Quiet Zone Committee Works On Strategy
SYRACUSE — About eight people attended the quiet zone meeting held Thursday, Nov. 5, at the Syracuse Community Center to plan its next moves. Resident George Marlow led the meeting.
The committee formalized its mission statement, vision statement and values. “This will be the message we’ll pass out to the community in the coming months,” Marlow explained.
The mission of the committee is to improve quality of life through elimination or reduction in unnecessary noise levels. The values statement states the committee will work with all stakeholders to create quiet zones in and around Syracuse improving the quality of life for all without harming public safety.
The values statement of the committee states safety of all residents remains a primary concern. Reduction in noise levels must be shown to not harm public safety. Reduction in noise levels can be achieved by creating quiet zones. Quiet zones are defined in the “First rule on the use of locomotive horns at highway rail grade crossings and can be established to improve quality of life to reduce noise levels.”
Residents deserve the right to enjoy a reduction in noise levels provided public safety is not harmed. Quiet zones can only be achieved in partnership with the governing body with the stakeholders working together to make it a priority.
The committee formalized its name selecting “Shh Quiet Zone” since it described the action the committee is working on.
Marlow reported he met with Syracuse Clerk Treasurer Julie Kline regarding how to designate donations to an account for the quiet zone project. The committee could be a committee of an existing 501 (c) 3 such as the Syracuse Lake Association or be appointed by the town council. Marlow reported Becky Fox is looking at having the committee formalized as a committee of the SLA.
Also discussed was selecting a consultant for the quiet zone evaluation. Discussion turned to a draft of a letter from Lawson-Fisher Associates P.C. which was sent to then-council president Brian Woody last year regarding professional engineering services for a quiet zone. Marlow said he spoke to Faith Morrison, civil engineer with LFA, asking if the proposal was still valid. Morrison said it is, but LFA had not heard back from the Syracuse Town Council.
Marlow said he would schedule a meting with Town Manager Henry DeJulia about whether the issue ever came before the council. “We have to get the town to agree. The town has to file the applications, not groups like us,” Marlow explained.
Sherri Seniff suggested having a strong online presence to raise funds and petition support. David Clevenger said he is hearing officials are concerned about public safety if the horns ended. He asked if there were safety studies the committee could refer to regarding quiet zones and accidents.
The committee will have to work with county officials as well as the Syracuse Town Council and possibly the state.
Kay Young said she thought the matter was worth a safety study such as suggested by LFA in its letter.
The committee members decided to get on the agenda for the council’s December meeting and tentatively meet Dec. 8 and invite council members and County Commissioner Brad Jackson.