By DAVID GREEN
Fayette village council members emerged from a closed session last week and voted to hold salaries for employees at the 2011 rate.
Council met in a closed session for about 45 minutes, but before it ended, mayor Ruth Marlatt was asked to leave the room. Last month, Marlatt was not allowed to attend a closed session at all.
Council member Rodney Kessler called for the closed meeting to discuss a personnel issue, stating the meeting was for “all elected officials, and then we’ll go from there.”
When councilors came back into the public meeting, Mayor Marlatt explained that no salary increases would be given to start the new year. The motion to increase salaries was tabled and would be discussed again after three months.
“It’s being postponed mainly because of what happened when Roberta was here,” councilor Julia Ruger said, referring to Roberta Acosta from the Rural Community Assistance Program.
Acosta spoke at the Dec. 14 committee-of-the-whole meeting and told council members that funding possibilities for the sewer separation project took a turn for the worse.
“We want to see where we are in three months,” Ruger said, noting that the long-term sewer control plan remains a worrisome issue for council.
Marlatt said it’s not that council doesn’t want to give pay increases.
Village fiscal officer Lisa Zuver said the salaries of most employees come from the general fund and are not affected by the sewer project.
The salary increase would have resulted in three percent raises for Zuver, Dee Potter and police officers.
PARKS—Nicholas Ramos was hired to serve as the park director for 2012. The park board will determine his salary.
BLEACHERS—Fayette’s park bleachers could be in for an overhaul if council accepts a proposal from Pioneer Boy Scout Joseph Stough.
For an Eagle Scout project, Stough would like to direct an effort to disassemble and repair the bleachers and paint them in the school colors.
Stough said he will undertake fund-raising to pay for the work.
Marlatt said the project sounds beneficial to the community and she would present the plan to the park committee.
ZONING—Suzette Boesger was appointed to fill a vacant position on the zoning board.
AUDIT—Council approved an expenditure of $400 for assistance with the annual audit. Zuver said the auditing firm of Perry and Associates was assigned to handle the village audit. She was pleased with the news since that firm was her first choice.
AUTOCON—Council approved a contract with Bergren and Associates for the water plant automatic control system.
INSURANCE—The Hylant Group (The Ohio Plan) was selected to serve as the village insurance carrier.
SOLICITOR—A motion to hire Tom Thompson as the village solicitor for 2012 did not come up for a vote. Instead the issue will go to the Government Affairs committee.
SEWAGE—Heavy rains increased the amount of sewage pumped in recent weeks. Average daily water use was 134,000 gallons, said interim village administrator Tom Clemensen, while daily sewage pumped averaged 280,000 gallons.
Cleaning sewer lines and connecting residences to the new NW Fulton Project line has been delayed by wet weather.
TAX REVENUE—Income tax collected so far this year stands at $307,500, Clemensen said. Last year’s collection ended at $283,100. The increase, he said, is likely due to the expansion at the TRW plant.