by Sue Miklovic
Only four of the six village council members arrived at the Tuesday evening August 6th council meeting at council chambers. Both Aaron and Art Patterson were absent for the meeting when it began at 5:30pm, hindering Council’s ability to pass legislation.
The Public Participation section allowed resident Shirley Hutchison to address the council for the third time in the last couple of months about on-going drainage issues near her property. This has been a problem since early spring this year, as well as in recent years. Recently Ms. Hutchison met with State Representative-District 3 Haraz Ghanbari who is trying to help resolve the issue, that according to Ms. Hutchison is being caused by CSX blockage of the ditch drainage near her property. “ I hope something gets done” she said.
The village approved the hiring of Paula Steen as the Utility Billing Clerk, effective August 26, 2019. She has 24 years of experience in a similar position. The village also approved the hiring of Andrew Slembarski as a part time EMT employee and also the hiring of Dakota Kimble as a volunteer fireman beginning August 6 .
Finance Officer Tony Swartz reported the State of Ohio Auditor’s office is wrapping up the audit of 2017 and 2018 records in the village. He also reported the village is moving forward in the implementation of software for paying water and sewer fees and other payments made to the village. The on-line paying option is not mandatory.
The Village Administrator reported a few locations of top coat soil will be reseeded as part of the final inspection of the Maple Street Sidewalk project.
%- The Downtown Revitalization Project is scheduled to begin this week. The village owned property near the Main Street railroad crossing will be used to stage the equipment for the project.
% -The Neighborhood Revitalization Grant is entering the design and engineering phase. The six projects will be designed after the engineering firm is selected. Actual construction will likely not take place until the Spring of 2020.
%- The 200 Block of N. Main St. “Ohio Public Works Commission” Grant will start the bidder selection process in August, with construction anticipated in Summer 2020. This will include paving of the 200 block of North Main Street.
%- The Village is applying for a 2019 Wood County Park District grant
%- The basketball goal systems have been acquired from the previous WC Park grant funds, and should be installed within a couple of weeks.
The Mayor reminded Council members to make sure they are updated on the Sunshine Law and to have documentation of their completion of the mandatory training.
%- She also commented on the recent Good Ole Summertime Festival, which is sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce.
%- She also shared that the two properties south of the Railroad tracks(one between Main Street and Second Street, the other between Main Street and Tarr Street)have been rented as parking lots for many years by the Chamber for the benefit of the citizens, from CSX. The Chamber was recently informed by CSX that the cost to rent these spaces will increase from $150 to $650 each, at the end of the year.
The village intended to vote on a resolution to place a renewal 2 mill levy (for 5 years) that helps to fund Street repairs on the November 2019 ballot. However, five yes votes were needed to insure it’s passage, and there were not enough members present. After a move to Executive Session, the meeting resumed, and Councilman Aaron Patterson arrived, the Council was able to complete the rest of the business on hand with his fellow Council members.
Wednesday at 4:00 PM was the deadline to submit the information to the Wood County Board of Elections in order for it to appear on the November 2019 ballot. The current levy will be collected through 2020, but it is a lengthy, and sometimes expensive process to place a levy request on the ballot, so council was attempting to be pro-active in being well prepared for the future renewal needs. They began talking last Spring about the importance of not missing the August deadline. The levy generally generates around $87,000 per year for the Village. Because of Mr. Patterson’s arrival , five members were now available to pass the legislation necessary, and Mr. Swartz was able to hand deliver the paperwork to the Board of Elections before the deadline on Wednesday.
Also, an ordinance was approved adopting the recommendation of the planning commission which will allow Hancock Wood Electric to split 2 parcels and add an additional tract to create a new parcel. The property will be used for the construction of a new Prism Propane corporate building and accompanying facilities to the west of Prism Parkway.
Reports from the Emergency Department Heads are found in separate articles here on theNBXpress.