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Hebron to re-advertise fire chief opening

HEBRON – Work on the Kelly and Westview drives repaving project could start as early as Monday, July 7, Village Administrator Ralph Wise told council members last Wednesday. Kokosing Construction will spend most of the time constructing new curbs and 59 driveway aprons. Actual repaving will take about two days.

Wise also reported that Eloise Lothes of Meadowbrook Apartments generously donated the 800 square foot easement needed to replace the North 6th Street culvert. Licking County Commissioners will open the bids on July 17 for the Community Development Block Grant project. Hebron is paying the engineering costs plus any costs that exceed the engineer’s estimate of $95,000.

Wise said an ODOT contractor has finished installing a new traffic signal at Enterprise Drive and Ohio 79. A radar detection system has replaced the former pavement loops to trip the signal on Enterprise Drive.

The South High Street sidewalk project is now set to go out for bids early next year. The new sidewalk will run from the Lake Forest subdivision to Main Street through Canal Park. It is to be completed by Nov. 30, 2015. Appraisals will be done this summer on the few parcels needed for construction.

Wise also said Ohio EPA has issued a draft NPDES permit for the village’s wastewater treatment plant. The five-year permit will become final after July 11 unless Ohio EPA determines that a public hearing is necessary. Wise has asked for an explanation on why the village’s ammonia limits have been reduced for the summer months.

In other council business, council members unanimously agreed to re-advertise for a fire chief to replace Fire Chief Randy Weekly who is retiring July 18. Four applications were received in the first round, but salary expectations were higher than expected for the preferred candidates. Assistant Fire Chief Mark Weekly asked for permission to send Engine 3 to Finley Fire Equipment to resolve electrical problems that have been cropping up since the engine struck a corner stone/ post on a Buckeye Lake fire run. Council authorized spending up to $2,500 on an $1,800 original estimate. The engine will be out of service for one to three days.

Council was one member short to waive the three reading requirement for a resolution to place the renewal of a two-mill fire levy on the November ballot. The measure will not increase taxes. The two-step process must be completed by early August and could require a special meeting.

Council members unanimously agreed to vacate an alley at 118 Maple Avenue after holding a public hearing prior to the council meeting. The unopened alley backs up to the fire station. It’s the first alley vacated by the village since 2002.

Council members also unanimously agreed to forgive approximately $20,000 in sewer and water bills. The issue arose after discrepancies were found between outside remote meters and the inside residential meters. The remote meters were installed several years ago as a convenience for the village and residents. Indoor meters were read for about 50 residential customers as they were switching to the new radio-read meters, resulting in billing discrepancies from 5,000 to 232,000 gallons of water. Most customers haven’t been billed, but those who did were not pleased.

“The discrepancy may have occurred over several years,” Wise explained. “We should waive this discrepancy,” council member Jim Friend said. Mayor Clifford Mason said the issue would go away with the change to the new meters.

Mason thanked Hebron Lions Club members for painting the curbs in front of fire hydrants. The village supplied the materials.

He also noted that the Village of West Liberty in Logan County has asked for permission to adopt Hebron’s exterior property maintenance code. Village officials found Hebron’s code during an Internet search and thought it best fit their needs.

Council’s next regular meeting is set for 7 p.m. on Wednesday, July 9, at the municipal complex.

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