SYRACUSE — Syracuse Village Council recently held its first meeting of 2019, setting committees and handling other business.
David Poole was elected as president pro tempore of council for 2019.
Council approved the appointments of Richard Hedges as solicitor and Dustin Butcher as street commissioner. Chris Morgan and Wil Crow were appointed to the Syracuse Volunteer Fire Department.
Committees put in place for 2019 were as follows: Street — Barry McCoy (chair), Tom Weaver and Michelle White; Finance — Rhonda Rathburn (chair), David Poole and Maria Schaefer; Ordinance — McCoy (chair), Poole and Weaver; Safety, Fire and Emergency — White (chair), Rathburn and Schaefer; Planning and Development — White (chair), McCoy and Poole; Recreation — Schaefer (chair), McCoy and White; London Pool — Poole (chair), Rathburn and Schaefer; Livestock — Rathburn (chair), Weaver and White; Information Technology — Weaver (chair), Poole and Schaefer; Shared Services — Poole (chair), McCoy and Weaver; Human Resources — Poole (chair), Rathburn and Schaefer; Veterans Monument — Weaver (chair), McCoy and White.
Grants Administrator Fred Hoffman updated council on multiple projects. Hoffman noted the well project went “pretty smooth” and should be completed in a couple months with the main items already completed. The Route 124 water project will be bid shortly.
Additional grant applications have been submitted and Hoffman is waiting on word regarding if the village will receive the grants.
With regard to the London Pool, council authorized a request to the Meigs County Commissioners to authorize Buckeye Hills to submit a Critical Infrastructure Grant for the Syracuse Pool Renovation project.
Council went in to executive session for 30 minutes near the beginning of the meeting to discuss personnel matters. Initially council asked to go in without Mayor Eric Cunningham present, but they were told by Solicitor Hedges that they could not exclude Cunnginham.
Fire Chief Bill Roush noted there may be four people to attend fire school in February at a cost of $450 per person. Council approved sending three to fire school and reimbursing mileage for one vehicle.
Roush stated the smoke detector installation project is coming up. He asked about upgrading the ATV and trailer as discussed previously. The current ATV is about a decade old and it has begun to overheat with use. A loan would need to be taken out for the purchase, with it also noted that the turnout gear loan will be paid off in April. Roush told council that with fire season coming up he wanted to stay a step ahead.
In other business, council:
Approved the mileage reimbursement rate as the IRS standard 58 cents per mile;
Approve the mayor’s monthly expenditures up to $500 per fund without prior council approval;
Approved all necessary training, seminars, and expenses for 2019;
Approved Cunningham’s appointment of Roush to take the vacancy on the Syracuse-Racine Regional Sewer District Board. Rick Friend stepped down after more than ten years of service, and Cunningham noted his thanks for Friend’s service;
Approved the appointments of Councilmen Tom Weaver and Barry McCoy to the Firefighters’ Dependents’ Fund Board
Approved paying the Meigs E.M.A. 2019 Emergency Planning fees of $300. It was noted the fees will increase to $500 for 2020;
Approved bills, financial reports, and mayor’s report.
Hedges is to draft a credit card policy to present to council at the February meeting.
Mayor Eric Cunningham presided over the meeting. Council members present were Barry McCoy, David Poole, Rhonda Rathburn, Maria Schaefer, Tom Weaver, and Michelle White. Other Village officials present were Police Chief Mony Wood, Police Sgt. Michael Oliver, Solicitor Richard Hedges, Grants Administrator Fred Hoffman, and Fiscal Officer Crystal Cottrill.
Council meetings will be held on the second Thursday of each month at 7 p.m., except in February, when the meeting will be on Feb. 7.
Information taken from Council draft minutes provided by Fiscal Officer Crystal Cottrill.