Garrettsville – Village officials present at the September 13th village council meeting, were Village Solicitor Michele Stuck, Linda Hartman, and Council people Steve Hadzinsky; Tom Hardesty; Deb (Glass) Wordell; Sheri Johnson; Jeff Kaiser; and Becky Harrington. The meeting was called to order around 7:30pm by Council President Hardesty.
The minutes from the prior meeting were approved in a unanimous vote; as was a motion to pay the bills. Hadzinsky informed the other officials that he believes the village is still on track to finish the year in the black.
Resolution 2017-28, a resolution authorizing the mayor to apply for, accept and enter into an agreement for a revolving loan account for the GIS mapping and assessment project was approved unanimously.
Village Council also expressed support for an upcoming EMS Levy. Kaiser explained that while the new levy would essentially be a replacement of the existing levy it cannot be billed as one in the ballot language. Long story short, if approved by voters, this levy would replace the existing one and generate an additional .8 mils— allowing Community EMS to undertake some much-needed expenditures in the next 3-4 years. These projects included replacements to vehicle chassis, purchasing three new heart monitors, and potentially replacing the chase car/SUV which is getting up there in years.
Multiple resolutions were passed honoring businesses and individuals, including:
Resolution 2017-30 honoring former Police Sergeant Eric Dunn for his service to the Village and its residents
Resolution 2017-31 honoring Valerie McCullough for her service in the Income Tax Department
Resolution 2017-33 recognizing Charles Auto Family for their 60 years in business
Discussion of changes to the village website were tabled until the October meeting.
Bids are still being sought for replacement of carpeting and windows at Village Hall.
Resolution 2017-32, which was passed unanimously, authorizes the mayor and village to settle an outstanding Ohio Worker’s Comp claim from 2005.
Council had their first reading of proposed ordinance 2017-35 which amends the water rates. After studying the water department budget, it was noticed that the ongoing rate increase schedule is insufficient to maintain the planned water line replacement schedule. The current rate increase schedule appears to be hampered by a drop in water consumption – which is likely tied to increased awareness of water usage. This reduction in consumption reduces the department’s projected revenue. Ordinance 2017-35 would add a 2% base rate increase to the already scheduled 5% increase in 2018. We’ll likely hear more details at the second reading of the ordinance at the October meeting.
Keith Whan informed council that an insurance settlement of a little over $14,000 was received for the damaged police vehicle. The first of two new police SUVs has been ordered, while a motion from Kaiser to authorize the purchase of a 2018 Chevy Tahoe with Interceptor Package at a price not to exceed $36,000 was made and subsequently withdrawn. This purchase will likely be discussed further at the October meeting.
A Garrettsville resident was present at the meeting to find out what information had been found regarding an issue they are having with a storm basin. The resident reported that damage to their drain tile occurred because of work performed by the gas company on the right of way. The residents expressed their disappointment in the council’s unwillingness to help them — it should be noted that in general, the village does not inspect work performed by utility companies and the resident should contact the PUCO office to register a complaint and to request the gas company look into this problem.
Hardesty reported that stones for the planters at the recently refurbished municipal lot had been ordered. He also mentioned that there are about < 1000 linear feet of sidewalk to replace. Hadzinsky read from an open letter he wrote to Harrington, an apology for a newspaper article that was, in his opinion, unkind to her. Wordell spoke with Tom Collins and Dolores McCumbers about the new entrance to Headwaters Trail on Windham Street. The Rotary has plans to add a bench, bike rack, and some landscaping to help improve the area. Wordell also asked if the fencing along Windham Street could be removed – some discussion followed about the usefulness of the fence in screening debris during floods. Hardesty shared some photos from past floods in that area. Kaiser inquired about the Liberty Street bridge replacement project which seems to be plagued by constant postponements. He would like to see the project completed this year. Harrington reported that she has not yet heard anything back on the Nature Works grant.