RACINE — Fred Nero has been appointed to fill the Racine Village Council seat left vacant after council accepted the resignation of councilwoman Ashli Peterman at this month’s meeting.
Peterman’s resignation came after she was elected to serve on the Southern Local Board of Education. According to her resignation, Ohio Revised Code prohibits a council member from holding another public office. Peterman still plans to continue helping with village activities. She has been one of the main people involved in the planning for Fourth of July and Christmas activities at Star Mill Park in recent years.
Nero was one of three candidates for the two council seats elected in Nov. 2019, placing third in the race. He was sworn in during the meeting.
Discussion was held regarding problems residents are reportedly having with the postal service over mailboxes and mail being returned. It was noted that Congressman Bill Johnson has been informed and will have discussions on the matter.
Village Administrator John Holman presented a report on water department operations. He noted that for every 100 gallons of water produced it cost the village eight cents. He added that the operating ratio was well within the EPA guidelines. He also reported that there were no major line breaks in 2019.
Councilman Bob Beegle urged members to stress to everyone the importance of participating in the upcoming 2020 Census. Information gathered from the Census impacts state and federal funding as well as representation in Congress and many other things for the next 10 years.
Councilman Ian Wise was reappointed by council to a seat on the Syracuse-Racine Regional Sewer Board. His present term ends in March.
Upon recommendation of the fire chief, Jessica Drum was appointed as a firefighter and Austin Rice was appointed as a junior firefighter.
Electric aggregation and SOPEC were discussed by Councilman Chad Hubbard. He reported that there were some guidelines and updates that need adopted before July. There also needs to be a public hearing to involve the public. Mayor Scott Hill advised that public hearings on the Community Development Block Grants are also required and suggested that the hearings be combined in hopes of having better attendance. No date has been set.
Mayor Hill reported that a water fountain for the splash park has been ordered. Funds for the fountain were provided by the family of Chase Roush.
Council also approved building a cover for the salt/cinder bin at a cost not to exceed $4,000. The project has been discussed for several years.
In other business, council approved the minutes and acknowledged receipt of the paid bills and the financial statements.
The mayor requested, and council approved, the meeting on May 14 of the Mayor’s Partnership for Progress to be held in Racine. This is a group of mayors and city managers in 15 counties of southern and southeastern Ohio. The group will have a speaker and then tour the Racine Treatment Plant, as well as Star Mill Park.
Council approved five additional hours per week for Marshal Mike Hupp at the request of Mayor Hill. He will now be working 20 hours per week as he continues in his required probationary period.
Attending the meeting were Mayor Hill, fiscal officer Janet Krider, village administrator Holman, fireman David Neigler, and council members Bob Beegle, Kevin Dugan, Chad Hubbard, Ian Wise, Mony Wood and Fred Nero.
At the request of Mayor Hill, council recessed the meeting until 6 p.m. on Feb. 17 to discuss compensation for the village employees.
Information provided by Councilman Bob Beegle.