Village of Thurston

Council Meeting Minutes

April 10, 2003



Meeting called to order at 7:00 pm by Mayor Hite.  Pledge of Allegiance was recited.


Roll call:          Robert Ortman – Present

Nona Buskirk – Present

Roger Aubery – Present

Warren Simpson – Present

JT Hilliard – Present

Josh Prather – Present

Jo-Ann Hite – Present

Aaron Reedy – Present


JoAnn said the siren went off at 1:00 yesterday, so it’s working.


Roger made a motion to approve the March 2003 minutes.  Robert second.  All yea.


Robert made a motion to approve the March 2003 financial statement.  Roger second.  All yea.


JT said he talked with the Sheriff’s office about the Prisoners At Work (PAW) program.  He said it doesn’t cost anything, we just need to provide the prisoners with tools.  They will be guarded at all times.  Mike said the firehouse needed painted; we could supply the paint.  They could also paint the fire hydrants and install the signs.  JT said they could pick up trash and sweep the streets.  JT said they are booked up until the beginning of June.  JT will take off the week and assist them. 


Nona made a motion to approve the minutes from the February 20, 2003 special meeting.  Roger second.  All yea.


Chief Mike Jackson was present to discuss fire department business.  JoAnn asked if Kent was going to mow.  Mike said Kent wrote a contract up wrong.  He’s been doing it for $80 per month.  He may want $100 per month this year.  JT made a motion to let Kent mow the fire department property for $100 per month.  Roger second.  All yea.


Mike said the new Engine/Rescue would be here between 5-5:30 p.m. on 4/16/2003.  He said the kids could come up and check it out after a month or so.  The volunteers will need to get hose and other equipment set up first.


Mike said the tornado siren is finally running.  He said training has been going well.  JT said the station looks good; trucks all look clean.  Mike said an EMT class just ended and everyone passed. 


Josh asked how many fire inspections Mike did per year.  Mike said about 8 – 10 a year.  Josh said they should charge a fee for fire inspection.  If not, at least ask for a donation.  We’d need to check to see if it was legal since the department is funded by a tax levy.


Mike said he would be putting one person in charge of record keeping for water delivered to pools.  That person will be solely responsible for all aspects of that function.  Mike said he would no longer supply hoses to people to fill their pools from the hydrant unless it’s worked out through Lowell Hite.


JoAnn announced that Mike’s check for his portion of the Nextel bill was postdated last month.  She said that was not acceptable.  She also told Mike that from now on, he is limited to 10 minutes during Council meetings, and must have an agenda.


JT wanted to continue the discussion about the PAW program.  He wanted to know if we had all the signs and signposts that we need.  No one was sure.  JT said he would check and re-write the plan.  He asked if we had shop brooms.  Lowell said we had 2 or 3.  JT said we should buy 2 or 3 more.  He said the playground equipment should be painted, too.  The fence out front should also be fixed and painted.  JoAnn said Bob Black was talking about donating playground equipment.


JoAnn said that Bob Black should come to Council directly when he wants to do something to the building, and that Robert Ortman has been put in the middle. 


JT would like to schedule the PAW program to come to Thurston, if it’s okay with everyone else.  JT will coordinate it, and be with them while they are here.  JT moved to schedule the PAW people for June and get the materials needed for the projects, including repairing the fence out front.  Josh second.  All yea.


Final Reading for Ordinance 2003-5 – An Ordinance to Increase the Salary for the Position of Mayor.  JT made a motion to adopt Ordinance 2003-5.  Nona second.  All yea.


Roger made a motion to waive the 3-reading rule and declare an emergency for Resolution # 2003-11.  JT second.  All yea.


Warren made a motion to adopt Resolution # 2003-11, A Resolution Authorizing the Transfer of Funds and the Declaration of an Emergency.  JT second.  JoAnn wanted a roll call vote. 


Robert Ortman – Yes

Nona Buskirk – Yes

Roger Aubery – Yes

Warren Simpson – Yes

JT Hilliard – Yes

Josh Prather – Yes


JT made a motion to waive the 3-reading rule and declare an emergency for Ordinance # 2003-12.  Roger second.  All yea.


Roger made a motion to adopt Ordinance # 2003-12, An Ordinance to Amend the 2003 Appropriations Ordinance and the Declaration of an Emergency (for the new fire truck payment).  Warren second.  All yea.


JT made a motion to waive the 3-reading rule and declare an emergency for Ordinance # 2003-13.  Josh second.  All yea.


Josh made a motion to adopt Ordinance # 2003-13, An Ordinance to Amend the 2003 Appropriations Ordinance and the Declaration of an Emergency (for insurance payment).  JT second.  All yea.


JoAnn said two CD’s were up at the end of March.  They re-deposited the BOPA CD, and cashed in the CD from the General Fund.


