The Borough of Fox Chapel hereby creates the Fox Chapel Environmental Advisory Council, authorized by 53 Pa.C.S.A. §§ 2322 to 2329.
The Environmental Advisory Council shall function to advise the Planning Commission, Park Commission and the Council of the Borough of Fox Chapel on matters dealing with the development, protection, conservation, management, promotion and use of natural resources, including air, land and water resources, located within the limits of Fox Chapel Borough and the effect of such activities on the natural resources of the surrounding region. The Environmental Advisory Control shall be empowered:
To identify environmental problems and recommend plans and programs for the promotion and conservation of natural resources and for the protection and improvement of the quality of the environment within Fox Chapel Borough;
To assist in the administration of this part as defined in the foregoing sections;
To make recommendations as to the possible use of open land areas of Fox Chapel Borough;
To promote a community environmental program;
To keep an index of all open areas, publicly or privately owned, including but not limited to steep and very steep slopes, flood-prone areas, swamps and other vulnerable natural areas, for the purpose of obtaining information on the proper use of such areas;
To update and otherwise refine the Fox Chapel Borough Flood and Slope Map, Geologic Hazards Map, and other maps which may be developed from time to time to display, depict and otherwise note the information as indexed above;
To keep abreast of technical literature, reports and documents relevant to the protection of natural resources in Fox Chapel Borough;
To maintain liaison with appropriate municipal, state or federal departments or agencies concerned with the quality of life and the protection of the environment; and
To advise Council in the acquisition of property, both real and personal, by gift, purchase, grant, bequest, easement, devise or lease, in matters dealing with the purposes of this part.
The Environmental Advisory Council shall keep records of its meetings and activities. The Environmental Advisory Council shall work with the Park Commission to establish a plan for the management, use and development of open space and recreation areas within the Borough of Fox Chapel. The Environmental Advisory Council shall, to the greatest extent practicable, utilize any assistance made available to it by the State Conservation Commission of the Department of Environmental Protection in the form of educational services, exchange of information, assignment of technical personnel for natural resources planning assistance, and the coordination of state and Borough conservation and planning activities.
In conjunction with and in furtherance of its duties and powers as set forth herein, particularly with regard to the indexing of and recommendations as to the use of open land areas and advice to Council with regard to the acquisition of property, the Environmental Advisory Council shall designate areas within the Borough of Fox Chapel for future public acquisition, where, in the opinion of the Environmental Advisory Council, acting in conjunction with and upon the advice of the Fox Chapel Park Commission, such land is required for proposed parks, nature preserves, and other open spaces. The Fox Chapel Borough Council may approve the acquisition of the land so designated and take whatever action is necessary to accomplish such acquisition at a time which it deems appropriate, where it determines that the acquisition of some interest in the subject land is necessary to protect or improve environmental values, including ecological balances; to protect existing visual and recreational values; to preserve existing open space; or to minimize potential damage from landslides, floods or other natural disasters. The designation by the Environmental Advisory Council for future public acquisition in accordance with this section shall not, absent approval of the acquisition of the land so designated by Council, be deemed, in and of itself, to constitute a taking or acceptance of any land by the Borough of Fox Chapel or a reservation of the designated area for future taking or acquisition for public use.
The Environmental Advisory Council shall be composed of no fewer than three nor more than seven residents of Fox Chapel Borough, who shall be appointed by the Fox Chapel Borough Council for a term of three years, except that initial appointments shall be so staggered that the terms of approximately 1/3 of the membership shall expire each year, the terms of their successors to be of three years each. Members shall receive no compensation for their services but shall be reimbursed for all expenses incurred by them in the performance of their duties in accordance with this part. The Fox Chapel Borough Council shall designate the Chairman of the Environmental Advisory Council and fill vacancies as may become necessary.