Sidney Council hears update on Ohio Building

By Sheryl Roadcap -

SIDNEY — An update on the Ohio Building’s rehabilitation was given to Sidney City Council during Monday evening’s meeting.

City Manager Mark Cundiff told council members since the roof on the Ohio Building was replaced in 2019, the main goal has been to get the building dried out so it would be safe for people get in inside safely to continue work. Prior to the roof being replaced, a lot of water came in and traveled to and remained in the basement.

As of Feb. 14, 2020, he said the city has spent $589,096 to repair the building. Repairing the building was the right decision, he said city staff feels, as it would have cost $750,000 to demolish it.

Cundiff said $45,050 is currently encumbered, of which $35,446 is for the drying and mold remediation. Also, there is $440,000 in approved appropriations in 2020 for sidewalk repairs, mold remediation, and evaluation of the building by a structural engineer. This brings the grand total of Ohio Building costs to $1,074,145.82.

The city may also need to spend an additional money associated with redeveloping, Cundiff said. It will cost about $2,500 to get information from the architect’s office that has the building’s plans on it’s interior footage/measurements.

Cundiff said the city was approached by two interested parties in 2019, but only one of them maintained contact with city staff about the building’s renovation. Once the mold remediation is completed and the basement is dried out, he said they are cautiously optimistic that the city will find a viable redeveloper to reuse the building.

In other business, council adopted three ordinances, and they are:

• To make supplemental appropriations for 2020;

• To amend a section of an ordinance regarding “pavement cuts” within the right of way. Assistant City Manager/Public Works Director Gary Clough said the changes to the ordinance include:

— Add: “All repairs shall be satisfactorily completed within 21 days of the pavement cut”

— Delete: “exceeding 25 square feet or 25 linear feet in the direction of travel, deletes within six (6) months, and add: “by October 15 of the year” for the time period to complete the pavement repair and, delete “25” feet, and add: “15” feet to the length of the repair.

• To make a zoning code amendment to a section of an ordinance regarding principal uses in the B-1 local business district. William Wolfe requested to add “trade or business school; photographic studio; dancing studio; radio or television broadcasting studio” as a permitted use in the B-1, local business district.

The Sidney Planning Commission recommended City Council approve amending the zoning code by adding “photographic studio and dance studio” only to the list of principally permitted uses in a section of the B-1 district chapter. The other uses, trade or business school and radio or television broadcasting studio, have the potential to negatively affect adjacent residential neighborhoods due to traffic, noise, or transmittal towers, she said.

Council passed the ordinance with a 4-1 vote with Mayor Mike Barhorst voting no. Barhorst said he voted no because dance studios can also be very loud. Council members Darryl Thurber and Steven Klinger were absent Monday.

City Council adopted five resolutions, and they are:

• To declare the necessity for repair/replacement of additional certain curb and gutters in Sidney and requiring abutting property owners to repair or replace the same.

Magoto told council the “resolution of necessity” is the first step of the 2020 curb and gutter program that will require property owners to make the repairs. On Jan. 13, 2020, City Council approved 17,349 of linear feet in need of repair at an estimated cost of $659,262.

Curb and gutter repairs on Gleason Street from Courter Avenue to North Vandemark Road was also been identified as needing to be repaired. The total additional estimated curb and gutter needing repaired or replaced is 906 of linear feet at an estimated cost of $30,804.

• To authorize City Manager Mark Cundiff to enter into an agreement with Wannemacher Construction Company Inc. for the purchase of real propertyin the Heritage Manor subdivision for use of a city park.

With the closing of Peerless Park several years ago, the acquisition of this property will allow development of a park to provide recreational opportunities for the citizens in this area of Sidney. Initial developments include a modular play structure, shelter, drinking fountain and fence. The master plan includes the addition of a swing set and basketball court to the grounds in the future.

• To confirm the appointment of Nichole Ellis to the Sidney Energy Special Improvement District Board of Directors.

• To appoint Nathan Burns to the Sidney-Shelby Economic Partnership Council.

• To accept the Ohio memorandum of understanding pertaining to the pending litigation seeking to hold opioid pharmaceutical supply chain participants accountable for the damage caused by their misfeasance, non-feasance and malfeasance.

Also Monday, council agreed to the request of the Shelby County Commissioners to amend a previously approved resolution for a right-of-way vacation agreement. The purpose of the vacation is to provide a extra space to get around in the parking lot area and improve the fairgrounds, County Commissioner Tony Bornhorst said in August. The county is responsible to install the hammerhead turn-around; to install a 20-foot gate to provide emergency access; fencing to accommodate the changes; and materials necessary to move the existing hydrant from the vacated area.

The resolution was amended from the 20-foot gate to an 18-foot gate because of the size of gate available. The Fire Department reviewed the request and did not have concerns with an 18-foot-wide gate for emergency access to the fairgrounds.

During council members’ comments, Barhorst and Council Member Steve Wagner both spoke about attending the Bicentennial Ball at the Shelby County Courthouse on Saturday, Feb. 22. Wagner complimented Barhorst and his Bicentennial Co-Chair Bob Guillozet and Julie Ehemann, chair of the Bicentennial Ball on the the Ball, calling it “quiet a soiree.” Guillozet and Ehemann are also Shelby County Commissioners. Barhorst pointed to the Shelby County Flag that was present in Council Chambers Monday evening. The flag had been taken from village to village as part of Shelby County’s celebrations in 2019. He said it will be returned to the Shelby County Historical Society, which is anxious to get it back.

Cundiff also informed all present Sidney Fire Fighter Brian Lundy is being promoted to lieutenant. His swearing-in ceremony will be held out front of Sidney Fire Department’s Station 1 on Monday, March 2, at 4 p.m.

In final business, council held an executive session to prepare for negotiations or bargaining sessions with public employees. No action was taken by council members when they came out of the session.

By Sheryl Roadcap

Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.

Reach the writer at 937-538-4823.