MIDDLEPORT — Plans for putting a one-mill renewal levy for the Middleport Fire Department on the ballot in November were made at Monday night’s meeting of Middleport Council.
Susan Baker, village financial officer, noted that the current levy expires this year with money to be collected through 2013 but said now is the right time to begin the process of getting a levy on the ballot. She said it generates about $18,000 a year for fire department equipment. Approval was given to proceeding with the renewal levy by a vote of 5 to 1 with Councilman Roger Manley voting “no.” Baker will now get the tax certified so that it can go on the ballot and secure figures on the actual amount of money a renewal will generate.
Councilman Craig Wehrung expressed his appreciation for the efforts of the firemen who recently completed painting all the fire hydrants. It was noted that they have been painted in colors denoting how many gallons of water per minute which can be pumped from each of the 119 hydrants in the village. Baker noted that at least 56 are blue which means they can provide 1500 to 3200 gallons per minute; green, 1000 to 1499; orange, 500 to 999, and red, only 7, less than 500 gallons a minute.
As for activity during June, the report from Jeff Darst, fire chief, showed 19 calls being answered, with vehicles being driven a total of 593 miles, with site manhours of 202, followed by 33.5 manhours on maintenance of equipment. Of those calls one was a structure fire, one a rescue, one for a hazardous condition and 10 for mutual aid.
A 2013 budget for village operational expenses due to be presented to the county auditor by July 20 was presented to Council by Baker. Once approval is given by the budget committee, a certificate certifying revenue and expenditures can then be used to set appropriations for 2013. The 2012 appropriations were $2,674,889. Mayor Michael Gerlach described the figures as set forth in the budget as a “blind shot.”
The first reading on an ordinance pertaining to non-compliance to a stop order issued by the village was approved listing the fines for violation of not less than $750 nor more than $1,000.
Drainage problems in the village along with storm damage in the cemeteries were discussed. Lawrence Powell met with Council to express concern about the water which is draining onto his property and was assured by the village administrator that some corrective work will be done soon. The mayor reported on storm damage and noted that work in the old cemetery remains to be done.
Jail Administrator Mony Wood gave a report showing that since the March 29 opening of the jail collections for housing of prisoners outside of Middleport have totaled $41,022.98. He said that currently the jail is about full with 20 prisoners. Totals as presented by Wood were 239 inmates booked and held for Meigs, Gallia, and Jackson Counties sheriffs’ department and village police departments. Seventy-one were Middleport inmates and 168 from other agencies.
Wood requested from Council a 25 cent an hour salary increase for Scott Kimes who is a licensed emergency medical technician which satisfies some jail requirements when a physician is not on staff. The raise was approved by a five to one vote. Manley voted “no.”