Shaw continues as president of New Hope Council
Given another two-year term as president of the New Hope Borough Council, Claire Shaw announced steps to forge better collaboration among the council, its committees, the business community and residents.
The council’s two new members, Connie Gering and Cliff Montgomery, figure prominently in these plans.
At Monday’s annual organizing meeting, Shaw said the system was being revamped to be more proactive and to better reflect the borough’s priorities. Each committee will provide a monthly report for the council’s agenda workbook so the council will be up to speed when it convenes on the third Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m.
“I think it’s a great idea,” Gering said. “Some of this is what we talked about when we were campaigning. We can avoid some duplication of efforts and work better. And I think it will help bring the people of the borough together.”
Gering, who has stepped down as president of the New Hope Chamber of Commerce and chairwoman of the borough’s Revitalization Committee, and Montgomery, who has a broad and extensive resume in global business, will chair the Economic Development Committee. They will be the council’s liaisons to the Revitalization Committee and seek to implement the comprehensive plan and the open space plan.
Gering will also serve on the newly created Civil Sector Task Force, which will include Geri Delevich and be chaired by Bill Scandone. The CSTF will work with the borough’s nonprofit organizations. Among them are the Bucks County Playhouse, which plays a key role in the borough’s economic vitality, the New Hope Historical Society, New Hope Arts and the Chamber of Commerce.
The task force will also oversee applications for special events, and New Hope hosts dozens of them each year, from road races to parades and street fairs.
Shaw and Scandone will compose the Constituent Outreach and Business Advisory Committee. They will focus on quality-of-life issues and the general business climate. They will work with the Chamber of Commerce when necessary.
Another new committee will focus on land use and historic preservation. Nick Gialias, who was elected council vice president for two years, will handle matters pertaining to the Historic Architectural Review Board. Rey Velasco, who was elected president pro tem, will oversee zoning hearing board issues, and Scandone will be liason to the planning commission.
Delevich and Montgomery will compose the environment and recreation committee, which will work with the Shade Tree Commission and Parks and Recreation Committee.
One of their first goals will be to implement a long-planned Cannon Square and Revolutionary Trail, which would give New Hope “a real town center” at the intersection of Ferry Street and Main Street, Shaw said.
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