I am excited to report that Supervisor Olson contacted me in regards to my questions surrounding the Fire Company’s Holiday Drive, the timeline for collection, contributions collected to date, responsibility for follow-up, etc. Yes, on the eve of the first 2010 Board of Supervisor meeting, Supervisor Olson called to give me an update. As you recall, Supervisors Olson, Lamina and Kampf organized the Holiday Drive, which culminated in the $23,200 cardboard check that was presented to Berwyn, Paoli and Radnor Fire Companies at the last Board of Supervisor Meeting on December 21. Supervisor Olson was able to offer the following information in regards to the Holiday Drive.
- There is now a paper trail in place to track the pledges and donations, which will allow easier follow-up.
- All fire company Holiday Drive pledge money to be contributed by March 31, 2010.
- All checks for the Holiday Drive are to be made payable to ‘Berwyn Fire Company’. Berwyn Fire Company will make the appropriate disbursements to Radnor and Paoli Fire Company.
- Supervisors Olson and Lamina met with Berwyn Fire Company president Rip Tilden in the last couple of days; checks totally $8,950 were given to the fire company.
- According to Supervisor Olson, there is not concern regarding the duplication of fundraising efforts to local businesses. It was my understanding that the Berwyn Fire Company is willing to review the contribution checks and make the decisions necessary so that each fire company receives contributions from businesses in their particular jurisdictions.
- Supervisor Olson is unclear as to the exact meaning of Tredyffrin Township Republican Committee (TTRC) Chair CT Alexander’s ‘matching fund’ statement that accompanied his announced contribution of $5K from TTRC. Supervisor Olson indicated that the TTRC money was going directly to the Berwyn Fire Company and was not included in the $8,950 checks already distributed. He was uncertain of the exact contributions to date by TTRC but thought it was about $2K (Apparently, TTRC’s contributions are going directly to Berwyn Fire Company). Supervisor stated that he was not a TTRC committee person and therefore was not certain about the details. He suggested I contact Mr. Alexander directly for follow-up on that issue. (If Mr. Alexander or members of TTRC are reading this blog, any update you can provide related to the $5K fire company contribution would be helpful).
- Supervisors Olson, Lamina and Kampf will take care of all necessary follow-up required for the Holiday Drive.
- I inquired whether the full list of Holiday Drive donors would be public. Supervisor Olson’s reply was appropriate; he said that the judgment to release the donor list would need to come from the fire companies.
- Supervisor Olson mentioned the idea of creating a Fire Company board, suggesting representation on the board from local businesses. There are required capital expense items upcoming for the Berwyn Fire Company, and help with funding is needed.
- It is not the intention of Supervisor Olson to make the Holiday Drive an annual event.
Supervisor Olson was completely forthcoming in his responses. Although I am grateful for his candor, I did suggest that it would be helpful if he would make this information public at tonight’s Board of Supervisor Meeting. Open and transparent government leaves the public asking fewer questions and I challenge the Board of Supervisors to think about this as a resolution for the New Year.
Based on the fundraising talents of Supervisors Olson, Lamina and Kampf, . . . I am making a personal appeal. If they can raise in excess of $20K for the fire companies in a matter of days, I am asking them to help me and the Board of Tredyffrin Historic Preservation Trust with our Build the Barn Capital Campaign. Historic preservation needs their help in Tredyffrin; I am asking them to join us to raise the necessary funds for our rebuilding effort. Locally, we have recently witnessed the tear down of La Ronda in Lower Merion and Radnor’s Eastern College tear down of a historic log cabin. Let’s show our neighbors that Tredyffrin Township cares about their historic resources . . . and I’m asking the Board of Supervisors to help.