Monday, July 24, 2017

Council nixes McGinness "Airfield" deal


In a 6-0 vote, Columbia Borough Council voided the agreement of sale with Peggy A. Knoll and James G. McGinness, trustees of the McGinness property at 1020 Manor Street. Council voided the agreement at a special meeting Monday night, because “environmental and/or subsurface conditions of the property are unacceptable to the borough.” At its April 10, 2017 meeting, council voted to consider approval of the sale, pending the outcome of an investigation of the property during a 90-day “due diligence” period.

Councillor Cleon Berntheizel was present via phone at Monday's meeting, and Councillor Fran FitzGerald was absent.

The backstory of the pending sale of the property is HERE:


16 comments:

  1. Columbia is such a Cluster!!!

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  2. At last night's special meeting some excellent points were brought up by residents in attendance.

    First was the fact that it made no sense to only permit citizen comments at the beginning of the meeting. The borough solicitor answered that saying the decision regarding citizen comments is up to council. I do not recall council accommodating this resident's request.
    Often topics come up during the course of meetings and it does seem unfair that residents cannot speak to those issues at some point, after all we are footing the bill.

    Second was a question as to whether the borough could legally buy and sell real estate or essentially act as a realtor.
    Again the solicitor answered and I did not catch the complete answer, but I think he said that it is legal, with some restrictions on the selling end.

    Third and last was what were the actual plans for the airfield property? Residents living nearby wanted to know because obviously it would impact them. The answer seemed to be nothing definite, wide open for opportunities.

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  3. This was a good thing to not do especially after the testing was done. Good thing to preserve green spaces but not good to be a real estate entity. Now Borough Council lets continue to keep making decisions like this one. Sensible.
    Take that money and put it to some good not into the Crossings it set maybe like the downtown in some way.

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  4. Does the airfield turn into a "Superfund" like the Front Street property?

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  5. Glad you did the right thing and we the tax payers will not have to pay for it

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  6. contact the Government to buy it. Loved that the "Black Ops" helicopters flew in & out of the arifield all the time! The Gov't Can afford to clean it up too. Win Win

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  7. Why aren't the present owners responsible for clean up?
    The house was never finished outside, why is that?

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    Replies
    1. McGinniss Tax Shelter Plan. He raked Columbia for years on taxes and stole land from the Manor Street area when on Council.

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  8. Happy to see my tax dollar is purchasing this property but yet very disappointed with just the thought the council was considering the purchase. I have yet to hear a reason as to why the council wanted to purchase this property. I would think a responsible council would explain the reason before even considering it.

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  9. If the land is contaminated as the Borough has stated, then why is it being farmed? I smell something else behind closed doors.

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    Replies
    1. Where is the results at? What is in the ground that is contaminated? The owners are and should be responsible for ALL clean up! This should be looked into because of the run off of ground water into creeks and streams that go into the river!!!!!!

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  10. it'll never happen....the boro won't make them. yes clean up the contaminated soil.

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  11. The EPA should be called in on this, i see lawsuits and i see a lot of people in trouble here!

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  12. There was never a factory or foundry on the grounds of the airport. The only factory was on the Northeast corner. I think this was an escape the Council had to do. This land could sit on the market for years, and would need the roadway upgraded to handle larger trucks (which Columbia would have to pay for if sold). Not a win-win situation.

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