Council Considers Woodward Traffic Concerns
Council President Brian Powers called the July 16, 2012 Council meeting to order at 7:30P.M. He then asked the St. Edward's rugby team to lead everyone in the Pledge of Allegiance.
With the rugby team still at the front of the hall, Councilman Powers (At-Large) turned the floor over to Councilman Shawn Juris (WardIII) who read a communication recognizing the St. Edward's rugby team for their Division I state championship and finishing the season undefeated 15-0. Council then passed a resolution congratulating them.
Next Mayor Mike Summers read a communication thanking the Fourth of July Parade Grand Master Suzanne Metelko for leading the parade. He also recognized the parade winners which included the Lakewood Fire Department Honor Guard for Best Color Guard, The Goodwin Family for Best Float, Beck Center for the Arts for Most Original Entry, Emerson Unicycle Club for Best Bicycle, and H2O (Help to Others) for Most Spirit. Each winner was presented with a plaque from the city.
Council passed the resolution recognizing them all.
Councilman Tom Bullock (Ward II) then read a communication to Council regarding a petition from the residents of Woodward Avenue for the city to address chronic cut-through speeding. Eighty-nine households on the street, between Madison and Detroit Avenues signed the petition, representing 74% of the street. They are asking the city to consider deploying traffic calming measures on the street in the hopes of slowing down the traffic. The residents noted that a 2011 study indicated that their street receives a much higher traffic volume than some of the nearby streets and that 69-77% of the cars were driving over the speed limit, 38% of which were over 30 miles per hour (the speed limit for the street is 25). A major concern for all the residents is the estimated 60 children who live and play on the street and the large number of Harding Middle School students who walk up and down the street every day.
Councilwoman Monique Smith (At-Large) said that she was supportive of the residents' efforts and has heard similar complaints from other streets that would probably be interested in trying the same thing.
Councilman Anderson (Ward I) said that he wanted to acknowledge the leadership of Councilman Bullock and the initiative of the Woodward residents on the matter. He also said he appreciated the Mayor helping with the consideration of this matter by having the traffic studies done.
Council received the communication for consideration.
Next Mayor Summers asked Council to consider two resolutions that would allow the City to accept grants that would help it update the radios for the emergency services. By January 1, 2013, all of the emergency forces in Ohio must comply with new regulations that require them all to use radios that work on narrow band frequencies. This requires the city to replace its entire stock of radios which currently work on UHF. The first resolution is to allow the City to accept a grant to help the city obtain 130 of these new radios. At $2,500 dollars apiece the investment for the City would have cost $325,000, but a grant from Homeland Security saved the city that initial investment.
The second resolution allows the city to enter into a two-year contract with MARKS (Multi-Agency Radio Communication system). MARKS is a 800 MHz radio and data network that provides statewide interoperability to subscribers throughout Ohio, which will include every safety force in Ohio by 2013. This new system will also allow Lakewood to forego the need of a transmitter. Each radio will have a monthly subscription fee of $2.53. With 243 radios (including the 130 new ones) the fees would cost the city $615 a month, or $7,380 a year.
To help fund the remainder of the two projects not covered by grant funds, the City will use $146,000 approved by Council in 2011 to use toward making much needed improvements to the existing aged UHF system. As that system is being replaced the money will be used to help replace it. Any additional cost not covered by those funds or grants will be addressed through Council’s standard appropriation and budget processes.
Council passed both resolutions.
Coming to the end of the agenda, Council President Powers adjourned the meeting at 8:29 P.M.
Council meetings are held every first and third Monday of the month at 7:30 P.M. in the City Hall Auditorium. The next regularly scheduled council meeting will be held on Tuesday, September 4, 2012. For a copy of the agenda or for any other information regarding the LakewoodCity Council, you can find it at onelakewood.com/citygovern_council.html.