Local Government

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The village has budgeted $1.89 million for 2015 and has projected only $1.69 million in revenue. A significant portion of the budget, almost half, is appropriated to the police department.

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At their last meeting, village council heard from Mary Greer, spokesperson from the Concerned Citizens organization, on the topic of injection well integrity.

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Johnson, a newcomer to public office, has roots in Garrettsville going back a couple of generations and has lived here her entire life. She currently works in administrative support at Charles Chevrolet here in Garrettsville.

Chief Byers shared, “The 911 outage this January is a prime example of how a battle-tested method is still relevant.”

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Stressing the importance of this seemingly old-school system, Chief Byers shared, “The 911 outage this January is a prime example of how a battle-tested method is still relevant.” Byers referred to the 911-outage caused when a steam pipe burst, damaging an AT&T switching station. That random event knocked out 911 service in Summit, Portage, Stark and Medina Counties for two-days.

According to Pam Baynes, wife of Hiram’s new Assistant Fire Chief Brandon Baynes, “Many of us know of or have heard of the ‘brotherhood’ of firemen. For those of you who wonder, it does exist. I have seen it. But for me, it’s not just a brotherhood. It’s a ‘familyhood’.” She’s gotten to experience this unique bond first-hand over the past 22 years that her husband, Brandon has been a fireman/paramedic.

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“We as a department, and the community as a whole, are really lucky to have Brandon take Mark's place as our Assistant Chief,” shared HFD Fire Chief Bill Byers.

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Make no mistake, the whole initiative to Save the Mantua Center School has divided the current township trustees—split them three ways as to what to do with the old school building. This not a new development either, because historically there has been much mud-slinging since the purchase of the school in 2004. The community has demonstrated overwhelming support for saving the school and making it into a community center.

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Mantua - According to Clerk-Treasurer Jenny August, Village Council has cancelled a public hearing that was originally scheduled for March 17th to discuss amending...

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Hiram - At the last meeting of the Hiram Village Council, Police Chief Ed Samec reported that his Department received three grants in February....

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Nelson Twp. – Residents gathered at the Nelson Community House on Wednesday, February 18th for the second trustee meeting of the month. Present were...

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Mantua - Alex Forristal, Crestwood High School freshman from Scout Troop 575, led the Pledge of Allegiance to open a recent trustee meeting in...

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Garrettsville - A hot and emotional topic lately in the village of Garrettsville has been the village’s finances and whether or not the village is in financial trouble. The mayor has stated that several residents have approached him asking if the village is “broke”. The village, as of this writing, is not in debt nor is it “broke”. However, the concern that’s been raised is not about today’s finances, but deficit spending and what that may mean for the future.

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Windham - The WVFD Joint Fire District Board met for their regularly scheduled meeting at the fire station last Thursday, February 12, 2015. The...

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Freedom Twp. - After the Pledge of Allegiance, the regular meeting of the Freedom Township Board of Trustees was called to order by the...

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Garrettsville - Garrettsville village council wants the message to get out to all residents that they are required to file a village income tax...

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Hiram - The Hiram Police Department is pleased to announce the acquisition and approval of the Ohio Criminal Justice Services Justice Assistance Services Law...

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Phil Snyder voiced his opinion on the four member board. Snyder said, “I am duly elected by official action of council to serve on this board (fire) and I oppose any decision made by a four-man board, due to not having enough representation from the village.” This went into a lengthy discussion with many people voicing opinions.

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Garrettsville - The January 14th Garrettsville village council meeting began with council re-electing councilman Tom Hardesty as Village Council President.   Mayor Patrick then addressed council with a State of the Village report (see below).  Mayor Patrick also asked for and was granted council’s approval for his 2015 mayoral appointments.

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At the December 10th Garrettsville Village Council meeting, Mayor Patrick called Garrettsville police officer Timothy Christopher forward as he read Resolution 2014-38, which recognizes the seven years of service of police dog Taz and authorized retirement of the canine. It further authorized officer Christopher’s assumption of ownership in exchange for $1. Taz was retired earlier this year for health reasons. He now resides with his handler, Officer Christopher and his family. Christopher thanked the mayor and council for their dedication and continued support of the canine program and, though he will not be the canine handler any more, he will still be involved in a supervisory capacity. Officer Keith Whan will be Garrettsville Police’s new canine handler.

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The WVFD Joint Fire District met for their regularly-scheduled meeting with all board members in attendance. The board approved the November minutes, expenditures, bank reconciliation and the temporary appropriations totaling $713,000.

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At the last meeting of the Hiram Township Trustees, Assistant Chief Mark Kosak thanked village and township residents for their votes in support of the Fire Department’s latest ballot issue. Kosak announced that as of January 1st, the department will begin 24 hour staffing, with two firefighter/EMTs on staff around the clock. Due to the increase in staffing, response times should see a reduction.

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The Newton Falls Municipal Court has earned final certification as a Treatment Court from the Ohio Supreme Court’s Commission on Specialized Dockets.

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Mantua - In her report, Mayor Linda Clark announced the unofficial report that issue 42 passed by 12 votes. She remains cautiously optimistic until...

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At the start of the last regular Council meeting, Hiram Mayor Lou Bertrand swore in Firefighter Austin Bracken to the Hiram Fire Department. Firefighter Bracken, a Garrettsville native is currently in EMT school. Upon completion of the EMT program, he will serve the Department in that capacity as well.

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Newton Falls Police Department was honored together with more than 50 other Northeast Ohio law enforcement agencies on Veterans Day for their traffic safety efforts and programs implemented to encourage safe driving.

