Meeting Minutes (3-6-23)
The Council of the Village of Woodsfield
March 6, 2023
The Council of the Village of Woodsfield met in Regular Session on March 6, 2023.
I. Roll Call:
Present: Council Members; Dale English, Tom Kirkland, Anthony McDaniel, Leann Harper, Tiffany Ramsay, Matt Schaber; Mayor Carol Hehr, Fiscal Officer Lori Cunard, Solicitor Ryan Regel and Village Administrator Kevin Brooks.
II. Pending Meeting Minutes Approval:
Leann Harper made a motion to accept the February 20, 2023 meeting minutes as written. Matt Schaber second. Motion passed 6-0.
III. Registered Visitors/Guest:
Mike Young, Woodsfield Fire Chief – Mike Young attended the meeting to give Council an update on the fire truck that was damaged in an accident last November. He said neither of the guys in the truck were hurt but the truck sustained a good bit of damage, and he has been since November trying to find someone to repair it under the amount that was allotted for repairs by the insurance company. Mike Young said he has spoken to the Mayor and he feels maybe the insurance needs to be re-evaluated because of not enough coverage. After 5 months the truck is finally getting repaired at Wheeling Mack and TJ Taylor Welding and hopes to have it back in service sometime before June. Mike Young stated that they are going to take inventory of their supplies and he is recommending to go with an insurance company that deals specifically with firefighting and fire apparatus not trucks, dozers, etc. Mike Young also wanted to update Council on the grant that was awarded to the fire department. In 2021 they applied for a FEMA Grant and after 2 years, they did receive the grant in the amount of $115,000. He said that Randy Jones wrote the grant and Mike Young also wanted to thank Kevin Brooks and Lori Cunard for all their help. The grant money will be used to purchase air packs. Dale English asked if the air packs have ever been replaced. Mike Young said they have not been replaced and when they were purchased, they got them at a really good deal. Leann Harper asked about checking the fire hydrants once a year and if the fire department does that or if we should have our water department do it. Mike Young responded and said that up until the end of the 1990’s or early 2000’s the fire department did it. He said that once he came on board it got harder to get guys to help with it because no one really wanted to give up a weekend afternoon or weekday evening. He turned in a list of hydrants that needed to be checked to Kevin Brooks about a year ago, so they did it and found issues. Mike Young said he is not necessarily sure whose responsibility it is to check them, but it is the Village’s water system. He said if the water/sewer department checks them the fire department can help out. Mike Young said the fireworks in the Village will be on July 3rd, he is not sure yet how much they are spending this year, but he will probably know in a couple of weeks. Mayor Hehr said she would like to do an event for the fireworks, she is asking for community volunteers to help with planning but has not gotten a good response so far. Mike Young said the fire department would help out as much as possible. Mayor Hehr said we are very grateful for the volunteers at the fire department and thanked Randy Jones for writing the grant.
Johnna Kaiser, Woodsfield resident – Johnna Kaiser attended the meeting to ask for permission from Council to paint the wooden benches at the softball and baseball fields at the park. She said the school would pay for the paint and she would also like to paint the benches on the hillside at the playground. She would like to paint them red, gold, and black, the school colors. Mayor Hehr said she would need to sign a user agreement to paint the benches. Village Administrator Kevin Brooks said as long as she signs the agreement, he does not see a problem with her painting the benches. Mayor Hehr agreed and said we appreciate her doing so. Johnna Kaiser would also like to plant some flowers around the flagpole at the football field and she said she would keep them watered and taken care of. Mayor Hehr said that would be great for her to do that. Mrs. Kaiser stated that she has been picking up trash along the road in front of her house and she said that they are having to pay extra for trash pick-up because of it so she asked for permission to put the trash in the bin at the park. Kevin Brooks said that would be no problem or she could also dump it in the bin at the city building. Johnna Kaiser asked if the lane to her driveway
would be repaired soon. Leann Harper stated that it would probably not be soon. Kevin Brooks spoke up and stated that we have allocated $200,000.00 to street paving but we are trying to get grant funds to turn the $200,000.00 to $500,000.00 as an example and once we have exceeded the $50,000.00 threshold the job needs competitive bid the job out, so it is a time-consuming process. The Street department has also come up with the top 20 streets needing paved, so we are going to be doing some meaningful paving and Mrs. Kaiser’s area has come up as needing done. She stated that the road is getting really rutted out and asked if her and her husband could have it chipped and sealed at their cost. Kevin Brooks replied that he doesn’t think anyone would have a problem with it, but he does not feel that it is their responsibility it is the Village’s responsibility. Mrs. Kaiser said that she just cannot wait to have it done because of the condition of it. Kevin Brooks said that when Shelley and Sands come back into town for the downtown project, and they are using hot mix he will send someone out to do some patching for the Kaiser’s.
