Mr. Neff called the Regular Meeting of the Council of the City of Belpre, Ohio, to order at 7:30p.m. The roll was called with the following members present: Ms. Abdella, Mr. Campbell, Mrs. Drake, Mr. Gant, Mrs. Miller, Ms. Riffle and Mr. Shutts present.  Also present was Safety-Service Director Mr. Cross, City Auditor Miss Pittenger, City Law Director Mr. Webster, Treasurer Mr. Smith and Clerk of Council Mrs. Meredith. Absent from the February 26, 2018 meeting was Mayor Lorentz.

Mr. Neff asked that everyone please rise for the Prayer and remain standing for the Pledge of Allegiance. Mr. Neff gave the invocation remembering tonight the family of Mr. Donald Lorentz.

Ms. Abdella made a motion to accept the minutes of February 12, 2018 as presented and by-pass the reading.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Reports of City Officials:

Mayor Lorentz was absent.  No report was given in his absence.

Safety-Service Director Mr. Cross announced that Drag Strip Road would open this week.

Mr. Cross announced that Chief Williams brother was in an accident and is in critical condition.  Please remember Terry’s brother and family in your prayers.

I want to thank the Fire and Police Departments for all they did during the flooding and how they were prepared to take on the flood the following weekend should it have occurred.

I have here this evening Jarred Strouth and Brian Smith from Pro Care with a proposal to renew their contract.  If anyone has any questions please feel free to ask. Mr. Cross presented the proposal to Mr. Neff so that he could assign to committee.

Mr. Neff informed Mr. Cross that he would assign the proposal to renew the contract for Pro Care to the Finance/Audit Committee.

Ms. Abdella asked Jarred that since they had spent almost a year with the City of Belpre can you tell me, “What is the biggest opportunity that we as a community have with EMS.”  Since Brian is here in our city he reported that the citizens are most thankful for the quick response time.

Miss Pittenger announced that we have opened our new Star Ohio accounts and since we opened them we are doubling our interest earned.  Right now we are getting paid 1.52% daily.

City Law Director Mr. Webster announced that he has prepared a proposed letter for the County Commissioners regarding the Prisoner Contract.  I would like to meet with Mr. Cross, Ms. Abdella and Mrs. Miller after the meeting this evening to inform them of what I have proposed.

City Treasurer Mr. Smith reported that a copy of the amended Treasurer’s Report for January 2018 appear on-line with copies placed on the table in the back.  Also a signed copy has been given to the clerk.  Mr. Smith stated that he would like council to approve the amended January Treasurer’s Report as presented.  Mr. Gant made a motion to accept the report as amended.  Mr. Campbell asked what the amendment was.  According to Miss Pittenger she had put the incorrect date on the January’s Treasurer’s Report. A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Communications and Petitions:

Mr. Neff assigned the following to committee:

Mr. Gant – Utilities committee – Washington Soil & Water Conservation District Legislation.

Mr. Neff also announced that he had received a thank you email from Sue Anstatt thanking the people who work hard in the city making it a better place.

Report of Standing Committee:

Ms. Abdella Finance Audit Committee thanked Mr. Cross for the proposal.  In order to move forward with this and evaluate the change I would like to get an Annual Report as to the number of calls you responded to, the runs you made, the level of calls, etc.

It is important to me to say that the hospital that I’m employed at had a bomb threat.  It was an incredibly scary evening.  There was 258 patients in that building and trying to figure out what to do.  The team work was absolutely amazing.  I called the Fire Chief at 10 PM at night and I told him the situation and could he help me if we had to get this many patients out of the building.  He made a call to a gentleman and responded back to me that he could get enough trucks to transport patients within thirty minutes.  I myself and the staff at the hospital was amazed with the response that the Fire Chief and County offered.

I also have two pieces of legislation that I would like to add to tonight’s agenda.  They are as follows:  A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE CITY OF BELPRE TO PARTICIPATE IN THE STATE OF OHIO COOPERATIVE PURCHASING PROGRAM; and ANNUAL APPROPRIATION ORDINANCE FOR CALENDAR & FISCAL YEAR 2018.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Mrs. Miller, Police and Fire Committee had no report.

