Last night’s borough council meeting was convened at 7:00 pm by Kelly Murphy, council president. All councillors were in attendance except Marilyn Kress Hartman. The mayor, borough manager and solicitor were present; none of the junior councillors were. The meeting was adjourned at 9:33 pm following discussion of items on the agenda and citizen comments.
Fewer than 20 persons — including media resources, persons with business before council and borough employees – were in the gallery.
One of the persons in the gallery Matthew Sternberg, executive director of the Lancaster County Housing and Redevelopment Authority and its Land Bank Authority.
Sternberg addressed the council concerning agenda item 10 (c): Consider approval of Resolution 18-22 | A RESOLUTION OF THE BOROUGH COUNCIL OF THE BOROUGH OF COLUMBIA, LANCASTER, PENNSYLVANIA AUTHORIZING THE LANCASTER COUNTY LAND BANK AUTHORITY TO ACCEPT PROPERTIES LOCATED AT 309 LOCUST STREET
AND 315 LOCUST STREET INTO THE COLUMBIA LAND BANK PROGRAM.
CEDC’s failure is on the agenda| At today’s Lancaster County Land Bank Authority meeting, this is on the agenda: “RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE OPTIONING OF 309-315 LOCUST STREET, COLUMBIA BOROUGH.” – Source: Columbia news, views & reviws, October 23, 2018
But the councillors seemed nonplussed by his appearance and request for council approval to allow the two-year option of the vacant, deteriorating Hotel Locust / Hotel Columbia properties to go forward. After discussion, the councillors tabled the motion to a future meeting.
Council, in a 5-0 vote, approved a motion by Cleon Berntheizel, Committee on Community Development chairperson, to accept the Market House use proposal submitted by CHI | St. Joseph Children’s Health. That proposal states: “Healthy Columbia, a project of CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health, proposes a partnership with the Borough of Columbia to restore and revitalize the Columbia Market House to create a thriving center for fresh foods and commerce in the downtown district of the Borough accessible and available to every resident of Columbia Borough and the surrounding community.”
A part of the proposal states, there’ll be:
- Food@Market – Fresh Food Market
- Restaurant@Market – Full-service restaurant operated
within the Market House
- Social@Market – Community events and activity space
- Gathering@Market – Community gathering location
for both information sharing and safety
The proposal continues, “The revitalization of the Columbia Market House is a partnership between CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health and the Borough of Columbia. Both CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health and the Borough have defined roles in the renovation and operations of the Market House. The goal of the partnership is to return full operations of a self-sufficient, sustainable and thriving Columbia Market House to the Borough of Columbia within five years of the Market House re-opening.”
CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health’s President, Philip Goropoulos, said there would be no cost to the borough though the proposal addresses the borough’s partnership role which includes:
- Renovation of the Market House – complete the restoration and updating of the existing building to meet the operational demands of a market and community space.
- Advise CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health on Columbia Market House operations.
- Market the Columbia Market House and events at the facility to Borough residents
Councillor Todd Burgard recused himself from the council vote on the motion explaining he serves on the board of CHI St. Joseph Children’s Health. When he then continued by trying to explain why he was in favor of the partnership, borough solicitior Robert Pfannebecker, managing partner with Zimmerman, Pfannebecker, Nuffort & Albert, LLP quickly advised that the councillor should make no comment on the motion on the appearance of impropriety.
— to be continued —