAS in Drinking Water as He Announces $3.8M to Help PFAS-contaminated Communities | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Wolf also gave an update on the state’s PFAS Action Team, saying the first results from a statewide water testing program were anticipated to be released this fall. He added the Pennsylvania Department of Health had hired a toxicologist to help study PFAS and that the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection was finalizing a contract for an outside toxicologist to help develop state drinking water standards for the chemicals.

Asked about criticisms the state was moving too slowly to regulate PFAS, Wolf acknowledged that states such as New Jersey are further ahead on regulations but then pushed back.

“It’s not going slowly,” Wolf said. ”(New Jersey) started before we did. I think we’re catching up to them. We want to do this right, we want to have this science-based.”

State Sen. Maria Collett, D-12, of Lower Gwynedd, has introduced legislation that would force the creation of state standards for drinking water and hazardous substances (read “PA Senator Maria Collett Introduces Two PFAS Bills - Classifying PFAS as Hazardous Substances & Lowering 'Safe' Limits in Drinking Water to 10 ppt vs EPA's 70 ppt’"). Collett was in Greece on Thursday but released a statement welcoming the money and calling for additional action.

“While this is positive news for the pocketbooks of residents in my district, it is a band-aid on a bullethole,” Collett said. “Meaningful progress will not occur in Pennsylvania until we classify these dangerous chemicals as hazardous substances... and set a maximum contaminant level.”

more...
johnmacknewtown's curator insight, August 23, 7:17 AM

Related Stories:

 

  • “U.S. Military Refuses to Test for PFAS in Fish in Horsham, PA & Other Areas”; http://sco.lt/98J6Qr
  • “PFAS From Tainted Water on Military Bases My Be Spreading to Other Towns in Bucks, Montco”; http://sco.lt/7Lill
  • “Perfluorinated Compounds Detected in Newtown Township's Water Supply”; http://sco.lt/70ujU9
  • “Senators From BOTH Parties Press EPA to Develop Enforceable Standards Limiting PFOA and PFOS in Drinking Water”; http://sco.lt/8NQUwz
  • “U.S. House Launches Bipartisan PFAS Task Force That Promises to Set Formal Drinking Water Standard for PFAS”; http://sco.lt/6JjI4P
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Playa Bowls Planning Newtown Location

Playa Bowls Planning Newtown Location | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Playa Bowls opened its first location five years ago in the Jersey Shore town of Belmar by Robert Giuliani and Abby Taylor.

The pair was inspired by surf trips to Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, California and Hawaii.

"Almost every exotic surf town they visited offered their own unique version of an acai or pitaya bowl. They decided to recreate their favorite recipes with their own twist at home at the Jersey Shore," according to the website.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Playa Bowls came before the Newtown Planning Commission (PC) last night seeking permission for conditional use. Some members of the PC had concerns about the safety of the outside seating area (8 seats) and suggested barriers more esthetically pleasing than concrete bollards.

 

Others wondered when the heck would people partake of these  bowls especially if the owners plan to open the assembly-line eatery at 8 AM - a tad late for breakfast, which is the most logical time for this "meal alternative."

 

The next step for this applicant is to get approval from the Board of Supervisors at its September 11, 2019, public meeting. The consensus of the Planning Commission is that the Board not oppose this application on condition that it include safety measures for the outside seating area.

 

Joe Blackburn, the lawyer representing this applicant and Brixmor (the landlord) noted that with this restaurant, the total % of square feet allotted to eating places in the Village at Newtown Shopping Center will be 28%. Recall that the Village received a variance from the Newtown Zoning Hearing Board - without any opposition from the Board of Supervisors at that time - to allow up to 45% of the total square footage to be devoted to eateries. Of course, a lot more square footage has been added since then with all the new buildings. I presume the ZHB were apprised of these additions when they made their decision - I wasn't on the BOS at the time.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Friends of Delaware Canal to Hold Native Plants Presentation on September 12

Friends of Delaware Canal to Hold Native Plants Presentation on September 12 | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Kelly Sitch, an ecologist with the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources — Bureau of Forestry, will share an illustrated program about Pennsylvania’s native plant species at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 12 at the Old Library by Lake Afton, 46 W. Afton Ave.

