Speed limits, sign postings concern DuBois City Council|
Friday, October 5, 2012
By Ian Erickson Staff Writer
DUBOIS - At yesterday's DuBois City Council work session, numerous concerns about speed limits and speed sign postings were discussed.
Council members first discussed the speeds on Jeffers Street and Hoover Avenue. John "Herm" Suplizio, city manager, said that he received an e-mail about concerns in this area. Mike DiLullo, city police chief, said that the design for those streets was 25 mph. He noted that if there is no sign posted, then it would be a 35 mph zone. DiLullo said that he thinks something would just have to be drafted to make it an official 25 mph zone, and council would have to discuss it with Solicitor Toni Cherry and have an ordinance written. After this process is completed, 25 mph signs could then be posted. He said that this is according to state law.
Suplizio told council this decision is in its hands, and it can make the judgement. Council members will vote on this topic at Monday's DuBois City Council meeting.
Dianne Bernardo asked DiLullo about the speed limit on West Long Avenue and if it is 35 mph. Bernardo said that she was near St. Michael's recently and observed, at residents' requests, the speed of vehicles and motorcycles.
"I think they have a valid complaint. That definitely is a straight shot and people have that uphill or downhill concept, and they are really moving," she said.
DiLullo said that if that area is considered an urban district, then it would be 35 mph unless changed by council.
But, he thinks that it could be either residential (25 mph) or urban (35 mph).
"If you are going to make Hoover Avenue 25 mph, then you would have a hard time not making that one 25," he said.
During his report, Zac Lawhead, code enforcement officer, gave an update on properties he has visited. Lawhead said the 201 Juniata St. property, owned by Greg Moore, has made a big improvement with everything now being leveled off and having topsoil put on. "It's a 100 percent improvement from what it was," he said. But he noted that the soil still needs to be seeded.
The property at 210 Rumbarger Ave., owned by Jason Moore, still needs improvements. Lawhead said that he was told the resident has been injured and on crutches or in a wheelchair and that is why his spouse has been trying to clean the yard. The resident said that he will try to have the property clean within the next few weeks. Lawhead also noted that Moore still hasn't paid his fines at the magistrate's office.
The final property he discussed was 333 S. Brady St. Lawhead said the resident continues to give excuses as to why nothing has been cleaned up.
Lawhead also brought up the idea of "sweep tickets," which he heard exists in the Allentown area. He said, "Instead of doing citations through the magistrate's office, their first step is to give people something like a parking ticket for violations such as high grass and garbage." He said that Allentown gives a ticket for $25 and goes up to $100, and then after a certain amount, it goes to the magistrate.
He said that according to the Property Maintenance Code, the city of DuBois could access a fee for code violations such as not mowing grass before going to the magistrate. Lawhead said, for example, "If I give them 10 days to correct the problem and pay $25 to the city, and they don't, then I can file to the magistrate's office and they will pay $25 plus fines." He said that maybe this would help motivate residents to act more quickly after getting a citation.
DiLullo suggested Lawhead discuss this idea with the magistrate's office first to see what alternatives would be if the fees aren't paid. DiLullo noted that Allentown may not work the same way Clearfield County does.
In other business:
• Suplizio said that council has been working with the school district on different topics, and one of them is Shower's Field, which is located on Maple Avenue. The ball field is used by the high school's baseball team. Suplizio said that council and the district are trying to make an agreement to get the field back up to the way it used to be, since it is in the park area near the walk way.
• fall cleanup will be held Monday through Oct. 12 on regular pick-up days. Councilman Randy Schmidt said, "You can put anything at the curb as long as one man can lift it."
• it was announced that work will be done on the railroad crossing on DuBois Street. Suplizio said that the street will be closed for an entire 48-hour period for this work to be completed.
The closure will take place during the week of Oct. 22, but council hasn't been notified on what two days this will occur.