By Jennie Acklin

School bus signs and safety were the first topic discussed at the Dec. 21 Town of Ellicottville board meeting. Concerned citizen Shawn Lafferty made a request to board members for two signs to be installed on Beaver Meadows Road, off Rte 219, at Hebdon Road. Lafferty stated that 16 to 21 kids get on and off the bus at this particular bus stop, and the speed limit there is 45 mph. Kids are lined up alongside the road, and it is potentially dangerous, especially without a warning sign. Referencing the recent school bus accident in Springville, Lafferty is working hard to prevent another such tragedy. The board approved the request, with all in favor.

Town Supervisor Matt McAndrew talked to the board about a letter received from Village of Ellicottville Mayor John Burrell, requesting an emergency purchase of a new sidewalk plow. The Town and Village share the current plow, and it broke twice in mid-December during a week of significant snowfall. A rental was obtained for $2,500 per week to take care of the sidewalks, which is still being used until repairs are complete.

Burrell’s letter requests a purchase of a new machine from Admar of Buffalo, at an estimated cost of $60,200. An annual trade-in contract would cost $1,000 per 100 hours of use, and is also being considered. The village of Allegany has the same machine being considered, and McAndrew suggested that he and Tom Scharf go see it; if they are pleased with the demonstration, they will recommend the purchase. The Board pre-approved the emergency purchase, but also noted that they want to let the Village of Ellicottville keep the Town’s half of the old plow, and will not pay for any more repairs on that piece of equipment.

Town Engineer Mark Alainello updated the board on progress with the EVGV Trail.MDA Engineering is working on the trail’s detailed site plan, and discussed possible permit applications. The Trail board officially kicked off its capital campaign, and informational postcards were presented.

The first section will start at the Town Center (next to the Nannen Arboretum) and continue east to Route 219, possibly ending at the Tim Horton’s restaurant. The cost estimate for completing this first section is $500,000 for an 8-foot wide stonedust trail.

Having a section of the trail network in place and used by the public may potentially increase the odds of landing future federal, state and local grant money, as well as private philanthropic funding.

The next meeting of the Town of Ellicottville board will be held at 6 p.m. On Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017 at the Town and Village Hall in Ellicottville.