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Newtown To Issue Stop Work Order To Delco Vets Memorial

A Stop Work Order was authorized by Newtown Township officials at the Delaware County Veterans Memorial Associate at a supervisors meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 10.

NEWTOWN SQUARE–The Delaware County Veterans Memorial Association (DCVMA) may see itself ceasing operations sooner than expected until they heed to Newtown Township's request to present detailed paper work on the construction of the memorial. 

At a supervisors meeting on Tuesday night, the Newtown Township Board of Supervisors authorized Township Manager Mike Trio to issue a Stop Work Order to the DCVMA on the the memorial site located at Alice Grim Boulevard and West Chester Pike/Route 3 in Newtown Square. 

According to Trio, verbal communication was given to Guy Fizzano, president of the DCVMA Board, to attend Tuesday's meeting to present to the supervisors with their request for waiver of required building permit fees as regulated by the township code.

The waiver request was on Tuesday night's agenda but representatives of the DCVMA were not present. Supervisors Chairman Joseph Catania stated that previous discussions were made with previous administration about waiving the building permit fee.

According to Catania, the application for the DCVMA came to the township in 2007 and in 2010, then Township Manager, Jim Sheldrake had verbally told the building inspector at the time to waive the $20,000 inspection fee–based on $1 million cost–for the memorial site. However, no official action was made by the Board of Supervisors made on the issue.

"There's no question that everyone here, and I don't know anyone that's not, is a proponent of veterans and their service–that goes without saying," said Catania. "But the building project itself...the veterans memorial is paying for materials, they're paying for laborers to do the work. If the township has to pay third-party inspectors, my feeling is that, the veterans memorial board should reimburse the township for anything that were out of pocket."

Catania said the township would then go to the third-party inspectors, on behalf of the DCVMA, and ask them to waive their fees to the township. 

"If it didn't cost anything to the township, then we wouldn't pass on any costs on the veterans memorial [DCVMA] funds," said Catania. 

According to Catania, Trio has had discussions with a third-party inspector who may be willing to waive the cost. In addition, another concern Catania shared about the memorial site was the overall "integrity of the structure to make sure somebody inspected the footings."

Any inspections that will be done by a third-party contractor, going forward, will have to abide by the township's inspection requirements.

Supervisor John Nawn said there hasn't been an inspection made at the site as of yet, and stated three main areas that the the DCVMA must provide to the township:

  1. Structural Plans 
  2. Materials Submittals (shop materials, delivery materials, design materials, etc.)
  3. Agree to require any testing, and pay for that testing, should the township have any questions in regards to any construction done to the site.

"I agree that we should immediately inspect construction," said Nawn. "This is a facility for public habitation. We should make sure that it's safe for the public."

A Stop Work Order will be lifted on the memorial site once those three documentations have been provided to the township by the DCVMA, according to Trio. In addition, representatives of the DCVMA will be requested to come to the next supervisors meeting to officially discuss their request to waive the building permit fee.  

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