Despite income tax collections running ahead of last year, the Mt. Sterling Council finance committee chair Monday, July 14 called for cautious spending.
Lowell Anderson reported the year-to-date income tax collection for 2014 for the village is $348,000. He compared that sum to the amount collected for the same time period in 2013: $253,000. Anderson said the former amount is 37 percent more than the amount collected last year.
Anderson said, “It speaks well of the village income tax, but we should be spending our money wisely.”
With Gov. John Kasich continually cutting local government funds, the village should remain prudent in its spending.
In other business, Madison County Sheriff Jim Sabin brought a report which also compared this year’s “numbers” to last year’s:
• In the first six months of 2014, the sheriff’s office (SO) has responded to 829 calls. The total number of calls for 2013 was 1,951.
• Criminal arrests, January-June ’14: 34; total for 2013: 70
• Theft-related calls: January-June ’14: 42; total for 2013: 168
• Juvenile activity: January-June ’14: 27; total for 2013: 67
• Disturbance calls: January-June ’14: 7; total for 2013: 24
• Threats: January-June ’14: 20; total for 2013: 59
• Animal complaints: January-June ’14: 26; total for 2013: 86
• Suspicious activity: January-June ’14: 123; total for 2013: 280
Sabin said it is important for residents to report any and all of the above.
“Call,” he said. “We’ll check into them. We encourage people to call.”
Sabin has promoted two deputies to the rank of sergeant and said he wants them to “get involved at the community level.”
“Let’s watch out for each other,” he said.
Related to that, the next Block Watch meeting will be held at 6 p.m., Thursday, July 17 in the basement of the Mt. Sterling Public Library.
Resident Erica Newman requested two blocks of Friend Street be temporarily blocked off so she and her neighbors could hold a neighborhood yard sale, Friday, July 25 and Saturday, July 26.
Following some discussion among council members, the motion was passed 4-2 with council members Anderson and Diane Spradlin voting no. She said she was not comfortable blocking the street for individual use.
Council member Heather Rice said the village has granted residents permission to close streets for a block party.
“In my eyes, it’s doable,” she said.
The case of “alley-gate” has been resolved. Rice said the matter had been discussed and the gate across the alley has been removed.
Mayor Charlie Neff congratulated the community center for a successful “Let Freedom Ring” celebration.
To expedite New Cingular Wireless PCS’s cell phone tower process, the council voted to suspend the three-reading rule on the resolution and passed it on its second reading.
Resident Bobi Little expressed her appreciation for the work the village administrator, Joe Johnson, especially in the area of obtaining grants for the village to remove blighted buildings.
Dean Shipley can be reached at (740) 852-1616, ext. 1617, or via Twitter @DeanAShipley.