8 September 2003 | Approved: 13 October 2003
Public Hearing on an Ordinance to Reduce Town Speed Limit to 15 mph:
Mayor Compton called the public hearing to order at 7:08 p.m. In attendance were Councilors Darrell Anderson, Betsy Klinger, Tom Land, Peggy Odick, David Stopak, John Tomlin and Treasurer Mary Challstrom. Also present were Charles Horan, Sylvia Horan, Meredith Horan, David Neumann, Gary Gordon, Ed Roberts, Sally Mansfield, Birgit Henninger, Warren Richardson, Glen Pierce and Planning Commission Chair John McClelland. Mayor Compton began with a review of the issue at hand and then read the proposed Ordinance. Dr. Horan stated that he has been concerned about the speed on Maple Road for sometime and thought that the Mayor and Council were wise to codify this. Warren Richardson said that reducing the Town speed limit was very appropriate especially when you consider the narrow width of our roads. Birgit Henninger expressed her concern about the speed of the school buses. David Neumann pointed out that the McCauley Street hill is a big problem and believes that new signs will help. Meredith Horan said that 25 mph was fine in a neighborhood with regular roads but that Washington Grove really just has alleys and 25 mph is too fast for our type of roads. Gary Gordon said that he was concerned about the people who cut through at 40 or 50 mph (as indicated in the road study) and is in favor of more barriers to discourage cutting through Town. Dr. Horan made the observation that traveling the length of Maple Road at 20 mph vs. 15 mph only saves the driver 6 seconds. The risks are far too high just to save 6 seconds. A lengthy discussion about enforcement ensued. Tom Land proposed a step-by-step re-education campaign for residents which included a slogan contest (i.e. “It’s Keen to Drive 15!”). The winner would get dinner at Hershey’s Restaurant or something similar. More discussion. Mayor Compton closed the public hearing at 7:50 p.m..
Peggy Odick moved, Betsy Klinger seconded, to accept the Ordinance lowering the Town speed limit to 15 mph. Vote: 6-0.
Peggy Odick moved, Darrell Anderson seconded, to amend the language of the new Speed Limit Ordinance to allow for public education, purchasing signs and installing signs. Vote: 6-0.
Peggy Odick moved, John Tomlin seconded, to delay the effective date of the new Speed Limit Ordinance by 30 days. Vote: 6-0.
Mayor Compton called the regular meeting of the Town Council to order at 7:52 p.m..
Meredith Horan, 127 Maple Avenue, asked if the pruning of bushes, especially at intersections, could be encouraged with a blurb in the Town Bulletin. David Neumann stated that residents who plant bushes on Town property should be told to prune them or expect to have them moved. A discussion about set-backs and planting on Town property ensued. John Tomlin agreed to take a ride around Town with Meredith Horan and make note of the hedges that may be a problem.
Approval of Minutes
Peggy Odick moved, David Stopak seconded that the Town Council minutes of 8 September 2003 be approved. Vote: 6-0.
Treasurer Mary Challstrom urged the Town Council to use caution on spending for capital projects. Our projected revenue from the State is not what was expected. Discussion. Peggy Odick moved, Tom Land seconded, that the Treasurer’s report be accepted. Vote: 6-0. Darrell Anderson moved, Tom Land seconded, that the Treasurer be authorized to transfer funds if necessary. Vote: 6-0.
Tom Land reported that he would be able to attend a Friday meeting with refuse/recycling contractor Waste Management. The Town Clerk will set up the meeting and ask former Councilor Nick Suzich to attend. A re-education process for all involved is in order. Tom also reported that the majority of complaints this week had to do with driving too fast, not stopping at stop signs and the fact that some trucks are still coming into Town on Tuesdays. Maple Lake – Tom Land reported that 5 new Coi fish were introduced to Maple Lake. Jim Fletcher will clean the bubbler and Dodie Tippens will take care of the pumping permit for Montgomery County.
