Councilman Richard Hays started London City Council’s regular meeting on Thursday evening with a moment of silence for Eric Joering and Anthony Morelli, the two police officers who were killed in the line of duty Saturday, Feb. 10 in Westerville.
Mayor Patrick Closser took time to thank the city’s police officers, as well as its firefighters, for their efforts in maintaining a safe community despite the risks to their own lives during the city official reports portion of the meeting.
“I cannot thank them enough for all they do to keep us safe,” he said.
The mayor also reminded everyone in attendance that the appointments for the Ward 1 and Ward 3 council seats will be held at the Madison County Engineer’s Office on March 6 at 5:30 p.m. Any person interested in one of the positions is encouraged to contact the mayor or Madison County Republican Central Committee Chairman Nick Adkins.
He and Street Department Superintendent Bill Long met with representatives from Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections and Madison Soil and Water Conservation District to further discuss the drainage issues for the farmland north of Mariemont and Graceland Avenues, the mayor reported.
A plan of action should be completed very soon, he said.
The area east of 20 S. Walnut St. is scheduled for repair sometime in April.
As the project would hinder the parking for patients of Dr. Mark Lima’s office, it is coordinated to occur on a date when the physician’s office will be closed.
The clearing of the creek bed running adjacent to Jacqueline Drive will be attended to as soon as weather permits, the mayor reported.
The mayor also noted the success of the combined efforts of the Access Cowling and Friends of Madison County Parks and Trails organizations in co-sponsoring the first annual community dodgeball tournament fundraiser last Saturday, particularly thanking Brian Knowles and Scott Willard for their hard work in organizing and promoting the event.
He and the council also commended the work done by the street department in keeping the snow cleared during the last round of winter storms.
A “concerned” business owner had called to inquire how the city could better maintain the curb areas for patrons of the various downtown businesses, it was reported by councilman Hays.
The mayor pointed out that business owners are responsible for keeping their sidewalks cleared of snow.
Using a frontloader to move the snow around downtown is an impracticality, he said. Not only would this take manpower away from clearing residential areas, finding a place to dump the loads without negatively affecting another business owner would be unlikely.
The fact remains, that when the city gets dumped on, residents have to do their part and dig themselves out.
“Sit around and wait on spring is the answer, I guess,” Closser said.
Councilman Hays, who has wasted no time in getting involved with his new position, recognized Parks and Recreation Director Tammy Braskett for her efforts, including her success with the basketball program — despite the heating issues just recently resolved at the community center.
“Tammy is a great asset to this city,” Hays said. “I like her, she’s a go-getter,” he said.
In old business, Amended Ordinance 168-17 was adopted by the council.
The ordinance authorizes the wage adjustments of elected and appointed officials in the following manner:
• Change the mayor’s position from part-time to full-time with an annual salary of $59,982 (up from $30,000);
• Change the auditor’s position from part-time to full-time with an annual salary of $59,982 (up from $45,000);
• Increase the law director’s annual salary to $93,314 (up from $70,000);
• Increase the treasurer’s annual salary to $10,392 (up from $5,000);
• Increase city council members’ annual salaries to $6,660 (up from $5,000);
• Increase the city council president’s annual salary to $6,660 (up from $6,000);
• Increase the city council clerk’s annual salary to $6,660 (up from $6,000);
• Increase board of public utilities members’ annual salaries to $6,660 (up from $5,000);
• Increase the civil service chair’s annual salary to $500 (up from $450); and
• Increase civil service members’ annual salaries to $400 (up from$350).
For elected officials, salary increases will take effect after the next election (2020), and appointed individuals’ salary increases will take effect after their current term ends.
Also passed this session were Ordinance 104-18 for strengths on job descriptions, and Resolution 107-18, authorizing auditors warrant for payment.
Reach Andrew Garrett at 740-852-1616, ext. 1616.
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