SIDNEY — Homeowners Ben and Erica Ernst, of 433 E. Russell Road, were presented with Sidney’s 2017 Neighborhood Beautification Award at the Sidney City Council meeting, Monday evening.
Code Enforcement Officer Kirby King presented the award to the Ernsts after they were unanimously voted as the winner. The decision came when the Citizens Peer Review Committee met to review nominations on Sept. 20. The city only received one nomination for the award this year.
King said although the award is for the exterior work of the home, it has been completely remodeled inside and out. Many of the home’s exterior features were replaced by the Ernsts, such as the siding, trim, shutters, windows and the landscaping. It was noted that most of the exterior improvement products were locally sourced from Sidney.
Council also received a presentation about Marcy’s Law for Ohio from Emily Hunter, the northwest Ohio field director for Marcy’s Law. The law is a citizen-initiated constitutional amendment for equal rights for crime victims that will be issue one on the Ohio ballot this November.
Hunter said many crime victims are currently being re-victimized through the system because their rights are not being enforced. She said being that she is a sexual assault victim, it is her mission to ensure no one else will go through what she has been through.
Hunter said Marcy’s Law will give the following rights to victims of crime:
• To be treated with respect, fairness and dignity throughout the criminal justice proceedings;
• To receive information about their rights and services available to crime victims;
• To receive timely notification of proceedings and other major developments in their case, and of changes to the offender’s custodial status;
• To be present at court proceedings and provide input to a prosecutor before the plea deal is finalized;
• To be heard at plea or sentencing proceedings or any process that may result in the offender’s release;
• The right to restitution.
The law, Hunter said, has “plenty of financial support” and “a wide range of bipartisan support,” from Ohio’s Attorney General Mike DeWine, the Buckeye State Sheriff’s Association and over 230 local elected officials. She requested for council members to join her in voting in favor of it in November.
In other business, council considered the ownership transfer of a C1 and C2 liquor permit to Jagat Petroleum, Inc., located at 2011 W. Michigan St. Cundiff told council after a review was completed by the Sidney Police Department, nothing unusual was found to object to the ownership transfer of the permit. Council exhibited silence on the matter, indicating consent for Jagat Petroleum Inc. to move forward with the next step to transfer the permit.
After a call for council member’s comments, Janet Born asked what other work is planned for Fair Road’s hill since she noticed green paint markings on the newly paved road. Born said the road looks very nice and wondered if it is going to be re-dug up.
Gary Clough, assistant city manager/public works director, said Vectren put the paint in locations where he believes they want to make emergency gas line repairs. He said the city informed Vectren if they make cuts in the new pavement, Vectren will be required to repave it by the block, not the patch.
Council member Darryl Thurber asked city staff about the status of the Ohio Building’s necessary roof repairs. Barbara Dulworth, community services director, said they have a series of mandatory steps to complete before the roof can be replaced. She said currently they are waiting for asbestos testing to be completed before anyone can go into the building to clear debris and crumbled walls, which needs removed before they can get to the roof. Cundiff said the hope is for the testing to be completed by the end of the month and to get a contractor on the roof before the end of the year.
Thurber asked if it was possible to move faster so some of the building can be saved before going into winter without replacement of the roof. Vice Mayor Mardie Milligan also asked if the roof could be patched if full replacement could not happen before winter.
Dulworth said there are no holes in the roof, but it has essentially become a large sponge needing completely replaced. Dulworth and Cundiff both said they are moving as quickly as possible to get the roof replaced before winter.
Council also went into an executive session to consider the purchase of property for public purposes and for pending or imminent court action. No action on the topics were taken when council emerged.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.
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