By: James Pruitt
THE VILLAGE REPORTER
The state of Ohio wants to pave and sign streets in Stryker and the Village Council would be wise to take the help.
That’s the recommendation of Village Administrator Gary St. John. Letting the state come in will keep the village in the good graces of the state.
“The state engineers are coming out July 17,” St. John said during his comments at the March 21, council meeting. “They are going to try to get the paperwork and plans here so I can sign off on them.”
The timing is critical because St. John is retiring in August.
The state engineers will draw up two sets of plans: How they should be and how they could be, St. John said.
“It’s your call on that,” St. John said.
The village is still a part of the signage program and as it stands now, the state will come in and pave from curb to curb, St. John said. The state program doesn’t come without its own challenges as as the last time the state did the painting of parking spaces, the village lost a few.
“I took some heat on the parking spaces,” St. John said.
If the village elects to go on its own, it would have to do its own thermoplastic paint and it would not be up to state standards. That would make the village liable in the state’s eyes, St. John said.
The village had been in trouble with the state over its parking spaces before due to sight distance issues. At that time the state said if there were any accidents, it would be the village’s responsibility.
“They said you are in violation and put on notice,” St. John said. “If we would use all legal speed limits, they would pave and stripe it.
“You got a real good deal then and you are getting a good deal now.”
As for local complaints about the loss of parking spaces, St. John said those comments are baseless. Unless there’s a wedding at the American Legion, there’s plenty of parking.
And for those who say it’s too far to have walk across the street, he went to the Wal-Mart in Bryan and measured the distance from regular parking to the door and found it’s actually farther, he said.
In other news:
•Mayor Joe Beck gave a state of the Village address and talked about the challenges the community faces since the A. Schulman plant closed in 2015. The closing will mean the loss of $45,000 a year in revenues, but he was pleased to see other local companies expand or upgrade their properties.
Beck cited the hiring of Patsy Mealer as an independent contractor to help promote the community for economic development as an instance of being pro-active. Mealer reported she had been busy reaching out to various commissions and raising awareness of a ribbon cutting.
•The council is compiling a list of homes and properties in disrepair that can either be salvaged or be razed. The village’s Safety and Health committees will do a drive-by of the community to view the affected properties at 6:30 p.m. April 5. The Judiciary Committee will meet following the drive-by.
•The Heritage Committee has developed a wish list of projects needed to restore the Historical Center. The building is in desperate need of TLC and Village Council Member Terry Wieland said it bothers him that the building (donated by Sauder) has not been maintained.
The total cost of repairs and painting could be as much as $10,000. Wieland talked about having an Eagle Scout applicant using the project. Other council members talked about using nonviolent offenders from Judge Stelzer’s CC&O program to paint the building.
•The demise of Stryker Fest may be greatly exaggerated. Local groups have been meeting to see if there is enough interest to bring it back. It may be held in conjunction with William Knight Day Sept. 25.
James Pruitt may be reached at