The free presentation is hosted by the Friends of the Delaware Canal.

As well as providing the basics, Sitch will tell how native plants can be threatened, what the commonwealth is doing to manage and protect them, and what the public can do to help conserve them. Sitch will be joined by Kristi Allen, coordinator for the Pennsylvania Plant Conservation Network.

The PPCN is a new statewide program that coordinates conservation efforts of native plants by working with communities to promote stewardship.

Pennsylvania is home to about 3,000 plant species; two-thirds are considered native because they have adapted to the local environment and can exist without direct or indirect human intervention. The use of native plants in the landscape can save time, money, water and provide vital habitat for birds and other wildlife.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Related:

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

BCCT Editorial: Tohickon Creek Deserves the Best Protection the PA DEP Can Offer

BCCT Editorial: Tohickon Creek Deserves the Best Protection the PA DEP Can Offer | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Here’s one thing the both Republican and Democratic legislators in Bucks County can agree on: The state ought to give the Tohickon Creek in Upper Bucks County its top rating and highest level of safeguarding.

 

We’re glad that U.S. Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, R-1, state Rep. Todd Polinchock, R-144, state Sen. Steve Santarsiero, D-12, and state Rep. Wendy Ullman, D-143, lent their support to a successful grassroots effort to halt, at least for now, the state Department of Environmental Protection’s plan to downgrade the creek.

 

The Tohickon Creek is a meandering, 11-mile stream that divides Bedminster and Plumstead townships from Tinicum. In recreational water sports circles, the stream is famous for its twice-yearly whitewater releases. The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources opens the Lake Nockamixon Dam, typically on a weekend in March and a weekend in November. The openings create Class 3 and Class 4-designated rapids through Ralph Stover State Park that draw kayakers, whitewater enthusiasts and spectators from near and far.

 

Earlier this year, the DEP finished a decades-long study of the steam and concluded it should be downgraded from a cold water fishery to a warm water trout fishery. That designation would suggest that the creek’s water is not suitable to support a native trout population and result in decreased environmental safeguards. The DEP reasoned that the creek is too warm to maintain its cold-water status, noting that the temperature only meets the criteria 50% of the time, yet it meets the warm water criteria 80% of the time.

 

Ullman submitted a guest opinion to our sister paper, The Intelligencer, urging readers “to fight for the Tohickon Creek” while other legislators and environmental groups like the Delaware Riverkeeper Network and the Tinicum Conservancy spent the summer pushing residents to provide feedback on the DEP’s draft report. Their efforts prompted a flood of 900 public comments denouncing the conclusion.

 

But the real push that’s underway is to convince the DEP to assign the Tohickon its gold-standard “exceptional value” designation, a campaign that the National Park Service supports. The EV designation would require developers to meet standards and use practices that’d prevent degradation of the waters and wetlands.

 

More…

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Learn more about DEP’s study at the 2nd Friends of Fisher & Mack Fundraiser where State Senator, Steve Santarsiero, State Representative, Perry Warren, and environmental activist, Sharon Furlong, will discuss issues impacting the state of local rivers and streams and legislation to set safe standards for PFAS in our drinking water.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Next Battle in Opioid Settlement Proposed by Purdue Pharma: Coming Up with a Formula to Split the Money!

Next Battle in Opioid Settlement Proposed by Purdue Pharma: Coming Up with a Formula to Split the Money! | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

The multibillion-dollar settlement that the maker of OxyContin is negotiating to settle a crush of lawsuits over the nation’s opioid crisis contains formulas for dividing up the money among state and local governments across the country, The Associated Press has learned.

 

The formulas would take into account the number of people in a given jurisdiction who misuse opioids, the number of overdose deaths and other factors, according to a person familiar with the talks but not authorized to discuss them publicly.

