Council President Mr. Neff called the Regular Meeting of the Council of the City of Belpre, Ohio, to order at 7:30 p.m. The roll was called with the following members present: Ms. Abdella, Mr. Colvin, Mrs. Drake, Mrs. Marshall, Mrs. Miller, Mrs. Sinnett, and Mr. Turrill present. Also present were Safety-Service Director Mr. Cross, City Prosecutor Mr. Andrew Webster and Clerk of Council Mrs. Meredith. Absent from the August 22, 2016 meeting was Mayor Lorentz, City Auditor Miss Pittenger and Treasurer Mrs. Kincaid.
Mr. Neff asked that everyone please rise for the Prayer and remain standing for the Pledge of Allegiance. Mr. Neff gave the invocation.
Ms. Abdella made a motion to accept the minutes of August 08, 2016 as presented and by-pass the reading. A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.
Reports of City Officials:
Council President Mr. Neff presented the report prepared by Mayor Lorentz. Since we last met Mr. Cross and I met AEP about the rebuild of our 13-2 lines through Belpre. As it stands now Florence Street will lose some trees that are under power lines. This project does however assist with our grid dependability.
The paperwork and easements have started on the Rt. 7 Sewer Line Project. Hopefully we will be able to see progress soon.
The Chamber of Commerce and I took part in a ribbon cutting ceremony for Freed Chiropractic Clinic on Washington Blvd. Sorry to see the Blue Moon go away but GOOD to see Dr. Freed invest in our city.
On the 18th I attended the Chamber Luncheon hosted by CAS Cable. Very nice to see our community businesses come together working for a better Belpre.
Mr. Cross and I met with our attorney this past week in preparation of negotiations for our two unions. This will start in the November timeframe.
On you desk tonight is an updated list of Fire Department volunteers for your records.
Safety-Service Director Mr. Cross reported a couple of updates since our last meeting. One lane widening has been completed on our bridge approach. They will be rearranging traffic control on Wednesday or Thursday of this week. Our solid waste district will be discussed at a later time. The proposals for our EMS are in Tom’s hands. Paving projects through our capital improvement funds are coming to a close. Getting reading to start on some storm sewer work. Shelley and Sands came to us about how to save money on some of the work that was done for our city. With that savings I would like to get some of the stripping on Main Street done for our public safety. Also we will be cutting out an area in Saw Grass in Boulevard Sands. Mr. Neff stated that somebody must have dropped the ball when they put the base in Boulevard Sands. According to Mr. Cross there wasn’t much of a base.
Ms. Abdella asked if the city still has a stripping machine. According to Mr. Cross we do.
Mrs. Sinnett asked where Hill Street is on the list for repair. According to Mr. Cross hopefully next year. Mr. Neff mentioned money in Permissive Tax. Mr. Cross will take a look at that fund.
City Auditor Miss Pittenger was absent. No report was given in her absence.
City Law Director Mr. Webster had no report for the law director’s office.
City Treasurer Mrs. Kincaid was absent. No report was given in her absence.
Communications and Petitions:
Mr. Neff stated that the city has a new agreement that needs voted on for the Waste Management. Mr. Neff assigned to the Utilities Committee.
Report of Standing Committee:
Ms. Abdella Finance Audit Committee reported that her committee met prior to this evenings meeting to discuss A RESOLUTION SUPPLEMENTING YEAR 2016 APPROPRIATIONS. From our discussion we have a few questions that we need responded to regarding the use of funds. I would like to call another committee meeting for September 12, 2016 at 7:00 for further discussion. If we do not have our answer to our questions we will not be moving forward on the third reading.
Mrs. Miller, Police and Fire Committee had no report. Mrs. Miller asked the law director about the new rates for parking tickets in the City of Belpre. Andrew stated that he would inquire with the Law Director about the question. Mrs. Miller stated that it had been a while and she would like to have some answers. Andrew stated that the City of Marietta’s cost for parking tickets are $10.
Mrs. Drake stated that they have had individuals going through their neighborhood door to door soliciting for the fire department to purchase air tanks for the fireman. They were asking residents to contribute $20. Along with that they tied in a picture photo that they do in December. Mrs. Drake said she thought they collected a sizeable amount of money. According to Mrs. Miller they do this every year. They need to advise council as to what is going on. City needs affirmation. There are a total of 40 tanks for inspection every year according to Mr. Cross. Mrs. Sinnett stated that they are trying to stagger the purchase of these tanks so it won’t be so costly. I will be calling a meeting in the future to discuss.