Seth Alleman, New hire – Kevin Brooks introduced Seth Alleman, he is a new hire for the Electric Department as a Laborer/Lineman apprentice. Mr. Alleman started today and in the next 6-8 months he will receive his first 2 weeks of lineman training. He is on the schedule to be a Certified Lineman within the next 3 years. Mr. Alleman thanked Council for the opportunity to work with the Village and he thinks it will work out great. Council welcomed him and thanked him for attending the meeting this evening.
IV. Old Business:
DORA – Solicitor Ryan Regel stated that he has a draft application that he needs to get with Kevin Brooks on for more specifics. He has the application about 95% done and is hoping to have it completed and sent to Council members by Friday for review. Kevin Brooks asked if Chief Corey Jones needed to get with the 4 businesses regarding the liquor license and Solicitor Ryan Regel replied not at this time. Kevin Brooks reminded Council that the times for DORA would be Thursday – Sunday @ 7:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. Mayor Hehr is wondering if it should be Thursday – Saturday rather than Sunday. Kevin Brooks said she would have to let Solicitor Ryan Regel know what days to do DORA. Solicitor Ryan Regel said he would need to know specifics as far as exactly where the DORA District will be, where the signs will be, what kind of cups, and where the trash receptacles will be.
V. Administrator Report:
Kevin Brooks requested Executive Session Pending Litigation at the end of the meeting.
VII. Fiscal Officer Report:
Fiscal Officer Lori Cunard asked Council to sign the December and January bank reconciliations.
Lori Cunard said Council members were given the 2023 Permanent Budget for review. Kevin Brooks spoke up to say that Lori Cunard and Brenda Mauck, Fiscal Office, would like the budget passed as soon as possible. Kevin Brooks stated that the budget presented is not going to be changed, it is our starting point, and it can be changed if needed. Mr. Brooks said that if it is not passed tonight then there will need to be a special meeting by next Monday to review the budget in more detail, but the numbers presented are what they are and will not be changed. Adjustments can be made as expenses dictate throughout the year and the budget presented is the 2023 budget. The strategy for the budget has always been to predict expenses high and revenue low. Anthony McDaniel spoke up and said that he had time to sit and go over it and he is ok with it. Mayor Hehr asked Dale English and Tom Kirkland if they had any comment on it and they stated that it is our starting point, and you have to start somewhere. Leann Harper said she thought there was going to be a meeting to go over it in more detail. Kevin Brooks said that we can have a special meeting to go over it if that’s what everyone wants. Leann Harper said that she thought there was going to be a special meeting to go over it in detail but, due to being short on time she said she is ok with it. Matt Schaber also said he would like to go over it in more detail. Kevin Brooks said that we could have a special meeting on Wednesday, March 8th at 5:00 p.m. to go over the budget in detail and he said we could have more than one meeting to accommodate those who cannot be here on Wednesday. All of Council agreed to this and agreed to pass the 2023 Appropriation Budget. Mayor Hehr asked for a motion to pass Ordinance #02-2023, An Ordinance to m
make Permanent Appropriations for the Current Expenses and other Expenditures of the Village of Woodsfield, State of Ohio during the Fiscal Year Ending December 31, 2023, and Declaring an
Emergency. Anthony McDaniel made the motion. Tiffany Ramsay second. Dale English – yes, Tom Kirkland – yes, Matt Schaber – yes, Leann Harper – yes. Motion passed 6-0. Mayor Hehr asked for a motion to suspend the rules and pass Ordinance #02-2023 by it second reading, Declaring it an Emergency. Tiffany Ramsay made the motion. Anthony McDaniel second. Dale English – yes, Tom Kirkland – yes, Leann Harper – yes, Matt Schaber – yes. Motion passed 6-0. Mayor Hehr then asked for a motion to suspend the rules and pass Ordinance #02-2023 by it third reading, Declaring it an Emergency and adopt. Tom Kirkland made the motion. Dale English second. Anthony McDaniel – yes, Leann Harper – yes, Tiffany Ramsay – yes, Matt Schaber – yes. Motion passed 6-0. Ordinance #02-2023 adopted.
Lori Cunard also reported that the LGOC Conference is March 27-29. Lori Cunard and Kevin Brooks will be attending and will be taking the Public Records training on behalf of Council members. Mayor Hehr asked if the conference will also be held virtual and Lori Cunard replied that it will be. The registration fee for virtual and in person is $200.00. Mayor Hehr asked Lori Cunard to please send the information regarding the conference out to Council members. Mayor Hehr asked when the deadline for registration is and Kevin Brooks said he believes it is Friday, March 10th. If any Council member is interested, please see Lori Cunard by the end of the week.
