With its police department receiving another recent round of state grant support, and its engineering services now joining in with a grant for pollution control support, Bedminster honored its representatives in Harrisburg at its April 13 meeting of the board of supervisors for helping to make it all happen. And while they were there, township officials took the opportunity to ask for other kinds of help.
At the outset of the meeting, Police Chief Matt Phelan lauded state Rep. Shelby Labs, R-143, Sen. Jarrett Coleman, R-16, and Coleman’s assistants Robert Arena and Gary Day, for their work in obtaining a $90,000 grant for traffic safety support, and for a $242,000 grant previously received for a new community service initiative (Herald, April 13, 2023).
The traffic safety grant is to further support the department’s efforts to target aggressive, impaired and suspended drivers, as well as uninsured vehicles. In particular, it will allow for the purchase of a specially marked and up-fitted patrol vehicle for high-visibility enforcement; a mobile license plate reader; and two solar radar speed display boards. The reader is to detect suspended drivers and uninsured vehicles, and capture the license plates of high-speed vehicles. The speed boards are to detect speeding, while collecting data “to determine problem areas and measure program success.”
Phelan was followed in similar fashion by Township Engineer Curtis J. Genner Jr., P.E. of Wynn Associates Inc. in Quakertown. After the meeting, Genner said the $240,000 grant supported the township’s largest expense for its Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS-4) Plans and associated Pollution Reduction Plan (PRP). The MS-4 requirement, often loudly criticized at Upper Bucks supervisors meetings as an “unfunded mandate,” derives from federal regulations, administered through the state, that are especially designed to mitigate and further prevent excessive buildups of sediment in local streams, and consequent threats to habitats, that can include serious economic impacts.
After praising the state officials, supervisors were joined by other residents in attendance in a plea for help with serious deterioration of the township’s Elephant Road, a state-maintained thoroughfare, and also with improved coordination with the county on conservation easement funding. In particular, they were hopeful PennDOT’s plans for Elephant Road could be moved up from their present schedule years away, and broadened in scope.
During his monthly engineer’s report, Genner praised PennDOT for its recently completed work on the locally notorious intersection of Old Easton Road and Route 611. The project included new signage and other upgrades and improvements to further enhance traffic safety.