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Meeting Minutes And Agendas

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Wednesday, April 18 2018



WEDNESDAY • APRIL 18, 2018 • 3:30 PM


In Attendance:

Authority Board

W. William Whiteside, III, Chair      

Joanna M. Furia Esq., Vice Chair                  

William Donnelly                                          

Dr. Curtis Griffin                               

Mark McCouch

HLRA Staff

Michael J. McGee

Tom Ames

Larry Burns

William Walker

Mary Eberle, Esquire


Chairman Whiteside called the meeting to order at 3:32 p.m. in the Horsham Township Building at 1025 Horsham Road, Horsham PA 19044 and led those in attendance in the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag.

Mr. Whiteside noted that the Board had just finished an Executive Session to discuss litigation. 

Mr. Whiteside asked if there were any questions or comments from the public.  Joseph Messina of 521 Horsham Road inquired as to when redevelopment may be commencing at the base property.  Mr. Whiteside confirmed that he expected later discussion to answer Mr. Messina’s question, and invited him late in the meeting to ask questions if the topic was not covered sufficiently.

Mr. Whiteside asked for the will of the Board regarding minutes of the HLRA meeting on January 17, 2017. It was moved by Mr. McCouch, second by Mr. Donnelly to approve the minutes for the January 17, 2018 HLRA meeting. All voted in favor, motion passed unanimously.

Mr. Whiteside asked Mr. McGee for the Executive Director’s Report.

Mr. McGee confirmed that earlier in the month that Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick was provided a briefing and tour of the base property.  With the recent changes in the congressional map, Congressman Fitzpatrick now represents part of Horsham Township.  Congressman Fitzpatrick is very familiar with the PFC issue, and with the briefing and tour is more informed regarding the status of the base and the approved redevelopment plan.  The Congressman expressed that he is supportive of the base redevelopment efforts.

Mr. McGee discussed the timing of redevelopment of the base.  Currently, the HLRA has submitted a grant application to OEA for the period of May 1, 2018 to April 30, 2019.  In our application, OEA was advised that all parties were working toward a FOST and transfer of property.  The Navy’s position is that before year-end 2018 that all data from the many investigations would be submitted to the EPA with a proposed remediation plan.  The Navy expects a quick turnaround by the EPA as they have been active in the investigations. In 2019, the remediation plan is expected to be implemented and we would expect to start negotiations with the Navy and with our Master Developer.  By the end of 2019 or in early 2020, a property transfer may occur.   Mr. McGee confirmed that a separate Public Benefit Conveyance (“PBC”) application has been submitted by Horsham Township for the approximate 8-acre S.E. Clear Zone property though the Department of the Interior.  It is hoped that the approval and transfer of the property will occur soon and that review by the Department of Interior should be promptly conducted and that EPA’s review should be fairly easy as the Navy never conducted any activities on the property and it served solely as a clear zone for the base’s flight operations. 

Mr. McGee confirmed that the HLRA’s 2017 audit had been completed and once again our auditors provided a letter of no findings.  He confirmed the township’s finance department has done a great job and that their support is well appreciated.

Mr. McGee confirmed that with the work on the new municipal building expected to soon start, that the HLRA meeting scheduled for July 18, 2018 may be impacted, and that alternate arrangements have been made to hold the meeting at the Horsham Water and Sewer Authority meeting room.  If that is the case, we will re-advertise the meeting and the new location.      

Mr. McGee confirmed that our current OEA Grant ends at 4/31/2018.  OEA, the Office of Economic Adjustment, a division of the Department of Defense, has been very supportive and well recognizes the issues that the HLRA and the township have faced over the years.  The property originally was proposed for transfer back in 2011 and has not as a result of a number of problems outside the scope of our control.  The OEA Grant covers 90% of the HLRA’s expenses with the remaining 10% coming from in-kind contributions by the township of time of our staff, the finance department and the township managers time.  It remains good news that OEA continues to support our efforts.

Mr. McGee confirmed that a Restoration Advisory Board (“RAB”) Meeting had taken place in March.  He was not available to attend and asked Deputy Director Tom Ames to provide a summary of the meeting.

Mr. Ames noted the RAB Meeting was held on March 14th and was an evening meeting and attendance seemed to be greater than afternoon meetings.  Draft remedial investigations of Sites 9 and 12 were discussed and have been submitted to PA DEP and the EPA.  Available alternatives for the sites were 1) to remove, 2) to cap, or 3) to do nothing.  The reports are expected to be finalized and believe the preferred remedy may be to cap the sites.  If capped, the sites could be perhaps used for parking or other passive type uses.  Site 5 was used for firefighting training and remedial investigation concerning PFC contamination continues.  Additional study of the site is on-going and reports are expected to be available late this year.  Regarding storm water, the Navy continues its work on addressing storm water runoff from the base.  The Horsham Air Guard has two sites where investigation is continuing. One is a site of a jet fuel spill in the 1970’s, and the second is Site 1, transferred from the Navy.  The Horsham Air Guard is conducting its own, separate, PFC investigation which is expected to continue for the next several months. Mr. Ames noted that responding to an audience question at the RAB Meeting, the highest level of PFC contamination at over 300,000 parts per trillion was confirmed in the area of the Air Guard and former Navy property.  Mr. Ames confirmed that on the issue of groundwater that a joint gauging event had been held where the Navy, Air Guard and EPA met in a cooperative effort and investigation. 

