When: Manheim Township commissioners meeting, July 27.

What happened: In a tie vote, which translates to a no vote, the board denied a motion to approve the first phase of the Stoner Farm subdivision and land development plan to build 42 single-family homes along Eden Road, near the Lancaster Bible College.

Details: William Weiss, of nearby Barclay Drive, raised concerns about excess runoff from the creek on the property and offsite areas; he proposed the developer, Sonshine Holding, establish a performance bond to cover damages. William Briegel, of Sonshine, declined the offer, noting that the developer offers “20 years of protection for what we build” and is required to manage on-site concerns but is not required to manage off-site concerns.

Quotable: “There’s a tremendous drainage area controlled by Manheim Township,” Briegel said. “We don’t control any of that runoff.”

Also: Deborah Frantz, president of the Manheim Township Historical Society, presented a letter to the board and discussed the need for more protections for the 1781 Hershey-Groff-Stoner farmstead. She asked the board and the developer to allow the society to assist in better protecting and preserving the site, which is eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places. Board President Sam Mecum recused himself from the discussion and vote because his wife, Debby Frantz (not to be confused with Deborah Frantz), is vice-president of the historical society.

Police: The board established a Police Advisory Committee with nine members, including two police officers. Also, the police department has a new registry for people with special needs.

Appointments: The board appointed John Brakeall to serve on the sustainability Advisory Committee and Cheryl Deaven to the Senior Citizen Advisory Committee, both until January 2022.

Recommendations: To improve communications with the community, Commissioner Thomas O’Brien said he would meet with a vendor on July 28 to discuss adding Zoom Professional to the meeting room for one year, beginning Aug. 24. He said the municipality also needs to upgrade its website so people can access it from their cellphones. He also suggested hiring a part-time communications associate.

— Joan Kern,

LNP Correspondent

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