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. Gilbert, Mrs. Marshall, Mrs. Miller, Mr. Newberry, and Mr. Robinson present.  Also present were Mayor Lorentz, Safety Service Director Mr. Ferguson, City Auditor Miss Pittenger, City Law Director Mr. Webster and Clerk of Council Mrs. Meredith.  Absent from the March 23, 2015 meeting was Treasurer Miss Martin and Councilman Martin.

At this time, Mr. Neff asked that everyone please stand for the prayer and remain standing for the Pledge of Allegiance.  Mr. Neff gave the invocation.

Mrs. Marshall made a motion to accept the minutes of March 9, 2015, as presented and by-pass the reading.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Ms. Abdella made a motion for a voice vote for the United Way Grant.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Reports of City Officials

Mayor Lorentz reported the Ohio Department of Agriculture conducted an inspection of our Health Department activities as well as our Sanitarians activities. During the interview and report out I found they had no discrepancies noted for Belpre. We may have one action item to improve on but will not know until the powers review the report in Columbus. One inspection may have been late due to online reporting.

March 13 marked Chief Clevenger’s last day before retirement. Law enforcement and well-wishers filled the chambers to wish Ernie well on his next chapter in life.

The Civil Service Commission administered tests on Monday March 16th for Street and Water department opportunities. The test was also given for Patrolman and Sergeant Openings in the Police department. After all the bidding and shuffling of employees we did hire one for the street department just to keep us whole.

Wednesday March 18th was a busy day as it started at the Churn for a ribbon cutting exercise to open the Lark’s Nest. The Wotring’s now house this business at their restaurant site. At noon I was the speaker for our noon Rotary to explain our trip to North Dakota and report our findings.

Council, be aware that I did receive another request to re-think the issues of Golf Cars on our city streets. You should have a list of cities that have been surveyed on this issue should you decide to take it back to committee.

On Saturday I took part in the Annual Parkersburg Easter Parade with all the area Mayors. Kiki Angelo’s and crew again did a very good job pulling this off.

The Recycle Dumpster is again an issue. For the last two weekends my phone has rang off the hook or pictures have been sent to my cell. Today complaints are coming to my office. If council does not have a recommendation or method of repair I am having it pulled until such time we start the curbside program.

Tonight we have a group of Girl Scouts that have completed all the requirements for their Silver Award. At this time I would like to introduce Mary Jo Slater and have the girls explain their achievement to date. Mary Jo Slater, Miss Pittenger and the Mayor presented three of the four ladies with their Silver Award. One of the ladies was not present due to illness.

Mary Jo Slater invited everyone to join them for refreshments after the meeting.

Mayor Lorentz and Miss Pittenger both spoke briefly about the girl’s accomplishments they made in the past two years.

Safety Service Director Mr. Ferguson congratulated everyone that was present here this evening.  It is very unusual to have these slots filled.  I would like to invite you all back.

Mr. Ferguson spoke briefly about the recycle opportunity that we have.  He stated that almost everything is recyclable.  If we all get behind this we can be successful.  Right now we have recycle bins that are being abused by unwanted garbage.  Recycling will be an increase in cost.

Mr. Ferguson stated that Mr. Neff has a piece of legislation that we would like to get assigned to committee and passed this evening.  This piece of legislation is AN ORDINANCE APPROVING AN ELECTRIC EASEMENT for the RC Club.  We should also have the Pool Contract for 2015 that we will need to pass soon.  The ANNUAL APPROPRIATION ORDINANCE FOR CALENDAR & FISCAL YEAR 2015 should be passed this evening.  Any amendments can be made in the future.

Mr. Neff stated that bio-waste is now being re-cycled.  In 25 years there should be ZERO waste. We have to re-cycle.  There are no more landfills to be opened.

City Auditor Miss Pittenger congratulated the Girls Scouts that had received their Silver Award.  The judges for Belpre in Bloom will be here July 20 and 21st.  Miss Pittenger recognized County Commissioner Rick Walter. Mr. Walter stood and was recognized.

City Law Director Mr. Webster reported that he was working on the Pool Contract.  There were a couple of changes that needed to be made to the contract.

 

As Chairman of the Port Authority, Mr. Webster announced that we are working with a company right now on organic waste.

Treasurer Miss Martin was absent.  No report was given.

