by Lisa Tome
Rob Alt's first 150 days in office as Elkton's mayor have been busy ones.
"I'm excited about my first 150 days in office. The town staff has been great. They have answered our call. Government works slow and some things are going to take time," said Alt, who was elected in May.
Alt led the town from 1998-2002. Prior to that, he served as a town commissioner, from 1994-98. He said people are showing an interest in what goes on in Elkton.
"It's been averaging close to 40 people per meeting (in attendance). It's absolutely wonderful that we get residents, business owners, and the community's citizens coming to the meetings," said Alt. One of the big issues that has come to light in the town is speed humps. People have been requesting them. "I'd like to try other types of traffic calming devices. At High and Howard streets we have put the pedestrian crossings in the street. In the State of Maryland, people don't have to stop at those (unless a pedestrian is in them). The intent of the crosswalks is to bring more attention to our pedestrians," said Alt. The mayor said those crosswalks were put in at the request of a citizen who reported not being able to cross the street.
In mid-November, Elkton town officials will take to the streets and tour the town. One issue they will look at is the parking meters. Currently, Elkton's parking meters are on hiatus to determine if they are needed.
Between July 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014, the town collected $24,115 in parking meter revenue. An additional $5,000 more, $29,345, was collected in parking fines during that same time span.
Elkton has 127 meters located on the municipal parking lot on West Main Street, and on Bow Street, West High Street, Singerly Avenue, Main Street, and South Street.
The fee for meters is five cents for six minutes, 10 cents for 12 minutes, and a quarter for 30 minutes. Nine meters were removed from Minihane's parking lot. The restaurant leases those spaces from the town. "My gut feeling is to remove them totally. But I could go either way. I strongly do not believe that we have parking issues in the town. We don't have that happening. We have a lot of open (parking) spaces. We need to do anything we can to encourage people to shop and do business here. We can put the meters back when the need arises," said Alt. "We're just not at that point yet."