Business As Usual For The Fayette Village Council

VR LOGO - WEBMr. Scott Wagner brought the meeting to order at 6:00PM. Those in attendance were: Mayor Ruth Marlatt, Mr. Mat Johnson, Mr. Dave Wheeler, Mr. Scott Wagner, Mr. Rodney Kessler, and Mrs. Linda Short. Mr. Dave Borer was absent for his role. Also attending were Village Administrator Steven Blue, Village Fiscal Officer Karin Sauerlender, and Police Chief Jason Simon.

The Agenda was approved as written. Mr. David Green of the State Line Observer represented the Press.

Visitors present were Mr. and Mrs. Kramer and TRW representative Doug Cox. Mr. and Mrs. Kramer came to speak against giving TRW a zoning variance. They feel that TRW has already been a bad neighbor with excessive noise and trash. They also feel that TRW has not been responsive to any complaints that they have made. Administrator Blue suggested that they come to the zoning board meeting on August 25 to make their comments. He gave the Kramer’s a copy of the plan for the proposed addition.

Mayor Marlatt passed out an article from the Toledo Blade regarding the shift of property taxes from business to homeowners.

The TRW expansion means there will now be a large roof where before there was a grass field, which means that storm drainage becomes an issue. The closest catch basins are at the north end of Cherry Street and at the corner of Gross and Gorham. The drainage won’t currently be able to get to either basin. The drainage along Industrial Parkway is an open ditch that travels west to a country tile. TRW’s plans do include a plan for water retention in the truck dock during heavy rains that would allow for gradual release of the water at a level not much more than we handle currently. This would be enough to cover a 25-year rain event. We need to extend the existing storm drain from Gross Street approximately 700 feet north along Gorham to their building. This is the most feasible/cost effective plan.

There are three options for financing:

1. Include in the new sewer separation project which is currently financed 75% grant and 25% loan. Gleason gave a tentative price of $30,000 for this project.
2. Share the cost with TRW. It would probably cost less in total to do this (about half) but our share would still be about $7,500. There would be no grant funding available under this option.
3. Require TRW to pay the full cost, similar to when you want electricity. However, they will be adding jobs with the expansion, paying more taxes, etc.

Mr. Cox indicated that the project is already on a tight budget, but they would be able to do a cost sharing arrangement. TRW will be adding 4-5 manufacturing cells with 20-25 added jobs. If they cannot expand here, they may need to move the entire plant elsewhere. Mr. Cox will get a cost estimate from the contractor to give to Administrator Blue. TRW has already paid a zoning application fee of $3,550.00, which is half of our cost right there.

We have received the first payment request for about 2/3 of the total contract price for the resurfacing of Bergman Street. We will still owe them the balance plus there is a retainage in this bill. They are aware that there are a number of things that they need to fix. Administrator Blue walked every inch of berm and made a detailed list of everything that needs to be fixed.

Gleason is 99% finished. Mr. Wagner suggested that the village pursue the penalty for failure to complete the project on time. Everything on the original punch list was completed by July 31. There is one more item, a hole that needs to be filled, but that is more of a warranty item than a punch list item and therefore is not subject to deadline. We also added an item to the original punch list – Boesgrs want their sidewalk fixed. Administrator Blue informed the council that Gleason has actually given the village a lot of breaks, such as not charging for down time when the taps were not located in a timely fashion. Mr. Johnson claimed that the alley behind the grocery store was not what they promised and he would like to see it fixed. Administrator Blue reported that, although it isn’t pretty, it does what we wanted it to do. Mr. Wagner countered that they said it would be all one pour with no need for the crack seal. That is not what we got. Maple Street is also as bad as it was before they fixed it. Administrator Blue will pursue the Alley and Maple Street with Gleason.

There was a police report filed when they hit a building with a skid steer, but there wasn’t a great deal of damage, just a gouge on one brick. If there are things that are still not right, we can require that they come back and fix them, but that is not the same as charging a penalty because they are not done.