MaintenanceDavid Stopak reported that Bruce Rothrock has been hired to help with Town maintenance. He has been authorized to work 16 hours per week. David will work on Jim’s "to do list" for the fall and will make sure that keeping the drainage ditches clear and working gets on that list. David Stopak also reported that the Hornbeam tree at the corner of Oak Street and Grove Road is dead. He will ask Jim and Bruce to take care of it. Playground – David Stopak reported that Amy Porter is helping with the new playground equipment. The Town should get another quote from the manufacturer. As soon as we are sure about the Program Open Space money, we will order the equipment. David also reported that Elly Briggs is calling a meeting to discuss the tennis fence and to get additional bids. Also, the clay courts are in need of volunteers to help with maintenance of them and a Bulletin item is in order.
Roads & Walkways
John Tomlin reported that he saw markings for water and sewer on Ridge Road near the new construction. Repairs and repaving of the corner and the drainpipe on Ridge Road and on Pine Road were discussed. The Town Clerk was asked to call AB Veirs and schedule the repairs.
Darrell Anderson reported that the Commission reviewed a planned subdivision of 205-207 Maple Avenue (Gumula). The subdivision plan will be approved after the plat survey is reviewed.
The Planning Commission would like the Town Council to clarify the agreement between Bob Herbert from Action Hauling and the Town in reference to the storage shed at Railroad Park. The Commission urges the Council to charge a realistic fee for this service. A discussion about fees and contracts ensued. Mayor Compton agreed that a contract should be done.
A request by the Calvary Community Church to rent space at the Commercial Corner was denied. Town Ordinances do not permit this type of use at the Commercial Corner.
The Forestry and Beautification Committee did not meet this month however, Darrell Anderson reported that residents have expressed concern about the leaning trees on Oak Street near the Horan’s and the Gumula’s. The Town Forester will look at these trees on his next trip to Washington Grove.
Betsy Klinger reported that the next Recreation Committee meeting is scheduled for September 17th.
Betsy Klinger reported that our new Neighborhood Watch Program is going strong. Chris Kirtz says that the new signs are coming soon. A lengthy discussion about signs ensued. The Mayor and Council concluded that they must see the Neighborhood Watch signs and approve their placement.
Betsy Klinger reported that the contract with Choice Painting & Restoration for minor exterior carpentry work and the staining of the original part of McCathran Hall is on the way. The work is scheduled for the last week in September. Betsy also reported that resident Ed Mroczka had time to make the storm windows for the lower hall windows. The Mayor and Council suggested that we draw up a contract for this work.
- Casey Field Update: Mayor Compton reported that he has not received any updates concerning the Casey Field/Oxbridge Development. A fund raiser for the Shady Grove Civic Alliance is scheduled at the Out of The Way Café in Derwood on September 9, 2003.
- Shady Grove Master Plan: Mayor Compton announced that an M-NCPPC meeting to present the Shady Grove Master Plan staff draft was set for September 23, 2003.
- The John Wesley Academy at WGUMC: Mayor Compton reported that he has not received any communication from the church concerning the John Wesley Academy. He is hoping to hear from the church and from Town attorney Bill Roberts by the October meeting of the Town Council.
Planning Commission liaison Darrell Anderson handed out Town Ordinance revisions completed by the Commission. The Mayor and Council made a few corrections that Darrell Anderson will take back to the Commission. The revision process will continue at the October Council meeting.
McCathran Hall Regulations
Mayor Compton suggested that until we revise the actual Ordinance for use of McCathran Hall, we put something in the Town Bulletin stating that the ending time for events in McCathran Hall has been changed to 10:00 p.m.. The Mayor and Council discussed the need for closer scrutiny where resident-sponsored activities were concerned.
Personnel Policy; Comp. Time
Maintenance Supervisor Jim Fletcher asked for clarification of the Town comp. time policy. The Mayor and Council decided that a flexible schedule of 40 hours a week with Jim picking the days he worked would be fine for the Town and allow Jim the time he needs to care for his mother.
New Street Lights on Ridge Road and Maple Avenue
Because of budget constraints, the Mayor and Council decided to change the number of new street lights on Ridge Road extended from 9 to 5 with the understanding that more could be added at a later time if necessary. The new light for Maple Avenue (near #10) will proceed as planned.
The Mayor and Council decided to have Jim Fletcher paint crosswalks on the road at the intersections of Maple Road and Oak Street and at Grove Road and Oak Street. He will use special traffic safety paint.
Peggy Odick moved, Darrell Anderson, seconded the motion to adjourn. Vote: 6-0.
The meeting was adjourned at 11:50 p.m.