Sep 30 2016

Report: Council Made Decision When People Were on Vacation

“keep some of the stop signs that are proven to ensure the safety of the driver and remove others…”

In my 17 years of living in Piedmont, I did not realize that I had an opportunity to have my voice heard in City Council meetings. It was really cool to see everyone’s ideas being heard and seeing them being taken into consideration by the Council.

My father had spoken at a School Board meeting because he was against the plan for the Haven’s elementary schoolers when their school was under construction. He didn’t like the idea of taking the kids to Emeryville on a bus every day. Of course, the Board still decided that taking the kids to Emeryville was the best plan of action, but the fact that my dad got to express how he felt about the situation personally to the Board is remarkable.

The name of the governmental body is the Piedmont City Council and the purpose of the meeting on September 19 was to address certain issues concerning Piedmont such as the recent abundance of stop signs, and protecting our community from mosquitoes with Zika virus. The City Council meets at least once every two weeks.

The 9/19/16 City Council meeting started off by addressing the issue with the stop signs. Two gentleman talked about and were strongly against the stop signs. They complained about how the stop signs were too excessive and the decision to put the stop signs in was made over summer break when lots of people are away on vacation. They demanded studies to be done on whether or not it is statistically safer to have stop signs or not and seemed to be extremely offended that the City would dare put more stop signs in place.

At first, I was appalled at how many people were complaining about the new stop signs, but then again I could also see where they are coming from because I have noticed that the stop signs around the Wildwood area of Piedmont are a little excessive and in some cases unnecessary. That doesn’t mean I am against the new stop signs but I am against some of them because I don’t believe every new stop sign is beneficial to our safety, but rather tedious to the driver. The best plan of action would be to keep some of the stop signs that are proven to ensure the safety of the driver and remove others that just make the stop signs excessive.

Another concern in Piedmont are the mosquitoes and possible spread of the Zika virus. A presentation was created by Robert Dickinson to ensure the safety of the community from mosquitoes. The recent scare of the Zika virus spreading into the United states sparked this presentation which informed us of many methods of avoiding and lowering the number of mosquitoes in our community. You could start by wearing long sleeved clothes and their are also mosquito eating fish that are available to people who are interested in raising them.

Since Piedmont wants to renovate Coaches Field and Linda Beach the council agreed to appropriate twenty-five thousand dollars to Coaches Field and thirty-five thousand dollars to Linda Beach.

I did not speak and neither did any of the other students, and I think it was because we felt ill-informed on the subjects spoken about. Prior to the meeting, I did not have any idea about what was going to be discussed and since I did not know how to obtain the information that would be covered at the City Council I did not contribute. If I had known we would be discussing the new stop signs, I would have mentioned how some are beneficial but most make driving around Piedmont very tedious.

I had the gracious opportunity to interview City Council candidate, Jen Cavenaugh, who was very helpful and informed on the issues concerning Piedmont, especially concerning Beach Field and the great uses for it. When I asked Ms. Cavenaugh how she will get her concerns addressed, she said, “I will continue to come back to the City Council and get everyone’s opinions on what they have to say.” Ms. Cavenaugh is running for City Council and I personally think she would be an excellent addition to the Council, as she is very intelligent and informed on the issues concerning Piedmont.

Donald Rendall, Piedmont High School Senior

Editors Note: Opinions expressed are those of the author.

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