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UPDATE - 490% Fee Increase - Hanusey Park Plumstead Township

Updated Saturday September 2, 2017 by Volunteer Office.

***   UPDATE  ***

TO: All CBAA Soccer Members
FR: James Ivers, james.ivers@cbaasports.org
Hello,
The last two weeks have seen a flurry of activity with respect to Central Bucks Athletic Association's relationship with Plumstead Township and our usage of Hanusey.  I'm writing to give a quick summary of the events and outline our next steps.
First off, my name is James Ivers and I serve as the Chairperson of the Soccer Fields Committee.
Within the last two weeks, Becky Barlow, President of CBAA Soccer, wrote an email notifying our membership of a sizable increase in our rental fees for the Hanusey Complex and asking for you to send emails or attend the Township meeting on Tuesday, August 22nd.  We would like to thank everyone that took time to write emails, take to social media, and attend the meeting on our behalf.  If you haven't heard, the results of these efforts were that the Township rescinded the fee increase, reverting the fees to their past levels.  The fee structure will be revisited again by the Township in January. 
As part of this action, we have agreed to collaborate with Plumstead and discuss the appropriate cost structure at a meeting on October 9th.  Knowing this, we would like to find out if there are members that would like to take part in these discussions as a representative of CBAA.  If you are interested, please click the link below and fill out the quick form.
Our relationship with Plumstead is just a small part of what our Fields Committee does.  If you would like to find out more about our efforts in increase the number and quality of fields that CBAA Soccer uses, please click the link below and fill out the online form.
Thanks for your time.
Sincerely,
James Ivers
james.ivers@cbaasports.org

_________________________________________________

Letter to Plumstead Township Manager and Board of Supervisors

Dear Soccer Friends -

I am in need of your support in an upsetting matter.  We find ourselves in grim situation with Plumstead Township, but sadly the Manager and Supervisors will not discuss with us. They have increased our field usage FEES for Hanusey Park from $865 per field to $4200+ per field.

This is a 490% increase.

To give a little history, we once had approval for Lights at Herbst Sports Complex for our association from Plumstead Township.  Our original approved plans were submitted in 2002. The township, after approval took away our rights by changing the Use Codes for that area to not allow lights.  This was a shock to our membership and board that had spent countless hours on the project.  We likely could have won a court battle, but we worked outside of court with a judge and the township.  We compromised… and the township approved our lighting of 4 front fields and the basketball courts with a provision.  It states: “Should Plumstead Township PROVIDE lit soccer fields and basketball courts at another location within the township this amended conditional final approval shall be null and void…”   At that time, we decided to wait on the lights as the township told us that they were acquiring open active space through a development deal at Carriage Hill.  In 2010, CBAA and Plumstead Township came to a legal binding agreement for the usage of what is now called Hanusey Park.    It was 5 years later that the fields were online for usage -10 years we waited and actied in good fatih.. 

I reached out to the BOS and Manager on August 2nd, with the letter you will find below.  I did not receive a response.  I reached out again on August 8th and again on August 16th.  My phone messages have not returned. We've asked to be on the agenda to discuss, but it has NOT been granted or addressed.  The only way the fees can be changed or waved, is through a public meeting.  We have the ability to bring this to public light and help all area youth organizations.  We will need to attend and speak during the Public Comment portion on the agenda beginning at 7:30pm.

The 490% increase is not justified, nor is it in line with any other municipality or school district, nor is it affordable to a non-profit community youth sports organization such as ours.  We are asking them to return the fees to last season.  Our registrations and budgets are complete and the only way to afford this is to come back to YOU, our members and collect what's needed.  As president, I cannot justify this.  Not having any lighted fields available to us is detrimental to our mission of serving your children in the Fall with the lack of daylight. The Township, in essence forced us to utilize these fields when they changed the zoning where our Herbst Sports Complex is located. 

How can you help?

-Read the letter below (sent to the Township Manager, Carolyn McCreary that remains unaddressed).

-Please Share this info with your parents on your team

-Attend the Tuesday, August 22 Board Meeting at 7:30pm and make a public comment(this is at the beginning of the meeting).  We need as many people as possible to show up and represent our club. Address is 5186 Stump Road / Plumsteadville, Pa 18949

---Fill the room.  This is our only way to be heard. 

---You have 3 minutes per person.  the letter below can be read or excerpts from within.

---Your Son or daughter can also make a 3 minute comment- even just about what soccer means to them

---If you are a Plumstead Resident , please be sure to state that as well

-Write letters and emails to the Board of Supervisors and the Township Manager

-Spread the word and Share on social media

-Submit a vent or editorial to the Bucks Herald or Intell

-Contact info for Plumstead Township http://plumstead.org/bosminutes.html

Carolyn McCreary [cmccreary@plumstead.gov] MGR

dan hilferty [dhilferty@plumstead.gov] CHAIR

frank froio [ffroio@plumstead.gov]

Brian Trymbiski [btrymbiski@plumstead.gov]

Nick Lykon [nlykon@plumstead.gov]

stacey mulholland [smulholland@plumstead.gov]

I can't tell you how disappointed I am in my own township.  It is unprofessional to act in this manner -  not willing to discuss or acknowledge a real community issue.  I am holding out hope that attention will be given to this matter on behalf of the kids in our community that we mutually serve.

Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions.  I hope to see you all on Tuesday evening.

Thanks,

Becky

Rebecca L Barlow

becky.barlow@cbaasports.org | www.cbaasports.org | CBAA Soccer Office
President, CBAA Soccer Buckingham United | IM-REC | TOPSoccer | CBAA Executive Board Member

Letter that was  to Plumstead Twp Manager and BOS is below(PDF)

Letter to Carolyn McCreary and Plumstead BOS Aug 3 2017.pdf