Windham Twp. – Windham Township Trustees met for their regularly-scheduled meeting last Thursday with trustees Dann Timmons, Brian Miller and Jesse Wirick, along with fiscal officer Jayme Neikirk, in attendance. The meeting was called to order and guest Betty Clapp, president of the board of trustees of the Portage County District Library (PCDL). Clapp was seeking support for the library levy that is on the ballot this fall. She stated that the library is currently trying to operate on a budget for 1997. The library receives about 95% of its funding from the government which has reduced funding to libraries considerably over the last few years. The library expects to see more reductions of government funding. The levy will generate enough funding to extend library hours, restore staffing, update computers and more. The cost to a homeowner with a $100,000 home is $30 a year or $2.50 a month. The trustees discussed the issue and agreed to endorse the library levy.
The minutes of the previous meeting were approved as presented. In safety news, Timmons announced that the old rescue squad that was replaced with a new unit was sold to North Lawrence Fire Department. Questions about panic/ crash bars on the doors at the town hall were brought up at a previous meeting, which had Timmons researching the issue. Timmons stated that he was unable to confirm whether it was required or not. According to the American Disability Act it isn’t listed as a requirement, however, he is going to have the fire chief inspect the building and see if it is a requirement for the fire department.
The next item on the agenda was the roads. Supervisor Rich Gano reported that the salt was in and the trucks are ready to roll for winter. A discussion was held about removing five dead trees on Colton Road in the road right-of-way. After the discussion the trustees approved the removal of the trees for $700, providing they received something in writing from the resident stating he didn’t object to the removal. In other road news, the trustees approved the crack sealing of Wadsworth, Werger and Bryant Roads along with paving an apron at the bus turn- around on Wadsworth Road. The job is contracted to Hard Labor of Windham.
Zoning issues: the board held a public meeting prior to the regular meeting to discuss proposed zoning changes. The changes were a hot topic and the trustees were unable to address all the proposals so a vote on the changes was not taken. Another public meeting on the issues can be expected. Several residents wanted clarification on accessory building height. One place in the current zoning code states no taller than 15 feet and another says 35 feet. Timmons said it was vague and that they had set a precedent of 15 feet when the trustees had previously turned down other requests and sent them through the zoning board of appeals process. Timmons said he was uncomfortable making any adjustments different from the precedent until the zoning code is updated, because he was concerned about former applicants suing the township. Trustees Miller and Wirick also stood firm on the issue. Until the code is updated to 35 feet the resident will have to apply for a variance and go through the appeals process.
Wirick updated everyone on the status of the NOPEC Grant Project on the town hall and service garage. Everything is just about done except the electrical work which is supposed to be completed soon.
In other news, the cemetery footers are scored out and if the weather cooperates they should be poured next Wednesday October 12, 2011.
The trustees meet on the first Thursday of each month at the town hall at 7 pm.