A public hearing was held before the August 19, 2015 village council meeting  for public comment and discussion over proposed Ordinance 2015-28, which would amend Sections 1193.07 and 1193.08 of the Codified Ordinances of the village relating to restoration of non-conforming single-family dwellings.  If existing structures that are non-conforming by today’s codes are damaged, passage of this ordinance would help streamline the insurance and financing process for owners’ to be able to rebuild exactly what was lost.  Later during regular session council unanimously passed the ordinance.

During discussion of revenue, expenditure, cash balance and income tax reports, council president Hardesty asked council to review the reports he had given them which more accurately depicts the flow of income and expenses for the village.

According to Hardesty, 75% of the village’s annual revenue is received in the first two quarters of the year.  In his reports there are three distinct components: cyclic (income tax), predictable (property tax, county and local revenue, charges for services, gasoline tax, cigarette tax, etc.), and variable (fines, zoning permits, donations, sale of cemetery plots, etc.).  Currently income tax collected from residents provides 69% of the village’s overall revenue.  Hardesty believes revenue can be improved without raising taxes on village residents.  He thinks it can be accomplished through better income tax collection, more lucrative contracts for services.

On the expenditure side of things, Hardesty thinks fixed costs to the village need to be reviewed and evaluated to see what can be decreased otherwise road and sidewalk maintenance may have to be curtailed.

Property owners from Windham Street were present to address council about the severe flooding issues at the old railroad bridge near Sky Plaza.  Pictures that were presented showed how violent and extreme the flooding was during the last torrential downpour at the end of June of this year.  Discussion ensued about the changes to the area when the (now closed) Sky Plaza gas station was built and if the flow of the storm drainage was impeded.  Council President Hardesty said that he would talk with ODOT because the flood does present a dangerous situation on the State Route.  He would also talk with the planning commission to see what exactly was involved when the gas station was built.  Council informed the property owners that they would get back to them on their findings.

In other business, Council approved the hiring of Vicki Wilcox as a dispatcher effective 8/25/15, the appointment of John Porter to the Board of Zoning Appeals, and Resolution 2015-35 authorizing the village clerk to certify delinquent water and sewer charges to the Portage County Auditor’s office so they are placed as an assessment on the listed parcel numbers.  Council President Hardesty informed council of the preliminary approval of Issue 1 funding for 2016.  He is hoping final approval will be received by the end of August.  Council also discussed the Liberty Street bridge repair work scheduled for 2017.

During round table discussion, Councilman Kaiser asked about the status of crack-seal maintenance for the village’s roads this coming fall.  He stated that there are several roads that have to be done before winter.  Council president Hardesty stated that he will arrange for bids for the work.

Council adjourned to executive session for discussion of personnel discipline.  If you’d like to know more of what is happening in your community attend a meeting.  The next regular village council meeting is scheduled for September 9, 2015 at 7:30 p.m. at Village Hall.