 

Spelling out the way the settlement is to be split could forestall squabbles over the money and avoid what some see as the mistakes made with the hundreds of billions of dollars received under the nationwide settlement with Big Tobacco during the 1990s.

 

Activists have complained that precious little of the money from the tobacco industry went toward anti-smoking programs and too much was diverted toward state budget holes, pensions and other things unrelated to smoking’s toll

 

[Read “Big Question in Opioid Suits: How to Divide Any Settlement”]

 

In the case of the opioid litigation, some of the plaintiffs have said they want direct control over the money to make sure it goes toward treating and preventing addiction and covering some of the taxpayer costs associated with the deadly epidemic, including mental health services, police calls and foster care for children of addicts.

 

As an example of the proposed formulas, Cabell County, West Virginia, a hard-hit part of Appalachia, and the local governments in it would get a total of $975,000 for every $1 billion in the settlement. Philadelphia would receive $6.5 million.

 

Under the plan now on the table, Purdue Pharma would file for bankruptcy and transform itself into a “public benefit trust corporation,” with all profits from drug sales and other proceeds going to the plaintiffs, news reports said.

 

[NOTE: According to the WSJ, the Slackers sold U.K.-based Mundipharma, a last-minute addition to the deal presented last week. The company was valued at $7 billion in 2017. Mundipharma is a network of international companies owned by the family. It is moving rapidly into Latin America, Asia, the Middle East, Africa and other regions, and pushing for broad use of painkillers in places ill-prepared to deal with the ravages of opioid abuse and addiction. In this global drive, Mundipharma, is using some of the same controversial marketing practices that made OxyContin a pharmaceutical blockbuster in the U.S.

 

Read “The Pain in Spain: OxyContin Sales Shrink in U.S., So Purdue #Pharma Goes Global!”; http://sco.lt/8jHyQS]

 

Related Story:

  • “OxyContin/Opioid Maker Purdue Pharma Offers a $10-$12 Billion Deal to Fend Off Law Suits, Prevent Further Damage to Its Image, and Open Up a Market for Its New Drug to Treat Overdoses!”; http://sco.lt/8jHyQS
johnmacknewtown's insight:

Purdue Pharma is privately owned and not required to issue public financial reports. But Decision Resources Group, a healthcare research and consulting firm, estimates Purdue brought in $13.6 billion from 2014 through 2018 just from sales of its OxyContin, Butrans and Hysingla opioid painkillers.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

St. Mary Medical Center Nurses Vote to Join & Be Represented by PA Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals

St. Mary Medical Center Nurses Vote to Join & Be Represented by PA Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Professionals | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

The nearly 800 registered nurses at St. May Medical Center in Bucks County have voted to unionize and be represented by the Pennsylvania Association of Staff Nurses and Allied Health Professionals.

Among the nurses who cast ballots in the two-day election that ended Friday night, the vote was 403 to 285 in support of joining the union

Based in Conshohocken, PASNAP represents more than 8,000 nurses and health-care professionals across the state.

“As health care has deteriorated to health business, nurses have had to bear the weight of the cuts in staffing and resources” said Joe Gentile, a nurse at St. Mary in Langhorne. “Now more than ever, we need to unify and advocate for each other. I’ve worked at St. Mary for over 35 years. This is my hospital, my home and my community. This hard-fought victory has given us a voice, a hope, and a future.”

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Ransomware Attacks Are Costing Big & Small Municipalities - Including Allentown - Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars!

Ransomware Attacks Are Costing Big & Small Municipalities - Including Allentown - Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars! | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

More than 40 municipalities have been the victims of cyberattacks this year, from major cities such as Baltimore, Albany and Laredo, Tex., to smaller towns including Lake City, Fla. Lake City is one of the few cities to have paid a ransom demand — about $460,000 in Bitcoin, a cryptocurrency — because it thought reconstructing its systems would be even more costly.

 

In most ransomware cases, the identities and whereabouts of culprits are cloaked by clever digital diversions. Intelligence officials, using data collected by the National Security Agency and others in an effort to identify the sources of the hacking, say many have come from Eastern Europe, Iran and, in some cases, the United States. The majority have targeted small-town America, figuring that sleepy, cash-strapped local governments are the least likely to have updated their cyberdefenses or backed up their data.

