April 4, 2018 at 5:30 p.m.

Council members look for community board volunteers

By HSJ Online [email protected]

The Hope Town Council is looking for some fresh faces interested in helping the town do its business of governing.

With the start of a new year is a time for new appointments to the town's board and commissions. At Tuesday' night's council meeting, J.T. Doane, the town manager, presented a list of residents interested in being appointed, or reappointed to the town planning commission, board of zoning appeals, the Economic Development Income Tax committee and a newly forming economic development commission.

But new council members Nellie Meek and Ed Johnson asked to hold off on the approval of the list of appointments, seeking more time to find new blood from the community.

Johnson, a Democrat who just took office, said that he has had several people approach him, both during the campaign last fall and since then, explaining that they felt like the people serving on the town's committees and boards was a too narrow slice of the community.

"One of the things they said was, the town board keeps reappointing people into these committees and they don't branch out any," Johnson said. "And they feel like there should be new people brought into these committees every time."

Meek, who also took office this year, said that one of her campaign promises was to find younger people and get them engaged in the business of town government.

The council agreed to table the recommendations until next months' meeting to widen the search for volunteer board members.

In other business, the Town Council:

  • Approved a recommendation from the town's EDIT committee to spend $1,500 helping promote and fund a Christmas program at Hope Elementary School for fourth through sixth grade students. Council President Clyde Compton said that Pete Law and Nancy Banta asked to have the request early in the year, because the cost to purchase the rights to a performance are lower now, than in the Christmas season. Money from the fund comes from the town's share of the countywide Economic Development Income Tax.

  • Gave its final approval of a new town ordinance regulating how long signs for yard and garage sales can remain posted around town. Doane said that there would be a $25 fine per day for any signs left up more than a day after the conclusion of the sale. Johnson suggested that the town also regulate the various advertising signs posted for services such as internet service providers. Doane said that he could put a proposal together for as early as the next council meeting.

  • Received an update from Utilities Manager David Clouse on the trees in the park. He said that after a recent tree trimming, the contractor said he found no signs of damage from the emerald ash borer.

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