Mantua – As noted previously, Ms. Linda Schilling resigned from her seat on Council at the June 18th meeting. That same evening, John Clark, husband of Mantua Mayor Linda Clark, was appointed to Council and sworn in that night. Since that meeting, several other key positions in the Village have been filled. Brian Rooth has been hired as a part-time service worker and Joe Urso has been hired as a seasonal employee.
At the July 16th Council meeting, David Akerley was hired, effective immediately, as Mantua’s Village Administrator, a position that was vacant since May. Mr. Akerley joins the Mantua team from Brecksville. He immediately took his seat at that evening’s Council meeting to begin the task of helping the Village heal from the recent storm and its aftermath. Mayor Clark’s report contained an account of storm damage throughout the Village, which included damage to roads and flooding to homes and businesses. She mentioned that she had been talking with the local Emergency Management Agency (EMA), who was working toward getting Portage County declared as a disaster area in the aftermath of the storm.
In other news, work on the Pump Station project is moving forward. According to Village Engineer Rich Iafelice, design work have been completed, and all the necessary easements have been signed. This project is a joint effort between the Village and the Crestwood School District. In addition, Mr. Iafelice mentioned that the sidewalk project along a portion of State Route 44 is moving forward. Work is slated to occur in summer of 2014.
At the meeting, several key ordinances were on the evening’s agenda, with council choosing to postpone voting on two key pieces of legislation to allow more time for community feedback. These issues relate to increased water and sewer rates. It was speculated that while having Council enact rate increases would not be popular, if the Village does not do so, the EPA has authority to step in and do so. Any increase stipulated by the EPA would most likely be at a higher cost to taxpayers than an increase stipulated by Village Council. Ordinances 2013-60 and 2013-61 will be on Council’s agenda for the next meeting, scheduled for August 20 at 7pm. Plan on attending to learn more, and to be a part of the decision process.