Members of the Wauseon City Council convened in regular session in the evening of March 7.
Council heard from Vicki Donavan Lyle, candidate for Ohio House District 47, and Tracy Zuver, candidate for Clerk of Courts.
Bill Drummer, the new Director of the Wauseon Chamber of Commerce addressed Council. He stated that he previously owned and operated CDD Inc. for 25 years, Bill’s Sports Center for 13 years, and has been a chamber member for 25 years. He spoke about some of the organizations and boards he is a member of, and said that one of the reasons he took this job was to increase membership. When he started the job, there were 170 members, and since he took the position he has gotten 18 new memberships with an immediate goal to get 200 members and to continue forward from there. The chamber is involved with the Strawberry Festival, Movies in the Park, the Chili Cook-off, the annual golf outing, the creation of scholarships, and so much for Wauseon. He is going to try and initiate a merchant’s tent to help the local merchants, something which was done several years ago. Wauseon is looking at giving something back for the chamber members, including the possibility of having a Valentines Dinner next year. The next event is the Business after Hours on March 31, and he invited everyone to attend.
Councilor Frey reported one of the goals of the Holiday Committee is to raise money for the 4th of July fireworks, with a goal is to raise $7,000-10,000. He explained some of the fundraising events they are planning. The Chamber of Commerce will be helping by sending letters to chamber members on behalf of the Fire Department for donations. Other ideas include a 50/50 raffle and a 5K run. He said there are food vendors who have already committed to the 4th of July.
The Tree Commission of Councilor Frey noted that Tom Savage gave a list of trees that have to be removed, and trees that need extensive trimming. The commission talked about hosting a Tree City USA in three or four years. Once the commission gets the blessing from the City, they will send a letter of intent. Jim Spiess suggested that a foundation be created for city trees. He referred to the City of Bexley that has done this, and it would be used for any tree related projects. More research is needed on what is needed to be done. The commission talked about the Arbor Day program and updating the tree ordinance.
Mayor Huner asked about the creation of a foundation for trees. There are so many trees that can be planted at a time, and also replanted and put back in the city boulevards. Councilor Frey replied the thought was to have funds for a major tree planting at Homecoming or Biddle Park and not take it out of city budget.
Regional Planning Director David Wright stated that at the next Downtown Revitalization Committee meeting, the members will pick out trash receptacles and benches for the downtown. The city is starting to draw funds from the Downtown Revitalization grant, and Mr. Wright is working with a couple others applicants for the grant. In 2014 he applied for a Targets for Opportunity grant for the Wauseon Library. The grant is moving forward and hopefully there will be an approval within the next month.
Fire Chief Rick Sluder reported that the written portion of the civil service test was given on February 27, 2016 and interviews are now underway to finalize that list. He has been working with the Holiday Committee on the 4th of July fireworks.
Police Chief Keith Torbet reported that registrations for Safety City will be going out in the kindergarten registration packets. The first class will start June 6 and the second class will be June 20. The Youth Police Academy will be starting up June 6-10. Applications will be going out for that as well.
Dennis Richardson, Director of Public Service, reported that he is working with ODOT and Fulton County on the ODOT campus and Fulton County Heritage Center. He is working on water and sewer needs for that project. The city is furnishing another water tap to Sara’s garden for their expansion. There was a preconstruction meeting for the painting of the clarifier at the Water Treatment Plant. The annual consumer confidence report will be going out in the next billing cycle of the water bills. Mr. Richardson gave a progress update on the Linfoot St. project. A draft of the bio-solids study at the Water Reclamation Plant has been received for review. The Fulton County Economic Development Corporation’s annual meeting will be held on April 21, 2016 at Founder’s Hall. Clem Kutzli has officially accepted the superintendent’s job at the Water Reclamation Plant, and Josh Reckner has been promoted to Working Foreman at the Public Works Department.
Jamie Giguere, Director of Finance, reported that she e-mailed the year to date financial reports and check run for March 7, 2016 and Income Tax Revenue report to Council. She reported that the income tax receipts are up 6.54% from this time last year.
Director of Law Thomas A. McWatters reported that the deed and easement for the transfer of the ball diamonds to the school has now been recorded, and the deed was given to Mr. Brown, Wauseon Superintendent of Schools. He is working on various other projects.
Councilor Chamberlin stated he read the year-report and asked if there is a possibility the income tax split could get back to 60/40 from the current 75/25. Mrs. Giguere replied given with the pool being built and not knowing what the operational costs are going to be for that, she would like to keep it as is.
Mayor Huner distributed the written year-end report to Council and department heads. She thanked the department heads for their reports and the information needed for the report.
Councilor Kost moved and seconded by Councilor Chamberlin to approve and pay the bills as presented.