Meeting Minutes (10-3-22)
The Council of the Village of Woodsfield
October 3, 2022
The Council of the Village of Woodsfield met in Regular Session on October 3, 2022.
I. Roll Call:
Present: Council Members; Dale English, Tom Kirkland, Anthony McDaniel, Leann Harper, Tiffany Ramsay (being sworn in as new council member); Mayor Carol Hehr, Fiscal Officer Lori Cunard, and Village Administrator Kevin Brooks.
Absent: Councilman Matt Schaber and Solicitor Kristy Rothenbuhler.
II. Council Member takes Oath of Office:
Tiffany Ramsay, appointed council member to serve the unexpired term of the vacant council seat which goes through December 31, 2025, was sworn in by Mayor Carol Hehr.
III. Pending Meeting Minutes Approval:
Dale English made a motion to accept the September 19, 2022 meeting minutes. Anthony McDaniel second. Abstain – Tiffany Ramsay, absent – Matt Schaber. Motion passed 4-0.
IV. Registered Visitors/Guest:
Jonathan Wilson – Mr. Wilson asked why there is no parking on W. Marietta Street. He had spoken to Chief Corey Jones who had told him it was for Charlie’s Run. Village Administrator spoke up to say that there was no parking for the run but before that it was due to gas and oil traffic. As traffic slows down Chief Jones will open up more parking, it is his call as to when it will be completely opened up for parking and he is aware of it. Mr. Wilson also asked about the parking around the center of town due to the construction. Mr. Brooks stated that parking has been altered in the center of town. Mr. Wilson asked if the cones can be moved in the evenings after construction working hours to allow more parking to which Mr. Brooks replied that Shelley and Sands makes decisions on moving the cones. Mayor Hehr asked how much traffic is on W. Marrietta. Mr. Wilson said that there have not been any over-size trucks on W. Marietta, it seems to be just normal traffic. Mayor Carol Hehr told Mr. Wilson that she would suggest he talk to Chief Jones again. Kevin Brooks said that he agrees with Mr. Wilson that the traffic has slowed down significantly so he would talk to Chief Jones about restoring some of the parking. Kevin Brooks also explained to Mr. Wilson that Gulfport did not sign a RUMA with the Village, they hired legal counsel which found a loophole in one of our Ordinances so they have been using Village roads regardless of signing a RUMA but Mr. Brooks will talk to Chief Jones. Councilman Anthony McDaniel made Mr. Wilson aware that if parking is opened up and he is parked, there is always the chance a gas and oil truck could strike his vehicle and damage it. Mr. Wilson replied that he just parks his older vehicle on the street and when you park on the street you take that chance. Anthony McDaniel also agreed that there will be a conversation with Chief Jones and it will be his decision.
Officer Jacob McNerney – Mayor Carol Hehr reported that Charlie’s Run was very successful, Charlie Kozlesky did reach his goal of raising over $1,000,000.00 for children in hospitals in the 45 years of doing the run. She presented the Proclomation and street sign naming the alley behind the Municipal Building “Charlie Kozlesky Way” to Charlie Kozlesky after the run. Mayor Hehr presented the Troy Swoyer award to Village Police Department on behalf of Charlie Kozlesky. Officer Jacob McNerney accepted the award for the Police Department. The Troy Swoyer award was also presented to Village Council.
V. Old Business:
SOLSD Memorial Park Community Center Contract
VI. Administrator Report:
Village Administrator Kevin Brooks reported that he has a quote from CT Consultants in the amount of $48,100.00 for the electrical system mapping which includes identification tags on all of our poles and mapping out the entire electrical system. There were several quotes taken and CT Consultants was the most responsive. Mr. Brooks said it needs to be done, we can’t do any upgrades or changes we would like to do until the mapping is done. Kevin Brooks asked that council make a motion to approve the
electrical system mapping by CT Consultants in the amount of $48,100.00. The funds will be taken from the Light/Improvements which has a balance of $793,741.79. Leann Harper made the motion. Tom Kirkland second. Matt Schaber – absent. Motion passed 5-0.
Mr. Brooks said that we received the deed for the property across from Reisbeck’s. The property was owned by ODOT and they have deeded it over to the Village. The Village has used the property for probably over 20 years for storage, ODOT had an internal audit and discovered they owned it and did not know it so they officially deeded it over to the Village.