Mr. Ames also confirmed that after the RAB Meeting, the PA Department of Health made a presentation where they confirmed that they had received a grant which would allow them to test the blood of up to 400 residents (randomly selected) for PFC levels.  The results would be shared and would set baselines and protocols for larger studies.  With the passage of the Omnibus Bill, the federal government had set aside $10 million for testing. Mr. Walker, as Horsham Township Manager, has provided input to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (“ATSDR”) that Horsham should be included in any study.

Mr. Whiteside asked Ms. Eberle for the Solicitor’s Report. Ms. Eberle stated that since the last board meeting that she had supplied the HLRA’s auditor with an audit letter and that she has reviewed for the HLRA ENA Extension Letters.

Mr. Whiteside asked for the will of the Board regarding the list of checks. It was moved by Mr. Donnelly, seconded by Ms. Furia, to approve the list of checks in the amount of $56,852.14. All voted in favor, motion passed unanimously.

Mr. Whiteside indicated the next item on the agenda was a Resolution to authorize the Executive Director to apply for grant monies and invited Mr. McGee to comment.  Mr. McGee confirmed that much of the HLRA’s funding is provided by grant monies that we apply for and receive from OEA.  Given we have recently applied for a new grant for the period from May 1, 2018 through April 30, 2019, it is appropriate for the board at this time to consider a resolution specifically authorizing Mr. McGee to apply for any and all grants, including the current OEA Grant. 

Mr. Whiteside asked for the will of the board regarding Resolution 2018-3 to authorize Executive Director to apply for grant monies.  It was moved by Mr. McCouch, second by Mr. Donnelly to adopt the Resolution.  Roll call vote:

Mr. Donnelly – Aye

Dr. Griffin – Aye

Mr. McCouch – Aye

Ms. Furia – Aye

Mr. Whiteside – Aye


Motion passed unanimously.


Mr. Whiteside indicated the next item on the agenda was to consider Horsham Township’s PBC application related to the S.E. Clear Zone property. Mr. Whiteside requested Mr. McGee to provide the background.  Mr. McGee stated that as previously discussed, that Horsham Township had applied for a PBC related to the approximate 8 acre S.E. Clear Zone property.  The Navy has prepared a draft FOST for the property and it is believed the Department of the Interior’s review should be completed in the coming months.  As the property has never had Navy activity on it and as it served solely as a clear zone for the runway, it is expected that the review the Department of Interior and the EPA should be fairly straight-forward.  This initial FOST and PBC should also provide us some information on the covenants and land use restrictions that might be required as part of this and subsequent land transfers.  Also, as our approved redevelopment plan for the base had proposed the S.E. Clear Zone as a township park, the PBC application was fully compliant with the approved redevelopment plan and should be supported by the HLRA.

Mr. Whiteside asked for the will of the board regarding the Township’s PBC application.  It was moved by Mr. McCouch, second by Mr. Donnelly to approve and support Horsham Township’s efforts to seek the S..E. Clear Zone property through a public benefit conveyance through the National Parks Service and to instruct HLRA staff to provide letters of support that may be required by that process.  All voted in favor, motion passed unanimously.


Mr. Whiteside inquired of Mr. McGee if there was any additional new business.  Mr. McGee confirmed there was one additional item, in the way of a Resolution.  He confirmed that process regarding our pending OEA grant has changed somewhat in the current round, with disclosures and verifications to OEA that had not been part of previous grant applications.  In particular, as Executive Director of the HLRA, Mr. McGee was asked to verify that the HLRA adhered to Federal Regulation 2 CFR 200.333 pertaining to Federal Grant Recipients and record retention and disposition requirements as set forth.  Mr. McGee and HLRA staff have reviewed 2 CFR 200.333 and recommend the board adopt Resolution 2018-4 which clarifies the HLRA records retention and disposition of records adopted by Resolution 2018-2 on January 17, 2018, to abide by 2 CFR 200.333 or the Retention and Disposition for Records of Pennsylvania Municipalities issued on December 16, 2008, which ever regulation is most stringent. 

Mr. Whiteside asked for the will of the board regarding the adoption of Resolution 2018-4. It was moved by Ms. Furia, second by Mr. Donnelly.  Roll call vote: 

Mr. Donnelly – Aye

Dr. Griffin – Aye

Mr. McCouch – Aye

Ms. Furia – Aye

Mr. Whiteside – Aye


Motion passed unanimously.


Mr. Whiteside announced that the next Horsham Land Redevelopment Authority meeting would be on July 18, 2018 at 3:30 p.m.  The meeting is scheduled to be at the Horsham Township Municipal Building but may be moved to the Horsham Water and Sewer Authority meeting room depending on the progress of planned demolition and construction of the new municipal building. Any change will be posted on the HLRA website.  There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:02 pm.




William T. Walker

HLRA Secretary

HLRA – Horsham Land Redevelopment Authority

1025 Horsham Road, Horsham PA 19044 | Telephone: (215) 643-3131 | Fax: (215) 643-0448 | mail@hlra.org

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