JoAnn said they need to get the fire extinguishers recharged for the Municipal Building.  Aaron suggested having Mike be responsible for that.  JoAnn said she wants to do it.  Roger made a motion that it was okay to have them tested/recharged.  Josh second.  All yea.

JoAnn asked if Council wanted to get someone for mowing.  Roger said his neighbor has a mowing service (Blevins).  The cemetery, Municipal Building, England’s lot and Long Street need to be mowed.  JoAnn said it was all done last year by Charlie Miller, which cost about $140.00.  JT said he would like to see someone professional do it.  Josh agreed.  JT would like to get a couple of quotes from others before we make any decisions.  Lowell said a few questions should be answered, too; how often will they mow?  Will we pay by the hour or by the job?


JoAnn said Jeff Feyko, Village Solicitor, received a letter from Owen Keller rescinding his request to donate the Long Street extension to the Village.  He doesn’t want us to put drainage through his property.


JoAnn said that Jimmy Barber got three lots on Holt Street.  He’s going to build on the center lot.


JoAnn said we got a letter from the USDA stating that our budget was approved for this year.  The letter also recommended that the Village raise it’s water rates.


JoAnn said she took the title down for the pumper we sold to Greenfield Township, and she got the check.


JoAnn asked if there was any new business.  She asked council if they wanted to adopt an ordinance to do away with the elected Village Clerk-Treasurer position and replace it with an appointed Village Fiscal Officer position (Ohio House Bill 245).  Aaron raised the question why they would want to pass it.  JoAnn said others were doing it.  Council discussed.  JoAnn and Lowell said if we’re going to do it, we have to do it now.  Aaron explained that the bill was designed to allow Villages that have a hard time finding someone to fill the position) who lives within the Village) to fill the position with someone outside the Village.  It was not meant as a method to get people out of office.  Aaron shared that Clerks all over the State of Ohio have raised this concern.  Council members are giving clerks they don’t like “the boot.”


Aaron went on to explain that he plans to run for re-election for the office this year, so the Village really doesn’t have a problem.  If, by chance, he leaves the Village and the Village is left without a Clerk, and Council can’t find anyone to replace him, then the Council can adopt an emergency ordinance creating the Village Fiscal Officer position and look to fill it from outside the Village.  JoAnn and Lowell both said that wasn’t true, you had to do it during an election year.  Aaron said he is sure that the State Legislators allowed for that situation, and it was stated right within the wording of House Bill 245 that they could do it in an emergency situation at any time.  Aaron feels there is no need for it at this point.  Aaron said that someone must feel he’s not doing a good job if they want to get rid of him.  JoAnn said she’s not saying anything. 


Aaron said another reason he didn’t like it was because it’s not a “given” that he would be appointed.  Council could appoint whomever they wanted.  Aaron also said he would lose his OPERS benefits because this would no longer be an elected position.  Council didn’t want to pass this legislation, so they took no action.


JT started to make a motion to raise the pay rate for the Village Clerk-Treasurer.  Aaron asked that he please not do that.  Discussion continued.  Aaron just wants to “keep the peace.”  He thanked JT for the consideration; that it showed he approved of the work Aaron was doing.  However, Aaron said he would decline the raise if they passed it.


JoAnn said the guy was here about the flood plan.  Lowell brought out the paperwork.  The Village has to have it in order for people in the Village to get flood insurance.  The man only comes once every five years.


Josh wanted to talk about Long Street.  He said it needed to drain somewhere.  He said we should have talked about it more, and come to a decision about submitting for a grant.  Josh says there are more drainage issues that what’s been addressed.  He said, “Let’s not fix part of the problem.  Let’s fix it all.”  Discussion on the issue continued.


Josh said he’s get with Keith Doll of ME Companies and check to see what else could be done.  Discussion continued on the Long Street drainage and Third Street issues.  Josh made a motion to investigate the problem further before submitting the grant application.  If we can add the additional drainage need to the application, we will.  Otherwise, we will submit for what we can.  JoAnn called for a roll call vote.


Robert Ortman – Yes

Nona Buskirk – No

Roger Aubery – Yes

Warren Simpson – No

JT Hilliard – Yes

Josh Prather – Yes


JoAnn brought up the letter from Time Warner regarding the tax/rate increase.


Lowell wants to know if Council wants Lowell to mow between now and the time they contract with someone for mowing services.  Nona made a motion to allow Charlie Miller to mow for $8.00 per hour until we get somebody else.  Josh second.  All yea.


Since there was no other business to address, Nona made a motion to pay bills and adjourn.  Josh second.  All yea.  The time is 8:46 p.m.


Respectfully Submitted,




Aaron L. Reedy, Clerk