City begins looking into street naming policy
Sunday, 22 July 2012 by Matthew Girard
The City of Belton began looking into a policy for the naming of streets last week.
After the Belton City Council approved the appointment of a committee to develop a policy of naming/renaming streets at the June 12 meeting, the committee of eight convened to begin the process of creating a policy.
The need for the policy was brought about by Belton's African American Churches United's request to rename a street for Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in May.
"The purpose of the meeting was to create a street-naming policy, not about specific street names per se, but to create a policy," Planning Director Erin Newcomer said. "We looked at other street-naming policies from around the area to see how they did it."
Because of the expected growth of Belton, Newcomer said the need for a policy is important to the city.
"It was brought up about why we didn't have a policy before, but nobody had ever come to the city to request a street-naming change," Newcomer said. "As the city is growing with a lot more streets going in, it's something that several cities have and is something that we are really going to need."
Although the first meeting was more of an informational meeting, Newcomer said discussion was well underway about the naming/renaming of streets policy.
"There was a little bit of discussion about staying in line with the Historic Preservation Ordinance to state the importance of the possible districts and the possible recognition in the policy for those changes," Newcomer said.
At the July 2 meeting, committee member Connie Demerson was selected as the committee chair. Along with Demerson, Wayne Carpenter (City Councilmember), Larry Guess (Planning and Zoning Commission), Rev. H.E. Jackson Jr. (BAACU), Rovert Atmar (BISD), Richard Cortese (Bell County Judge's Representative), Stephanie O'Banion (Belton Area Chamber of Commerce) and Adam Lucksinger (business representative) joined Demerson on the committee.
The next meeting for the committee is scheduled for July 16.