Understanding the needs of the community and determining the level of satisfaction with services provided to residents and businesses was the impetus behind a recent Bath Township community survey. Through use of the online platform Survey Monkey, a community questionnaire was developed asking residents to provide input on a variety of topics and township services and rate their level of satisfaction. Scores for each service were ranked on a scale of 1 to 5 (1-very dissatisfied, 3-average, 5-very satisfied). Included in the survey were questions surrounding police and fire services, roads, parks, and zoning and land use.
Residents were offered several options to complete the survey before the Sept. 30, 2022, closing date and in total, 786 people responded to the community questionnaire. Police department services were rated as a 5 on the scale by 74.73% of respondents who indicated they were extremely satisfied with police services in Bath Township.
A traffic safety concern was noted at the intersection of Granger Road and Medina Line Road on the border between Bath Township and Medina County. A review of crash data at this location since 2019 confirms a total of 16 crashes at this location, with four crashes occurring since June 2022. The concerning trend showing an increase in the number of motor vehicle crashes at this intersection was presented to the Summit County Engineer’s Office for review. The engineer’s office maintains authority over the intersection because Granger and Medina Line are both county roads. Bath Township has also reached out to Granger Township officials to collaborate on safety measures that could be implemented to increase safety at the intersection. The area remains under investigation for possible safety improvements.
With 79.45% of residents scoring Bath Fire/EMS as a 5 on the scale, emergency services continue to be an essential part of Bath Township local government. A staff of 12 full-time fire medics and 30 part-time medics enable Bath Fire Department to provide unparalleled service to the community. Despite increased costs of equipment and personnel, the Bath Fire Department and Bath Police Department effectively manage their resources and consistently exceed resident expectations.
Managing 62 lane miles of township roads isn’t an easy task, yet the Bath Township Service Department performs routine maintenance of these roads and utilizes a priority system for paving operations. For winter snow and ice operations, the service department began supplementing the traditional use of road salt with a liquid brine solution. The brine provides an effective barrier to inhibit ice formation on roads and improves the clearing capability during plowing operations. Acknowledging the important work of this department, 71.19% of township residents scored the service department with an above average rating at a 3.93-weighted total out of 5. To further improve winter plowing operations, the service department will be implementing a fleet management tool in each of the 10 vehicles used for plowing and salting township roads. The AT&T management device will utilize GPS tracking of service department vehicles, allowing route information analysis and improving response to winter storm events.
Resident satisfaction with the Bath Township Parks division was solid with 63.51% of residents scoring the department a 5 on the approval scale. With the most recent addition of the North Fork Preserve of Bath, residents have a variety of amenities available in each of the township parks. Whether it’s tennis, pickleball, lacrosse, baseball or simply taking a leisurely stroll through the Bath Nature Preserve, the Bath Township Parks are second to none and serve as a key feature in the community.
Zoning and land use were some of the most involved areas of review in the community survey. Bath Township Zoning received an above average rating at a 3.60-weighted total out of 5 on the approval scale from 55.97% of respondents. Highlighting the importance of preserving Bath’s rural character, residents who responded to the survey felt increased development should be concentrated to the business districts in the township. Land use and development have generally followed guidelines set forth in the township comprehensive plan. Zoning oversight is accomplished through a series of committees appointed by the board of trustees. They include the appearance review commission, board of zoning appeals, and zoning commission. Working closely with each of these entities, the Bath Township Zoning Department understands the community’s goals and implements strategies to balance community interests with land use.
Resident feedback continues to be an essential tool for evaluating and providing important services to the community. We appreciate the time and effort of those who responded to the community survey. Community leaders will continue to implement policies that provide for long-term sustainability, as well as enhance the safety and security of residents and businesses in Bath Township. ∞