Theft, an armed robbery and missing children are just a few of the events that have kept the Mount Gilead Police Department busy the past few weeks.
At July’s village council meeting, Chief Brian Zerman discussed the events that have consumed village officers’ time and resources.
Zerman reported that for the month of June there were 200 calls for service, 39 reports, 6 of the reports were felonies, 5 accidents with one injury, and 52 charges issued.
The week prior to the council meeting was extremely busy according to Zerman.
“We had a theft at Kroger’s, a guy walked out with roughly $650 worth of merchandise which was recovered. The suspect took off on foot as officers arrived. He has been identified from reviewing the security video footage,” Zerman said. The Family Dollar was robbed at gunpoint on July 13 and that continues to be investigated. On July 14, three small children were reported missing. Zerman shared that everyone came out in force to help with the search, Morrow County Sheriff’s Office, Cardington PD, Mt. Gilead Fire dept. Morrow County EMS, Various firefighters from other departments, countless neighbors and citizens, even the Village streets department employees took part in the search for the 5, 3 and 2 year old. The children were ultimately found when an adult came home with them. Miscommunication between the adults was the reason for the misunderstanding. Ultimately what mattered was the children were safe and Zerman thanked everyone for assisting in the search effort.
Fire Department Chief Greg Young reported that in the previous two weeks there was 1 call for mutual aide, 2 squad assists, a barn fire in Franklin Twp., a couple alarm malfunctions, a couple of gas odor reports, a CO check, missing children search, 2 accidents, 1 call for burned food and 1 smell of smoke in a building for a total of 14 responses.
Committee reports: Streets: John Curtis was excused, no report
Kay Hines reported that the Safety committee, along with Mayor Porter, met with Chief Zerman to discuss salaries and the budget. They gave approval for the Chief to advertise for a full time patrol officer.
Finance and Personnel: The committee met prior to council and discussed an ongoing BWC claim which is drawing to a close. They discussed resignation benefits and will try to stay consistent with what has been used in the past even though there is no specific policy there has been a practice. They will be putting something in the personnel policy that is consistent with that practice.
Village Clerk Sue Merman discussed the income tax seminar. On the new ORC 718 income tax law that will go into effect by Jan. 1, 2016. Village solicitor Matt Griffith is currently reviewing that law to ensure that village ordinances are in line with the new law. There will be some loss of revenue for the village due to the new state mandates. This will not affect the 2015 taxes.
Committee member Tim Clapper made the motion to authorize the village administrator to post the ad for the fiscal officer position and for the selection of the proposed schedule for the process.
Utilities: Tim Clapper: There is some paving needed at the water treatment plant and need to incorporate that into the paving plan.
Long Range planning: Tim Clapper: Discussed the fiscal officer position and discussion on upcoming retirements over the next 4 to 5 year period.
Economic Development: Ed Kline discussed the Mt. Gilead CIC meeting. They had a quorum but need to look at potential new members as they are down several people. There has been renewed interest in the Core building and that potential buyer is working directly with the seller.
Codes & regulations: Steve Hart- discussed the vicious dog ordinance. Hart mentioned that he had received some new information so would like to table it and re-discuss in a committee meeting. Hart discussed possible rezoning within the village possibly creating a historic business zoning area in the downtown. “this will be a long process.”
Village Administrator Dan Rogers reported that there have been a lot of storm sewer issues over the past weeks. Collapsed storm tiles that probably would not have been discovered had we not had the amount of rain that were the most recent one is between the Presbyterian Church parsonage. Old clay tiles that are between 50 to 100 years old that have collapsed and caused sink holes. The most recent one is by the Presbyterian Church parsonage. Rogers noted that the excessive rain has caused overages on the villages NPDES permit however everyone is over and this should not be a problem
The village is waiting for word back from the County Development Office on the CDBG grant for the Fort Gilead project.
Village Solicitor Matt Griffith reported that the village received a signed agreement from officer Gifford and a resolution was prepared authorizing the mayor to execute that agreement on behalf of the village. The resolution was adopted.
The next village council meeting will be held on Monday August 17, at 7:00 pm. at the municipal building.
Reach Donna Carver at 419-946-3010, ext. 1804 or on Twitter @MorrCoSentinel.