 

Two years ago such attacks were still relatively rare. But now they are far more targeted, and as companies and towns have shown an increased willingness to pay ransoms, criminals have turned to new and more powerful forms of encryption and more ingenious ways of injecting the code into computer networks. Only this summer did the United States begin to see multiple simultaneous attacks, often directed at government websites that are ill-defended.

 

Last year, hackers based in Ukraine hit Allentown, Pa., a city of 121,000 residents, with a malware package that shut down the city government’s computers for weeks. No explicit ransom demand was made, but the attack played out like many that target cities, said Matthew Leibert, Allentown’s longtime chief information officer.

 

When an Allentown city employee took a laptop with him while traveling, it missed software updates that might have blocked the malware. The employee unwittingly clicked on a phishing email, and when he returned to the office, the malware spread rapidly.

 

The attack cost about $1 million to clean up, Mr. Leibert said. Improved defenses are costing Allentown about $420,000 a year, squeezing the city’s budget. He said one frustration was the scattershot targeting that happened to hit Allentown. “There are warehouses of kids overseas firing off phishing emails,” Mr. Leibert said.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Keeping Residents Better Informed Via Smartphones

Keeping Residents Better Informed Via Smartphones | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Is a mobile-based service needed to notify Newtown residents about emergencies, public meetings, special events, etc.?

 

Like many local municipalities, Newtown Township has no official Twitter Account or Facebook page to help keep residents informed about public meetings, special events, public service notices, public works projects, etc.

 

The Township publishes notices in the classified ad sections of local newspapers and posts limited information to its website.

 

Wouldn't it be better if residents could subscribe to one service that is capable of providing ALL this information or just the information they want to receive? And wouldn't it be great if residents could get this information via a cell phone app, text message, or email?

 

Learn about a notification system that the Township may consider implementing and TAKE THE SURVEY to express your opinion.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Bucks County Residents Got a Chance to Test Drive Possible Voting Machines in Newtown

Bucks County Residents Got a Chance to Test Drive Possible Voting Machines in Newtown | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Bucks County [held] a public demonstration of new voting machine options Monday night [at the Bucks County Community College campus in Newtown]. Voters [tried out] out the different machines, [talked] to the vendors and [gave] feedback to county officials who will make the decision.

 

This … demonstration [was] Bucks County’s third and final voting machine demo. County chief clerk Deanna Giorno [said it was] not only a good chance for voters to test drive the machines and ask vendors questions, but [it was] also a chance for county officials to ask voters what they think.

 

“What they’re looking for, what they like, what they don’t like, to help guide the decision on what machine Bucks County’s going to go with," Giorno said.

 

Giorno says they got great feedback in the first two demonstrations, and she hopes that continues.

 

And, she adds, once a final decision is made, they’ll have as many demonstrations of the new machines as possible to try to familiarize as many people as possible before the 2020 presidential primary.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

I tested all 5 machines. I wouldn't say they were any easier to use than the current machines. A few required that you first use a touch screen to vote, get a paper readout of the results and then insert it into a scanner - a two-step process that many people will need help to complete at the polls. Expect delays! Especially when many people opt to use the paper ballots.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Newtown Supervisors Pass a Resolution Urging Use of Native Plants Without Citing a Source for Defining What Is Considered a "Native" Plant 

Newtown Supervisors Pass a Resolution Urging Use of Native Plants Without Citing a Source for Defining What Is Considered a "Native" Plant  | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Saying that native plants are better adapted to local soils and climate, the board of supervisors unanimously passed a resolution at the August 14 meeting saying that "every reasonable effort" will be made to plant native species on township-owned property.

 

The measure also states that the township's Environmental Advisory Council (EAC) will do everything "to educate and empower" the public to help transition private properties to include native plants.

 

Voting for the resolution were: Chairman Phil Calabro, along with Supervisors John Mack, Kyle Davis, Linda Bobrin and Dennis Fisher.

