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, Mr. Martin, Mrs. Miller, Mr. Newberry, and Mr. Robinson present.  Also present were Mayor Lorentz, Safety Service Director Mr. Ferguson, and Clerk of Council Mrs. Meredith.   Absent from the September 28, 2015 meeting was City Auditor Miss Pittenger, City Law Director Mr. Webster and Treasurer Mrs. Kincaid.

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

Ms. Abdella made a motion to accept the minutes of September 12, 2015 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 reported that over the past few weeks numerous folks have contacted my office wanting to set up another town hall meeting regarding our drug issues. Mike DeWine’s office has been very helpful in research and a how to so that we do it correctly.

Take a look at start talking, and Teen Challenge USA. If I am correct it is housed in Youngstown, Ohio.

We are experiencing a growing problem in our city with panhandlers. They are congregating around the churches at service times. Truly I do not want this getting out of hand so it is up to council to assist us with legislation or plan of control.

The advisory Committee as well as the Executive Committee for Washington County 911 is trying to develop a plan of how to fund the Next Generation 911. As this develops I will communicate to council. The first thought of costs is horrible at best.

My wife and I attended the annual Ride for Recovery gathering in Vienna on September 19th. As it turned out we represented all four-area cities. These folks can first hand explain how far you can fall but yet return from drugs and alcohol.

September 21st marked the Ribbon Cutting at Camden Clark Hospital for their new Emergency Facility as well as announcing their new name in our area. While there I did witness a possible new candidate for the street department. When it comes to shoveling not many people can hold a candle to our own Ms. Abdella.

Belpre was well represented at the America in Bloom Symposium. Holland Michigan is a beautiful city even though it is in the wrong state. Our city won two awards this year and was really recognized for our efforts. The judging panel was quite complimentary of our work and city appearance overall.

Upcoming events that council may be interested in are as follows. Heritage Day celebrated at our museum October 17th 11am, Oct. 29th Chamber Annual Dinner, and Trick or Treat on the 31st. Parkersburg, Vienna, Williamstown, and Belpre are using the same date and time.

Tonight I would like to introduce and swear in our newest Police Officer. Jesse Whittington is from Belpre and fresh out of the OPATA Program and came highly recommended by those who are involved at the college. Please make Jesse feel welcome as you introduce yourselves after the meeting.

Safety-Service Director Mr. Ferguson reported that prior to this evening’s meeting a Public Hearing was held for the purpose of discussing 2 parcels of property and to allow property owners within 100 feet of the proposed variance request to express any concerns. The property owner of 1448 Boulevard Drive is requesting a zoning variance on the lot depth regulations as per Ordinance 1149.01 (a). The other request is at 2209 Washington Boulevard where the gentleman at 2209 Washington Boulevard has requested permission to build a large garage 15×21 at the peek. There was one gentleman in attendance for the property of 1448 Boulevard Drive.  I would like a voice vote from council to accept the variance.  Mr. Martin asked Chief Sinnett if there would be a problem for the fire department to get a ladder truck to the location of 2209 Washington Boulevard.  According to Mr. Ferguson there would be enough room.

Mr. Ferguson welcomed Police Officer Jesse Whittington

City Auditor Miss Pittenger was absent.  No report was given in her absence.

City Law Director Mr. Webster was absent.  No report was given in his absence.  Mr. Webster was stirring apple butter for the Apple Butter Stir Off to be held October 10-11, 2015.

Treasurer Mrs. Kincaid was absence.  No report was given in her absence.

Communications and Petitions:

Mr. Neff announced that he had the opportunity of filling in for the Mayor on September 26, 2015 for the dedication of the Memorial Marker for James Patton.

Next weekend will be the Apple Butter Stir Off. The date is October 10-11, 2015.

I would like to assign Panhandling to Mr. Martin’s Committee and Municipal Income Tax to Ms. Abdella’s Committee.

I received letters for the requested variances.  With no objections I would like a voice vote from council.

Reminder to review the handout that Mr. Gilbert handed out at the last meeting of council.

Ms. Abdella made a motion to accept the two zoning variances that were requested at tonight’s Public Hearing.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Report of Standing Committee:

Ms. Abdella, Finance Audit Committee had no report.  Ms. Abdella called a Committee Meeting for October 12, 2015 at 7:15 PM for the purpose of discussing Amendment 181 as to the City Tax Ordinance.  With no objections I would like to have added to the agenda that evening.

Mr. Gilbert, Police and Fire Committee had no report.  Mr. Gilbert to hold a committee meeting at a later date.

Mr. Martin, Streets, Sidewalk and Storm Sewer had no report.  Mr. Martin called a committee meeting for October 12, 2015 at 7PM for the purpose of discussing cars on city streets and panhandlers.

Mr. Robinson, Utilities Committee reported that his committee met to discuss Rubbish Removal Chapter 969.  Further discussion at a later time after everyone has had a chance to loot at it.

Mrs. Marshall, Parks and Recreation Committee had no report. Mrs. Marshall welcomed Police Officer Jesse Whittington

Mr. Newberry had no report for Planning and Zoning Committee.

Mr. Newberry, Economic Development Committee reported that the

BACC met on September 28, 2015 at 6:00 P.M. Guest speaker was from Division of Liquor Control. Discussed procedures and processes.

Mrs. Miller, Rules Committee had no report.  Mrs. Miller stated that they are still working on the fix-its for the Bike Trail throughout town

Persons Appearing Before Council – Agenda items only.  None

Unfinished Business:

Mr. Martin brought before council for third reading A RESOLUTION SUPPLEMENTING 2015 APPROPRIATIONS.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Mr. Martin moved this be Resolution 24, 2014-2015 and passed.  A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye.

Mrs. Miller brought before council for second reading AN ORDINANCE APPROVING THE EDITION AND INCLUSION OF CERTAIN ORDINANCES AS PARTS OF THE VARIOUS COMPONENT CODES OF THE CODIFIED ORDINANCES OF BELPRE, OHIO.  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-  

Chief Eric Sinnett 927 Belrock Avenue informed council that the fire department has earned and was seeking grants for their equipment.  The fire department has earned $20,791.60 in truck fund.  A new truck is $36,000.  The fire department has received grants of $18,000 for fire gear.  The cost of the gear is $20,000.  Ms. Abdella discussed the financial situation of the city funds.  A motion was made by Mrs. Marshall to lock in the 2015 prices for a new truck. Discussion followed on the purchase of a new fire truck.   A vote was taken with all members of council present voting aye except for Ms. Abdella and Mr. Martin. The vote was 5 in favor and 2 not in favor.

Mr. Newberry congratulated the newest officer to the police department.


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