Meeting Minutes 2-7-2022
The Council of the Village of Woodsfield
February 7, 2022
The Council of the Village of Woodsfield met in Regular Session on February 7, 2022.
I. Roll Call:
Present: Council Members; Dale English, Tom Kirkland, Jamie Hill, Carol Hehr, and D. Ray Hughes; Mayor Mike Ricer, Village Administrator Kevin Brooks, Fiscal Officer Lori Cunard.
Absent: Council Member; Anthony McDaniel.
II. Pending Meeting Minutes Approval:
Councilman Jamie Hill made a motion to accept the January 18, 2022 meeting minutes. Dale English second. D. Ray Hughes – abstain and Anthony McDaniel – absent. Motion passed 4-0.
III. Registered Visitors/Guest:
Uriah Wilson – Mr. Wilson attended to ask if his letter of intent was received regarding the zoning variance of a Parcel at 328 S. Main Street. Village Administrator Kevin Brooks replied that he had sent an email and a hard copy to Mr. Wilson’s secretary explaining the steps that need to be taken for the variance, there are certain criteria that need to be met. Mr. Brooks is waiting on a site plan and a list of adjoining residents so a public hearing can be held. Mr. Wilson said he had the site plan, which he left with Mr. Brooks, but he did not have a list of adjoining residents so he will get a list together and provide it to Mr. Brooks.
IV. Old Business:
Before the Administrator’s report, Mayor Ricer would like to commend the Village of Woodsfield employees. The employees, especially Light Plant, went above and beyond during the last 4 days because of power outages due to the weather. Lewis Hill, Light Plant Superintendent, did arrange for extra help from Cuyahoga Falls Electric Service which was authorized by Village Administrator Kevin Brooks, Mayor Mike Ricer and some Council members. Councilwoman Carol Hehr stated that residents expressed how thankful they were for the Street Department and Light Department and the work they do.
V. Administrator Report:
Village Administrator Kevin Brooks reported that he doesn’t think people really understand how much effort it takes to coordinate and make sure everyone is on the same page during emergency situations. Due to the weather situation over the weekend, Mr. Brooks was on the phone with Chief Corey Jones, the Mayor and some Council members several times a day from Thursday evening throughout the weekend and decisions that were made were discussed by the Administrator, Mayor, several Council members, and Superintendents to make the best decision possible. Kevin Brooks stated how much he appreciates the Police Chief, Superintendents, and the Mayor being available. Mr. Brooks stated that out of 1,754 electric customers only 6 were without power for an extended period.
Kevin Brooks reported that the SCADA Project is beginning at the Water Plant. There are concerns that the employees at the water plant have no experience installing or operating the equipment. Because CT Consultants did the design work they have been contacted for project representation, and construction administration. The proposal from CT Consultants is for $15,400.00 to provide this service for the SCADA installation, this is a not to exceed proposal. Mr. Brooks talked to Paul Robison, Water/Sewer Superintendent, and some things we can do ourselves for the installation and some we can’t. Mr. Brooks is asking that Council make a motion to approve the proposal with CT Consultants not to exceed $15,400.00 for the project representation and construction administration relating to the SCADA Project. Kevin Brooks stated that the money would come from the ARPA Funds. The Village has not spent any of those funds yet and this is an allowable expense. Dale English made the motion. D. Ray Hughes second. Motion passed 5-0.
Kevin Brooks stated that the ARPA Funds were originally earmarked for the AMI Metering Project. It looks as though we will be settling with a price of around $500,000.00 for the project. There are
significant projects needing done and projects already in progress in the Water Department, so he is not sure it is feasible to do the AMI Metering for water. Mr. Brooks said within the Electric budget we could do the network infrastructure and have all the electric meters installed. In order to have the network functional we must install a minimum of 40 water meters which he thinks we can do. We would be able to use the ARPA Funds for the water meters but not electric, this is an eligible expense for ARPA Funds. We can get all the infrastructure in place so we can auto read all the electric customers and manually read approximately 1,200 water customers. With the mapping project, the SCADA project, and potentially some other issues that will need taken care of, Mr. Brooks does not feel that we should burden the Water and Sewer Departments with installing all new meters at this time. Mr. Brooks also said that the water meters are all inside and we cannot hire a private contractor to go into residents’ homes to change the meters. Mr. Brooks informed Council that he can print off a list of eligible expenses for the ARPA Funds if they would like to see one so that they can discuss what the remainder of the ARPA Funds can be spent on. Councilwoman Carol Hehr asked how long we have to spend the ARPA Funds and Mr. Brooks replied that there has not been a deadline put on it as of now but he will look into that.
Village Administrator Kevin Brooks said that since the article has come out in the paper regarding the potential construction of a new building we have gotten a lot of comments and feedback. They did sit through a conference call with CT Consultants and their architect talking about plans and expectations. Once the weather breaks there will be an on-site visit to take some measurements of the lot. Mr. Brooks said that when the project moves forward, he feels Council should take an active role, be involved in it and part of that is deciding on what the name for the new building will be. This will be their legacy; it will be in this community for the next 50-75 years with their names prominently displayed. The first step is to have CT Consultants come up with the non-architectural site-plan and then we can research grant money. The tentative timeline is that by the end of 2022 we hope to have a complete design and by spring to summer of 2023 go to bid for the project. There will be 3 phases to the project; first will be construction of the new building and occupying the new building, second is demolition of the old building, and third is the development of the new park. Councilman Jamie Hill inquired about the environmental. Mr. Brooks replied that he has a list of firms that will do the environmental study which will probably happen in the next 45 to 60 days which will be a huge part of the grant application process. When reviewing the conceptual design, we want to make sure that the building, a government facility, will be adequate to meet our needs, be energy efficient and ADA compliant. Councilwoman Carol Hehr asked if when they do the environmental study if they will be able to tell if anything has been buried on the property. Mr. Brooks replied that yes, he would assume that they should be able to tell, there will be Core samples taken and he will talk to the environmental folks about all of our concerns but remember there will be no basement in the new building. Mr. Brooks said he would keep Council up to date with any progress and any meetings or telephone conferences that will be scheduled concerning the new building.