We have several tree trimming issues, there are some electric poles that are not accessible. Mr. Brooks said he is going to get some more estimates because of the cost. There were some issues last winter during the ice storm We did not have the equipment to get to some of the poles to restore power so we had to use AMP’s Mutual Aid and called out crews from Hudson Valley and Cuyahoga Falls to restore power to one neighborhood section. Mr. Brooks is not happy with the prices for tree trimming so we may look at some other options such as doing one at a time because this was not budgeted for at the cost they gave. To trim the trees they will have to be climbed so we have to go with a company that will climb which adds to the price.
We have received over 20 applicants for the open Cemetery position. He has forwarded them to Dale English, Tom Kirkland, and Matt Schaber, Cemetery Committee. They would like to start doing some interviews, but the issue is that we had a large payout to the previous Cemetery employee. We had planned on doing it as bi-weekly payments but the individual asked to have one lump sum payment, so we went ahead with the lump sum payout. Mr. Brooks would rather not hire right away while we are absorbing the cost of the payout. There are several qualified candidates so we may start some interviews but wait to hire after the first of the year. Steve Eikleberry, Park Superintendent, should be able to handle the Cemetery along with Park because mowing season is almost over, we will probably only cut one more time. Mr. Brooks said he will keep Council informed of the hiring process but as he stated earlier, we will probably wait until after the first of the year. Mayor Hehr asked if it’s really a good idea to interview now if we will not hire until January. Mr. Brooks said that since they have received a lot of qualified applicants they would like to interview maybe as many as seven for the position and then do second interviews. By the time first and second interviews are done and the applicant gives a 2-week notice to their current employer we probably won’t be far from January. Mr. Brooks would like to have someone in the position in January so they can get familiar with the Cemetery, equipment, etc. and he wants to have them maintenance the equipment over the winter.
Kevin Brooks reported that he will be out of the office October 12-14 for the OML Conference in Columbus. Lori Cunard, Brenda Mauck and Mayor Hehr will also be attending the Conference, the Fiscal Office will be closed for the 3 days. Dale English and Tom Kirkland will be attending on Thursday only.
VII. Fiscal Officer Report:
Fiscal Officer Lori Cunard stated that she completed her Mayor’s Clerk training.
Chris Kerby, traveling clerk, was in the Fiscal Office on Tuesday, September 27th working on next year’s budget. We completed Payroll, General and Street Department. This Thursday Mr. Kerby will be helping complete the rest of the budget by phone conference. Kevin Brooks spoke up to say that we have done substantially better in 2022 than what was projected. We have done really well at maximizing revenues and managing expenses.
Lori Cunard said our renewal for Anthem Health Coverage and PEP is up for renewal.
VIII. Committee Chair/Council Reports:
Dale English – Councilman Dale English stated that when Matt Schaber gets back into town the Cemetery Committee will start interviewing.
Tom Kirkland – Nothing to report
Anthony McDaniel – Nothing to report but Councilman Anthony McDaniel asked if there was going to be Executive Session regarding Personnel and Mayor Hehr replied no there would not be because she did not know he was going to be in attendance.
Leann Harper – Nothing to report but Councilwoman Leann Harper stated she would like to make a motion give our Solicitor 30-day notice and seek new legal counsel. Village Administrator Kevin Brooks said we should go into Executive Session to discuss it. Leann Harper requested Executive Session at the end of the meeting.
Tiffany Ramsay – Nothing to report
Matt Schaber – Absent
Kevin Brooks spoke up to say that he also wanted to report that Mayor Hehr, Dale English, and himself met with a couple people downtown along with Shelley and Sands. There are a couple things in the downtown project we would like to see done. There are two sections of sidewalk downtown one being from Marden Rehab to Midtown Fitness and the other being in front of the theater where the 4 front of footage will be replaced but the backside will not be touched. We have started procuring prices to have the whole sidewalk replaced in those two sections and also to have the brick inlay put in to match the Courthouse front and the Subway to Ace Hardware fronts so the quadrants downtown will all be the same. The price to do the two sections is under $20,000.00 which we will take from the Capital Projects Fund. We had two decorative light poles that were damaged due to traffic issues and were never re-installed so they will be replaced. They are going to be ordered through the Electric Department and one will be installed at Subway and the other in front of the Theater. Due to the curb islands Mr. Brooks feels they will less likely be damaged by traffic. Councilman Dale English stated that when the poles were knocked over by traffic they were covered under insurance. Mr. Brooks said yes they were but they were just never replaced. Leann Harper asked what they are doing at the intersections downtown. Mr. Brooks said it is for all the electrical that will operate the traffic signals and the Ped-Heads, and we are also putting in conduit to accommodate parking stations or internet if we go with the smart meters for credit card usage. We will have electric in the center island and the curb islands and just so Council knows, the traffic signals will be at the curb at Marden Rehab and the Theater rather than the center of the road like they are now. Mayor Hehr asked when they would start the curb islands and Mr. Brooks replied as soon as Shelley and Sands get back from working on another project they will be starting them. Mr. Brooks stated that the next phase will be the curb islands which means traffic patterns will change and it will be a permanent change. The sidewalk work will also begin which may mean in some cases it will be very difficult to gain access to some of the businesses, which we have communicated this to them.