 

… importantly, the resolution notes, local plant species protect water quality by reducing runoff and soil erosion.

 

That's important to the township because of newly-mandated federal and state regulations requiring that municipalities greatly decrease stormwater runoffs into local waterways. [For more on that, read, “Newtown Township Revises Pollution Reduction Plan After Hearing Resident Comments”]

 

Meanwhile, Newtown Township has a list of native species to help property owners with future plantings, something that the EAC is ready to advise residents in order to bring the township closer to its goal.

 

However, EAC member George Skladany cautioned the supervisors that this list should be updated over time.

 

"Because of climate change some native plants that were acceptable years ago might be on the decline now," he contended.

 

Planning commission chairman Allen Fidler, who labels himself an amateur horticulturist, agreed with Skladany's assessment.

 

"The list of natural species that may be viable for the next 20 years, might be different than today," maintained Fidler, who called on the Bucks County Planning Commission to also update its native plant list.

 

He also pointed out that invasive plant-eating insects, such as the spotted lanternfly, might affect what species to plant in the future.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

At the meeting, I suggested that the resolution include an acceptable definition of what is considered a “native plant”. Specifically, I suggested referring to the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR), which defines a native plant as one that occurred within Pennsylvania before European settlement. The DCNR maintains a list of native trees, shrubs, perennials, ferns, and grasses. It was decided that the ambiguity should remain in the Resolution until the Township revises the Subdivision and Land Development Ordinance (SALDO).

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by johnmacknewtown from Public Health & Safety
Scoop.it!

Bucks County Courier Times Gives Navy a “Thumbs Down” for Ducking PFAS Contamination Culpability

Bucks County Courier Times Gives Navy a “Thumbs Down” for Ducking PFAS Contamination Culpability | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

For years, we’ve been closely following the U.S. Department of Defense’s response to the discovery of toxic PFAS chemicals in water wells used by more than 70,000 local residents near current and former military bases where firefighting foams containing the chemicals were used since the 1970s. So we weren’t surprised to learn government officials knew about — but did little to address — the ways residents could be exposed to the chemicals beyond drinking water from their wells.

Still, the U.S. Navy gets a Thumbs Down for showing, once again, that ducking culpability while minimizing and delaying its response took priority over protecting residents from the contamination it caused.

Thousands of pages of recently obtained internal documents, which reporters Kyle Bagenstose and Jenny Wagner reviewed, yielded a number of instances in recent years in which environmental experts counseled Navy officials to evaluate exposure pathways other than drinking water. Examples include consumption of crops fertilized with waste from treatment plants and fish caught in nearby ponds and streams.

But it seems the advice was either ignored or considered but then dismissed. In one case, a remedial project manager for the Navy sent word to the East Coast director of the Navy’s Base Realignment and Closure program that he could evaluate potential fish exposure pathways in Warminster. The director responded telling him to “hold off on that course of action” until higher-ranking officials could weigh in.

We’re not sure what happened after that, but the communications office of the U.S. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry told us last month that fish near the bases still had not been tested. We wish that came as a surprise.

more...
johnmacknewtown's curator insight, August 12, 9:44 AM

Related Stories:

 

  • “U.S. Military Refuses to Test for PFAS in Fish in Horsham, PA & Other Areas”; http://sco.lt/98J6Qr
  • “PFAS From Tainted Water on Military Bases My Be Spreading to Other Towns in Bucks, Montco”; http://sco.lt/7Lill
  • “Perfluorinated Compounds Detected in Newtown Township's Water Supply”; http://sco.lt/70ujU9
  • “Senators From BOTH Parties Press EPA to Develop Enforceable Standards Limiting PFOA and PFOS in Drinking Water”; http://sco.lt/8NQUwz
  • “U.S. House Launches Bipartisan PFAS Task Force That Promises to Set Formal Drinking Water Standard for PFAS”; http://sco.lt/6JjI4P
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Newtown Township Will Develop a 5-Year Financial Plan

Newtown Township Will Develop a 5-Year Financial Plan | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

At the August 14, 2016, the Newtown Board of Supervisors voted unanimously in favor of approving and advertising a Request for Proposal (RFP) for developing a 5-year financial plan. Voting in favor were Supervisors Phil Calabro, Linda Bobrin, John Mack, Dennis Fisher, and Kyle Davis.

