MINSTER – Minster Council welcomed a new member at its Dec. 15 meeting.
Travis Wilges was sworn in to council for a term of one year, which will end Dec. 31, 2021. Wilges replaced council member Rick Schwartz, who is retiring.
Wilges works for the City of Englewood Tax Department. He has lived in Minster with his family for 16 years. A total of seven people applied for the vacant position.
In related action, council approved an ordinance officially thanking Schwartz for his 35 years of work on the council, presenting him a plaque commemorating his service.
In end-of-year business, an ordinance was passed to allow the village to appropriate $5,155,000 of interim appropriations for the first quarter of 2021. Village Administrator Don Harrod said this sum represents one quarter of the anticipation 2021 yearly budget of around $24 million.
In other action, it was agreed that village employees will receive a 2% salary increase in 2021, following council’s approval of an emergency ordinance.
Council also approved a second reading of an ordinance updating the village zoning map to accommodate the new commercial designation of property at Main and 7th streets.
Other end of year actions included approving resolutions allowing transferring of funds to pay end of year bills.
Council also approved $356,342.31 in income tax funds for November. This brings total year-to-date income of $3,708,493.99. Harrod said this was approximately $46,000 less than last year’s totals.
Harrod also reported on village activities.
He said Rumpke Waste and Recycling will change garbage pick-up schedules over the Christmas and New Year holiday. Those residents who have their garbage picked up on Thursdays will continue to be picked up on Dec. 24 and on Dec. 31. However, if residents normally have their garbage picked up on Fridays, their new pick-up date will be Saturday, Dec. 26, and Saturday, Jan. 2.
Work on the emergency repairs to the sanitary sewer on Seventh Street went very well, he said, replacing a leaking sewer line and filling in a large void under 7th Street by the afternoon of Dec. 9. On Dec. 10, crews began to place concrete into the trench, and the road was opened to traffic on Dec. 11.
Harrod said village offices will be closed on Dec. 24 and 25 to celebrate Christmas as well as on Jan. 1 st to celebrate the new year.
The village used $18,767.90 of the $53,767.90 in additional CARES Act funding from the county to cover costs to purchase air handlers to purify air in the utility building, police department and wastewater treatment plant.
The remaining $35,000 was sub-granted to the Minster Local Schools to assist in providing educational opportunities to the residents of the village during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.