Lori Cunard also stated that James Bates, CPA has been in touch with her regarding the audit. He will be auditing 2021 and 2022. Most of the audit will be done off-site and he said the cost would be around $20,000.00. Kevin Brooks reminded Council that we went to a 2 year audit because we were paying about the same amount for a 1 year audit. Leann Harper asked if we have a different auditor each time we’re audited. Kevin Brooks replied that we did have but this year we will be having a different auditor because the State has contracted with outside independent auditors. Leann Harper asked if we stay with this outside independent auditors’ firm if we would have the same auditor again next time and Kevin Brooks said not necessarily. Leann Harper said she feels there is some benefit to having the same auditor each time.
VIII. Committee Chair/Council Reports:
Dale English – Nothing to report.
Tom Kirkland – Tom Kirkland said he was approached by John Reick today. Mr. Reick has a sewer problem that has been going on for quite some time. Tom Kirkland asked if Brian Harrigan, Water/Sewer Superintendent could go check it out for Mr. Reick. Mr. Brooks said that the water/sewer department has been out there before, but we would be glad to go out and check things out for Mr. Reick.
Anthony McDaniel – Anthony McDaniel reported there was a Property Maintenance Committee meeting held before the Council meeting this evening. It was a brief meeting and it focused on some target properties that need cleaned up. The Landbank has changed the dynamic and we would like to try and help residents who may not have the means to clean up their property. Mayor Hehr would like to have another meeting but not before a Council meeting because there is not enough time. Anthony McDaniel asked if our Street Sweeper is operational and asked about using it to sweep up trash to help Johnna Kaiser out, but Kevin Brooks replied that it would not work for that. Mayor Hehr said that we really need to have the streets swept because of all the cinders. Kevin Brooks said when it gets a little warmer, he will have the Street Department start and we generally run the Street Sweeper during rain events because it uses water. Mr. Brooks said he will have the guys get started soon.
Leann Harper – Leann Harper stated that there is a lot of trash on the property across from Riesbecks that the Village acquired from the State. Mayor Hehr said it is not there anymore because Bonnie Reed and Sharon Kress went from Monroe Central to True Value picking up trash. They are also going to clean up on Holiday Ave., going up the hill from State Route 78. Mr. Brooks said we can get a sign for them if they would like.
Tiffany Ramsay – Tiffany Ramsay reported that the Downtown Revitalization Committee met before the Council meeting this evening. They are looking at trash receptacles for the downtown area. They would like to meet again at the end of the month. They would possibly like to invite the residents who attended the open house Downtown Revitalization meeting a few months ago.
Matt Schaber – Nothing to report.
IX: Solicitor’s Report:
Nothing to report other than what he has already went over earlier in the meeting concerning the DORA District.
X: Mayor’s Report:
Mayor Hehr asked for a motion for the payment of bills. Dale English made the motion. Leann Harper second. Motion passed 6-0.
Mayor Hehr asked for a motion to approve the Mayor’s Court Report, February 2023. Tiffany Ramsay made the motion. Matt Schaber second. Motion passed 6-0.
Mayor Hehr asked for a motion to approve the Income Tax Report, February 2023. Anthony McDaniel made the motion. Tom Kirkland second. Motion passed 6-0.
Mayor Hehr said she is still looking for people to help with planning events for the Village. She also thanked the employees of the Light Plant for being out in the bad winds on Friday evening.
Mayor Hehr said she was unable to attend the Appalachian Grant Meeting in Marietta due to car problems.
Mayor Hehr also wanted to remind people of the Sidewalk Program and if anyone is interested, they should see Kevin Brooks.
Mayor Hehr, Kevin Brooks, and Chief Corey Jones met with Mike Carter from CT Consultants regarding the new Municipal Building. They have changed a few things and cleaned it up a little. She said that nothing is set in stone, and everyone will be able to view the plans. She said that the Police Department will be professional, and people will be able to talk with the Police Department more privately. The building will be ADA compliant and energy efficient. They will be meeting with CT Consultants again tomorrow to discuss grants and funding options.
Kevin Brooks reported that they are still looking for live entertainment for the summer and having a food truck on Thursdays during the Farmer’s Market.
Kreg Robison, MC Beacon, asked if the bagging of the parking meters would continue and Kevin Brooks said yes, the Eastern Star just paid for the meters as advertisement for 1 month.
XI. Un-Registered Visitors:
Mayor Heher asked for a motion to go into Executive Session regarding Pending Litigation. Dale English made the motion. Tom Kirkland second. Motion passed 6-0. Executive Session entered at 6:40 p.m.
Mayor Hehr asked for a motion to go back into Regular Session. Anthony McDaniel made the motion. Matt Schaber second. Motion passed 6-0. Regular Session entered at 6:56 p.m.
The Mayor asked for a motion to adjourn the meeting. Leann Harper made the motion to adjourn. Tiffany Ramsay second. Motion passed 6-0. The meeting was adjourned at 7:00 p.m.
Carol Hehr, Mayor Lori Cunard, Fiscal Officer