 

The goal is to develop a multi-year trend analysis of historic financial data and to perform an assessment of current budget performance. A secondary, but an extremely important objective, is to identify additional sources of revenue for the township.

 

According to the RFP, which was developed by the Newtown Finance Committee and reviewed by the Township Solicitor and Manager, “Newtown Township’s finances are facing difficulties and will need to address fire protection, emergency response, policing, as well as routine operational needs. Currently, the Township relies entirely on earned income tax, real estate transfer tax, and a local services tax to fund the general operations of the Township.”

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Related:

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Lower Makefield Residents Jam Hearing to Protest Proposed Ordinance Amendment to Allow Wegmans & Apartments on Stony Hill Road Near Shady Brook Farms

Lower Makefield Residents Jam Hearing to Protest Proposed Ordinance Amendment to Allow Wegmans & Apartments on Stony Hill Road Near Shady Brook Farms | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Lower Makefield residents have a message for developers proposing a mixed-use development near Shady Brook Farm: not in our town.

 

Hundreds packed the township’s planning commission meeting Monday to oppose a proposal by Shady Brook Investors LP and ELU DeLuca Yardley LLC to amend a zoning ordinance to establish a “mixed-used overlay district” around a 36-acre property they have dubbed Prickett Run at Edgewood. The proposal includes a Wegmans grocery store along with other stores, apartments and amenities.

 

After less than an hour of discussion between the board and developers, residents complained they couldn’t see or hear the presentation since much of the crowd spilled outside of the township building.

 

Several attended after receiving a flier in the mail warning that “Lower Makefield is for sale” since the proposed ordinance would “change our zoning for big box retail, apartments, warehouse, stores ... whatever.”

 

Several residents said Monday that they are worried that the development would bring even more traffic to the heavily traveled road across the street from Shade Brook Farm near the Newtown Bypass. Many said that the township doesn’t have room for more development.

 

Developers want to amend the current ordinance to bring the 100,000-square-foot supermarket, 55,000 square feet of retail space and 200 apartments less than than a half mile from Route 332 in the property at one point known as Capstone Terrace. Along with the supermarket and retail space, Prickett Run would include a “community gathering area” featuring a clubhouse, courtyard, splash fountain and amphitheater, said Vince DeLuca, of DeLuca Homes.

 

The proposed development would replace a proposal for a 125,775-square-foot warehouse on 14.85 acres at the site, which stalled in April after the township’s zoning hearing board questioned the traffic impact of the project. Some residents also objected to the project because of traffic concerns.

 

…planners voted to continue the hearing and seek another venue to accommodate the crowd. Officials said they would reach out to Pennsbury School District to secure a school for the meeting.

 

No date or location has been selected, but officials urged residents to check lmt.org or the township building at 1100 Edgewood Road for updates.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Statement published the FB group page “Citizens Aligned for Lower Makefield”:

 

"We need smart development with informed decisions. We need a plan with a real vision for what we want our community to be. Changing the rules to allow developers to do what they want is not a plan and it should not matter who they are, who they donated to or to whom they are related.”

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Newtown Borough Council Passes Climate Change Resolution and Calls For State House & Senate Bills to Address Causes

Newtown Borough Council Passes Climate Change Resolution and Calls For State House & Senate Bills to Address Causes | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

About a month after passing a resolution urging Congress to pass climate change legislation, the Newtown Borough Council passed a similar resolution urging the state legislature to do the same.

The council voted unanimously at its August 7 meeting to approve the resolution, which calls on the Pennsylvania legislature to consider and pass a bill which will significantly address the causes of climate change.

In its resolution, the Council acknowledges its commitment to fighting climate change and to protecting borough residents from the impacts of climate change and air pollution.

