JACKSON CENTER — The Jackson Center Council approved three ordinances concerning Ohio Municipal Codes at their regularly scheduled meeting Monday evening. The codes are updated and revised on a yearly basis and must be approved by council annually to ensure there are no conflicts between past codes and the new ones now in effect.
Council approved the adoptions to take effect immediately concerning updates in the administrative code, the traffic code, and general offenses code. Village administrator Bruce Metz noted this is nothing new and just a part of normal business procedures that takes place at the beginning of each year to make sure the village is in compliance with the updated codes.
In pre-scheduled business, council was visited by Gary J. Carter, Magistrate for Shelby County Common Pleas Court, who will be running for the office of Sidney Municipal Judge. Carter shared a brief bio with council members and answered questions about his reason for entering the race for judge.
In other new business, Councilman Ken Gloyeske, serving as Pro Tem in Mayor Scott Klopfenstein’s absence presented two new resolutions for council’s consideration, both of which were approved.
The first resolution permits Metz to enter into a contract with a grant writer to apply for funding needed for the village fire department. Fire Chief Jerry Davis seemed optimistic about the prospects of acquiring the grant funding and noted it may help them get some “big ticket” items if the grants go through.
The next resolution passed gives Metz the OK to enter into a contract with Vectren Corporation for the purpose of installing a new gas line from the main to the water treatment plant to supply gas for the new emergency generator.
“The generator will be used in the event of emergency power outages at the water plants and for ‘shaving,’ or reducing, the amount of electricity used during times of peak demands in mid-summer, which will keep the demand figures lower, thus resulting in lower electrical bills for all consumers in the village,” said Metz, who noted the resolution was needed to acquire the easement necessary for installing the new gas line.
Administrator Bruce Metz reported the new electrical substation project on Jerry Drive was going well and was on schedule with new switch-gear expected to arrive within the coming week. Metz also reported on progress at the new Airstream manufacturing facility located on the west side of town, saying the main electrical lines were now in place on the east and south sides of the main building.
In other business, Metz reported the village is looking to purchase a new snow plow to stay abreast of current and future requirements.
“We are looking at retiring a truck we purchased way back in 1979 and a new replacement will ensure we are ready for future demands. The new truck will cost around $158,444; that’s an increase of about $10,000 from the last truck we purchased in 2011, but the new truck will feature a stainless steel bed that will last much longer,” Metz said.
He also commended the street department for the level of service they provide in taking good care of the equipment.
“Our guys do a great job taking care of their equipment, that’s why our trucks have lasted so long; they keep everything clean and in good running order. We have gone from replacing our trucks every five years to every eight years; that’s really stretching the dollars used for purchasing, operating and maintaining our equipment and I’m proud of how well our staff has improved their performance over the years,” Metz said.
Metz then shared some information about a problem with the heating system at the Family Life Center in the village, noting he was working with others at the CIC (Community Improvement Corporation) to find a solution.
“The heating system there is on its last leg and needs to be replaced, I’m hoping we can help them find a solution very soon so there is no damage caused by freezing temperatures like what is expected next week. A variety of solutions have been tossed around and the CIC is looking at several options. The Family Life Center is a genuine asset to our community and we sure don’t want to lose it; it is a nice clean facility with a kitchen and restrooms and it is available to rent for parties, reunions, and other activities and even has a small gymnasium available as well. I’m hoping we can find a way to fund the replacement or that perhaps someone in our community, whether individuals or businesses, will step up to help out where needed. The owner (United Methodist Church) has already spent ten times the original purchase price of the heating unit to make on-going repairs, it’s time to replace it.” Metz said, noting any and all donations would be greatly appreciated and he is asking anyone that is willing to help out to contact him immediately at the village office, at 937-596-6314.
Before adjournment, council heard a brief report from Zoning Officer Ed Maxwell on a new restaurant that is scheduled to open sometime around mid-February.
“Suzy Wilkins will be opening her diner, ‘Split Decision,’ soon and we look forward to again having a nice place here in town to have breakfast and lunch. I will have more information to share at our next meeting.” Maxwell said.
The next regularly scheduled council meeting will take place in the JC Council Chambers on Feb. 11, at 7 p.m.
The writer is a regular contibutor to the Sidney Daily News.