Kevin Brooks asked for Executive Session at the end of the meeting regarding Personnel/compensation and there may or may not be action taken.
VI. Fiscal Officer Report:
Fiscal Officer Lori Cunard reported that the Hinkle report and year-end has been completed. She is in the process of completing January’s bank statement. Today there was $2,000,000 taken out of Citizens National Bank and moved to WesBanco Bank, starting the transition of moving the General Fund Primary checking account. Also, with the moving of funds to WesBanco, payroll direct deposit will take effect next pay.
VII. Committee Chair/Council Reports:
Dale English – Nothing to report
Tom Kirkland – Nothing to report
Anthony McDaniel – Absent
Jamie Hill – Councilman Jamie Hill just wanted to say “Thank You” to all the employees for the work that was done during the bad weather weekend.
Carol Hehr – Councilwoman Carol Hehr wanted to report on the landbank in the County. She is hoping that there is at least one property in the Village that the landbank funds can be used for. Carol Hehr also reported that she received the contract for the ODNR Grant which she dropped off at Solicitor Kristy Rothenbuhler’s office. Carol Hehr also suggested that a non-emergency phone number be listed at the bottom of utility bills in case of power outages and so on. Carol Hehr received a phone call from Mick Schumacher reporting that Diane Burkhart wrote a grant for the grinder screen needed at the jail for the sewer system issue and he just wanted to give an update for Council.
D. Ray Hughes – Nothing to report
VIII: Solicitor’s Report:
IX: Mayor’s Report:
The Mayor reported that there is a meeting with Solicitor Kristy Rothenbuhler next Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. If anyone has anything they would like brought to her attention please let him know.
The Mayor asked for a motion to approve the payment of the bills. Dale English made the motion. Carol Hehr second. Anthony McDaniel – absent. Motion passed 5-0.
The Mayor asked for a motion to approve the Mayor’s Court Report, January, 2022. Jamie Hill made the motion. D. Ray Hughes second. Anthony McDaniel – absent. Motion passed 5-0.
The Mayor reported that he and Fiscal Officer Lori Cunard are meeting with a representative from the Gaming Commission regarding gaming fees on Monday, February 14th.
The Mayor asked for a motion to approve the Income Tax Report, January, 2022. Jamie Hill made the motion. Dale English second. Motion passed 5-0.
X. Un-Registered Visitors:
Kyle Culley and Barret Hayes – Mr. Culley and Mr. Hayes attended this evenings meeting to discuss the 2 locomotives at the south end of town. They are interested in acquiring and restoring the locomotives to operation and once restored they could bring them back periodically to the Village. They both have a strong background and history of railroading. They are interested in using the locomotives to provide a classroom setting for the technology and allure of locomotives. They also would like to get the youth more involved so the technology of railroading is not forgotten. Mr. Culley and Mr. Hayes would like Council’s feedback on acquiring the locomotives. Councilman Ray Hughes asked when they restore them to operation they had said they would bring them back but how often would they bring them?? Mr. Culley and Mr. Hayes replied that possibly annually to make sure that their legacy is known. Mr. Hayes also said that there may be a possibility the engines will be kept nearby but he and Mr. Culley want to make sure the heritage of these engines stays here. Mayor Ricer asked if they could leave their business card so we could contact them once a decision is made. Carla Wobschall of the Monroe County Beacon asked if the locomotives that the gentlemen were inquiring about actually belonged to the Village. Councilman Ray Hughes replied that going by abandonment rules then they absolutely do. The cars have been sitting at the same location for 30 years or longer.
Mayor Ricer then asked for a motion to go into Executive Session regarding Personnel/compensation and there may or may not be action taken. Jamie Hill made the motion. Carol Hehr second. Anthony McDaniel – absent. Motion passed 5-0. Executive Session entered at 6:30 p.m.
Mayor Ricer asked for a motion to return to Regular Session. Jamie Hill made the motion. Dale English second. Anthony McDaniel – absent. Motion passed 5-0. Returned to Regular Session at 8:22 p.m.
Dale English made a motion to purchase a K-9 for the Police Department in the amount of $13,500. Tom Kirkland second. Jamie Hill – abstain and Anthony McDaniel – absent. Motion passed 4-0.
Ray Hughes made a motion to move 2 wastewater operator employees from hourly wages to salary wages, pending further conversation with the 2 employees. Carol Hehr second. Anthony McDaniel – absent. Motion passed 5-0.
There were two more royalty checks received from Gulfport, one in the amount of $38,864.39and one in the amount of $97,650.95 that gets deposited to the General Fund and then disbursed to the Building Fund for the new municipal building.
Ray Hughes made a motion to donate the locomotives to the 2 gentlemen from Colorado that attended the meeting under the condition that they bring the locomotives to the Village annually during our established time frame. Jamie Hill second. Anthony McDaniel – absent. Motion passed 5-0.
Councilman Ray Hughes made the motion to Adjourn from Session. Jamie Hill second. Anthony McDaniel – absent. Motion passed 5-0. Meeting adjourned at 8:30 p.m.
Michael E. Ricer, Mayor Lori Cunard, Fiscal Officer