Mr. Colvin, Streets, Sidewalk and Storm Sewer addressed council regarding the drainage issue in Boulevard Sands. As of today it has been taken care of. Mr. Cross stated that it will be a three-day process and would be closed until the next week. Our street paving is getting done as we have the funds to do so.
Mrs. Marshall, Utilities Committee had no report. Mrs. Marshall stated that she needs a program update on the Solid Waste Management that has been assigned to her committee. She was informed that there would be one additional recycle date so that they can work with folks that want to get on board. Also there will be a new recycle transfer station on Route 7. We will need legislation for our Solid Waste Management District per Mr. Cross.
Mrs. Sinnett, Parks and Recreation Committee had no report.
Mrs. Drake, Planning and Zoning Committee had no report.
The pool issue I brought before Council a few months back still stands (property at corner of Ann and Ames Street), as nothing has been resolved per Ordinance 1325.01 and 1325.04. Action is either pending or has been disregarded.
A present concern I have is that I was contacted by Alan Milhoan regarding property at 2130 Murray Street, which has been on going for a good year and half. I have suggested to him that he utilize Ordinance 351.13 at this time until there can be a change to our ordinance or other factors are pursued, which I am exploring.
Also I was contacted on August 22, 2016 by a Construction Company from AL inquiring about building permits for Little Hocking. Little Hocking is getting a new business. I got the information for the business and sent it back.
Mrs. Drake, Economic Development Committee presented the following before council. Mrs. Drake stated that she would like to see council embrace with Economic Development.
I am pleased to be a part of Economic Development representing Belpre City Council.
I see this committee a vital part of the City of Belpre and its future.
I love the many various topics that I have listened to through these meetings and certainly feel better informed and educated to see there really can be a better future for this community. We have certainly shared with some great brainstorming.
The City of Belpre though small in a given geographic area does have potential for great improvement.
One big step will be to achieve having an established hotel and restaurant that this committee has a vision for and I feel it will come to be. The accomplishment of these two establishments will certainly bring more positive features to the community.
The ‘Town Hall’ meeting that was recently held with State Senator Lou Gentile brought various issues to the table to be aired, but not solutions for future movement of the community.
The gentleman from Port Authority finally came through with what is actually needed for future accomplishment for The City. He pointed out our main need is a ‘Major Plan’ which would be an expense to The City of $30,000 to $50,000, and The City does not have this funding. So from that point of view that puts The City back to square one.
Listening to this ‘Major Plan’ need my thoughts were as many institutes of higher learning we have all around us, perhaps one with an engineering department would like to take this on as a project. Most likely would be little if any cost to The City. At least it would be a beginning, create revenue, and then afford consultation as needed.
NEEDS: Belpre needs a true vision and have it documented. Belpre needs a Major Plan—on paper and computer. Belpre needs property owners and renters to be better informed. Belpre needs to Market itself.
NO vision, no plan, no market, equals nothing but the same ole thing over and over again.
NOT NEEDED: The City does not need any more car lot’s, loan sharks, or auto stores.
WE DO NEED: improvements make overs, and many revised City ordinances. We also need growth in population so we remain a firm number as required to stay a City. One thing that could be seriously considered is senior housing.
Thank you for listening to my thoughts and concerns for the City of Belpre.
Ms. Abdella asked Mrs. Drake to send out copies of her report to each member of council.
Mr. Neff recognized Mr. Bob McCloy who is with Economic Development.
Mr. Turrill, Rules Committee had no report.
Persons Appearing Before Council – Agenda items only. None
Ms. Abdella brought before council for second reading A RESOLUTION SUPPLEMENTING YEAR 2016 APPROPRIATIONS. A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye. This will lie over until the next meeting of council.
Persons Appearing Before Council: none
Mrs. Drake called a Committee Meeting for 7:15 PM for the purpose of discussing Economic Development with the Chamber of Commerce.
Ms. Abdella stated that she would like a copy of the RFP prior to the next meeting for review.
Mrs. Abdella made a motion to adjourn at 8:12 PM. A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.