Northeast Times

Bustleton Civic League approves craft beer store

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Beer, pets, cash and crime were on the agenda last week dur­ing the Great­er Bustleton Civic League’s fi­nal monthly meet­ing be­fore its sum­mer break.

League mem­bers OK’d two zon­ing pro­pos­als, wel­comed new board mem­bers, heard about some burg­lar­ies and honored out­go­ing of­ficers dur­ing their June 20 meet­ing at the Amer­ic­an Her­it­age Fed­er­al Cred­it Uni­on on Red Li­on Road.

A pro­pos­al to sell high-end beer in a small shop­ping cen­ter on the 1900 block of Grant Ave. was over­whelm­ingly ap­proved. Kuldeep Pa­tel wants to sell spe­cialty beers in what had been a barber shop. Mem­bers voted to sup­port Pa­tel’s ap­plic­a­tion to the Zon­ing Board of Ad­just­ment for “a re­fer­ral.” Re­tail takeout beer re­quires a cer­ti­fic­ate from the zon­ing board.

Jack O’Hara, the league’s new pres­id­ent, said the league’s board mem­bers looked at sim­il­ar re­tail beer stores in the North­east and in Ger­man­town and found them to be op­er­ated well.

Lan­guage will be in­ser­ted in the store’s lease with shop­ping cen­ter own­er B&J Ltd. of Red Li­on Road to pro­hib­it ever us­ing the premises as a bar.

City Coun­cil­man Bri­an O’Neill (R-10th dist.) said such a lease re­stric­tion would be more ef­fect­ive than an agree­ment with the op­er­at­or be­cause the city’s De­part­ment of Li­censes and In­spec­tions doesn’t have the man­power to en­force such a pact, but the land­lord would have the power to evict the ten­ant if he vi­ol­ated the lease.

The coun­cil­man fre­quently has ad­voc­ated deed or lease re­stric­tions as the best meth­ods of pro­hib­it­ing un­desir­able res­ults when the civic group ap­proves zon­ing ap­plic­a­tions.

Harry Haberkern, the league’s new vice pres­id­ent, spoke in fa­vor of the store, adding that Bustleton needs to at­tract and re­tain busi­nesses. And, al­though some of the shop­ping cen­ter’s neigh­bors said they were wor­ried about park­ing and trash, the mem­ber­ship voted to back Pa­tel, who is sched­uled to go be­fore the zon­ing board on Ju­ly 11.

In oth­er mat­ters:

• Most mem­bers said they had no prob­lem with a pro­pos­al to put an an­im­al shel­ter at 1810 Grant Ave.

Dana Spain, ex­ec­ut­ive dir­ect­or of the Phil­adelphia An­im­al Wel­fare So­ci­ety, said her non-profit or­gan­iz­a­tion res­cues cats and dogs from the city’s an­im­al con­trol shel­ter and puts them up for ad­op­tion.

The league’s sup­port, however, was not form­al back­ing be­cause PAWS is con­sid­er­ing buy­ing the build­ing at Grant and Bustleton av­en­ues, but has not pur­chased it and has not made an ap­plic­a­tion to the zon­ing board.

An ap­plic­a­tion would be ne­ces­sary if PAWS pro­ceeded with the pur­chase, be­cause the prop­erty’s C-7 com­mer­cial zon­ing does not al­low for dog ken­nels. Spain would have to re­turn for a form­al vote.

Veter­in­ari­an Jerry Gef­fen, whose fa­cil­ity is nearby, said he was con­cerned about com­pet­i­tion and the pos­sib­il­ity his pa­tients could be in­fec­ted by air­borne dis­eases that might be car­ried by PAWS an­im­als.

Spain said a half-dozen dogs and about 40 cats would be housed at the shel­ter. PAWS would give shots, and spay and neu­ter an­im­als, but it would not have oth­er veter­in­ary ser­vices, she said. Res­cued an­im­als are checked for dis­eases else­where, she ad­ded.

• O’Hara said the or­gan­iz­a­tion’s out­go­ing of­ficers had been very help­ful to the new board mem­bers and honored former pres­id­ent John McK­eever, former treas­urer Joan Rhoades, former re­cord­ing sec­ret­ary Di­ane Canuso and former cor­res­pond­ing sec­ret­ary Lil­lian deKrafft with plaques of ap­pre­ci­ation.

The new pres­id­ent, who had led a win­ning slate of chal­lengers in the league’s May elec­tion, had prom­ised more in­form­a­tion on zon­ing is­sues would be made avail­able to mem­bers, and he made good on that last week.

Data sheets about PAWS and the beer re­tail­er that in­cluded maps, ap­plic­able zon­ing reg­u­la­tions and oth­er in­form­a­tion were handed out to mem­bers.

Treas­urer Bob Hall had cam­paigned with a pledge that he would re­port monthly on the league’s fin­ances. The or­gan­iz­a­tion has more than $45,000 in the bank, he told mem­bers.

The oth­er newly seated of­ficers are Maur­een Greene, cor­res­pond­ing sec­ret­ary, and Mar­lene Moskow­itz, re­cord­ing sec­ret­ary.

Dan Lod­ise, an aide to state Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-170th dist.), said many people have called the le­gis­lat­or’s of­fice with con­cerns about the new “smart meters” cur­rently be­ing in­stalled by PECO.

He said callers said they were afraid the new meters, which send and re­ceive ra­dio trans­mis­sions, would cause health prob­lems or would spy on them. Lod­ise said he looked at more than a dozen re­ports about the meters but couldn’t find any that cited health prob­lems. He ad­ded, however, that many of those stud­ies cau­tioned that the smart meter is a new tech­no­logy and that its new­ness meant no long-term stud­ies were done on the long-term health ef­fects of the meters.

• Rich Si­mon, the 7th Po­lice Dis­trict’s com­munity re­la­tions of­ficer, said res­id­ents about to go on va­ca­tion can re­quest “tem­por­ary va­cant forms” from the po­lice dis­trict. Patrol of­ficers will be aler­ted at roll calls to check on prop­er­ties whose own­ers are away, he said.

Res­id­ents can con­tact the dis­trict for the form as a pre­cau­tion. Burg­lar­ies and oth­er prop­erty crimes have been per­sist­ent prob­lems city­wide. There have been a dozen burg­lar­ies in the 7th dis­trict re­cently. However, in four of those crimes, the burg­lars left be­hind fin­ger­prints.

In re­sponse to a ques­tion from the mem­ber­ship about people go­ing door to door ask­ing to see res­id­ents’ elec­tric bills, Si­mon said the best course is to call 911.

“Call 9-1-1 about any­thing sus­pi­cious,” he said.

The civic league’s next meet­ing will be Wed­nes­day, Sept. 19. Meet­ing dates for the rest of the year are Oct. 24, Nov. 28 and Dec. 12. ••

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Stay con­nec­ted …

The Great­er Bustleton Civic League is on­line at gb­c­league.com 

Call: 215-676-6890

E-mail: gb­cl19115@ve­r­i­zon.net 

Write: PO BOX 51523

Phil­adelphia, PA 19115

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You can reach at jloftus@bsmphilly.com.

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