Reading Redevelopment Authority Minutes 08/15/17

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The Redevelopment Authority of the City of Reading held the regular Monthly Meeting at 815 Washington Street, Room 2-53 in the City of Reading, County of Berks, and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, on 15th day of August, 2017.


The meeting was called to order at 3:04 p.m. by Mr. Luckey, Vice- Chairman and on roll call, the following were present:


Mr. Chris Heinly, Chairman

Mr. Dan Luckey Vice-Chairman

Mr. James Radwanski Member

Mr. Juan Zabala Member

Also present were:

Mr. Adam Mukerji, Executive Director

Mr. Dennis Witwer, Executive Assistant

Mr. Keith Money, Barley, Snyder


Upon roll call, Mr. Witwer declared a quorum. The consent agenda was approved unanimously.

Mr. Mukerji advised the board that Mr. Mel Jacobson had recently been appointed to the board and will start attending meetings in September.


Greening Penn Street


Mr. Mukerji updated the board on his progress for gaining support for the Greening Penn Street project and securing funding to move forward with the implementation of some of the changes suggested in the EPA funded study. He advised that he had contacted Mr. Kevin Murphy of Berks County Community Foundation. Mr. Mukerji reported that revitalizing Penn Street is a priority of the B.C.C.F. He also stated that B.C.C.F. will consider RRA’s request for $60,000 as matching funds towards the project in their October board meeting.


Mr. Mukerji stated that he is working closely with Simone Collins to apply for grant funding. RRA has applied to DCED for the MTF grant.


Mr. Radwanski asked how much money the City has committed to the project. Mr. Mukerji stated that the administration has not committed any money to the project, yet, but he and Mr. Collins will be meeting with the Mayor and his administration soon to discuss the project in depth and that he will report back to the board on the meeting in September.


The board discussed the RRA finances. Mr. Mukerji was asked about the CD with Fulton Bank and if they would release some it. Mr. Mukerji stated that Fulton Bank would not release the CD, but he would talk to Mr. Fletcher about using the CD to pay interest on the $1.6 million loan.


At this time the board entered into an executive session to discuss future sale of RRA properties.


Upon re-entering the regular session, the board made a motion authorizing Mr. Mukerji to reduce the asking price of the 50 acres to $2.6 million, but only after Mr. Mukerji meets with Randy Peers of the Greater Reading Chamber and Economic Development Inc. Mr. Luckey made the motion with Mr. Zabala as second. All members were in favor.


Mr. Luckey made another motion to give Mr. Mukerji authorization to place the Bookbindery Apartments for sale. Before moving on the motion, the board discussed their options of sale. Mr. Zabala and Mr. Heinly both stated that they did not feel comfortable with selling the property before selling off the 50 acres. Mr. Heinly stated that the 50 acres is a huge strain on the RRA cash flow selling the Bookbindery would only be a band aid to a long term problem. Mr. Zabala agreed. Stating that he would only agree to the sale if the 50 acres sold first.


Mr. Radwanski seconded Mr. Luckey’s motion. Upon roll call, 3 members were in favor and Mr. Heinly was not. 3 yea, 1 nay.


There being no further business to be brought before the board, Mr. Luckey made a motion to adjourn the meeting; all members were in favor.


The next monthly meeting of the Reading Redevelopment Authority will be held on 20th September 2017.


Respectfully submitted by:


Executive Assistant