Wow, I didn’t realize it had been so long since I posted. I mean, I knew I had neglected this space for a while – partially on purpose, partially because I was busy – but I didn’t realize it had been almost eight months.
So, I’m on council now. That plays a role in my lack of posting. I kept most of my comments to shorter items on Facebook once the primary election ended. I had fewer reasons to shout from the rooftops once I realized how many people in town really wanted the group I ran with to succeed. So that was part of it. Then Barb left. And so did some council members. And I had things I wanted to focus on more than bury myself in council business before I officially had to.
That’s why the blog has been barren. Well until now. And I don’t come here to mock or complain or point fingers. Well, actually, I do want to point fingers, but in a good way.
One of my biggest problems with the former leadership was their communication or lack thereof. Information didn’t always get out to residents and, when it did, there often seemed to be a negative connotation to everything. I wanted to fix that. Thanks to some help from borough manager Flo Ford, treasurer Sam Miller and secretary Dorrie Neiderer, a few changes I asked for have already taken place in the first six weeks since the board turned over.
First of all, there is now an Announcements page on the borough website. This was added to the top-level navigation on the borough’s website in January and serves as a place to keep agendas and general community information.
The second change somes on the Zoning Department page. At a recent seminar for newly elected officials sponsored by the Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs, I realized that the Hanover Zoning Ordinance was not available anywhere online. The webpage on the borough site talked about how you could get a hard copy or CD version of the ordinance, but that included a fee (stipulated by ordinance).
When I talked to Flo and Sam about it, they agreed that the ordinance should be widely available. People who requested a copy via e-mail got one free of charge so I asked if we could just post it online as well. A week later, Dorrie did just that and now you can download the zoning ordinance from the borough website.
I can’t thank the staff enough for listening and helping make these things comes to life. They may seem small, but putting a lot of little things together makes for big changes. I have a lot of other ideas and really liked hearing that some of them were either already in the works or aligned with ideas staff already had. We can’t do everything in six weeks, but I think we’re off to a good start.