The Borough of Bath has been auditing borough roads, defining which ones are public roads and which are private. The borough can continue maintenance on public roads. Private roads, on the other hand, become the property owners’ responsibility. The borough has been seeking signatures from residents affected so that they continue maintenance on these roads.
Despite community interest in handing over ownership of private roads to the borough, it was announced to Bath Council on Monday, July 8, that a majority of residents contacted have not responded to signature requests.
If private roads in the borough meet eight specific requirements as outlined by the borough, they are eligible to become public roads. However, 51 percent of property owners on each road must sign their agreement. Borough Manager Brad Flynn stressed that no one will be losing property or land. Residents will only be signing to confirm that the streets already in existence can become public.
“We just want what is there now to continue maintenance,” he said.
Many roads have as little as a zero percent signature rate. Others have about 30 percent of the signatures needed to move forward.
The borough will be making one “last-ditch effort” to contact residents via phone and door-to-door notices.
In other news, the borough is preparing its sanitation contract, which will be sent out for bid later this summer. The new contract will go into effect in 2020.
One element of discussion is whether or not the borough will purchase their own garbage and recycling bins, or use bins owned by the sanitation provider.
Purchasing bins provides a benefit in that the borough will own them; however, Flynn says they would be a “significant capital expenditure.”
Meanwhile, residents brought up concerns about the possibility of parking meters in the borough. They wondered where they or their tenants will park.
Council President Mark Saginario stressed that no decision has been made, but permits for residents are being discussed.
Council had previously discussed adding parking meters to certain parts of the borough’s downtown area to control parking.
“It is time this borough starts helping businesses out,” said Councilman Tony Kovalovsky. He said no parking means no customers, which forces business out of the borough.
Finally, it was announced that the Bath Farmers’ Market will once again hold a children’s craft night on July 19 from 4 until 6 p.m. The first craft night of the summer had over 20 children participating.