Chairman John Diacogiannis proposed that Hanover Township team up with eight other municipalities in preparing a regional comprehensive plan at a cost of about $12,000. Manager Jay Finnigan advised Supervisors that its current comprehensive plan is 13 years old, and is overdue for an update.
Diacogiannis urged a multi-municipal plan, authorized by state law, as the best way of dealing with the warehouse crisis. But Steve Salvesen was opposed. He kept questioning whether this regional effort would really be a benefit to Hanover Tp. Finnigan replied that under this approach, Hanover Tp would get traffic impact fees from warehouse development "to improve our roads. ... We don't have that ability right now."
The biggest advantage to multi-municipal planning is that it allows for planning all categories of land uses across the participating municipalities. This means there's no need to permit all possible legal uses within one municipality, so long as one municipality accommodates it. Thus, some municipalities could deny warehouses so long as another municipality permits it. One municipality could refuse to permit a gentleman's club so long as another municipality provides for it.
Other advantages to multi-municipal planning is that it provides a framework for enhanced communication, sharing of municipal services and coordination when there are development proposals of regional significance.
The current multi-municipal plan serves the boroughs of Bath, Nazareth, Stockertown, and Tatamy; as well as Bushkill, Lower Nazareth, Moore and Upper Nazareth Townships.
Resident Cecil Blocker said he counted 16 trucks on Crawford Road on his way to the meeting. "This is going to be Trucksville USA soon," he complained. "We're at the end of the colon," replied Steve Salvesen, referring to truck traffic that will be coming through Hanover Township as a result of the FedEx facility.
Voting for the multi-municipal plan were Diacogiannis, Susan Lawless, Esq., and Michael Prendeville Salvesen was the dissenter. Jack Nagle was absent.