Written by Don Ratzlaff Wednesday, 13 February 2008 08:16
After several months of anticipating action, the Hillsboro City Council finally approved an ordinance at its Feb. 6 special meeting that would assess a fine up to $500 for anyone creating “unnecessary loud noises” within the city limits.
The movement toward the ordinance began when a resident complained about a vehicle in the neighborhood that made excessive noise whenever the driver accelerated aggressively.
The new ordinance, which does not identify a scientific measure to define a violation, addresses the issue of loud exhaust systems as well as defects in a vehicle, or one loaded in such a way that “creates loud and unnecessary grating, grinding, rattling and other noise.”
The ordinances also specifies other sources of disturbing noises: horns and signaling devices, stereos, and loud speakers or amplifiers used for commercial advertising. The ordinance is not limited to those sources, however.
The ordinance will be in effect 24 hours a day.
To accommodate traffic issues that will be created by the start of construction at Hillsboro Elementary School, the council agreed to designate the alley between A and First streets that runs along the west edge of the school property as a one-way traffic route (northbound) for dropping off and picking up children up to Sept. 1.
Unified School District 410 is planning additions to the present facility that will close the traditional circle drive and drop-off area in front of the building for the remainder of the school year.
As part of the traffic plan, the council designated a speed limit of 10 mph through the alley, with the placement of stop signs at the north end of the alley, and for eastbound traffic on First and northbound traffic on Wilson.
In other business, the council:
n approved steps needed to authorize the release of funding through a loan with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment for the sewer-lagoon project. Construction will begin soon, according to the project engineer represent EBH & Associates.
n heard city engineer Bob Previtera ask to hear from the council regarding its intention for developing the Hillsboro Business Park. The park could be developed as a single project, he said, or in phases.
n agreed with City Administrator Larry Paine’s plan to increase staff by one position in the street department, using funds from the special highway fund. The council voiced commendation for street supervisor Dale Dalke and his crew for the progress made on street maintenance.
n approved spending “less than $1,000” to have an overhead door repaired at the AMPI property. The door, which a former city employee had tried to install himself, serves a business renting space in the building.
n approved Paine’s recommendation that a company be hired to prepare a map that details the city’s electrical system. He said the lack of such a map at Greensburg hindered the application of federal aid after a tornado destroyed the system.
n called for a 60-minute executive session at the start of the meeting to discuss the possible purchase of land. The session lasted 75 minutes, with no discussion or action taken when the public session resumed.
n adjourned for an extended work session after the meeting to talk about strategic planning.