By DAVID GREEN
Fayette is getting some help in its efforts to stop sewage overflows with the promise of a loan from the Ohio Water Pollution Control Loan Fund (WPCLF).
Village administrator Amy Metz told council members Jan. 24 that a five-year, zero-percent interest loan of $570,780 will be available for the design phase of the town’s sewer separation project, known as the long term control plan.
The design loan will be rolled into the 20-year construction loan at a later date. A nomination form for construction phase funding was submitted to the WPCLF. The status of the request should be known by the end of February.
“Timing is everything,” Metz said later, “and we have been patient in receiving this loan for the design phase, waiting to maximize all principal forgiveness/grant opportunities for the future.”
Survey work is underway for the Fulton Street water and sewer project on W. Industrial Drive. The project is expected to be completed in September.
A proposed six percent increase in water rates, plus a $2.50 increase in the enhancement fee, and a proposed 40 percent increase in sewer rates will be discussed at the Feb. 21 Finance Committee meeting.
PRESIDENT—Julia Ruger was chosen to serve as president of council to lead meetings in the absence of the mayor. Paula Ferguson and Tommy Molitierno were absent from the meeting.
SIDEWALKS—Councilors heard the second reading of an ordinance amending an existing law regarding sidewalk maintenance. The proposal calls for the removal of snow and ice within 12 hours of a snowfall.
PRISON WORKERS—Metz was authorized to arrange a Community Public Works agreement with the Corrections Commission of Northwest Ohio. Prisoners who are not considered a threat to the public will be available to help with brush chipping, snow removal, mowing and painting.
DEVELOPMENT—Fulton County Economic Director Lisa Arend told council the focus of her office is in job retention and in expanding what currently exists. Cash flow generally isn’t available for new development in the current economic environment.
Arend said that Frank Roach—owner of the former Fayette Tubular property—also owns property to the north and he’s interested in constructing a spec building for future industry, but she suggests that the village annex the land before development begins. The building would be designed to meet modern industrial needs that aren’t present in older structures.
Mike Maginn asked about an industrial project that was expected in the village. Arend and mayor Ruth Marlatt said the proposal was dropped.
Maginn also wondered about warehouse possibilities for Fayette. Arend said the area is good for warehouse projects because of the turnpike to the south, route 127 to the west and the railroad to the north, however, she doesn’t expect any warehousing within the village.
Metz said there’s been discussion about developing a joint venture with Gorham Township.
Arend told council that employee training support is available through the state’s One Stop program. Up to 50 percent of a trainee’s wages would be paid during the training process.
Ruger asked who is responsible for bringing business to Fayette and who should get involved. Arend said everyone’s help is needed. She encourages people to attend Fulton County Community Improvement Corporation (CIC) meetings.
APPOINTMENTS—Council approved the following appointments made by Mayor Marlatt: Metz will continue to represent the village on the Fulton County CIC; Marlatt will serve with the Regional Planning Commission; Kirk Keiser from the school board and Marc Brubaker representing the village will serve on the park board; and Dave Wheeler will serve on the village zoning board. Council committees will remain unchanged.
WATER—Water usage remained high in December, Metz said, even after a water line break was repaired on West Main Street. Village workers continue to monitor the situation.
TREES—Tree removal approved by council last year is underway. The project also includes stump grinding. Property owners have the first rights to the downed wood. Anyone interested in obtaining wood should contact the village office.
FESTIVAL—At the advice of the village solicitor, liability insurance for the annual Bull Thistle Festival will be added to the village plan at a cost of $466. Council’s Finance Committee will discuss whether the cost should be forwarded to the festival committee.
TAXES—A revision to the village income tax collection ordinance states that refunds less than $3 will not be given. A proposal calling for income tax reciprocity—to require Fayette residents working in another community where an income tax is paid to pay an additional 0.5 percent to Fayette—is not included in the revision.
CONTRACT—Council approved a contract with BrightNet for placement of an antenna on the village water tower. In return, the village will receive free internet service for the village office, the police department and the maintenance building; a monthly $75 lease payment; and a monthly fee of $1.50 for each village resident served by BrightNet.
CHANGES—Regular council meetings are now scheduled at 6 p.m. rather than 7 p.m. on the fourth Monday of the month. The minutes from committee meetings will no longer be read aloud at meetings, but committee chairs will present a summary.
Finally, council will follow the Ohio Revised Code and no longer read aloud proposed ordinances. They will be read by title only.