Following residents' complaints of loitering and possible criminal behavior involving minors in the community, Trappe Borough Council had a first look at a proposed Anti-Loitering/Disorderly Conduct ordinance at their November 13, 2012 monthly meeting. Some parts of the proposed legislation include not allowing more than three people to loiter in a public area and not allowing people to obstruct public streets.
Councilman Paul Edwards commented that he witnessed several youths between the ages of 11-15 "kind of getting a little rough" at The Trappe Center recently. He said, "I just saw where this makes it difficult for people to feel comfortable to walk there."
Borough Solicitor Dave Onorato said that while this ordinance does not give the borough jurisdiction at the Trappe Center, it does allow the property owner to call the state police.
"The ordinance would apply across the Borough- on Borough owned property," Onorato said.
"We've stepped up our presence (around the Trappe Center) and I've had dialogue with the security officer there too," said Fire Chief Brian Long. "It seems to be better, but that could have to do with the colder weather."
Council President Fred Schuetz added that he's noticed that state troopers have been parked in the lot at the center recently as well.
A public hearing on the Anti-Loitering/Disorderly Conduct will be held at the December 4, 2012 Council meeting.
Council also discussed a resolution to designate The Trappe Fire Company #1 Ambulance as the first provider of services in the borough.
Fire Chief Brian Long asked if the Trappe Fire Company could also be given the same designation by the borough. Solicitor Dave Onorato suggested that these be two separate resolutions. Council approved the ambulance designation and will address the fire company designation at the December meeting.
Council members and audience members applauded the efforts of the Trappe Fire Company during their response to Hurricane Sandy. The borough experienced numerous trees and power lines down and some residents were without power for five days. Both the fire company building and Augustus Lutheran church experienced damage.
"We responded to 20 incidents during Sandy," Chief Long said. "There was a time (during the storm) when roads were blocked by trees and power lines and no one could get in or out of the area."
Chief Long credited the efforts of Bill Wilfong, the entire fire company crew and the Public Works Department. He thanked the Council for their gratitude saying, "That's what we do".
The public is invited to the December 4, 2012 Trappe Council meeting and to make comments on any issue during the public forum portion of the meeting.