By Timothy Kays
Prior to the start of their July 8 meeting, members of the Montpelier Village Council bore witness to the swearing in of their newest Council compatriot, Mr. Don Schlosser. Prior to the start of the meeting, Jessica Apple, the Clerk of Council, administered the oath of office to Mr. Schlosser, who is filling the vacancy left by the departure of former Councilor Cheri Streicher.
With the vacancy filled, Council next bore witness to the presentation of the American Legion Law Enforcement Certificate of Commendation to Montpelier Juvenile Resource Officer, Stephanie Mills.
Councilor Kevin Motter, the Commander of Montpelier Legion Post 109, emceed the presentation, saying, “To officer Stephanie Mills of the Montpelier Police Department for actions on 10 May, 2019 as follows…a parent had brought a child to the Montpelier K-12 School office. Officer Mills recognized the parent was acting in an erratic and aggressive manner, was under the influence of controlled substance.”
“Officer Mills retained the parent, and removed her from the view of school children. After a brief struggle, the parent was taken into custody without further incident. Officer Mills is currently serving as a member of the Ohio National Guard…as a military police officer, and a member of the Montpelier American Legion Post 109.”
“For removing a child from a potentially dangerous and neglectful situation, and handling contact with a person under the influence of a controlled substance in a highly professional manner, thus defusing a potentially dangerous incident, Officer Mills has been recommended for nomination of the American Legion Department of Ohio Law Enforcement Officer of the Year Award by Post Law and Order Committee Chairman Roger Brown, himself a retired D.A.R.E. officer with the Williams County Sheriff’s Office.”
Councilor Chris Kannel outlined the report of the Economic Development and Strategy Committee, which focused again on the tabled proposal from McCaulley and Company. “We talked a fair amount about while McCaulley is not the only company that we know of that does this type of work,” Kannel said, “…we have, as you all well know, done a fair amount of work with Maumee Valley Planning Organization and Poggemeyer design group, who are all capable of doing similar types of work to McCaulley and Company.”
“I think that the biggest concern that we have is the ongoing costs, which is proposed by McCaulley, and we are responsible for coming up with the ideas that they pursue the funding for, without having done enough planning to really be able to identify what is it that we ought to be pursuing funds for. And so what the Committee recommends is that the administration issue a request for proposals (RFP) for two parts…one an update of our 2001 Comprehensive Plan, which would include looking at land use, transportation, economic development, public facilities, and utilities, and parks and recreation.”
“And then the second part of that is funding source identification and grant writing that would be based on the Comprehensive Plan. What we have now is sort of a thrown together list we’ve come up with over the course of the last several years. We recommend at least issuing the RFP to McCaulley and Company, Poggemeyer and Maumee Valley, and that we would wait on the McCaulley and Company renewal proposal until after we looked at all of that.”
“We feel like McCaulley and Company deserves the opportunity to continue to submit a revised proposal if they wish. If they don’t, that’s fine but we’d like to at least offer them that opportunity.”
Councilor Nathan Thompson added, “We discussed that we feel that we need to have somebody doing that type of a job for the village, which is grant writing and looking at trying to find those sources, so we don’t want to drop it. We feel it’s important at least go out for other bids and see if somebody can do it just as well, or just make sure we’re being concerned about the money with the village.”
The subject would be addressed again later in the meeting when the disposition of the tabled proposal was addressed. “I think the point is that…the subject of this proposal is not exclusively what we’re looking for. Right. So there is no sense in us entering into this agreement in any case, because it’s not what we want. So we also don’t have to make a motion at all, and just let it die on the table. Then we have neither declined the proposal, neither have we accepted the proposal. The Mayor can ask for a motion, then hearing none, it dies and then we move forward. Because if we table it, then we’re obligated to pick it up again, and talk about it again.”
Mayor Steve Yagelski carried forward with the recommendation, asking, “Any further discussion from the Council? If there are none, I will ask for a motion to approve the McCaulley and Company agreement.” The call went unanswered. A second call for a motion went unanswered, as did a third, after which Mayor Yagelski declared the measure dead upon the table.
Councilor Motter reported, “The Zoning and Planning Committee met at five o’clock today. We discussed a lot split at 1306 Maplehurst Avenue, and we approved the variance for that lot split.” “This individual, this property owner,” added Mayor Yagelski, “…has already been to Planning and Zoning back in August, so there’s nothing new to it.”
Council heard from Jeanette Hull, who presented the final updates to the schedule for the 2019 Bean Days and Balloon Fest. Mr. Greg Lee spoke about the Balloon Festival, which he said is facing difficulties due to new, strict regulations being imposed at the federal level. “We’re struggling with a lot of things,” he said. “This year, the FAA has really cracked down on a lot of the regulations that the balloon pilots fly under. Events are being hit really hard. There’s a lot of events around the country that have just flat out canceled.”
“There’s events that typically have 30 or 40 balloons that are at 10 and 12. The one that comes to mind…is Marysville, Ohio, which is the longest running balloon event. Typically it has 30 to 40 balloons. This year, they have paid anywhere from $1,500 to $3,000 to get 12 balloons in, and they have two regular balloonists coming in. So that’s just the way a lot of these events are being hit.”
“We’ve got eight balloons coming in, so I really feel pretty good about that. For a small event like this, being able to bring in some balloons, and we’re bringing them in from Michigan, all around Ohio, our Touchstone pilot is coming in from Missouri. We talked about getting special shape in this year. A rocket ship, there’s three of them that I know that are flying different events this year…but not Montpelier. And there’s a space shuttle.”
“We couldn’t get it either, but one was dropped in our lap. It’s Chad Crabtree out of Delton, Michigan; his balloon is called ‘Independence.’ It’s got the United States flag on one side. On the other side it has USA on it, so that that’ll kind of go along with our theme.”
Ms. Hull commented on the reputation that Montpelier has attained amongst the pilots, saying, “The pilots actually tell us that because of the way they’re treated, and because of the excitement out of our small community, that they come back. That’s why we were able to get the eight pilots that we did, because of the reputation in the last six years of our community, the community support, and how the community treats the pilots as they come to our community. They’re wanting to come back for us. We have a couple on there that have been with us the entire six years.”
Prior to adjournment, Council retired into executive session to discuss potential litigation, with no action undertaken upon returning to regular session.
Timothy can be reached at email@example.com