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Bedminster report

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Bedminster reassures residents about post-merger fire company response time

Cliff Lebowitz

Acting on a request from a resident, Bedminster Township has determined that response time to its township for fire emergencies from volunteer fire company resources will not be affected by an upcoming fire companies merger. The announcement was made by Township Manager Rich Schilling during his monthly report at the township’s April 13 public board of supervisors meeting.

“We met with the resident twice, and also met with the present fire companies based in Riegelsville and Ottsville, and determined that response time for Bedminster will not be affected by the merger,” Schilling reported.

The Riegelsville Community Fire Company and the Ottsville Volunteer Fire Company are in the process of finalizing a merger into a new entity, Palisades Fire and Rescue.

Also at the April 13 meeting, supervisors approved a four-property, 79-acre extension to the Agricultural Security Area (ASA) District. The parcels include 9 and 4 acres on Birch Lane; 27 acres on Edge Hill Road; and 39 acres on West Creek Road.

Bedminster established its ASA in 1986, helping to preserve its farmland and farming tradition, while providing some protection against farming-related nuisance complaints, such as those related to spreading fertilizer, and also against eminent domain seizures.

When the township approved a 73-acre addition to its ASA last January, it also announced an additional 40 acres of the now latest addition were in the application phase. The 152-acre total from the January and April approval totals brings the township ASA total to 6,584 acres.

In its Feb. 2 approval recommendation letter to the township for those 40 acres in the latest addition, the Bucks County Planning Commission noted that “the parcels appear to be actively farmed, and 100 per cent of the soils designated by the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s land capability classification as Class I through IV.”

Also in his April 13 meeting report, Schilling reported the entire length of nine roads, and parts of seven others, were to be up for bid for this year’s oil and chip part of the road program, with another entire length, and parts of another nine, up for bid for paving.

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