Clarks Summit Borough Council rescinds fence vote

By Meredith Colohan - For Abington Journal | August 18th, 2015 4:52 pm

CLARKS SUMMIT — At the regular borough council meeting Aug. 5, the council rescinded a motion that passed July 1 to enforce uniformity for privacy slats on fences in the borough.

Last month, the motion was made and passed in a resolution that a property owner may use privacy slats to cover the entire area of a fence or none at all within two weeks of installation.

David Tompkins, Dalton, spoke to council Aug. 1 about the property he owns in Clarks Summit to explain the partial privacy slats on the fence on that property. Tompkins told council his daughter and grandchildren reside in that property and desired a bit of privacy for when they spend time outside.

Council debated the issue to determine how to handle the matter going forward.

“Our problem is we do not have an ordinance for a front yard fence,” said council member Herman Johnson.

Council member Vincent Cruciani acknowledged the resolution that passed last month was his idea for uniformity, but that, “It will protect us if it’s handled by ordinance rather than resolution.”

Cruciani motioned to rescind the resolution regarding the regulations for privacy slats. Council voted 6-0, with council member David Jenkins absent, to rescind last month’s resolution.

Council also voted 6-0 to pass the Ordinance 2015-06 Zoning Amendment.

The zoning amendment aims to help the borough’s MS4 storm water initiatives and preserve green space in the already developed borough. The amendment requires larger minimum lot sizes for new building construction and reduces the size allotted for new impervious space on different properties.

For new development on a residential or R1 zoned property the maximum amount allotted for impermeable surface is 20percent, which was previously 25 percent. For an R2, the maximum is now 25 percent.

“That is going to have a great effect. It’s a multi-faceted approach to…keep a certain amount of area green,” Cruciani said.

No existing properties in place will be affected.

Council will vote on the subdivision and land development or SALDO amendment at the work session Aug. 25 because it was not advertised for the vote with the zoning amendment. If passed, the SALDO amendment will give council the final say on any and all subdivision and land development plans.

Council also voted 5-1, with council member Pat Williams voting no, to pass Resolution 2015-12 Borough Support for the Legalization of Medicinal Cannabis. The resolution urges the State House to act and vote on the legalization of medicinal cannabis.

In other news, Mayor Patty Lawler swore in Christian Orlando as a Junior Council member and Tom Kelly as the borough’s Abington Regional Waste Water (ARWA) Representative.

By Meredith Colohan

For Abington Journal

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