The Town of Kent Town Board discussed myriad initiatives at their Tuesday. June 12 work session including business signage, the installation of a stoplight and the Lake Carmel dam, among others.
As it stands, town code allows businesses to place signs that cover 10 percent of their windows, but in an acknowledgment that many businesses flout the restrictiveness of the law by placing signs that far exceed the 10 percent restriction, the Town Board discussed raising it to 30 percent, with the the hope that by doing so, more businesses would come into compliance.
Town Councilman John Greene said the 10 percent restriction was in line with state guidelines, but did not serve the interests of local businesses.
“To me, that is useless,” he said.
Town Supervisor Katherine Doherty said the increase would allow businesses to better advertise their businesses to passersby along Route 52, while still trying to achieve a more aesthetically-pleasing look to the downtown area.
“Nobody wants to give a business a fine, but we would like them to comply to make the town look better,” Supervisor Doherty said.
Stoplight at Ludingtonville Road
Supervisor Doherty read a letter from a town resident that had been submitted to the New York State Department of Transportation [DOT] requesting the need for a stoplight at the intersection of Route 52 and Ludingtonville Road.
Supervisor Doherty said the DOT requires that a town submit a request for a study in order to determine if the traffic conditions, the pedestrian characteristics and the physical characteristics of a particular roadway or intersection merits the addition of a stoplight.
It was noted that a study at that intersection has been conducted seven years ago to investigate the feasibility of putting a traffic roundabout at that intersection, but that another would be needed for the consideration of a stoplight.
Based on their personal experience, the members of the Town Board seemed to agree a stoplight would help drivers better navigate the intersection.
“You cannot get out of the gas station,” Councilwoman Penny Ann Osbourn said, if one’s intention is to take a left turn out of the service station and head south on Route 52.
Lake Carmel Dam
Supervisor Doherty said that improvements were needed at the Lake Carmeldam and that she had asked Insite Engineering for a proposal on how much it would cost to achieve short-term improvements and long-term improvements.
She said the proposal for short-term improvements, including construction and soft costs, would be an estimated $120,000 that would have to be borrowed.
All of the Town Board members seemed in favor of a proposal requiring a permit for temporary, exterior storage units on residential properties. According to the town board discussion, there would not be a fee attached to the issuance of a town permit to have a temporary exterior storage unit, but residents who had one on their property and did not have a permit would face a fine if they did not comply after having received a written warning from the town.