Honesdale events, traffic and lock boxes
At its monthly meeting on March 11, the Honesdale Borough Council and borough officials reviewed announcements and requests from local business and community groups with regard to upcoming events.
Friends of the Wayne County Public Library announced two library-sponsored events scheduled for next month. The first event is Flavor and Fun Luncheon on April 9 at the Hotel Wayne, with a start time of 12 noon. Featured speaker Pat Libutti is a master gardener, herb specialist and author of “Urban Herban.” Tickets are available at the library for $20 each. The second event is In Good Taste, a wine tasting, to be held on April 26 at Wayne County Ford from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Admission costs $30. Tickets are available at the library; the public is urged to purchase tickets early, as this event is expected to sell out quickly.
The council granted requests for special parking privileges, street closures, signage, and venue reservations in connection with a vareity of events. For the May 10 and 11 plant sale, the Wayne County Penn State Master Gardeners requested the use of the 911 Memorial Park Sidewalk on May 11 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Greater Honesdale Partnership (GHP) submitted numerous requests in connection with the Honesdale 500 Sidewalk Sales Weekend on July 19 and 20. Gail M. Tucker, executive director of GHP, addressed each request before the council and outlined GHP plans for special events, including a feature film presentation in keeping with this year’s Sidewalk Sales NASCAR theme. Borough President Monaghan jokingly asked Tucker for assurance that the film would not contain material of a sexually explicit nature; she replied that it would not, but that it would nevertheless be a film intended primarily for an adult audience.
Country Farm Market petitioned the council for use of the Fred R. Miller Pavilion Wednesdays in June from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. and Saturdays in June from 9 a.m. to 12 noon.
Wayne County Creative Arts Council requested the use of Central Park for its Summer Concerts in the Park series on Monday and Thursday evenings from June 17 through August 22, starting at 5 p.m. It was noted that no concerts will be scheduled during the week of the Wayne County Fair.
Among the council’s other business, two topics generated considerable discussion, the first being the Building and Zoning Committee Report, which included introduction of a new safety procedure known as the Knox Box Ordinance. The draft ordinance will be publicly advertised for one month and voted on at the council’s next monthly meeting. If passed, the ordinance will require all commercial buildings within the borough to install a lock box near the building’s entrance(s), to facilitate fast, easy firefighter access to the building. Honesdale Fire Chief Steve Bates explained that similar ordinances have been adopted by other municipalities, to beneficial effect. He reassured merchants fearful that building security would not be compromised by the lock box system, and that strict security procedures will be observed by firefighters at all times, emphasizing that the chief benefits of the lock box system are faster, safer access for firefighters and less property destruction resulting from forcible entry.
The other hot topic of the evening was the ongoing debate about one-way traffic flow on Church and Main streets. During the public comment portion of the meeting, two people expressed opposition to the one-way flow. In a letter read aloud by Monaghan, the first opponent cited pedestrian safety concerns, claiming that faster thru traffic on both streets endangers pedestrians. Identifying himself as a Main Street merchant, the second opponent cited recently compiled traffic data to support his case that the one-way traffic flow on Main Street discourages drivers from patronizing business establishments on Main Street. Honesdale Mayor Ed Langendoerfer and council members applauded the apparent success of a recent meeting of the Ad-Hoc Committee for One Way Traffic Complaints. Attended by about 30 persons, ample testimony was provided by both proponents and opponents, and the meeting concluded without incident.