Pomeroy approves Christmas bonuses, discusses hirings

By Michael Hart - Special to the Sentinel

POMEROY — Pomeroy Village Council reviewed candidates and resumes, cost saving measures, and emergency infrastructure fixes during its Dec. 5 meeting.

Early in the agenda, council members held an executive session to interview a candidate for Village Administrator.

Giving her input on the position, Clerk Sue Baker pointed to positive experiences with some previous administrators and their emphasis on well managed systems.

“It’s night and day,” she said. “The difference they can make — in compliance, asset management, money they can save, employees working the way they should,” all make the position critical to the Village.

Prior to the Dec. 5 meeting, Acting Police Chief Jim Webster and Mayor Bryan Shank requested the office manager of the Pomeroy Police Department seek a replacement for a recently resigned dispatch position. The final candidate’s resume was reviewed by the council, and they moved to confirm the hiring Jess Anne Black.

Acting Chief Webster informed the council training and expected changes in employee availability might create scheduling difficulties, so the office manager was given discretion to pursue further hirings.

The remainder of the meeting was devoted to business brought by council members.

Pomeroy Village intended to distribute $100 holiday bonuses to employees, and Councilperson Ruth Spaun asked if the specific dollar amount affected tax calculations — for example, whether a bonus of $99 versus $100 could accidentally result in less actual money for employees. Council discussed and confirmed the taxed percentage would not change, though Councilman Phil Ohlinger suggested raising the bonuses a nominal amount to offset any taxes. A figure of $105.55 was decided upon to guarantee a flat $100 will be received by employees.

“I am just glad to be able to give them this year, as opposed to some other years,” said Councilwoman Maureen Hennessy, who supported the offsetting increase.

Hennessy requested a rundown of certain December expenses, which spiked somewhat from previous months. Shank determined some of the costs came from en masse annual and bi-annual maintenance of county vehicles.

While visiting the topic of the village garage, Ohlinger distributed information on modern space heaters for potential use in the building. An aging gas heater is currently utilized, and incurs significant cost most months in winter in Ohio.

Councilman Don Anderson brought to the council’s attention a variety of infrastructure items, the most critical centered on the Lincoln Terrace slip. While a guardrail will be added to the area in the spring, the village informally agreed to purchase a concrete barrier from contractor D.V. Weber assuming ‘’the price is reasonable,” said Anderson.

Several potential water and sewage leak locations were added to the water department’s itinerary based on Anderson’s report.

Pending a full quote from Weber and further paperwork from the administrator candidate, the council intends to declare a special meeting early next week although a date for that meeting has not been announced.

By Michael Hart

Special to the Sentinel

Michael Hart is a freelance writer for The Daily Sentinel.

Michael Hart is a freelance writer for The Daily Sentinel.