John Mack - Newtown Supervisor

Newtown Crossing vs. Arcadia: Residents Speak Truth to Power

Residents of Newtown Crossing and neighboring Eagle Ridge crammed into the Public Meeting Room at the Newtown Township Municipal Center last night (October 11, 2017) to voice their opposition to Arcadia Green’s latest proposal to build 85 single-family homes adjacent to these developments. This proposal would destroy a home on High Street (#295) to make way for an egress road. Traffic would then pass through other roads in the Newtown Crossing development to access Newtown Bypass – a limited access road. Such an egress road was necessary because a previous plan was rejected because of problems exiting the development onto Bucks Road to gain access to the Bypass.

The meeting was the beginning of a quasi-judicial hearing before the Board of Supervisors (BOS). At least a dozen residents, including Bucks County Controller and former Newtown BOS member, Mike Gallagher, who lives on High Street, stood up and obtained “party status” in the hearing, which means they can give testimony for the record and be cross-examined by council to Arcadia. 

However, they will have to wait until AFTER the elections to testify – the hearing was “tabled” until November 8, 2017.

Mike Gallagher reminded the audience that “it’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon” and urged people to attend future meetings, including a Planning Commission meeting later in the month (perhaps Oct 24) where Arcadia will be available to answer other questions.

Nevertheless, many other residents made comments before the board about their personal issues regarding this proposed development. At one point, council for Arcadia tried to shut down the comments but her request was denied. The audience broke into cheers and applause when the commenter said “we want to speak truth to power!”

One resident requested a map be made available to better understand what’s being discussed. I was able to take a photo of the PRD plan (see it here).

Several people complained about the traffic through their development via the egress road, which would endanger children and pets who are used to play and roam on quiet streets such as High Street. School buses would also be affected, noted another resident.

One person said she moved to Newtown because it was because she was “reaching to part of America that almost doesn’t exist anymore. Newtown,” she said, is “so ‘Norman-Rockwellesque’.” She lamented the possible loss of open space next to her development where her children go and play. Another resident defended the open space as a haven for wild animals including, she said, coyotes and bald eagles!

The most heart-wrenching comments came from a elder retired police sergeant whose wife died last year. He told a story of living in motels for years after he had to abandon his home do to a fuel spill many years ago. When he found a new home in Newtown Crossing he and his wife were happy at last. Now, however, he faces the loss of that happiness on top of the sorrow of missing his wife.

As a candidate for the position of Newtown Township Supervisor, I stand opposed to this project because it will destroy precious open space and adversely impact the neighboring communities. I, like most residents speaking at the meeting, am especially concerned about the traffic problems this development will cause. The plan also lacks an easy way for residents of the proposed community to commute to work and to visit the shops and activities in Newtown.

As stated on the Newtown Crossing Community Association website, “Remember, the residents of Newtown Crossing represent a significant portion of Newtown Township’s electorate. Your voices count.”

Posted on 14 Oct 2017, 01:48 - Category: Development



Iím a Newtown Man

[With apologies to Chicago ~ I'm a Man]

Well Newtown is pretty nice but it's got cracks in the streets

Our kids are addicted to drugs made right here in town

We are in debt up to our necks, can hardly pay our bills

Our open space may soon dwindle,

And our water may be tainted.

 

But I never had no problems 'cause I've always paid may taxes

And thought things were fine with “fat cats” in power

I had no time for complaining or campaigning

'Cause my time was all used up with kids & work.

 

Today, I walk outside canvassing

All the groovy kinds of residents

I'm a Newtown man, yes I am and I can't help but love Newtown so

I'm a Newtown man, yes I am and I can't help but love Newtown so.

 

If I had my choice of matter

I'd rather be with the big “fat cats”

All engrossed in money-making chatter

Showing where their minds are at.

 

But I resist that route, ‘cause

 

I'm a Newtown man, yes I am and I can't help but love Newtown so

I'm a Newtown man, yes I am and I can't help but love Newtown so

I've got to keep my principles

And fight to make Newtown better!

 

I’ll never drop upon my knees

And help keep the “fat cats” in power

You think that I'm not qualified or that I am afraid,

But I've never had no problems

'Cause my cause and my heart are pretty strong.

 

I'm a Newtown man, yes I am and I can't help but love Newtown so

I'm a Newtown man, yes I am and I can't help but love Newtown so

I'm a Newtown man, yes I am and I can't help but love Newtown so


Posted on 29 Sep 2017, 12:14 - Category: Newtown



Showing Respect for Victims of Addiction

We must destigmatize opioid use disorder and its treatment. I respect the parents who have told the stories of their children who have died from drug overdose!

Posted on 27 Sep 2017, 15:45 - Category: Opioid Epidemic



How Well Off Are We in Newtown?

When going door-to-door canvassing, most people feel that Newtown is a very nice and prosperous place to live and it's difficult to find much to complain about. The data below confirms exactly how well off we are! But there are some issues that are on the minds of voters that should be addressed to make Newtown an even better place to live! For more on that, read "Newtown Speaks Out on the Issues".

Click on the title in the article below to see the data for the 18940 zip code. 


Posted on 25 Sep 2017, 16:11 - Category: Newtown



Turning Grief Into Action

Recently, the Pennsbury school board approved a $149,000 one-year agreement with the Richard J. Caron Foundation to provide drug counseling and other services to district schools. This was after Pennsbury school board president Jacuelyn Redner spoke out in a public meeting about her 28-year-old son Joshua - a 2007 Pennsbury High School garduate - who died of a heroin overdose.

Read the BCCT editorial 
published on 21 Sept 2017.
Rembrance rocks placed
around tree at Steps
to Recovery in Levittown

This is exactly what Tony Luke Jr., of Philly cheesesteak fame, who lost his son to heroin overdose, wants more people to do. He started the #BrownandWhite initiative to help end the stigma and shame associated with addiction.

He encourages people to honor those who have died of a drug overdose to post their stories on Twitter using the #BrownandWhite hash tag.

In observance of Drug Overdose Day,  I attended the “Night to Remember” ceremony hosted by Steps to Recovery on Veterans Highway in Levittown, PA. Tony Luke was a speaker at that event. Read more about that here.

Posted on 21 Sep 2017, 12:52 - Category: Opioid Epidemic



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