Borough signs Moss Spring pact, chooses intersection plan
The Borough of Greencastle became the second municipality to sign a settlement agreement with Moss Spring Estates residents. Four council members were present in a special meeting Monday night to approve the document. Acting president H. Duane Kinzer, Harry Foley, Mark Singer and Matt Smith authorized council president Charles Eckstine to execute the agreement.
Borough solicitor Sam Wiser commented on the settlement reached after two years of discussions. "Greencastle was a defendant in two lawsuits and was represented by insurance counsel. With this agreement certain residents will be removed from the homeowners association and planned residential development."
Five borough residents living in Moss Spring were in the audience to witness the approval, which was also agreed upon by Antrim Township on April 13. They were pleased to see progress in settling their two-year old lawsuit, which also sued developer Frank Plessinger and the Moss Spring HOA. Fourteen families in Phase I of the PRD took legal action to get out of the HOA, stating they were notified they were members years after they moved into their homes. The PRD encompasses both the borough and the township. Plessinger included the single family homes situated in the borough in his PRD land development plan submitted to the township. The plaintiffs challenged their inclusion because Greencastle does not have a PRD ordinance.
Franklin County Judge Richard Walsh had ordered the plaintiffs to include Greencastle in the lawsuit in 2008. Kinzer summarized the settlement action taken April 26. "We're delighted we were able to accomplish this. We felt the borough should never have been in it in the first place. Now we'll move on."
Paul Schemel, who recused himself from the Moss Spring approval, joined council members to choose a concept for reconstruction of the Route 16/U.S. 11 intersection. The joint project with PennDot has been on the table since 2007.
Borough manager Kenneth Womack presented two options prepared by the engineering firm Gannett Fleming: installing three more right turn lanes, or also adding a through-lane on U. S. 11. Greencastle's share in the former would be just over $532,000. The borough is responsible for upfront costs and PennDOT is funding actual construction through the Transportation Improvement Program.
The board unanimously approved GF's recommendation to just construct the right turn lanes. Womack said he expected it to take six months to obtain rights-of-way and settle utility issues. The plan was to award construction contracts in May 2011.
GF will have a cost estimate for preliminary design phase engineering ready for the May 3 regular council meeting.