Injunction hearing delayed; temporary orders remain in place

By Sarah Hawley -

POMEROY — A decision on the fate of the old bus garage next to the Rutland Civic Center will have to wait a little while longer.

A hearing on the injunction motion filed by Meigs County Prosecutor James K. Stanley on behalf of the Meigs County Commissioners against the Village of Rutland was scheduled for a hearing on Tuesday morning at 9:30 a.m.

More than a dozen people were in the court room waiting for the hearing to take place. Around 10:30 a.m., Stanley came into the courtroom, briefly spoke with Commissioner Randy Smith, and stated that the hearing had been continued until Feb. 10 at 9 a.m.

Visiting Judge Dean Evans is scheduled to hear the case.

No reason was stated for the continuance.

Stanley stated that the temporary restraining order issued last week by Judge I. Carson Crow will remain in place through the hearing on the 10th.

The commissioners have challenged the ownership of the old bus garage property which Rutland is attempting to sell to Dollar General. As previously reported, the sale was scheduled to be completed on Jan. 26, the day after the filing of the motions by Stanley.

The commissioners claim that the bus garage property was an asset of the water and sewer services which the county took over from the village. At the time, the county was to take on all of the debts and assets of the water and sewer department from the village. The county has been paying the electric bill for the facility since that time.

Despite that, the property was never deeded over to the county, meaning the village is still listed on the deed as the property owner.

As the Sentinel reported previously, Rutland Village Council accepted an offer from Dollar General in the spring of 2016 for the purchase of the bus garage property and the property where the log cabin sits next to the civic center.

In accepting the offer, there is never a mention of the village advertising the property for bids which is required by law for a public entity to sell real estate. A notice of bids must run for five consecutive weeks prior to the sale of property.

The hearing is now scheduled for 9 a.m. on Feb. 10 in Meigs County Common Pleas Court.

By Sarah Hawley