By: Jacob Kessler
THE VILLAGE REPORTER
The Wauseon City Council held their meeting on Monday, June 5th. The meeting began at 5:01 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance and a moment of silence.
Council first moved to approve minutes from the regular meeting held on May 15th as well as the Committee of the Whole meeting held on June 1st.
Fire Chief Phil Kessler then gave his department head report and stated the department is looking to add two full time personnel to its roster sometime in June.
There is also hope of holding an oath ceremony later in June as well. The mandatory Medicare audit was just completed, and the fireworks will be held on June 3rd.
Work is being done with Scott Yoder from Fulton County GIS to get SOMA the information it needs in order to get the new CAD system up in running in July.
Director of Public Service Keith Torbet gave his report next and gave information regarding pool sales, daily entries and passes sold. Gross sales are also currently at $11,500 for the snack shack at the pool.
One of the slides is still down at this time. Once the pump is returned it will be back up and running.
Mr. Torbet was asked how parking has been going at the pool. Torbet stated that the parking has been going well.
Director of Finance Jamie Giguere then reported to council that the financial statements had been turned in and that income tax revenue is currently up 37% when compared to the same time last year.
Law Director Thomas McWatters III next informed council that work is being done regarding the York Township fire contract which will be discussed during executive session. It was stated that Clinton Township Trustees would be invited to join the executive session.
Moving on to committee reports, the Financial Committee met previously to discuss the following issues. The monument cleaning at North Park and the one in front of the fire department.
The North Park monument will cost around $13,000.00 and the fire department monument cleaning will cost around $1,296.00.
A new housing development is being put in on Seneca Drive. A roadway will be added but there is an issue with connection points matching up.
It was the committee’s recommendation to agree to pay $43,684.00 to take care of the issue as long as the roadway is paved to extend to the existing roadway.
A new fire vehicle was approved back in 2022 but was not procured due to everything being backed up from COVID. There is another vehicle available now which may be obtained.
Lastly for the Financial Committee, a recommendation was put forth to replace the buildings current generator which is from around 1969.
The cost is estimated to be around $117,000.00. All four items from the committee were approved by council.
The Safety and Code Committee report took place next. The possibility of golf carts being allowed on city streets was addressed.
The committee had previously met with citizens who wanted to discuss the issue. It was stated that both the current police chief and previous police chief are not in favor of the issue due to the possibility of more calls and accidents.
Councilman Brandon Tijerina stated that restrictions would be placed on the usage and that the rules would look similar to the ones used by North Baltimore.
Councilman Shane Chamberlin stated that he appreciates the difference in opinion between the police chief and the fire chief, as well as the list of cons provided by Councilwoman Sarah Heising.
Tijerina brought up the issue of other similar types of vehicles already being allowed on the streets which include mopeds, motorcycles and more.
He pointed out that these vehicles are also less safe when it comes to being in a crash, yet they are allowed. He also stated that if people understand the risks, they should have the freedom to be able to use a golf cart.
Heising also spoke and stated that she feels it would be an extra burden placed on drivers coming through town for the leisure of the people wanting to drive carts around and that it doesn’t sit well with her. She also stated that she doesn’t see how the benefit outweighs the risk. Other council members also spoke in support or opposition to the idea.
A motion was then put forward to accept the recommendation to allow golf carts under certain restrictions to be set later. The vote was split at three for and three against.
With the mayor not being present the motion died, but the option remains to bring the issue up again when the mayor returns.
Council next moved to approve Resolution 2023-7 to amend Ordinance 2022-7 Annual Appropriation Ordinance by authorizing the director of finance to increase or decrease certain line account appropriations within the various funds listed within the year of 2023.
Additional motions were also approved including a motion to accept the Public Water System Equipment Grant and a motion to pay the bills as presented.
Council next entered into executive session at 5:32 p.m. Upon their return, the meeting was adjourned.
Jacob can be reached at email@example.com