City purchases Grand Division Parking Lot; Flushing hydrants proceed

By Karen Cornelius

City correspondence: Vermilion City Council met on Monday night, October 23. City engineer Lynn Miggins was absent, and there was no open to the audience and no old business. Council president Steve Herron read two thank you letters to city council from Edison Estates homeowners thanking them for the street and catch basin improvements and the fine job done by Herk as well as the support from service director Tony Valerius, city engineer Miggins, and councilwoman Barb Brady.


Mayor’s report/Fulper property: Mayor Eileen Bulan announced that this week is Business Appreciation Week in Erie County sponsored by the Erie County Economic Development Group. She said representatives from the Vermilion Chamber, Main Street Vermilion, the Erie County Economic Development Group and herself would be visiting the local businesses on Thursday, October 26.


The mayor gave an update on the Fulper property, corner of Liberty Avenue and Grand Street. She stated that the Tier One investigation report requirements have been completed. Now they need to excavate out the impacted soil in two areas, and collect confirmation samples from the site of this excavation at the former gas station to demonstrate that all the impacted soil has been removed. Then, there is the backfill of the two areas with clean fill and the submission of an Interim Response Action completion report to complete the work. The mayor said this work is being done by the Mannik Smith Group through a $100,000 fully funded grant from the Ohio EPA. They are presently seeking quotes to have this new work performed.


Mayor Bulan asked council to add a resolution to that night’s agenda so the city can apply for a Clean Ohio grant for the beach property located at 477 Main Street. She stated that the city applied for one previously for the entire amount of purchase and were not funded. Now, the city has received donations, a grant from the Land and Water Conservation Fund for $162,000 and they have applied for a Nature Works Grant. She said that now they will have a better chance because the city will just be asking for a partial amount. The grant deadline is Friday so council needs to pass this resolution by emergency. Later in the meeting under new business, council voted to add the resolution to the agenda. Under the reading of the ordinances, council suspended the rules and adopted it by emergency.


Executive session/Grand Division Parking: In the mayor’s report, she also asked for an executive session to discuss a legal matter and property acquisition. Under new business, council voted to go into executive session before the reading of the ordinances to discuss pending litigation concerning Highbridge Road issues and to discuss property acquisition. After 35 minutes, council returned and added an ordinance to the agenda to purchase the Grand Division Parking Lot for $99,000 plus closing costs. Mayor Bulan thanked the Dickerhoff Family for working with the city. Council-at-large Monica Stark said she was really excited that now the city could provide free parking for its residents and visitors. The city intends to finance the purchase.


Service director’s update/flushing hydrants: Service director Valerius reported the Utilities Department has started flushing hydrants west of the river. He said during this process, homeowners may experience periods of low water pressure or slight discoloration to the water. If this is the case, run the water until it clears.


He added that the final two taps into the new water main on Main Street were successfully completed that day. Short of capping the abandoned line in a couple of spots, the main replacement work is done. Next, a project on the westside of North Main will proceed. Councilwoman Brady asked when this pervious pavement project to improve storm drainage to the lake will be done. The service director thought by the end of November. Brady added that asphalt work on Woodside and Edgewater was nicely done by Precision Paving.


Finance director’s report: Finance director Brian Keller reported that the first on-site visit has been scheduled for Thursday, November 2, to establish an up-to-date and more efficient bank reconciliation. He stated that the department has received 11 requests for public records. The department has also started an historical log/library of information on streets paved since the initiation of the 2013 road improvement levy. They have additionally begun compiling flood plain management figures.


Law director’s update: Law director Ken Stumphauzer informed council that former police officer Michael Reinheimer’s time to appeal has passed and there was no appeal filed.


Reading city ordinances: Council gave a third reading to an ordinance to approve the plat of Bacon Allotment Subdivision #1 for recording purposes. They adopted it by emergency. This concerned property on Vermilion Road, a division of the plat for a house. The vote was 6-1 with Brady opposing.


A second reading was given to a change order to the original contract with Abraham/Miller Excavating for the Main Street Green Infrastructure Enhancement Project. The contractor was given an extension of time until December 31, 2017. A second reading was given to an ordinance to amend a chapter on Peddlers, canvassers, and solicitors. It will be referred to Legislative in November.


A second reading was given to an ordinance to amend a section of the city code on RS Special Residence District concerning the minimum for side yards where there is an attached garage. A second reading was given to an ordinance to amend a chapter entitled “Flood Damage Reduction” and a section entitled “Application Required.” This concerns permit fees. The ordinance was referred to Legislative in November. Another second reading was given to an ordinance entitled “Zoning Certifications and Site Plan” for industrial and commercial developments. This concerns what is missing for some commercial developments within residential areas which should have to get zoning certificates so the city can review their plans. This will also go back to Legislative in November.


A first reading was given to an ordinance to renew the city’s insurance with Allen-Thorley-DeLloyd for one year in 2018. There was no price as yet, and agent Jerry Pearl will make a presentation later in the year. A first reading was given to an ordinance to receive a subsidy from Brownhelm Township for subscription ambulance service through the city’s contract with North Central EMS. The cost will be $5,448,28. Another first reading was given for Vermilion Township’s ambulance subsidy with a cost of $15,034.44.


A first reading was given to an ordinance accepting and approving the plat of Edison Village Estates Subdivision No. 8 for recording purposes. This was for a house plat. A first reading was given for an ordinance to vacate all or parts of Frederick Avenue, Edward Drive, Gardiner Drive, Gilbert Drive, Charles Drive, Midway Drive, William Drive, and Edgewood Drive in the Vermilion River Park Allotment Nos. 1 and 2 as favorably recommended by the Vermilion Planning Commission. These are paper streets on property off Vermilion Road near Indian Ridge Estates. There will be a public hearing on November 20 at 7 p.m. Lastly, a first reading was given to an ordinance amending the city code for load limits for commercial and heavy vehicles. This would establish truck routes.
City council’s schedule: City council will meet again on Monday, November 6, at 7 p.m. at the municipal complex on Decatur. Another council meeting is scheduled for November 20. All five committees will be meeting on Monday, November 13.


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