PSATS Southcentral II 2023 Regional Forum - 10/24/23 - Gettysburg

Includes a Live In-Person Event on 10/24/2023 at 9:00 AM (EDT)

PSATS’ Regional Forums are back! This series of full-day educational sessions is scheduled for multiple locations statewide. Learn more about issues that matter to your community, discuss common interests with other local leaders, earn PMGA and other professional credits, and attend specialized workshops designed for township officials. This educational event will be the perfect opportunity to hear from experts on the local issues that matter to you and your municipality.

Eligible for 5 PMGA points


8:30 - 9:00 a.m.

Registration, Continental Breakfast, and Networking

9:00 – 9:10 a.m.

* Welcome and Introductions

David M. Sanko, Executive Director, PSATS, and Scott E. Coburn, Esquire, Education Director & Counsel, PSATS


9:10 - 10:05 a.m. (choose one)

* Hot Button Issues in the Volunteer Fire Service (1 PMGA Public Safety Point)

We will discuss a variety of key issues that are currently impacting municipalities and volunteer fire companies. These include volunteer fire training, standards of cover, fire relief, junior firefighters, and recruitment and retention. There will be opportunities for attendees to share their successes and challenges.

Tracie Young-Brungard BS, EMTP, RRC, Administrator, Recruitment & Retention, Office of the State Fire Commissioner

* Planning for Recreation, Parks, and Public Spaces (1 PMGA Planning/Zoning Point)

This session will address the opportunities and challenges associated with providing quality recreational facilities and programs. Representatives from DCNR and the Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society will discuss various available funding and program options and provide you with links, contacts, advice on how to tap into these resources, and real-world examples. There will also be time for participants to ask questions and receive information specific to their situation.

Dan Hendey, CPRP, CPSI, Education Manager, Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society, and Lori Yeich, Regional Manager, Central Region Office, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources


10:15 - 11:10 a.m. (choose one)

* Managing Open Space: Guidelines for Success (1 PMGA Planning/Zoning Point)

As the use of natural landscapes has become more common, so have the issues associated with improvements and long-term maintenance of open spaces. This workshop will discuss how a municipality is using guidelines to help streamline the transition, from permitting to implementation to maintenance, to ensure long-term success of natural areas in increasingly urbanized areas.

Brian Harris, Township Manager & Authority Administrator, Warwick Township, Lancaster County

* Townships and Social Media– Legal Implications under Right-to-Know Law, Sunshine Act and First Amendment (1 PMGA Admin Point and/or 1 CLE)

In this session we will address legal implications arising from townships’ social media use. The speaker will address recent judicial decisions involving government officials’ personal social media posts. Questions include whether posts are accessible under the Right-to-Know Law. The speaker will also address policies for townships to avoid civil liability under the First Amendment.        

Joshua Bonn, Esquire, Nauman Smith Shissler & Hall


11:20 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. (choose one)

* MS4 Program Management (1 PMGA Public Works Point)

This session will provide an overview of MS4 Program requirements, including its importance, what entities are required to comply with it, and the program components. Strategies for administering the MS4 Program from the township perspective will be provided, including budgeting tips and funding strategies.

Beth Uhler, Pennsylvania Director, Center for Watershed Protection, Inc.

* Top Ways You and Your Township Can Get into Ethics Act Trouble...and How to Avoid It (1 PMGA Admin Point and/or 1 CLE)

This session will provide attendees with real-world examples of Ethics Act violations and help attendees spot, address, and avoid such violations.

Mary Fox, Executive Director, State Ethics Commission


12:15- 1:00 p.m.

* Lunch


1:00 - 1:55 p.m. (choose one)

* The Implementable Comprehensive Plan, From Top to Bottom (1 PMGA Planning/Zoning Point)

This session will give participants a thorough overview of the implementable comprehensive plan, including what they are and how they differ from traditional comprehensive plans, why municipalities should implement them, descriptions of success stories, and information available resources for funding them.  

Rachel Reznick, Local Government Planning Specialist, Department of Community and Economic Development

When and How to Get the Word Out: Communicating & Controlling Township News in Good Times and Bad (1 PMGA Admin Point)

When you work within a municipality, there is no such thing as a typical day. Budget woes, development issues, safety concerns and even festive community events seem to divide residents into three camps: those who are pleased, those who are upset, and those who are generally confused.

Proactive communication can go a long way toward improving public awareness and garnering greater support for the activities and initiatives occurring within your township.

But how does a budget-strapped township improve its communication? And what should a township do and say when a crisis occurs?

This informative session will provide strategies and tactics for communicating in good times and bad. We will explore ways to maximize your township’s existing communication resources and how to leverage local media, social media, direct mail, community groups, and outlets you never even thought of.

Bring your bad news or good news scenario with you and you’ll leave this workshop with a strategy for communicating it.

Leza Raffel, President, The Communication Solutions Group


2:05 - 3:00 p.m. (choose one)

*Bridging the Gap Between Townships and Consultants: Tips for Engaging Consultants and Leveraging Partnerships for Funding (1 PMGA Public Works Point)

The American Council of Engineering Companies of PA (ACEC/PA) will provide resources and information on various topics, including best practices for working with consultants, drafting high-quality RFPs/RFQs, maximizing grant funding opportunities, and other resources and information needed and used by PSATS members.

Paul McNamee, Client Services Manager, KCI Technologies, Inc.

* Maintaining Civility at Public Meetings (1 PMGA Admin Point) 

Ensuring that attendees remain civil during public meetings can be a challenge for many townships, especially when contentious issues are on the table. In this session, experienced municipal solicitors will provide tips for how to best manage your public meetings.  

Sam Wiser, Esquire, and Isaac Wakefield, Esquire, Salzmann Hughes, P.C.   

3:10 – 3:40 p.m.

* Municipal Jeopardy (.5 PMGA Admin Point)

Test your knowledge of important aspects of township government so that you are better prepared to lead and manage your townships. 

Camie Stouck-Phiel, Treasurer & Finance Director, Cumberland Township, Adams County, and Scott E. Coburn, Esquire, Education Director & Counsel, PSATS


3:40 – 4:00 p.m.

* Open Forum and Q&A

David M. Sanko, Executive Director, PSATS


               October 24, 2023


                9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.


                Adams County
                Wyndham - Gettysburg
                95 Presidential Circle
                Gettysburg, PA 17325

Registration Fee:   - Each Regional Forum registration is partially funded through a scholarship provided by the Pennsylvania Leadership Institute.   

                Member* -  $ 99.00

                Non-Member –  $149.00                                            

        *PSATS Member = Registrant has paid current annual membership dues to PSATS or one of its professional associations (e.g., Township Emergency Management Association, Township Engineers Association, Township Planners Association, Township Solicitors Association, or the Pa. Assoc. of Zoning Officials).


Cancellations must be in writing, and can be sent to us by email to; by fax to (717) 763-9732; or by mail to PSATS Education Program, 4855 Woodland Drive, Enola, PA, 17025. Refunds will be determined by the sent date of the notice.
Refunds for cancelling a webinar at any time will be subject to a $10 processing fee. 
For classes, (in-person and virtual), refunds for a cancellation sent to us between 10 and 2 business days before the class you are registered for will be subject to a $20 processing fee. Those who cancel within two business days of the class you are registered for, or do not attend, forfeit the full registration fee which, if unpaid, will be invoiced.


If you require alternate format, sign language, or have other needs, please contact PSATS directly (717) 763-0930, x-159.