Tyrone showing its vision

Tyrone Borough Council resolved a minor, albeit nagging, issue by deciding to reinstall five parking meters on Logan Avenue, next to the municipal parking lot just south of the borough building, that the borough removed a few months ago as a convenience to customers of businesses across the avenue.

That kind gesture was undermined by downtown employees who began parking in the spaces all day, rather than keeping them open for the customers intended.

Council members discussed responses to what was occurring and decided that the simplest solution would be to bring the meters back.

Tackling the parking space issue is not the council’s most important agenda item so far in this new year, however. Instead, addressing the issue of security at the borough building has become 2020’s most relevant agenda item, at least at this early stage of the year.

Failing to have good security measures in place is a no-no at this point in time.

With many issues now more complex and oftentimes more controversial, and with better overall enforcement, the need for effective security measures and procedures cannot be overstated.

While a half-century ago, residents — even strangers — could walk into a municipal office usually without anyone fearing one’s safety, that isn’t the case today, as a number of communities across the nation have shown in recent years.

Rather than Tyrone being accused of overreacting to the idea of possible trouble, because of how remote such problems might seem to be for a town of its character and size, the move on behalf of beefed-up safety should be appreciated instead.

The borough took a risk in not having addressed municipal building security long before now.

The borough council currently is seeking bids for what it regards as necessary security components, including a security barrier, remote locking system and possibly a camera.

Tyrone’s security-related decision made on Jan. 6 should serve as a reminder to communities that have not given thought to at least evaluating the quality of their current security measures and equipment.

In Tyrone’s case, there have been instances in which unhappy residents have entered municipal offices after being cited for violations. Thankfully, the situations didn’t escalate into physical confrontations or other violence where someone’s well-being was endangered.

Borough Manager Ardean Latchford has dealt with a somewhat different situation. He has come into his office at times to find someone who hadn’t made an appointment to meet with him already seated there.

The manager’s opinion regarding that kind of scenario is correct.

“We do not want to limit access to our public building, (but) we do need to keep the safety of our employees as our main concern,” the manager wrote in a report submitted to the council.

Meanwhile, the projected $11,000 to $20,000 cost of the security measures being pursued is reasonable for what is being sought.

Those security improvements won’t inhibit borough residents’ opportunities to access the community’s services and officials. Services just will be in a protected environment — an environment consistent with the needs of the times.

To Tyrone Borough’s credit, good leadership is stepping forward on issues big and small.


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