Think your government can't be responsive?
Maybe there's hope.
Of all the initiatives Columbia County officials have gotten into over the years, one of the more polarizing has been the speed hump program.
It sounds simple: When neighborhoods ask for help in slowing down motorists, the county conducts a traffic survey and, if the results warrant it, a crew installs asphalt speed humps.
This program evolved from an older version in which citizens first had to canvass the neighborhood to get signatures of support. That turned out to be controversial when some Evans residents disputed their signatures on a petition, so the county wisely took over the whole process.
So far, so good. But just lately, some residents have been complaining not about the process, but about the results. It seems the crews had switched from building low-and-slow speed humps to teeth-jarring speed bumps - narrower, taller and far more annoying to the residents who drive over them every day.
As Evans resident Chris Noah wrote last month, "Unless we want to leave parts of our vehicle behind, we must now come to a complete stop, ascend and descend this peak and then start up again. I have gone over logs on back roads more smoothly."
Noah wasn't alone in his complaints - and commissioners listened. Last week they agreed not only that future humps will be lower and less jarring, but that the bad ones will be replaced.
Sure, it's a costly lesson - more than a thousand bucks per hump. But with the county's sheriff praising speed humps as helping make motorists slow down, the result is safer neighborhoods.
And, hopefully, the residents of those neighborhoods will be happier, too.
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