The Elma Town Board is considering updating the town code to eliminate conflicting codes and ambiguous wording.
Town Supervisor Dennis Powers said Wednesday that consultant Drew Reilly recommends an approach including one representative from each of the town’s appointed boards such as the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals, beginning with two or three “scoping” meetings that could cost $3,500 to $5,000.
Powers said Reilly expects the changes to take two to three years. “While our current code book has served us well for years, several codes are up to interpretation and need to be rewritten,” the supervisor said.
Planning Board Chairman Tom Reid added that the Zoning Board of Appeals has been “very active, which shows many codes are up to interpretation.”
An updated code is expected to help all the boards and especially the code enforcement officers.
Powers said a “front to back overhaul is needed. We will meet with people who update our code books, who have been adding new codes at the end but need to be incorporated into the book. This is going to include lots of input and discussion. We will engage the public too. This is their town too.”
In other business, the Town Board will look into a request from David Speich of Spring Brook Shores Home Owners Association to see whether traffic on the patio homes’ roadway off Rice Road can be enforced by law enforcement.
Speich said the association can levy fines on homeowners but not on visitors. He said the primary problem is speeding.
He said an estate sale last summer drew lots of traffic, with eight drivers rolling past stop signs and speeding. “The only recourse we have is if the town passes a law,” he said.
Speich said the association has posted speed limit signs of 20 mph “and we do carry a certain amount of liability insurance in the event of accidents.”
Highway Superintendent Wayne Clark said it may be necessary for a traffic study first to post signs. “This could work backward too,” Clark said. “The state could recommend a 30 mph limit.”
Speich said the community has stop or speed signs but they are not regulation size. He added that the association will pay for any signs that are required.
Powers said he would get a legal opinion from the Association of Towns and that Town Attorney Phyllis Todoro will look into it.