Wauseon Council Approves Tax Levy To Fund New City Pool

IMG_4216 WEBBy: Shar Dimick

At their June 15th meeting City Council approved the Finance Committee’s recommendation to place a tax levy on the November ballot to secure funds to construct and operate a new pool.

Councilor Jon Schamp said the Finance Committee said that the money secured from the tax levy would be used to pay back a $1.4 million note (plus interest) over a 5-year period to construct as well as operate a new community pool.

Law Director Thomas McWatters explained that the next steps of placing the tax levy on the ballot in the next general election would be to pass two resolutions regarding the wording of the ballot measure.

McWatters said that along with Jamie Giguere, Finanace Director, they are working with Squires, Patton & Boggs on preparing the ballot language. McWatter’s anticipated that the required resolutions would come before council at their July 6 meeting. He said that the first resolution would need to pass on an emergency first reading and to meet the board of elections deadline. The second resolution maybe able to have two readings.

Council approved the recommendation 5-0 (Councilor Rick Frey was absent) without any further discussion.

Back in February council unanimously passed a resolution to build the new pool at Reighard Park based on the results of a September 2014 survey that went out in the water bills of approximately 3000 citizens. Reighard Park was location of the original 70-year old pool that closed in 2009 due to deteriorating conditions. The survey results also showed that residents supported building a new community pool with 655 in favor to 70 against.

In department head report highlights:

•Dave Wright, Regional Planning reported that he is working on the Downtown Revitalization grant and expects the county commissioners to approve the release of funds at their next meeting. Once the funds are released he is working with Sunshine Communities and a funeral home to utilize those funds for building improvements. He said they have until August 2016 to use the funds. Wright also continues to work with the Wauseon Public Library on the Targets of Opportunity grant under the Community Development Block grant. Their application is still pending for this grant.

•Assistant Fire Chief, Phil Kessler, said that hosted grain bin rescue training. They are having a fundraiser for the fireworks display at Tiny’s Dairy Barn was postponed to June 19. People can also make donations via Pay Pal from the Fire Department’s website (www.wauseonfire.com). The fireworks will be held on Friday, July 3 and the rain date will be Sunday, July 5.

•Police Chief Keith Torbet reported that the first session of Safety City is complete with 64 kids and approaching 100% funding through donations. He said that they had 17 graduates of their youth police academy. Finally, he reported that murder suspect Romualdo Cordoba was in custody and was questioned by Wauseon Police Department deputies in connection to the murder of Joshua S. McJilton on April 25. Cordoba will be held at CCNO until his arraignment.

•Tom Hall, Zoning and Housing reported that two business came before the Downtown committee and got approval. The owner of Sullivan’s received approval to erect fencing and complete landscaping as the first phase of a plan to enhance the south side of his building as a rental area for events. Hall said the owner hoped to have this phase complete in time to do something with the Homecoming Committee. Hall also said the owner of The Upper Crust Bakery received approval to change the exterior of her building. Construction should start in the next week or two.

•Dennis Richardson, Public Service, reported that construction of the new digester lid replacement at the Water Reformation Plant is near completion. He also reported that the received the schedule for biosolids study, which should be completed in January. The Shoop Avenue water tower aeration and mixing equipment contract documents have been finalized and issued to the successful contractor, Richardson said. Finally in regard to the Linfoot St. project, Richardson reported that ODOT has encumbered the grant funds of approximately $1.6 million. The total project is $2.4 million the remainder of which the city is responsible for contributing. He met with the contractors to sign contracts, scheduling and other details.

Finally in other council business, council approved:

•The second readings of four ordinance related to the proposed charter changes for placement on the ballot at the next regularly scheduled election and include revisions to qualifications of a council member, adding a method to remove an unqualified council member and eliminating an acting mayor’s ability to vote twice, reference to the director of finance as an elected position and lack of qualifications as a basis for removal of a public official under section 11.01.

•The emergency third reading of a resolution authorizing the mayor to grant a permanent and temporary easement to Rover Pipeline, LLC for the purpose of constructing and maintaining a gas pipeline across the Rails to Trails bike path, which is now in effect.

Shar may be reached at

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