Residents Complain About Speeding, Traffic Congestion

Speeding vehicles and after school traffic congestion were among the complaints raised by residents during last week’s Crothersville Town Council meeting.
Rita Brandenburg said the speed limit on Kovener Street is 30 mph which she called “excessive” for a residential area.
“The speed limit may be 30 but they drive faster than that and someone’s child could get hit,” she told the council.
“We went through all of the posted speed limits in town four years ago and made changes where necessary,” said council president Lenvel ‘Butch’ Robinson. “Maybe it isn’t a matter speed limits but enforcement.”
“Speeding is a problem but lower speed limits won’t help,” said councilman Bob Lyttle. “Officers need to set in the trouble spots and ticket the offenders.”
He added,” Certainly (vehicle-pedestrian) accidents can happen but parents need to control and oversee their kids’ activity to help prevent them from being hit by cars.”
Councilman Chad Wilson agreed saying the council should work with the police department to step up enforcement of current speed laws.
In a related traffic matter, James & Debby Martin of East Main Street Circle complained about parents speeding around their street jockeying for a place in line to pick up their children after school.
The subdivision is located just east of the elementary school entrance.
“Parents drive around our subdivision like it’s a race track and then park in front of houses blocking driveways waiting for school to let out,” said Jim Martin. “It’s unsafe and a nuisance.”
Clerk-Treasurer Terry Richey, who also works in the school’s central office, said the school has no official policy about where parents should wait to pick their up children after school.
“Parents want to be near the front of the line so they or their kids have to wait. It has just sort of unofficially evolved that parents use Main Street and Main Street Circle to line up,” she said, adding that the school could look at formulating an after school line-up policy but they lack enforcement.
To help alleviate the school traffic/residential problem the council directed town attorney Jeff Lorenzo to draw up an ordinance prohibiting parking or idling on Main Street or Main Street Circle.
In a downtown matter, Council President Robinson said that an asbestos inspection of the Ashley Foundry buildings would cost the town $500.
“Ashley has agreed to sell to the town for a dollar the two dilapidated buildings to the north,” said Robinson. “But before we should get bids to tear them down or proceed further we need to know if there is any asbestos in the buildings.”
The Ashley buildings, on the east side of Armstrong in the center of downtown, have been the subject of discussion by the town’s unsafe building committee and with its boarded up windows and collapsing roof is considered by the committee as unsafe and unsightly for the downtown.
Town engineer Brad Bender of FPBH said before the town accepts any offer to sell, “There are other due diligence that would be required. You don’t want to buy property that has environmental issues underground.”
“And a title search would be needed to determine if there any liens or mortgages on the properties,” added town attorney Jeff Lorenzo.
The council voted 4-1 to proceed with an asbestos inspection. Councilman Bob Lyttle voted no commenting, “Why do we have to bail out people who cause the mess?”
In other matters the council:
•Heard an update on a $220,000 Community Development Housing Grant. Currently there are 11 applicants and we can do up to 18 homes, said grant administrator Trena Carter of Ara. “This is an ‘aging in place’ grant allowing senior citizens to stay in their homes,” she said. The council approved a local contribution of $4,500 toward the grant consideration.
•Heard a report from town engineer Brad Bender that six contractors have picked up bid packets for the stormwater improvement grant work. Bids are to be opened and reviewed on June 28.
•Clerk-Treasurer Terry Richey announced that the town employees’ health insurance premium would increase 6.8% next year.
•Approved spending $1,500 for 20 new chairs for public seating in the council meeting room.