IX: Solicitor’s Report:
X: Mayor’s Report:
Mayor Hehr reported that she received a phone call from Howard Lewis on 225 Berkley Dr. Mr. Lewis said there is a half an acre of land that meets up to his land that is landlocked. In the 70’s he sold the half acre to ODOT when they talked about putting a by-pass in to from St. Rt. 78 to Fairground Rd. which they never did. When the by-pass did not get built the property reverted back to the Village. Mr. Lewis has been maintaining the land since then and would like to buy it back. The Mayor asked Council to go out and look at it before they make a decision on selling it back to him. Mayor Hehr and Kevin Brooks talked about having Mr. Lewis pay the survey fee and then sell it to him for $1.00. Kevin Brooks spoke up and said that adverse possession comes into play because of the amount of time Mr. Lewis has taken care of it, so technically because of him maintaining the property it reverts back to him. Mr. Brooks feels that the right thing to do, if Mr. Lewis agrees, let him have the survey work done then the Village will sell him the property back for $1.00.
Mayor Hehr reminded Council that there is a public meeting on Tuesday, October 4th @ 6:00 p.m. concerning the downtown revitalization.
Mayor Hehr reported that the exercise equipment for the walking trail that was purchased through the NatureWorks Grant was shipped on Thursday. It was going to be an additional $5,000.00 to have them come and put it together so we opted to have our own employees do it. Kevin Brooks said he spoke to Mike Young, Fire Chief, and he is ok with it sitting at the Fire Station until it can be installed. Mike Young also let Kevin Brooks know about a drainage issue at the walking trail, so it will be taken care of. Mayor Hehr said since it has been paved it is very nice. Councilman Anthony McDaniel said we need to promote the walking trail. Mayor Hehr said once the exercise equipment is installed she is wanting the MC Beacon to come up and take pictures and publicize it and we are going to add signage. She also would like the next step of the walking trail to be connecting it to the school. Kevin Brooks said there is currently a gravel trail that leads from the school to the walking trail and up to the Firehouse.
The Mayor asked for a motion to approve the payment of bills. Anthony McDaniel made the motion. Leann Harper second. Matt Schaber – absent. Motion passed 5-0.
The Mayor asked for a motion to approve the Mayor’s Report, September, 2022. Dale English made the motion. Tom Kirkland second. Matt Schaber – absent. Motion passed 5-0.
The Mayor asked for a motion to approve the Income Tax Report, September, 2022. Anthony McDaniel made the motion. Leann Harper second. Matt Schaber – absent. Motion passed 5-0.
XI. Un-Registered Visitors:
Councilman Anthony McDaniel made a motion to go into Executive Session regarding Personnel and the sale of property. Leann Harper second. Matt Schaber – absent. Motion passed 5-0. Executive Session entered at 6:20 p.m.
Mayor Hehr asked for a motion to go back into Regular Session. Leann Harper made the motion. Anthony McDaniel second. Matt Schaber – absent. Motion passed 5-0. Regular Session entered 6:44 p.m.
Leann Harper made a motion to give Kristy Rothenbuhler 30-day notice, letter of services no longer needed and would like to seek new legal counsel. Anthony McDaniel second. Matt Schaber – absent. Tiffany Ramsay – abstain. Motion passed 4-1-0.
The Mayor asked for a motion to adjourn the meeting. Dale English made the motion to adjourn. Tom Kirkland second. Matt Schaber – absent. Motion passed 5-0. Meeting adjourned at 6:54 p.m.
Carol Hehr, Mayor Lori Cunard, Fiscal Officer