Hebron makes the most of second chance
HEBRON – Village Adminisstrator Ralph Wise had good news for village council members and residents living on Kelley and Westview drives.
The estimated $550,000 project to resurface Kelley and Westview drives was ranked 43rd last fall for Ohio Public Works Commission funding in District 17. There was only enough money to fund the top 41 projects.
Wise suggested that council members consider second chance funding via the Small Government Program. Only $18 million was available statewide.
He also suggested increasing the project’s score by reducing the amount of the grant requested and taking some of it in the form of a 20-year, no interest loan. Council members unanimously agreed to request $349,000 rather than $362,000 in assistance. In addition, $110,000 of the $349,000 would be a 20-year, no interest loan.
The changes increased the project score by nine points to 63, just above the 60-point cutoff. Only 37 out of the 81 applications were funded. Wise expects to get the final contract by July 1, but the actual work could slip to 2014.
In other business May 8, Fire Chief Randy Weekly presented a revised 2013 budget for council members to review prior to the May 13 combined committees meeting. Mayor Clifford Mason asked Weekly to closely evaluate his budget after Union Township Trustees unilaterally reduced their payments from 60 percent of the department’s operating expenses in previous years to just 38 percent for 2013. Weekly said personnel costs account for 80 percent of his expenses while staffing levels also make the largest impact on services.
The department has a minimum of four firefighters/EMT’s on duty 24/7/365. At least one is a paramedic.
Weekly’s revised budget proposes eliminating the weekday fire prevention officer position and reducing part-time pay from $11.55 to $11.00 per hour.
The possible purchase of the former car lot on the northwest corner of Main and High streets has been revived. Another Phase 1 environmental assessment is needed. Wise is talking with Ohio EPA about using a grant from the Targeted Brownfield Assessment Program to fund the updated study. The property is owned by the Ferris family of New Philadelphia.