Town speed limit goes to 35 mph
by Susan Mikula Campbell
Wheatfield residents are invited to find out more about the town's new recycling policy and see the new recycling totes from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Feb. 18, at the Wheatfield Community Center next to Town Hall.
The town has approved a contract with Modern Disposal to begin every other week recycling this spring. The new system is expected to bring significant savings to the town.
Joe Hickman, Modern sales manager, will be available to answer questions at Saturday's meeting. Samples of the new 64- gallon totes will be on display, as well as one of the new automated trucks that will be used to pick them up. Lists of what can be recycled will be available and a short presentation on how Modern's recycling facility works will be given.
Another program will be held Saturday, March 17, at the same time and place.
The town has also ordered some 35-gallon totes for those unable to handle the 64-gallon totes and is discussing ordering even larger totes for businesses, according to Supervisor Bob Cliffe.
At Monday's Town Board meeting, Melissa Germann, a member of the town Planning Board and several of the town's focus groups, was hired as a part-time, temporary clerk to assist in organizing the distribution of the recycling totes.
In other matters at Monday's meeting:
•Cliffe revealed that the state Department of Transportation has agreed to allow the town to set a 35 mph speed limit on all town roads if not marked otherwise. Speed limits on state and county roads will remain the same.
Cliffe noted one speeding problem area has been roads leading out of Town Hall after traffic court on Tuesday nights.
Highway Superintendent Art Kroening said town officials will be meeting with state officials about the new speed limit next week. He hopes to get new signs up on the town's 78 miles of town roads as soon as possible. Current speed limits on town roads range from 30 to 45 mph. Even 35 mph on Church Road leading from Town Hall is fast, he said.
"Some people go 55 even if it's a town road. Hopefully, they'll see a 35 mph sign and slow down a little bit," he said.
•Councilman Art Gerbec reported that the town's Fire Advisory Committee is considering a recommending the town supply four Knox boxes to each of the towns five volunteer fire companies to answer security concerns by some town businesses. The town already has approved an amendment to the town code to meet state regulations to require installation of the system in all commercial, retail, industrial and residential dwellings with four or more units.
The boxes at these locations contain a master key for every locked door in the building and keys to the alarm panel and elevators, as well as emergency contact information and a map of the structure's layout for the fire department's use in case of emergency.
If the Fire Advisory Committee's primary proposal is approved, the keys carried by fire department vehicles to access businesses' Knox boxes would be in their own Knox box, accessed by a punch pad. Each firefighter having access would have his own code, so it would be known who used the key and when.
•Cliffe reported that the town will continue its Farmers Market outside of Town Hall this year. Vendors met a couple of weeks ago and it was agreed to have a shorter season this year, starting in June instead of May.
•The town received a response from Time Warner in regard to Cliffe's request for reduced rates due to the loss of the MSG network and its Buffalo Sabres programming.
"It was just a lot of excuses," said Councilman Larry Helwig, urging residents to send their complaints to the Public Service Commission.
"I think we are being shortchanged," added resident Jack Cindric.
•The board approved its 2012 contract with Wendel Duchscherer Architects and Engineers, with no increases from the 2011 contract.
•The board received handmade thank you cards from youngsters in the Youth Center's Helping Hands program. Recreation Director Ed Sturgeon said the program emphasizes that the youth should reach out and react when someone is helping them.
The board also approved the hiring of Megan Schear and Kristi Kaczorowski as part-time recreation aides for the Youth Center.
•The next Town Board meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 27, after a 7:15 p.m. public hearing to discuss policy regarding the placement of streetlights in the town.