Members of the Wauseon City Council convened in regular session on the afternoon of February 15.
Councilor Kost reported that the Personnel Committee met to discuss hiring police interns through the Defiance College Ready Internship grant program. Defiance College requires 150 hours for internship. The first 30 hours will be unpaid internship, and then the college grant will pay the other hours as they progress. The police department has had internships before. It is beneficial to the college student that they can get paid for their internship. The committee made the recommendation to hire interns through this grant opportunity.
Councilor Chamberlin stated he always thought interns were unpaid positions. Police Chief Keith Torbet replied that this is the first time where the college is offering money to put the person through. Mayor Huner asked if other colleges do this, to which Chief Torbet stated this is the only college that has approached Wauseon about the program. Council approved the recommendation without dissent.
Councilor Schamp reported that the Finance Committee had two items on their agenda. The first matter was discussion on the assessments for Glenwood Avenue. There was a meeting with the property owners in November of 2014 to discuss the assessments and different provisions. No conclusion had been reached from that previous Finance Committee. There is a possibility by law that the assessment period could be extended an additional eight years. It was originally designed for twenty years to come due in 2025. The committee was asked to review the case, and determine as to whether or not they would have a recommendation. The committee felt that at this point in time there is still nine years left in the original twenty, and that there is no reason at this time to make an extension. They would like to see this revisited again in January of 2021, when it will be within four years of the original twenty. Perhaps then the city will have a much better idea of what land has been developed, and what land is still undeveloped and might need any assistance in extending it. Mayor Huner stated that if the assessments are not addressed soon, there may be a different council in five years, and may not be revisited. Councilor Schamp replied that there is currently no reason to extend it. Council unanimously agreed to revisit the assessments in January of 2021
Councilor Schamp stated the committee discussed the fire protection contracts for the townships served by the Wauseon Fire Department, as the contracts are over twenty years old. Fire Chief Rick Sluder had presented the committee with a lot of financial information, and presented how it would be allocated accordingly. There was a lot of information given, and the committee asked for more time to review and will schedule another meeting to discuss.
Councilor Scott Stiriz reported that Larry Zimmerman is the newest Park Board member, replacing Bill Drummer. Dave Murry had a quote to replace new double doors. The cost is $2,500 and the Public Works Department will be doing the labor. The Rotary remodeled the restrooms by the Potawatomi. A new pavilion is budgeted to be placed at Biddle Park. The Public Works Department demolished the inside of the pool house, and took the concrete out. Public Works will be resealing the bike path and the trail at Homecoming Park this year.
Councilor Chamberlin reported that the Street Committee met twice regarding Sullivans request for additional handicap parking. The southwest corner of the intersection of Elm and Fulton was evaluated, and Dennis Richardson was asked if that could accommodate ADA requirements. Mr. Richardson researched and responded to the committee that there is not enough room there to provide a handicap place. The committee felt that was the best place to look at to provide an additional spot, and that there was no other city owned property that could provide it. There is no action coming from the Street Committee, however Mr. Richardson suggested that during the Downtown Revitalization engineering for project could be to be vigilant when considering ADA handicap parking spots in the entire downtown district, but more handicap spots are definitely needed.
Councilor Schamp stated that he is the city representative for the new EMS Executive Board. This board was created from the new EMS agreements between the commissioners and the city. The board has met twice, elected the officers, and are now reviewing the bylaws. The next meeting is March 16, and is the statutory meeting.
Chief Sluder stated an Incident Safety Officer Class was held on February 13 and 14. The civil service test for the Fire Department is on February 27. The required physicals for fire fighters were completed last week.
Chief Torbet reported that he distributed copies of changes in the Police Department. The sesquicentennial for the police department is next year, and the department has created new logos to incorporate a more community spirit, one being the design for the car, and one for the patch. Mike Colon, art teacher at Wauseon schools came up with the design for the car, while Sergeant Gonzales came up with the design for the patch. Chief Torbet explained that there are also motions for two grants. The first one is for the Drug Use Prevention Grant for $1,640, which pays for Officer McDonough, our School Resource Officer (SRO), to do drug safety talks. This pays for his wages and benefits. The JAG LE grant will replace several laptops, with only a 10 percent match. Council later approved both motions, without dissent.
Dennis Richardson, Director of Public Service, reported that the city is in the process of awarding a contract to A1 Industrial Painters of Campbell, Ohio, to paint the East Clarifier at the Water Treatment Plant. The Biosolids Study is continuing for the Water Reclamation Plant. The Linfoot Street project is progressing, and all the main lines underneath the road have been installed. Mr. Richardson reported that he is working with an engineering firm for the development of a project at the northeast corner of Shoop and Airport Highway. He is working with the Fulton County Economic Development Committee to evaluate the Wauseon Industrial Park, which is part of the Ohio Department of Development, to look at different locations all around the state to make them more marketable. Dave Murry met with the engineers for the new pool project, showing them where all the infrastructure is at. The engineers will plan another visit to evaluate the roof.
Jamie Giguere, Director of Finance, reported that she was busy with receiving the bond bids for the pool. The lowest bid was from Huntington Bank at 1.85 percent. Mrs. Giguere reported that the year to date and month-end financial reports were given to Council. The income tax figures are higher than this time last year.
Kevin Whitlock, Assistant Director of Law, reported that Mr. McWatters is working on various projects for the various departments, as well as the year-end report to the Mayor.
In legislative actions, Council, under suspended rules of reading, passed Resolution 2016-3, authorizing the Mayor to enter into an amendment to the Maumee Valley East CHIP Consortium Partnership Agreement.
Also under suspended rules of reading, Council approved Ordinance 2016-4, which amends Section 147.08 of the Codified Ordinances of the City of Wauseon.