Council approves increase in waterpark fees

By Sheryl Roadcap -

SIDNEY — Sidney Waterpark’s rates will be increasing for the 2017 season.

Sidney City Council passed a resolution during Monday evening’s meeting establishing this season’s rates. Sidney Parks and Recreation Director Duane Gaier first presented the suggested rate increases to council at last week’s workshop session. The new fees will be as follows:

• Daily admission for adults, seniors and youth increases to $4.25;

• Daily admission for preschool children increases to $3;

• Individual-only season pass increases to $32; family passes are not available. Gaier said the individual season pass fee is comparable in cost for a family of four to the former family pass fee;

• Pool rental increases to $300 per two-hour rental;

• Training rentals remains at $15 per hour per guard required;

• Replacement photo season passes remain at $10.

Sidney-Shelby County Senior Center Director Eileen Wiseman gave council an update on the center’s happenings. Wiseman said the Senior Center provides programs focused on health, education, socialization and recreation for senior citizens 50 or older. She said the center will be celebrating its 20th anniversary on Sept. 9.

Wiseman said the Senior Center’s funds comes from The United Way, the city of Sidney, Shelby County Commissioners and dues. She said dues only account for 14 percent of their budget, so grants and fundraisers make up the difference. Dues are $30 annually.

Wiseman said the center offers a variety of daily activities and hot meals. She often the center serves as “a second family to many who are alone.”

She said members have access to a trainer, an exercise room, and walking track. On-going programs include a variety of exercise classes, bingo, quilting, crocheting/knitting, various card games, billiards, line dancing, pickle board and computer classes. The Senior Center also hosts several events throughout the year, such as the upcoming public meeting on Thursday. The center also participates in various ongoing events outside of the center, such as Senior Day when they give out free meals at Shelby County Fair.

The center’s upcoming events include the monthly carry-in meal, “Friday Night Out,” motor coach trips, dances open to the public four times a year, the fall bazaar, spring card party, aqua aerobics and blood drives six times a year. Wiseman said the building is also available for rental.

Board member Ed Hamaker said he has heard positive feedback about the center’s “Coffee with a Cop” program. Wiseman said they hope to have it again in the future.

Board member and Senior Center member Steve Wagner asked Wiseman about the need for additional funds to have trainers available more often. Wiseman said she would like to have an additional $2,000 for more trainer hours.

Board member and Senior Center member Janet Born said they have a blood drive several times a year with the motto, “You bleed; we feed.” She said they provide more than the typical cookies and juice of other blood drives, and encouraged people to “come and be fed.”

In other business, council was introduced to two ordinances for assessment of weed cutting or junk/litter removal costs and for an extension of the existing medical marijuana moratorium until Oct. 9, 2017.

The weed cutting or junk/litter removal ordinance includes outstanding invoices through Feb. 7, 2017.

For the removal of litter or junk, property owners who were not in-compliance with the city code was invoiced the cost of the work plus 20 percent. For weed cutting, property owners were invoiced the cost of the work plus $50 for the first cutting, $75 for the second and $100 for each cutting afterward.

A total of $3,077.50 of special assessment will be collected with other tax property obligations from 26 properties for weed cutting, and $3,061.20 for the junk removal of 16 properties.

It will return to council for further consideration on March 27.

Other than Sidney Waterpark admission fee increases, council also adopted a resolution to authorize the submission of a proposal to the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) for grants through the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) for funding from the Ohio Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities program and for the execution of the contract upon approval.

There was also a brief discussion on the city’s purchasing credit card policy. Finance Officer Ginger Adams introduced proposed changes of the current policy which would add cardholders’ names, titles and credit limits within the policy document. Adams said they know this information may change over time and thus an appendix was added.

Adams said the reason the over 100 cards have been issued to public officials since 2003 is to ensure funds are always immediately accessible for travel or supply purchases.

City Manager Mark Cundiff said the city used to only have a few (department) cards available, but if all were being used at the time, people had to be reimbursed. He said the city takes accountability very serious and expenditures are often questioned.

Board member Darryl Thurber was absent; his absence was excused by council.

Cundiff also reminded council/the public of the scheduled public meeting on the State Route 47 Improvement Project at the Senior Center on Thursday at 6 p.m.

By Sheryl Roadcap

Reach the writer 937-538-4823.

Reach the writer 937-538-4823.