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Ridge Traffic Task Force Planned for Officials

School officials say that public input would be sought, but not as members of task force.

Rather than meeting last week, township and school officials have decided to get together on Wednesday to set the parameters of a joint task force to try to address a long-term solution to Ridge's traffic jams on school mornings.

At the first meeting, the representatives from the school and from the township expect to hash out when they will meet, and set parameters for the task force, Susan McGowan, president of the said at Monday night's board meeting.

McGowan said the school representatives will include herself, Schools Superintendent Nick Markarian, and board member William Koch, who has headed the board's facilities committee.

But she said the task force is not intended to include members of the public.

However, she said the task force would be looking at ways to solicit input from the community.

As he had before at last month's school board meeting and Township Committee meeting, South Finley resident Bill Connors asked the school board, and then the Township Committee, to create a promised task force that would include residents from South Finley, neighbors of the high school, and also Homestead Village residents affected by the rerouting of Ridge school buses to a walkway behind the Cedar Hill Elementary School.

"There should be a community voice," Connors said. He also asked what had happened to a task force with residents that had been discussed earlier this year.

Connors did not get a direct answer to his questions.

Connors told the school board in September, "I will be at every meeting."

IMHO October 10, 2012 at 01:12 AM
Does anyone find it a conflict of interest that Susan McGowan is heading the Task force with no community input yet LIVES in Homestead Village. Just pointing it out .......
SD October 10, 2012 at 01:54 PM
She’s on the task force, not heading it. She is the liaison to the Township Committee, seems appropriate to me.
IMHO October 10, 2012 at 03:16 PM
It may seem appropriate to you SD but it may not to others who are concerned with their particular neighborhoods not just Homestead Village. It seems like a conflict of interest to have a prominent member of the Task Force (who may or may not be leading it but it appears from the article above that she has determined that no members of the public will be offered a spot at the table) living in the very neighborhood that is at the forefront of this fight. If Homestead Village has not put up such a fight, there would not have been a traffic consultant, plans to widen South Finley, paving graveled paths and on and on.... Conflict of interest???

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