New Knoxville welcomes new firefighter

By Sandy Rose Schwieterman - For the Sidney Daily News

NEW KNOXVILLE – New Knoxville Village Council welcomed a new volunteer firefighter at their meeting Wednesday night, Oct. 14.

Mayor Keith Leffler administered the oath of office to New Knoxville native Colton Shreve as the newest member of the fire department. Fire Chief Larry Merges said they were glad to have his services and that his CDL license would be a great help.

In other news, council member Brian Jones, chair of the zoning and planning committee, said that he and his committee had met to begin updating the village zoning regulations. He said the current regulations date back to 2013. They plan to have new zoning regulations out by May 2021. He asked that the public was invited to give them feedback about suggested changes. Leffler commended the committee for taking the project.

“Some things have changed in the past years, with new items to consider such as solar or wind power,” he said, “that are not covered by zoning.”

On hand at the meeting was the Larry Kellermeyer, who will fill the post of the new village administrator on Oct. 26. He and current village administrator Rex Katterheinrich will work together for a few weeks afterward to orient Kellermeyer before Katterheinrich retires.

Council members had a brief discussion but made no decision about the value of having large trash pickup days to help residents get rid of items that don’t fit into trash bags such as bricks or pieces of metal. Katterheinrich said the current tag system they have arranged with the village waste management company Maharg’s may encourage more recycling, especially since they have a recycling center near by. He agreed he and Kellermeyer would investigate options.

In other action, council approved by emergency an ordinance accepting additional COVID Cares Act funding, increasing their account from $74,577 to $106,000. Currently, the village is reported to have spent the money on air purifiers for the town hall, laptops, extra medical equipment, and touch-free hand dryers. The fire department is also investigating possibly purchasing a second set of new break out gear for all firefighters. The fire chief said the gear needs to air dry after cleaning and the second set would allow the firefighters comfortable gear. Unspent funding is required to be returned to the State of Ohio by the end of 2020.

Council approved an ordinance increasing appropriations to the general fund from $65,000 to $87,000 to allow payment for the new village corporation signs.

Katterheinrich was authorized to submit an application for $78,000 in Ohio Public Works Commission Capital Improvement funding for the upcoming Bremen Street paving project.

Council then adjourned to executive session. No action was taken when they returned.

By Sandy Rose Schwieterman

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.