 Mr. Campbell, Streets, Sidewalk and Storm Sewer reported that his committee met prior to this evenings meeting at 7PM for the purpose of discussing a Resurfacing Project of SR 32/Main Street.  It was the decision of the committee to add this piece of legislation to the agenda this evening for first reading.  Mr. Campbell made a motion to add to tonight’s agenda for first reading A RESOLUTION FOR THE RESURFACING PROJECT OF SR32/MAIN STREET.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Mr. Gant Utilities Committee had no report.

Mr. Shutts, Parks and Recreation Committee had no report.  We do have a lot of mud.

Mrs. Drake Planning and Zoning Committee stated that last year around March or April we discussed Yard Sale Fees.  I thought we had raised the fees to $5.00.  I looked online and the legislation has not been changed nor has the form fees changed.  Based on our finances I feel that we should raise the fee higher.  In 1988, Gallipolis raised their fee to $10.  We are only charging $3.00 in 2018.  That ordinance also reads that if anyone has more than three yard sales within a years’ time they need to apply for a Business License.  I think council needs to take action on the ordinance.  Mr. Neff suggested that Mrs. Drake call a committee meeting to further the discussion to see if council wants to take action.

Ms. Abdella thought it might come from a Fee Schedule that would be updated by the administration.

Mr. Campbell asked for an amended ordinance ready for us at the next meeting.  Mr. Webster to take a look at the legislation and bring before council.

Mrs. Drake, Economic Development Committee reported that the committee met on February 22, 2018 at 6PM.

Council members present were Judy Drake, Josh Campbell and Mayor Lorentz.

Members will be meeting in May with Jeff Chaddock to find how much interest he has in Belpre and possibly invest in the City.

Committee was very pleased to know Council allowed for a Grant Writer in the appropriations for 2018.

Marietta Memorial Hospital plans is to have the new Strecker facility finished in less than two years.

Boxers, Bed & Biscuits has 24,000 sq. ft. that will be available for other use.  Habitat for Humanity is looking for a location on this side of the river so perhaps this would be a good location.

Our local Kroger has received their State Liquor License.  My understanding is this will require a separate building to be built.

There was good discussion on establishing an identity for Belpre that people can relate to.  Along with just how do we want Belpre to look and be identified by outsiders?  Who are we and who/what do we want to be known as.  The committee is open for suggestions.

Business Expo is April 30th at Boxers, Bed & Biscuits.

The meeting was adjourned at 7:30 PM.

Ms. Riffle Rules Committee had no report.

Persons Appearing Before Council – Agenda items only.  None

Unfinished Business: – None

New Business

Ms. Abdella brought before council for first reading A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE CITY OF BELPRE TO PARTICIPATE IN THE STATE OF OHIO COOPERATIVE PURCHASING PROGRAM.    A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Ms. Abdella moved to suspend the rule of council on three different days to allow for the second and third readings A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE CITY OF BELPRE TO PARTICIPATE IN THE STATE OF OHIO COOPERATIVE PURCHASING PROGRAM.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Ms. Abdella brought before council for second and third readings A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE CITY OF BELPRE TO PARTICIPATE IN THE STATE OF OHIO COOPERATIVE PURCHASING PROGRAM.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Ms. Abdella moved this be Resolution 2, 2018-2019 and duly passed.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Ms. Abdella brought before council for first reading ANNUAL APPROPRIATION ORDINANCE FOR CALENDAR & FISCAL YEAR 2018.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.  This will lie over until the next meeting of council.

Mr. Campbell brought before council for first reading A RESOLUTION FOR THE RESURFACING PROJECT OF SR32/MAIN STREET.  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:

Mr. Shutts asked about the rezoning of Boxers, Bed & Biscuits.  Mr. Neff stated that there was no rezoning needed.  He asked if she has any Commercial Permits.  According to Mr. Webster this doesn’t come from us, it comes from the County.  We have nothing in it.

Mr. Campbell stated that during our budget meeting we came to the realization that we are spending more than we are taking in, in the city.  This year the appropriations we have cut back in some ways but we really didn’t balance the budget.  Moving forward I would like to challenge you and citizens to hold council accountable to make the city’s budget in a better situation.

Mr. Webster stated that Lake Tom continues to deepen.  Lake Tom is located at the entry way from Washington Blvd. and the new baseball field.  A new pump was installed.  We will get this pumped out when weather conditions are better.

ADJOURN:

Mr. Campbell made a motion to adjourn at 8:15 PM.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.