Resident brings knowledge of lights to council

WELLSVILLE — Village Council approved a request for the removal of a street light on Riverside Avenue and in its place, a new LED-lit hedge be installed.

The request was made Tuesday during public comment by Riverside Avenue resident Dave Jackson, who asked permission for AEP Energy to remove the street light near the intersection of Riverside and Eighth streets and replace it with an Evergreen box hedge that will be installed at the wall and will include LED lighting on both sides of the hedge.

Jackson told council he spoke with a representative from AEP Energy, who advised Jackson the cost to remove the light was $40. Jackson agreed to cover the costs.

In presenting the information to village council, Jackson also provided some of his knowledge based on what he has learned on street light laws while residing in California. He mentioned the lighting also would provide a better look to the area.

“It’s a big step forward. It’s a small issue,” Jackson said. “Clearly, it’s one light, but if you want information regarding that subject, I know plenty about it simply because I lived in Palm Springs, Calif., where street lights are banned, and I lived in Manhattan Beach, Calif., also where street lights have been radically re-worked from top to bottom.

“This does not mean less light by the way. Regardless of the one we’re talking about, that is less light. When you’re on Riverside, the less street light you have around you, the better. It’s totally beautiful through the river valley without glaring street lights.”

Jackson said the cost to use the LED lighting would be inexpensive, would cost less than operating a regular street light, and would also take less power to operate than the regular street light.

Jackson also provided information about towns that have switched to LED lighting, and have been cited by the International Dark Sky Association (IDA) as “Dark Sky Cities.”

The IDA is a non-profit organization based in Tucson, Ariz., whose mission is to protect the night skies for future years while combating light pollution. Among its goals is to serve as an advocate for the protection of the night sky, educate the public about night sky conservation, promote environmentally-responsible outdoor lighting, and empower the public with tools and resources to bring back the night.

The IDA has more than 60 chapters throughout the world including one based in Pittsburgh.

Also during public comment, Shoub Towers resident Naomi Gooch publicly thanked the Wellsville Police Department and the village for the development of a crosswalk, which she noted makes it easier for residents to walk throughout town.

Also receiving commendation were representatives of Wellsville First Christian Church. Mayor Nancy Murray thanked the group for its efforts during the most recent Community Clean-Up Day, and commended them for pitching in due to the absence of assistance through the Summer Youth Employment Program, which was discontinued by the state earlier this year.