“Climate change,” reads the resolution, “poses a serious threat to Newtown Borough in terms of the economic, public health and environmental consequences of greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere. These greenhouse gases contribute to poor air quality in Lower Bucks County, which can lead to respiratory and cardiovascular issues.

“As a result of climate change,” the resolution continues, “Bucks County and the Northeastern United States are experiencing higher average daytime and nighttime temperatures resulting in erratic weather patterns, increasing invasion of non-native plants and insects and an increase in the number of days a year during which harmful species – such as ticks carrying Lyme and other diseases and mosquitoes are active.

“More frequent heat waves in Newtown Borough and the Northeast are expected to threaten human health through an increase in heat stress,” says the resolution. “More excessive heat impacts outdoor activities such as individual and team sports played on local fields, and residents and tourists who use outdoor facilities for biking, hiking and sightseeing, as well as those residents who work in the construction and landscaping industries or hire persons who perform such work.”

The resolution adds that “an increase in the amount of and frequency of rainfall measured during precipitation events are expected to increase local flooding of streams. This will also regionally contribute to higher water levels in the Delaware Bay, threatening storm water drainage systems, roads, Delaware River fresh water intake locations, buildings, bridges, and infrastructure.

“With the rise in temperatures and the increase in erratic rainfall patterns,” the resolution continues, “agriculture in Bucks County and Pennsylvania is already experiencing reduced yields, potentially damaging livelihoods and the regional economy. We have already seen agriculture impacts, which affect local farmers who sell organic food at farmers markets in Bucks County.”

The resolution concludes by saying that the “legislature has the responsibility to act swiftly and meaningfully on the issue of climate change.

“Legislation addressing climate change should not be economically burdensome to Newtown Borough residents,” says the resolution, “but must significantly improve environmental and associated economic outcomes.”

Finally, the council requests “that our State Representative Perry Warren cosponsor and vote for an appropriate House Bill, which will significantly address the causes of climate change based on sound science and that our State Senator, Steve Santarsiero, cosponsor and vote for the Senate Companion Bill to that bill as soon as it is introduced in the Pennsylvania Senate.”

johnmacknewtown's insight:

The Borough always seems to lead the way in promoting quality of life issues!

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

Who Makes the Best Pizza in the Newtown Area?

Who Makes the Best Pizza in the Newtown Area? | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Like hoagies, pizza is really BIG in Newtown! There are many pizzerias in Newtown and soon to be more (read "MOD Pizza to be Opening In Newtown").

 

But which one makes the best pizza?

 

To answer that question, I started a poll on Nextdoor, which included the 10 pizzerias most mentioned by pizza afficionados:

 

  1. Acqua e Farina
  2. Dolce Carini Pizzeria
  3. Dominick's Pizzeria
  4. Francesco's Pizzeria
  5. Jules Thin Crust Pizza
  6. Marco's Pizzeria
  7. Meglio Pizzeria
  8. Newtown Pizza
  9. Tre Fratelli
  10. Vince's Pizzeria

 

The chart above shows the results as of today (August 9, 2019).

more...
No comment yet.
Rescooped by johnmacknewtown from Good Government
Scoop.it!

What’s the Most Satisfying Part of My Job as Newtown Township Supervisor?

What’s the Most Satisfying Part of My Job as Newtown Township Supervisor? | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

I'm often asked "How do you like being Supervisor?" I can't answer that without some kind of qualifier such as "...on a scale of 1 to 10." But even then, it depends.

 

A better question is "What’s the Most Satisfying Part of My Job as Newtown Township Supervisor?" That one is easy to answer...

 

Find the answer here...

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

It’s Time for Newtown Township to Update Its Comprehensive Plan!

It’s Time for Newtown Township to Update Its Comprehensive Plan! | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

At the June meeting of the Joint Zoning Council (JZC), Lisa Wolff, Senior Planner at the Bucks County Planning Commission (BCPC), presented a proposal to update the Newtown Area Joint Comprehensive Plan, which was adopted in 2009. Newtown Township is a member of the JZC. Other members include Upper Makefield and Wrightstown Townships.

