MOUNT VERNON — Mount Vernon has a long list of projects planned for 2019.
Finance and Budget Chair Sam Barone listed some of the projects either planned this year or for which preparations are being made during the City Council meeting Monday. Those projects include brick street repairs (although a major brick street repair project may be a year or two out), completion of the Parrott Street intersection, Mulberry and Belmont sidewalk and drainage project, the Sandusky Street safety project at Tilden, property acquisition for the Ohio 13 corridor, funds to complete the bicycle trail under the viaduct, matching funds for a sidewalk along Newark Road from Burger King to the Industrial Park and the building addition at the water park to house the heating system.
During the meeting, council authorized accepting a $200,000 grant from the Ohio Development Service Agency for the Parrott Street/South Main Street intersection project.
She said she didn’t like having to follow decisions made by “different” counties, but Mayor Richard Mavis reminded her that the creation of the district was mandate by the state, which required abutting counties to combine in blocks of at least 100,000 population. It collects money from waste disposal fees, which are then used to fund recycling programs.
Ashland County was the only small county allowed to “go its own way” and its fees are about $11, compared to about $6 in the DKMM district.
Council voted unanimously to amend the property maintenance code to improve the explanations of required maintenance and also to implement a system of fines the code enforcement officer can issue for failure to comply with the code.
Council gave first reading to the measure being pushed by Councilman Chris Menapace to create a registry of vacant commercial and industrial properties. Menapace asked Zoning and Planning Chair Nancy Vail to set a date for a committee hearing on the bill, but in her remarks at the end of the meeting she forgot to mention it. She said afterwards she would have to see about scheduling it and it might be set for the next council meeting.
Menapace also apologized for remarks he made at the last meeting complaining about how long it was taking the law director’s office to prepare the legislation.
In other action Monday, Council:
•Approved an emergency ordinance establishing the compensation for an assistant director of utilities at $59,420.
•Approved the appropriation ordinance for 2019, which totals about $45 million. A temporary measure was passed in December and that money was included in the latest supplemental appropriation.
•Authorized the auditor to pay bills left from 2018.
•Authorized the auditor to make a number of supplemental appropriations.
•Approved two emergency ordinances fixing the compensation and benefits of certain employees of Mount Vernon Municipal Court. In one case only the grant source of the salaries is changed, the other sets the pay as directed by the Municipal Court judge.
•Council received the recommendation from the Planning Commission to reject the rezoning of 197 Mansfield Ave. from R-1 (single family) to R-3 (multi-family) to allow a larger number to be served by the residential recovery house operating there. A hearing will be held by council at 7 p.m. March 19 at the Station Break.
Council President Bruce Hawkins said he will also be scheduling meetings with the Mount Vernon Board of Education and Mount Vernon Nazarene College to discuss issues related to Cougar Dive and the Mount Vernon Avenue bridge and a meeting with the county commissioners to discuss the need to repave the Station Break parking lot. The building is owned by the city, but the county controls the levy for the senior programs.