Hopewell Borough Council to decide on safety advisory committee in December

ANDREW HARRISON/STAFF

The public hearing for a new ordinance establishing a Pedestrian, Bicycle and Safety Advisory Committee (PBSAC) will take place at the Hopewell Borough Council’s December meeting.

The ordinance hearing is set for a Dec. 2 Council meeting. Members of the council introduced the new ordinance at their Nov. 4 Council meeting earlier this month.

“The idea is to have a committee to advise council and collect information on pedestrian, bicycle, traffic safety, and in my mind other ways to connect our community,” Councilman Ryan Kennedy said. “Whether they be trail connections, complete streets or other issues that allows us to be better, safer and connected to our community.”

The committee would be advisory only and would report to the council.

“One of the things that interests me is a ranking and listing system to start collecting a list, goals or problem areas or suggested improvements and thinking about them in terms of cost, in terms of what approvals are needed, and in terms of the affect on business and parking,” Kennedy said. “Ultimately, it will be council’s decision to move forward with any particular improvement, change or suggestion.”

If established the committee would consist of five members who would be appointed by Mayor Paul Anzano. On the committee, there can only be one person appointed who is not a resident of Hopewell Borough.

The PBSAC would research and recommend advice to the Borough Council on areas such as policy, facilities, information and promoting and improving safety for pedestrians, bicyclists and motor vehicles.

According to the ordinance, the formal committee would be tasked with studying and collecting data, information and opinions on pedestrian, bicycle and safety matters throughout the borough and the surrounding areas; and prepare an inventory for each street in the borough spotlighting any issues or recommended improvements.

There would be an annual budget appropriation for PBSAC by the council.

“You would have an appropriation annually to conduct the research, but if there was something more than that wouldn’t be funded through this group,” Borough Administrator Michele Hovan said.

If approved, the committee is not only be tasked with proposing initiatives to the council regarding safety, but also will conduct a comprehensive report of its findings and present items that need to be addressed and provide an update and review report every 10 years after the initial report or the most recent report conducted.