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, and Treasurer Mr. Smith.  Absent from the June 25, 2018 meeting was Mayor Lorentz and Clerk of Council Mrs. Meredith.

Mr. Neff asked that everyone please rise for the Prayer and remain standing for the Pledge of Allegiance. Mr. Gant gave the invocation.

Ms. Riffle made a motion to accept the minutes of June 11, 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 reported that Dominion energy has announced a project to replace old gas service lines starting in August.  The project location includes Hocking Road, Lee Street, Franklin Avenue, and Clement Avenue.  The project will take 6 weeks to complete.  A gas inspection official will be on site to oversee the project.

ODOT is expected to start the Main Street Paving project in September.  Currently, the project is out for bid.  More information will be provided when available.

The utility department is expecting to repair a water line along Rt. 7, just south of the Orion Chemical plant.  The scheduled date for the repairs is June 10th, weather permitting.  Water service will be interrupted for customers north of the city limits, along Rt. 7.  The public works department will be notifying customers affected by the project.

Miss Pittenger reported that the State Auditors are in the City Building and will meet with us in mid-July.

City Law Director Mr. Webster announced that the fire department are in the process of picking homes for demolition.

City Treasurer Mr. Smith had no report.

Communications and Petitions:  none

Report of Standing Committee:

Ms. Abdella Finance/Audit Committee had no report.

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

Mr. Campbell, Streets, Sidewalk and Storm Sewer reported that the city crews have been working to address the issues in the street department as they arise and praised the crew’s efforts.

Mr. Gant Utilities Committee reported that on June 20, 2018 he had a meeting about the solar panels and charging station to be installed in Belpre.  The solar panels will at this time be installed on the fire station and the charging station for electric cars will be installed at the park. I talked to Tom Webster about any legislation needed for these projects.  Tom did say that we do need it for the solar panels but not for the charging station.  The legislation will be forth coming.

On June 21, 2018, I had a conversation with a city councilman from Nelsonville who had stopped by the house to campaign for State Representative.  I asked him about soft billing for the fire department.  Their fire department is a payed department.  He said that they have been doing this for two years.  He said it is working quite well and it did not raise any ones insurance bills because it is already figured in the premiums that they charge everyone now.  He also said it wasn’t a big money maker but it did raise about $6 to $7,000 a year which they use to purchase fire equipment.  This is not to say that 6 to 7 thousand is not a lot of money.

Mr. Gant stated that he asked him about having a charter form of government instead of a statutory city. He had a lot of good information that I will share later with the committee.  They have a population of 5300 with a 7 member council and a City Manager.  He did bring up one very important point, the way the charter is written will either make or break the success of the Charter form of Government.

Mr. Shutts, Parks and Recreation Committee had no report.

Mrs. Drake Planning and Zoning Committee had no report.  Mrs. Drake however called a committee meeting at 6:30 pm on Wednesday for the purpose of reviewing the city’s ordinance involving weed and grass cuttings.

Mrs. Drake, Economic Development had no report.

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 ADOPTING THE TAX BUDGET FOR 2019. 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 reading of A RESOLUTION ADOPTING THE TAX BUDGET FOR 2019.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Ms. Abdella brought before council for second reading A RESOLUTION ADOPTING THE TAX BUDGET FOR 2019.  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: 

Lyn Nelson announced the Belpre Alumni Ice Cream Social would be held on Saturday, July 14th from 11am to 3pm.  He welcomed everyone.

Karen Locke complimented the street department.

ADJOURN:

Ms. Riffle made a motion to adjourn at 7:53 PM.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.