DELIBERATING … Montpelier Village Council held the discussion at the July 11, 2022 meeting that is being entertained in every village in the area, concerning whether to go with the new state legislation on fireworks. (PHOTO BY REBECCA MILLER, STAFF)
By: Rebecca Miller
As a portion of the July 11, 2022 Montpelier Village Council meeting, the topic of the new ruling from the governor about fireworks was discussed. Fire Chief Brian Fritsch was present to share his thoughts on whether or not the village should opt out of it or allow it.
The new legislation allows Ohio residents to use consumer grade fireworks on certain holidays, but municipalities are allowed to opt out.
Many area villages have decided to stay with the ordinances they already have on the books, not allowing this change to happen.
Attorney Chris Walker informed council that they will just need to watch to be sure that whatever council decides on is what gets put in their Ohio Revised Code.
Montpelier council members and Mayor Steve Yagelski leaned toward the “wait and see” thinking, stating that they would rather not rule it out if it can allow citizens some more fun, but if it causes problems, they can deal with it in the future.
Fritsch stated that his biggest concern is that they will land in neighbor’s yards and possibly be unsafe. All were in agreement that if residents follow all of the carefully worded instructions in the state legislation, most homes and yards in Montpelier would not fit into the description of places that are large enough to allow the lighting of fireworks.
Mayor Yagelski brought up the thought that “this country was founded on the concept of independence and freedom and the 4th of July is a very special holiday.”
Council members shared their desire to not shut down the possibility of more enjoyment for Montpelier residents, if there is no absolute proof it will cause trouble.
Village Administrator said that in an email Chief McGee was just “asking for clarification between two sections of code. One references Ohio Revised Code and one is specifically village.
Now they don’t coincide so he is asking that either both ban it or both refer to Ohio Revised Code, for clarification purposes.”
It was decided to have a resolution written for the next meeting, which would include an email from Police Chief McGee, and write it to match what the ORC says and if there is a problem, they can change it in the future. The actual determination will be made when they vote on the resolution.
In other business, council voted to appoint acting clerk Nikki Uribes as Jessica Apple was unable to be present. Also approved were the Amended Agenda, the Minutes from June 27, 2022, and 2022 Financial Reports.
Resolution 1352 Archbold Refuse Service Contract renewal (suspend and pass) was approved as Rockey explained that it is still the best deal for the village.
Council approved a Then and Now Certificate for Fire Safety Services, LLC in the amount of $13,876.60 for turn out gear for the fire department.
The resignation of Kim Friend from the Montpelier Park Board was accepted, effective immediately.
Councilman Kevin Motter reported that the Utility Committee met and discussed various changes. It was agreed at that meeting to recommend the ARS contract.
Mayor Yagelski asked about Land Bank actions and Rockey said that he found out that the Demolition money in the amount of $499,000 was awarded to the Williams County Land Bank for use on 215, 217 and 419 W. Main St.
The grant agreement has been received and will be signed during the week. A question was raised about a house on Randolph St. and Rockey said that it will be go out for bid soon when another property is verified.
Bean Days are ready to go and some of the council members will be walking in the parade. Council heard the Income Tax Report from Uribes, being $191,917.48 collected in June 2022, with the yearly amount so far being $1,449,204.79.
Additional information from Jason Rockey, which had not already been covered during the meeting, included information that the Brown Road turn lane project is almost complete and that Village Departments have been hard at work preparing for Bean Days festivities.
He also reported that the mural at Patriot’s Point has been repainted by Janet Dye.
Council went into Executive Session to discuss acquisition of property and to consult with Legal Counsel.
There was no action taken and with no further business, the meeting adjourned.
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