The Scotts Valley City Council voted at its Wednesday, Feb. 19 meeting to move forward with a plan to remove the northbound and southbound stop signs along Glenwood Drive at the intersection with Kerry Court and Casa Way.
The signs will be removed for at least two months, said City Engineer Majid Yamin, while city public works staff conduct studies on whether or not the signs' absence relieves pressure on the traffic during school hours.
After two months, he said, the issue will likely return to the council.
The signs were put in place as a temporary measure during the construction of the now-completed sidewalks on the way to the nearby Scotts Valley High School.
The stop signs on Casa Way and Kerry Court, however, will remain in place.
Neighbors from Casa Way and Kerry Court respectively argued for and against the signs' removal. Residents of Casa Way pointed to the number of vehicles that cut through their neighborhood to avoid the traffic backups, while Kerry Court residents said that the stop signs make entering and exiting their cul-de-sac safer.
City loosens restrictions of sewer connections
The council also voted to loosen regulations on allowing residents with property outside the city limits to connect to the city's sewage system.
The council cited the reduction of strain on the city's wastewater treatment facility in recent years as one of the primary reasons for the decision.
As part of the plan, properties need no longer be directly adjacent to the city limits, or within the city's “sphere of influence” to qualify.
Incentives for new police officers approved
The council voted unanimously to allot more funding to the Scotts Valley Police Department in an effort to create more competitive bonuses and incentives for recruiting new police officers.
The department, which has lost several officers to retirement, injury, and poaching by other departments, cited the need to create enticing incentives — not only for recruitment, but retaining officers once they've completed training.
“What we're hoping to do is make our department more appealing to those in academies,” said Chief John Weiss.
The new plan calls for $5,000 in bonuses to be awarded to recruits from police academies over their first three years with the department, as well as $2,000 to help new hires relocate to the Scotts Valley area if necessary.
“Anything we can do to make (academy trainees) take a second look at us is helpful,” said Councilwoman Donna Lind, herself a retired SVPD officer.