Communications and Petitions:

Mr. Neff stated that tonight he has a piece of legislation that he would like to assign to committee.  The legislation is AN ORDINANCE APPROVING AN ELECTRIC EASEMENT.  The easement will come across a small portion of city property.  After some discussion, Mr. Neff declared this piece of legislation as Committee of the Whole.  Mr. Neff made a motion to add to tonight’s agenda for first reading AN ORDINANCE APPROVING AN ELECTRIC EASEMENT.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Mr. Webster informed Mr. Neff that there was an error in our ordinance book that needed corrected.  Section 1313.25 reads:  Storm water shall be discharged into sanitary sewage system.  Mr. Neff stated that after review he found that we were correct and this was an error made by the Walter Drane Company.  Section 1313.25 should read:  Storm water shall not be discharged into sanitary sewage system.

Mr. Neff also stated that there was a request for legislation regarding a Golf Car.  Mr. Neff also stated that during this term of council Golf Cart legislation was voted down.  The legislation was changed to reflect Golf Car and was assigned to Police and Fire Committee.

Report of Standing Committee:

Ms. Abdella, Finance Audit Committee called a committee meeting for April 13, 2015 at 7:00 PM for the purpose of discussing the Everbridge Communication.  Ms. Abdella also thanked Chief Sinnett for the Flag displayed during the Easter parade.  Ms. Abdella thanked the Girl Scouts for all the accomplishments and their help to the city.

Mr. Gilbert, Police and Fire Committee reported that he has received a copy of the Golf Cars legislation and will look into reconvening.

Mr. Martin, Streets, Sidewalk and Storm Sewer was absent.  No report was given.

Mr. Robinson, Utilities Committee had no report.

Mrs. Marshall, Parks and Recreation Committee had no report.

Mr. Newberry had no report for Planning and Zoning Committee.  Mr. Newberry congratulated the Girl Scouts on their accomplishments.

Mr. Newberry had no report for Economic Development Committee.

Mrs. Miller had no report for the Rules Committee. Mrs. Miller stated that she would be getting in contact with Mrs. Locke about cleaning up trash around the city.  Mrs. Miller also recognized the Girl Scouts uniforms.

Persons Appearing Before Council – Agenda items only.

Items that appear on the agenda for this evening are:

  1. ANNUAL APPROPRIATION ORDINANCE FOR CALENDAR & FISCAL YEAR 2015.

Fire Chief Sinnett addressed the Annual Appropriations and the budget cut to the fire department.  Chief Sinnett stated that the budget had dropped from $50,000 to $25,000 for small equipment.  With this cut, Chief Sinnett stated that he would need help running the fire department.

  1. AN ORDINANCE APPROVING AN ELECTRIC EASEMENT.

Mark Farra spoke briefly about the Electric Easement needed for RC Racing.  The electric easement would run from Blennerhassett Avenue to the Sewage Plant.  It would be metered and paid for by RC Racing.

Bill Locke, 726 Tuttle Street informed council that the trees would not be a problem.  The actual easement is 30 ft. There will be no cost to the city.

Unfinished Business:

Ms. Abdella brought before council for third reading ANNUAL APPROPRIATION ORDINANCE FOR CALENDAR & FISCAL YEAR 2015.  Discussion followed.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Ms. Abdella moved this be Ordinance 18, 2014-2015 and duly passed.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

New Business:

Mr. Neff brought before council for first reading AN ORDINANCE APPROVING AN ELECTRIC EASEMENT.  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 of AN ORDINANCE APPROVING AN ELECTRIC EASEMENT.

Mr. Neff brought before council for second and third readings AN ORDINANCE APPROVING AN ELECTRIC EASEMENT.   A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Ms. Abdella moved this be Ordinance 19, 2014-2015 and duly passed.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Mr. Neff stated that we had a very educational meeting this evening.

Persons Appearing Before Council-

Tom Logston, Middle Street, Belpre addressed council and ask them to reconsider licensed Golf Cars in the City of Belpre.  Mr. Logston stated that he has copies of research he has done with other communities in Ohio.

Ms. Abdella made a motion to excuse Mr. Martin from this evenings meeting.  Mr. Martin contacted the President of Council and informed him that he was ill.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Adjourn

Mr. Robinson made a motion to adjourn at 8:30PM.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.