Kent City Council fills board vacancies, discusses bikes on sidewalks

Elizabeth Blosfield

The Kent City Council announced the results of the ballot for vacancies on city boards and commissions at its meeting Wednesday, with new members being appointed to the Architectural Review Board, the Income Tax Board of Review, the Shade Tree Commission and the Board of Building Appeals.

During the meeting, audience members raised concerns about housing safety inspections, the condition of Rockwell Street and unkempt landscaping interfering with storefronts on the intersection of Haymaker Parkway and Main Street. All of these issues were addressed by the council, which agreed to return to the issue of Rockwell Street’s condition at a later time.

The issue of keeping bicycles off of sidewalks in downtown Kent was also discussed. Council member John Kuhar suggested putting up signs. However, council member Scott Flynn argued that this would encourage people to drive downtown rather than use alternative transportation such as walking or biking. The council voted and agreed to return to this issue at a later time as well.

The council then voted on several issues involving the community development, finance, health and safety, land use, and streets, sidewalks, and utilities committees. They previously discussed these at the Sept. 4 council meeting and approved them for moving forward.

In addition, the council approved a landscaping agreement with College Town Kent. This landscaping agreement will include landscaping around the Kent State campus sign, a new irrigation system and places to sit along Route 59. The landscaping’s total cost will be $35,000, and Davey Tree Expert Company agreed to donate $5,000 to the total cost.

The council also approved and confirmed a collaboration agreement between the city of Kent and Kent State to continue after Lester Lefton’s retirement. City manager Dave Ruller said during the council’s discussion that “both parties want to stay engaged and keep working toward the good of the community as a whole.”

Contact Elizabeth Blosfield at [email protected].