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Hansville Speed table group hits roadblock

HANSVILLE — County Commissioner Steve Bauer disbanded a Hansville speed table working group in late July after some of its members said the effort had fallen into dysfunction.

Bauer formed the committee to study alternatives to the asphalt speed tables, which have stirred controversy in the North End community since their installation in 2007. The group began as two committees — one tasked with finding alternatives that would allow the speed tables to be removed, the other studied ways of enhancing the existing tables. Bauer merged the committees in May and the combined group went to work researching alternatives, including radar signs, increased law enforcement and changes to speed table design.

The group met with the Kitsap County Sheriff’s office and was planning to consult with North Kitsap Fire and Rescue.

Bauer terminated the group on July 31, citing a July 20 letter from Ed Call, who served as chair of the Enhancement Committee. Call wrote that a schism had formed after the committees were merged.

“Recent conversations face to face, via email or by telephone have degraded in many cases, to include threats of lawsuits in one instance,” Call wrote.

In an email to committee members, Bauer said Call’s letter and conversations with other frustrated committee members swayed him to end the effort.

“This issue has been going on since the speed tables were installed almost three years ago,” Bauer said. “It is time to bring it to a close.”

Bauer said the county will review suggestions made by the committee to determine which might be effective and affordable to pursue.

“I thought they made good progress,” Bauer said Monday.

Committee member Barb Fox said several people in the group plan to continue researching speed table alternatives and present their findings to the community. Fox said she and the continuing members were dismayed that Bauer had not consulted the committee as a whole before making the decision to disband and had ended the effort before the group’s findings were shared.

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