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Lower Swatara salutes Hall, Springer as they attend last meeting as commissioners

By Phyllis Zimmerman, Special to the Press & Journal
Posted 12/27/17

At their final meeting in 2017, Lower Swatara Township commissioners recognized two departing board members.

Board President Jon Wilt presented plaques commemorating the services of Ben Hall and …

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Lower Swatara salutes Hall, Springer as they attend last meeting as commissioners

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At their final meeting in 2017, Lower Swatara Township commissioners recognized two departing board members.

Board President Jon Wilt presented plaques commemorating the services of Ben Hall and Laddie Springer, who finished their terms as township commissioners on Dec. 20. Hall was appointed to the board in December 2016 to fill the seat vacated by Tom Mehaffie after Mehaffie was elected to the state House of Representatives. Springer was elected to the board in November 2013.

“It’s been a pleasure serving with you both,” commissioner Michael Davies told Hall and Springer. “We got a lot of good things done together.”

“You two are among the best commissioners I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with,” interim township manager Frank P. Lynch added.

Hall and Springer ran to maintain their seats in November’s general election, but were defeated by former Lower Swatara Township manager Ron Paul and former Lower Swatara Fire Chief Chris DeHart. Paul and DeHart both said on Wednesday that they were looking forward to serving on the board.

Hall and Springer thanked township staff and fellow board members for assistance during their terms.

“It was great to be able to do this for the residents of our community,” said Hall, who described his time on the board as a “humbling experience.”

“The past four years have been a great ride. We don’t always agree, but I value that when we walk out the door, we’re still friends,” Springer told fellow board members.

Also on Dec. 20, the board unanimously approved a preliminary/final subdivision plan for Buddys Run, an 11-lot single-family, detached home subdivision in a heavily wooded area off Morgan and Stoner drives. The plan was submitted by BL Companies on behalf of property owner Tim Clouser.

The board granted the developer’s request for a partial waiver of the tree preservation and planting ordinance that states trees with a caliper of 6 inches or more not be removed within 15 feet of a proposed foundation. The action follows an earlier recommendation by the township planning commission for a partial waiver that maintains trees in areas identified in the plan.

Clouser said project construction will begin early next year “as soon as we can get the financing.”

Finally, the board passed an ordinance that finalizes the township’s purchase of nearly 32 acres of land known as the Shireman tract for $325,000. Officials plan to develop the area off Ebenezer and Longview drives into a recreational area.

The township is involved in a peer-to-peer study in conjunction with Middletown, Royalton and the Middletown Area School District about “making the best use of the land,” Davies said.