Russia Council hears resident’s rezoning request

By Christoper Bulfinch - For the Sidney Daily News

RUSSIA — The Russia Village Council met on Wednesday, Jan.9, during which a discussion was held regarding a re-zoning request made by a resident, Tom Garriety, who is building a house extension that requires an additional sewer hookup.

The council discussed the different construction options available and funding methods. In addition to the sewer construction issue, the council approved the 2019 budget, dealt with small funding and economic issues, and considered selecting a village flag.

In order to accommodate Garriety’s expansion, the town needs to run another connection to the home. To do so, an annexation is necessary. The council, reflecting on the high cost of expanding the water system, wondered if there might be an opportunity to get surrounding properties into the town’s water system. Running sewer to the home would cost about $40 per foot, and the council considered helping with some administrative costs, though the any money put in by the town is unlikely to be recouped.

In all, the Garriety project was estimated to cost roughly $40,000 $45,00o. The health department needed to be contacted and easements needed to be secured.

After a lengthy discussion, it was decided that in order for the Garriety property to receive sewer service, a line would be run from the back of the Busse property to Countryside. The village would pay the cost of the line, with the property owner sharing in the cost by paying the amount it would have cost to install the grinder pump. The section of the property including the house would have to be annexed into the village. The property owner would pay the cost of water and sewer tap in, and annexation.

In addition to the water and sewer expansion project, the council also considered running water service out to Voisard Tool. However, annexing a small strip of land was not an option that the council was interested in pursuing because the county government avoids doing those kinds of annexations.

The council wanted to proceed slowly in terms of acquiring an annexation, hoping to expand water service to some surrounding properties. The cost of the project was projected to be somewhere between $130,000 to $150,000, though the council opted to get a more precise cost estimate, stating that they were interested in contributing around 10 percent of associated cost, or finding a way to cover some costs.

Outside of water and sewer issues, the council approved appropriation for the snow plow truck, library, and a maintenance fund transfer. An ordinance approving village appropriations for the new year passed unanimously.

According to a report to the council, the waste water influent had remained consistent for a number of years, at around 19 million gallons.

The council is applying for a $125,000 grant to renovate the baseball diamond in town used by the schools. If the grant is approved, the entire cost of the renovation would be covered.

The council made committee appointments, which remained fairly consistent:

• Finance: Mary Jo High, John Grogean, and Cindy Goubeaux

• Law and Order: Greg Borchers and Adam Barga

• Streets and Recreation: Brandon Simon

• Zoning: Mark Shappie

• Park Superintendent: Mark Shappie

• EMA Representative: Mark Shappie

• Tax Review Committee: Mary Jo High, Dale Armstrong, and Jordan Grogean

• Records Commission: Mary Jo Voisard, Adam Barga, Mark Shappie, and Terry Daugherty

• Flood Plain Administrator: Mark Shappie

The council also considered a proposal to adopt a flag for the village. Designed by resident Levi Francis, the proposed flag is reminiscent of the French flag, adorned with the village symbol. The council appreciated the submission, but was unsure about the proper procedure involved in adopting it and wanted to have a sense of any associated costs.

By Christoper Bulfinch

For the Sidney Daily News

The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.

The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.