2007-02-10 / Editorials & Letters

'Watchdog' says fivevotes required for emergencies

Editor:

I will give the benefit of the doubt to Kirkersville Council Member Bobbi Miller and hope that since she is fairly new to politics maybe she just doesn't understand the process in passing an ordinance, especially as an EMERGENCY...at least in Kirkersville. The ordinance in question is the 2006 Municipal Traffic Codes. Ms. Miller wasn't at this meeting.

In ANY municipality without its own charter, there is a process that is set in law on what it takes to pass an ordinance. Part of that required process is reading the ordinance on three different days. In Kirkersville, most ordinances are passed as an EMERGENCY. In doing that, the Kirkersville Council suspends the three reading rule which by law (R.C.731.17) requires a vote of "at least THREE FOURTHS (3/4) of the members of the legislative authority." The number of "members" of a village council is set by law. That number is 6. That means FIVE members must agree to suspend the threereading rule. Even if a seat is vacant due to a resignation, it is still a six-member council and fivevotes are required to suspend the three-reading rule.

This current dispute started when Kirkersville Police ticketed a man on Loop Road based on an illegal 15 MPH speed limit sign. Since the 15 MPH limit was illegal, I (and some others) believe the man (who paid a $95 fine) should have been refunded his money. But rather than do that, Mayor Bennie Evans and the rest of the Good Ole' Boys now want to reduce the speed limit on the Ohio 158 bypass to 35 MPH where there are no houses, no businesses, no nothing! Maybe they are looking for another place to trap unsuspecting drivers.

Our police should have known the laws regarding speed limits and should not be writing tickets on illegal signs. Incidentally, have you noticed the private speed limit signs in the driveway of the fireworks shop? They say, "Speed Limit 20 MPH!" That's faster than village officials allowed you to go on Loop Road and Community Drive where many of the Kirkersville Good Ole' Boys reside!

Bonnie MansfieldKirkersville

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