News Release: PSATS 2013 Township Manager Leadership Award
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 29, 2013
Contact: Ginni Linn
Director of Communications
Lebanon County Township Manager Wins PSATS' Leadership Award
Robin Getz, manager of North Cornwall Township in Lebanon County, was presented with the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors’ 24th Annual President’s Leadership Award at the association’s 91st Annual Educational Conference and Trade Show in Hershey in April. The conference attracted attendees from every county in Pennsylvania except Philadelphia, which has no townships.
Each year, the association presents the award, established in 1990, to a township supervisor and a township administrator, such as a secretary or manager, whose outstanding projects or programs have benefited their communities.
Getz received the honor on the final day of the conference in recognition of her efforts to make North Cornwall Township a better place to live and work. Public service, she told the crowd, is a rewarding experience.
“Some nights you go home and realize you can’t make everyone happy. Other nights you go home and realize you’ve made a lot of people happy,” Getz said. “Local government is the basis of all government, and we do make a difference.”
Getz, who has worked for North Cornwall Township for 26 years and was promoted to manager in 1999, is considered one of Lebanon County’s leading experts on state and federal storm water requirements for municipalities. To help neighboring communities comply with the regulations, she co-founded a countywide committee to address the issue cost-effectively.
To support local businesses, Getz worked to create the North Cornwall Township Business Alliance, which now has more than 200 members. And when developing the township’s website, she made sure it included a virtual marketplace, which also encourages support for local businesses.
On the transportation front, the manager was instrumental in creating a parallel road concept to connect housing developments and keep pass-through traffic off major and congested corridors. She also helped to secure state and federal funding for three bridge replacement projects that amounted to more than $2 million.
Parks and recreation have also benefited from Getz’s leadership. She helped the township adopt a master trail system and create the first township park, with two more in the planning process. In addition, the manager worked with the developers of the largest housing development in Lebanon County. Through this partnership, Getz secured half a million dollars for recreation and a public trail head for the Lebanon Rail Trail, which includes parking and restroom facilities.
Getz also worked with the county, PennDOT, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to create a wetlands bank program to preserve natural habitats and promote natural storm water management.
Public safety got a helping hand when Getz led an effort to purchase high-definition, on-officer video cameras for the township’s police department. This cutting-edge technology records activity from the officer’s perspective, and the North Cornwall department is only the second in the state to use these cameras. Getz has also secured two federal grants, amounting to more than $250,000 each, to offset police department costs.
In addition to her work in the township, Getz is a member of the PSATS Grassroots Lobbying Network and past chair of its Land Use Planning and Growth Management Committee. She is a member of many community organizations, including the Lebanon County Clean Water Alliance, the Lebanon Auxiliary Post 915, the Neversink Fire Company, the Lebanon County Managers Association, and the International Institute of Municipal Clerks.
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The Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors represents Pennsylvania’s 1,455 townships of the second class and is committed to preserving and strengthening township government and securing greater visibility and involvement for townships in the state and federal political arenas. Townships of the second class cover 95 percent of Pennsylvania’s land mass and represent more residents — 5.5 million — than any other type of political subdivision in the commonwealth.