Tax Assessments: Administrator Blue passed out three lists:
1: Properties to be assessed now ($13,871.38).
2. Landlords to which we can write letters first and assess if they do not pay ($10,133.81)
3. Properties to which have been sold and therefore cannot be assessed. These accounts may need to be written off. ($5,273.37). We may be able to go to small claims, but it will cost $50 per account and is still up to us to collect, even if we get a judgement.

Once the accounts have been assessed, they are considered “current” and the water must be turned back on.

Public Works has been working on a shut-off policy, so that the delinquent bills do not get high. When an account is 31 days delinquent, they will receive a door hanger with 48 hours to pay. If they have reneged on a payment arrangement in the past, they cannot get another one. There are also guidelines on what those arrangements can be. We will need to get more of the new meters before we can consider moving to monthly billing. Mayor Marlatt suggested that we also need to look at what is going to cost for reading, preparing bills and postage. It takes a full day to stuff the envelopes, but we can’t go back to the cards because of privacy laws.

Water Plant Brine Wells: The brine wells is what used to treat the water for hardness. The media in these wells needs to be replaced. Artesian wants $1400 for the media stone. Administrator Blue is looking into the possibility that we would buy cheaper stone and wash it ourselves.

Road Salt Bid: Every year we participate in the county program for salt. The county received only one bid for salt, which came in at $95/ton, compared to $62/ton last year. Administrator Blue has a meeting with the county to decide what they are going to do – accept or reject the bid. We have 40 tons in our barns at this point. Even though it was a bad winter last year, we didn’t use more salt because much of the time it was too cold for the salt to be effective.

Tax Refund: VFO Sauerlender reported that when she started working in Fayette, she found that an employee had been overpaid in 2012. The employee had repaid the amount deposited in her account, but did not reimburse the village for the deductions. The taxes and the pension amounts had been paid to the various agencies, along with all the required match amounts. VFO Sauerlender has filed for and received the refund from our Village for $8.10, from the IRS for $19.13, and from the school district ($5.63 and $4.61 respectively). The sense of the council was that it was not worth the time to apply for refunds of these amounts.

Walter Drane: We have a cost estimate for Walter Drane Co. to update our codified Ordinances. Although we have a few ordinances to be included, the biggest part of the cost is the number of changes in the Traffic and Criminal codes at the state level. It doesn’t really save any money to put it off, it will just cost more when you do it. We need to have those up to date if we want to be able to prosecute people in court. We cannot just adopt the state code for everything because we determine the fines and it makes a big difference for things like overweight penalties. We also want to make our own ordinances for things like keeping of chickens. Some judges will not enforce out ordinances if they are not codified. Put a motion of the next council agenda to spend approximately $3400 to codify the ordinances.

Kessler Tank: The company came and did the cleaning and inspection of our elevated water tank. It did not have wax and therefore we did not need to spend the extra money that had been requested from council. They did give us a bid for painting both the interior and exterior at a cost of $26,000 and $29,000 respectively. They did not give any indication of how badly it needed to be repainted. The cleaning process went pretty well as we only had one service line break.

Miscellaneous: VFO Sauerlender reported that all the adjustments have been made to the 2013 annual report. There were a total of 105 line item adjustments that needed to be made. The report is now balanced. Mr. Wagner asked if the Park Board was going to meet. He is concerned about the quality of the sand that was put in the new Volleyball court. It’s a washed sand, but it is not the white, fluffy sand they were expecting. Mr. Wheeler asked if our sidewalk ordinance prohibited putting wire in the sidewalk. Chief Simon responded that you don’t want wire in it if it would need to be removed. If they use fiber, they don’t need wire.

Adjournment: Motion by Mr. Johnson second by Mr. Kessler to Adjourn. Motion carried 5 yeas, 0 nays. Meeting adjourned at 7:41PM.

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