Council to take action on speed bumps
MIDWAY - The city council spent nearly half of a 45-minute meeting Monday debating how best to replace portable speed bumps installed on Stephens Street. Mayor Grayson Vandegrift said the bumps had proven effective in reducing speeding near Midway University, but said he agreed with drivers who said they were too big. He also noted concerns expressed by officials at The Homeplace at Midway and Woodford Emergency Medical Services (EMS) about bumps slowing ambulances - or jostling patients inside them. Vandegrift had sent council members an advertisement from a company showing 2-inch bumps designed to slow traffic to between 15 and 20 mph. The present, 3-inch bumps are designed to cut speeds to between 10 and 15 mph. Council Member Steve Simoff suggested Vandegrift contact officials from cities that are using the 2-inch bumps and see how they're working. Vandegrift said he'd do the homework, adding that the 2-inch bumps are advertised as being "ideal for residential streets," a claim that isn't made for the 3-inch bumps. Council Member Sara Hicks suggested asking Woodford EMS officials if there was a safe height for speed bumps. Vandegrift responded that the EMS Association of America preferred no speed bumps at all. "I am fairly darn confident these will work," Vandegrift said. In the end, a motion to remove the present speed bumps and allow Vandegrift to purchase replacements passed unanimously. Vandegrift said the 3-inch bumps could be moved to Johnson and Cross streets, both of which have 10 mph zones. After the meeting, Vandegrift estimated the cost of the 2-inch bumps he lobbied for would be between $4,000 and $4,500. The ones in place now cost $5,500. Cemetery rules The council unanimously accepted an addendum to the city's cemetery rules that Council Member Libby Warfield and other members of the Cemetery Committee worked on for months. Earlier this year, Warfield noted that the city had all but stopped enforcing rules aimed at keeping the cemetery litter-free. The last update to the city's cemetery rules was in January of 1999, she said. Among the problems are solar lights, flags and children's toys left behind by loved ones. Among the new regulations are a recommendation that people purchase granite, marble and bronze monuments, which will last longer and look better than cheaper alternatives. Hicks said she hoped that in the future, the council would consider helping people who can't afford granite, marble or bronze headstones by charging $50 more for plots. In other cemetery-related news, the council voted unanimously to accept a low bid of $7,200 from Grubbs Excavating of Versailles to demolish the old caretaker's house there and haul it away. Vandegrift said the company will grade the site and add topsoil if necessary. "It breaks my heart," said Council Member Sara Hicks about the loss of the house. Vandegrift said the project will take place sometime after the Versailles Police Department holds a June 28 SWAT-type training exercise in and around the house. Sparks in the Park The council voted unanimously to hold the annual Sparks in the Park Monday, July 3, beginning at 6 p.m. Vandegrift said there will be free barbeque and bottled water - but no fireworks. Other vendors include Railroad Drugs and 2 Ladies and a Kettle. Council Member Kaye Nita Gallagher is one of those two ladies.