 

The JZC is recommending that the proposal be accepted by each of the member municipalities. The Proposal must be considered by each Planning Commission Definition and by each Board of Supervisors with the Board of Supervisors adopting a Resolution that: authorizes the Proposal; authorizes the preparation of the Comprehensive Plan Update; agrees to splitting the cost in accordance with the Jointure Agreement; and authorizes the Chair of the JZC to apply for any grants that may be available to offset the cost.

 

Newtown Township is in receipt of the BCPC proposal, which will likely be moved forward for review by the Township Planning Commission to evaluate and advise the Board of Supervisors.

 

The Municipalities Planning Code recommends that Comprehensive Plans be updated every 10 years.

 

More information, including a copy of the proposal and an audio recording of the proposal presentation by Lisa Wolff, can be found here: http://bit.ly/ComPlanProposal

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Related story:

 

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by johnmacknewtown
Scoop.it!

BCCT Guest Opinion: Zoning Changes Can Harm the Community

[Opinion of Marilynn Huret, a resident of Lower Makefield, published in the Aug. 4, 2019 edition of the BCCT].

 

Zoning.

The word is derived from the practice of designating mapped areas that regulate the use, form, design and compatibility of development. The primary purpose of zoning is to designate uses that are compatible. In practice, it’s also used to prevent new development from interfering with existing uses and/or to preserve the “character” of a community.

It is the way governments control the physical development of land and the kinds of uses to which each property may be put. This includes regulation of the kinds of activities that will be acceptable on particular lots, such as open space, residential, agricultural, commercial or industrial.

It includes the densities at which those activities can be performed, from low-density housing such as single-family homes to high density such as high-rise apartment buildings. It includes the height of buildings, the amount of space structures may occupy, the location of a building on the lot (setbacks), the proportions of the types of space on a lot — such as how much landscaped space, impervious surface, traffic lanes, and whether or not parking is provided.

Among other things, zoning helps protect property values and improve safety. In communities where developers seek to convert land to uses that were not intended, it opens a larger concern for all.

Once a change is approved — such as an overlay for a large tract or even extreme variances for single lot — this opens up a landslide of similar requests from other property owners to rezone their land to purposes other than what they were originally meant to be.

 

Restructuring a tract to a lower standard of use or category creates an impact on a community in terms of municipal services and lowers standards of value to existing zoned areas. Can primarily residential communities be broken into other types of usage that defy the original purpose of the planners?

 

The cost of such changes places uncalled-for financial and infrastructural stress on the existing balance of police, fire, emergency services, roads/maintenance and schools that will take years to recoup. And in doing so, it harms the character and face of the community.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

As an example of the importance of comprehensive planning and zoning that benefits the whole community, consider Wawa’s efforts to amend the OR (Office Research) zoning ordinance to allow it to build a combination gas station/convenience store on the Bypass.

 

The Newtown Planning Commission balked and suggested that the amendment proposed by Wawa be scrapped and that the Township create its own version of the amendment (more on that here). This is still an ongoing process.

 

Related Stories:

more...
No comment yet.
Curated by johnmacknewtown
I am a retired small businessman who has lived in Newtown Township PA since 1995. The opinions expressed here are solely mine and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
Other Topics
Good Government
A good government is an open government where transparency reigns supreme. These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
Human Relations
This board is dedicated to promoting the value of diversity and addressing discrimination based on age, race, color, gender, religion, creed, culture, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, ancestry, national origin and disability. These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents
These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. Please click on the "From" link to access the full original article. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
Newtown Twp Board of Supervisors Business
This topic includes summaries of BOS meetings based on official minutes and/or audio and video recordings. Also included is information about ordinances, resolutions, etc. passed by the BOS.
Public Health & Safety
These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. They focus on public health issues such as opioid addiction, water and air quality, environmental issues, emergency services, traffic, crime, etc. Please click on the "From" link to access the full original article. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.