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Fire Chief Mike Iwanyckyj said the FEMA grant opened November 1, 2014 and will remain open until December 5, 2014. Mike reintroduces Jack Breese, who has been the grant writer for WVFD. Breese presented a contract to the board, for grant writing for the FEMA Grant. Breese also made a few suggestions on what the board should apply for with the grant.

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Councilman Klamer reminded council members that “Our job is to provide service to the residents. Our job is not to see how much we can bankroll.” He said as the village council they are responsible to the taxpayers and spending the extra money this year is “officials doing their job”.

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Trustee Schulda suggested that if adequate funds are available, Trustees should also consider paying off the remaining portion owed by the Township for the Hiram Fire Department’s new truck.

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Regarding the Center School committees and volunteers, Trustee Festa commented that he was, “not thrilled that non-professionals were added to the Assessment Committee.” Trustee Festa plans to discuss it with Todd Peetz from Regional Planning, but is, “looking forward to the next phase.”

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Mantua - As many people know, Lieutenant Ken Justus and his K9 partner Vader have been working successfully to keep the Mantua community safe...

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At the start of the October meeting, Mayor Lou Bertrand congratulated several members of the Fire Department on their recent promotions. Those promoted include:...

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Windham - The Windham Village council met on September 22, 2014 with all council members in attendance. Mayor Rob Donham called the meeting to...

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The next regular meeting of the Mantua Village Council will be held at 7 pm on Tuesday, October 21st. The meeting will be preceded at 6 pm by a Town Hall meeting regarding the upcoming street improvement levy, which will be on the ballot for village residents in November. Residents are strongly encouraged to attend this informative meeting.

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For the remainder of the meeting the trustees heard commentary in support of the the Quarry Park’s concerts, as well as several complaints about them. Ultimately Meduri suggested that the trustees put together a list of changes they would like to see from the Quarry Park, and submit them to the owner’s legal counsel; a suggestion that most of the trustees seemed to agree with.

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Mantua - At the last meeting of the Mantua Township Trustees, it was announced that an organizational meeting will be scheduled to discuss committee...

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Windham - The WVFD Joint Fire District met on September 11, 2014. The meeting was called to order by the Chairman Dann Timmons. The...

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During round table discussion, the mayor announced that FALL CLEAN-UP is scheduled for THURSDAY, OCTOBER 23, and TRICK-OR-TREAT is scheduled for THURSDAY, OCTOBER 30th from 6-8 P.M.

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Windham Twp. - Windham Township Trustees met for the regularly scheduled meeting with trustees Dann Timmons, Brian Miller and Rich Gano in attendance. The...

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Geauga County Auditor Frank J. Gliha announces that 2014 is a Triennial Update year for Geauga County. Based on our analysis and analysis of...

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“Cops and Kids” fishing day presents an opportunity for area children to enjoy the day fishing with police officers of the Hiram Police Department. The event builds lifelong bonds between children and police officers.

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Windham - Windham Village will place two levies on the ballot this fall. The first one  is a 1.38 mill levy that is expected...

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Here’s your chance to finally get a unique rain barrel while helping to protect our water resources. Don’t delay, bid on a barrel today! All proceeds will go toward the District’s environmental education programs.

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In other business, the Ohio National Guard's Camp Ravenna Joint Military Training Site was selected as one of five possible sites for a missile defense site. The Missile Defense Agency, which operates under the authority of the U.S. Department of Defense, will be briefing local elected officials on August 5, 2014 at Reed Memorial library prior to a meeting open to the public. Brian Miller will attend on behalf of the township.

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The Mantua Restoration Society, in conjunction with the Mantua Historical Society, is hosting the event on Saturday, to demonstrate what Carole Pollard refers to as, “the sweep of time the building has been through,” Both groups plan to have several exhibits throughout the building, highlighting world and local events that occurred throughout its century of life. In addition, a small classroom exhibit will showcase desks, materials, clothing and photos from the early life of the school. The event will include tours of the building, as well as ice cream and cake to celebrate the building’s historic 100th birthday.

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Hiram Twp. - It was noted that that as a part of the partnership between Hiram Township and the Hiram Village Police Department, Hiram...

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Hiram - Meet “Copper”, the newest addition to the Hiram Police Department. Copper is now Hiram Police Department’s mascot and will be at Hiram...

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Fiscal Officer David Finney provided the trustees with suggested supplemental appropriations to the Township budget that will free up $85,000 for use on the chip & seal project. By dropping part 5 from the project, only $84,576.20 would be needed for chip & seal work on Township roads. The trustees also voted to award Hughes Contracting the contract for parts 1 through 4.

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During round table discussion, Council President, Tom Hardesty, updated everyone on the status of the puddling issues with the completion of the Windham street paving project. The state will make sure the problems are corrected. Hardesty also stated that the village’s next improvement project is to construct curbing on the east side of South Street from the top of the hill to the library entrance. He is waiting on estimates, but the cost should not exceed the budgeted amount.

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The WVFD Joint Fire District Board met for their regularly scheduled meeting on July 11, 2014 with members Dann Timmons, Debbie Blewitt and Ron Kilgore, along with Fiscal Officer Jayme Neikirk in attendance. Two members were unavailable for the meeting.

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Nelson Trustees meet on the first and third Wednesdays of the month at 7 p.m. in the Community House. Meetings are open to the public and residents are encourage to attend.

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Non-violent inmates from the Portage County Jail worked alongside township employees, and a PlayWorld Systems specialist to erect the township’s playground equipment at Pixley Park on June 19th. The playground is expected to be ready for use by the second week of July.