POMEROY — Pomeroy Village Council made a statement regarding mask usage and COVID-19 vaccination during the regular meeting last week.
During the meeting, council members approved a motion, made by Nick Michael, stating as a governing body, the council recommends the use of facial coverings and endorses vaccination against COVID-19. During discussion, Mayor Don Anderson said it was his opinion that the village should make a recommendation, but not mandate mask usage. Council members Michael, Vic Young, Phil Ohlinger, Larry Hess and Aaron Oliphant voted in favor of the motion. Member Maureen Hennessy was not in the room during most of the discussion and voting.
Council members briefly discussed Treat Street during the. Anderson said he spoke to the merchants and the county health department. As of now, the event is tentatively planned for Oct. 28 and there are no new restrictions from the health department. Mayor Anderson noted children seem to be more susceptible to the current COVID-19 variants. Council decided to wait until the next meeting at the beginning of October to make a final decision on holding the event.
In other business, council approved the last payments, for a total of $414,167.34, for the water meter project. The fourth, and final, payment to CI Thornburg for the project was for $36,987.42 and was approved by council.
Council approved resolutions to accept the American Rescue Plan (ARP) funds and to create a new fund for the money to track usage.
Regarding the ARP funds, Mayor Anderson said he wants to look at projects to spend the money. The Village of Pomeroy has approximately $92,000 in ARP funds. Current ideas for projects include: eight new tasers for the police department at a cost of $19,444.32; assistance with the fire department renovation; and street paving. Fiscal Officer Sue Baker said the village has until 2026 to spend the money.
Council discussed electric vehicle charging stations. Anderson said AEP currently has a program to reimburse the village for installing charging stations. There are three options the village could choose for the program: a single station that takes four hours to charge a vehicle would be reimbursable for $10,000; two stations that take four hours to charge a vehicle would be reimbursable for $20,000; or a single station that takes 20 minutes to charge a vehicle would be reimbursable for $100,000. The village would have to pay for the charging station to be installed, then would receive the reimbursement later. Assistant Fiscal Officer Ben See said if the “slow charge” station was installed, people would spend the time in Pomeroy, rather than leaving shortly after arriving with the faster charging station. Council members reported seeing more electric cars driving around the area.
Hennessy, Ohlinger and Michael volunteered to complete training for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for the village to qualify for the principle forgiveness funds received for various projects.
Council entered executive session to discuss employee compensation, but no action was taken upon return.
The next meeting for the Pomeroy Village Council is scheduled for Monday, Oct. 4 at 7 p.m.
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Kayla (Hawthorne) Dunham is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing. Reach her at (304) 675-1333, ext. 1992.