Chuck Martin/News Mount Vernon Parks, Buildings and Public Lands Supervisor Dave Carpenter prepares to drive off with the Kawasaki “Mule”  he just received from Mid-Ohio Suzuki-Honda-Yamaha-Kawasaki General Manager Dave Ewart, right. The vehicle is being loaned to the city for use in the city parks. The model Pro FXT is being provided as part of the Kawasaki User Relations Loan program which has provided vehicles to the parks and the Knox County Sheriff’s Office for several years.
Joshua Morrison/News Steven Jones, Smith Paving and Excavating, operates a “wet” concrete saw on Monday morning at the corner of Main Street and Ohio Avenue. South Main Street in downtown Mount Vernon will be closed through Friday as the crosswalks are replaced from Ohio Avenue to Public Square.


MOUNT VERNON — Although South Main Street was reopened to traffic Friday, traffic will continue to be disrupted off and on for the next few weeks.

In redoing one of the tree boxes along Main north of Ohio Street, it was discovered that a gasket in a two-inch water line was leaking and needs to be repaired. There may be additional repair work needed as well, said Utilities Director Meths Orndorf, and the situation is being evaluated.

Also needing to be scheduled are digs to connect water service to the apartments being developed in the Ohio Avenue area. The city wants those connections made before South Main Street is resurfaced this year.

The crosswalk at Ohio and South Main and the first crosswalk south of Public Square were found to have deteriorating bases, so it was decided that those cross walks will be temporarily filled with crushed limestone then, after the resurfacing is complete, the crosswalks will be filled with concrete molded and colored to look like brick, as was done with the crosswalks on West High Street last fall.

Jason Epley, assistant to the city engineer, said he is not sure when Small’s Asphalt is planning to pave the stretch of South Main Street downtown, but they will likely start this year’s paving program with finishing the paving on South Main near Parrott Street and working north.

Street Superintendent Tom Hinkle said that as they were removing the bricks from the Ohio Street crossing on the north side of the intersection, they found a buried “pull box” where the wiring for street lights and signals in the area are connected. Since it will be concrete instead of bricks in the area of the box, they will have to raise the box to the level of the surface and install a lid on the box that will allow access.

As part of the Middle School’s first Community Service Day, Middle School students helped plant trees in the city. They also worked at the C.A.&C. Depot, Dan Emmett House, Ariel-Foundation Park and the Municipal Parking Garage.

The contract for the Newark Road/Dixie Drive water project was awarded to Law Construction.

Hinkle said the department continued to fix potholes this week, now working on the east side. However, they lost about half a day’s work when the burner on the new asphalt buggy refused to ignite. It finally started when the main fuse was pulled and the computer allowed to reset.

Hinkle reported the street sweeper was back in operation. A schedule for the coming week is posted on the city website.

Belmont between Mulberry and Mansfield may be closed Monday and part of Tuesday.

The department had to fix a sinkhole at the southwest corner of James and Rose.

Orndorf said he has ordered the replacement sewer camera. The price is $194,683, which is less than the $230,000 he expected.

Orndorf said the exercising of valves in the East Street revealed at least one to be frozen and will have to be replaced. They’re not sure of two valves on south McKenzie. A boil advisory will be required when they are replaced.

Mayor Richard Mavis said the city will be replacing the entry signs coming into the city. The process of replacing the signs on each state route entering the city will be paid for by a grant from the Ariel Foundation.

Parks, Buildings and Public Lands superintendent Dave Carpenter said painting of the exterior trim of City Hall will begin Monday, weather permitting.

Carpenter said he has received 1,700 American Flags from the Mount Vernon Veterans Service Office this week. The flags will be placed on all veterans’ graves at Mound View Cemetery prior to Memorial Day.

Doug Priest and a group of his probation volunteers will be walking the cemetery Saturday cleaning any built-up grass and debris off of headstones.

Epley also reported that the heater building at Hiawatha Park is almost done, with the contractor working on the roof. They will be able to start the process of heating the pool by using the old heater.

Parade plans

“We’re trying to get as many veterans as possible to participate in the Memorial Day Parade this year,” said Mayor Mavis. “Donley Ford and A-Plus Autobrokers have agreed to provide vehicles for all the veterans who wish to participate.”

Veterans who want to be in the parade should call the mayor’s office at 740-393-9517 or the Veterans’ Service Office at 740-393-6742, then be at Flowers-Snyder Funeral Home at 619 E. High St. before 10:30 a.m. the morning of the parade.

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Chuck Martin: 740-397-5333 or and on Twitter, @