Mantua Twp. – At a recent Trustee meeting, Bill Steiner, Portage County Recycling Director announced that single-stream recycling will come to Portage County in mid February. From February 15th through February 19th, drivers delivered 95 gallon, wheeled recycling carts. These new carts will replace small bins, and can be filled with unsorted recyclable materials including paper, cardboard and plastics coded one through seven. Residents are encouraged to visit the department’s new website at portagerecycles.com for more information. Mr. Steiner noted that drivers were currently being trained on the new vehicles and asked that residents be patient during this time of transition. Households will be notified as to the recycling pick up day in their neighborhood, or may call, email, or visit the website for more information. Mr. Steiner noted that Portage County Recycling currently services Mantua and Shalersville Townships, Streetsboro, Aurora, Franklin and Atwater Townships, Brady Lake, Kent, Ravenna, and Rootstown.
In similar news, trustees have tentatively agreed to schedule a Tire Collection day on May 14th in the township, which will take place from 1 – 3 pm near the Township Garage. As in previous years, tire drop off is free for residents.
On behalf of the Zoning Commission, Lynn Harvey provided the trustees and fiscal officer with updated pages for their zoning books. The changes include a map amendment, changes to section 408, and an updated table of contents, which reflects the aforementioned modifications. Ms. Harvey has requested an electronic version of these changes from Regional Planning Director Todd Peetz; the new information will be posted on the township’s website as soon as possible.
In other news, trustees voted unanimously to participate in Ohio Edison’s Pole Program to add a floodlight to illuminate the front of Center School as well as the side parking lot. The goal is to provide improved lighting in time for the upcoming election on March 15th, since the school serves as a voting venue for residents. In related news, trustees voted unanimously to join the National Trust for Historic Preservation in an effort to unearth and qualify for additional grants for improvements to the Center School. A community meeting about the latest developments on improvements to the structure was held on February 23rd.
In other news, Deeanna and Thomas Barkett attended the meeting to bring a matter to the attention of all three trustees. To summarize, the Barketts purchased a vacant lot adjacent to their property at sheriffs sale in the fall of 2013. Prior to agreeing to purchase the land, the Barketts did due diligence search for outstanding liens or debts on the property and found none. In January of this year, the Barketts were unpleasantly surprised to find that an assessment of $9,000 — more than they paid for the property — was now owed on the property. It was determined that the abandoned home, which sat vacant for over a dozen years, was removed as part of fledgling program by the Land Bank. The back taxes of $148,000 were forgiven, but the cost of removal was eventually, inadvertently, passed along to the new owners at the beginning of 2016. In contacting the trustees, township solicitor, County Auditor, County Prosecutor, and the Land Bank, the Barketts are exasperated with the huge, unexpected bill they recently received, since, “no one knows why.” It’s amazing to me,” Deeanna quipped, “for so many hands in Portage County to be in the pot, but no one has answers for us.” This issue will be addressed at the next Land Bank meeting in late February.
The next township trustee meeting will be held on Thursday, March 3rd at 7:30 pm.