The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

Joe Helle achieved his goal.

Joe Helle

After working to visit every house in the Village of Oak Harbor, Helle’s dedication paid off as he was elected mayor earlier this month

“It was overwhelming to say the least. The state pushed back the release of results to after 9 p.m., which made the waiting even worse,” he said. “My wife, Andrea, and I stayed up until after 10 to see the results come over the screen, and I remember thanking her for all of her support through all of this.

“It means absolutely everything to me (to be elected mayor). Knowing that the residents of Oak Harbor have placed their confidence in me for the next four years is very humbling and I can't wait to get to work for them. They deserve it.”

The Ottawa County commissioners will meet next week to hold departmental budget hearings for 2016.

The commissioners have scheduled special sessions Nov. 16-23 at 8 a.m. to discuss department requests.

In the county’s 2014 annual report, the commissioners stated the county was able to maintain existing services and a balanced financial position because elected officials and employees focused on containing costs.

A permanent increase of 0.25 percent in the sales tax that went into effect in July 2013 generated $1.6 million in 2014.

The general fund ended 2014 with revenues exceeding expenses by $976,631. Without the sales tax the fund would have had a deficit of $633,623.

When he assumes the mayor’s post in the Village of Clay Center in January, Mark Franks plans to implement some changes in the village administration.

One of his goals for 2016 is to reorganize the police department, Franks said.

Before that, however, there are seats to fill on village council as no one filed to run in the election for either of two open seats.

“In a small town like this, we only have about 250 residents, it’s hard to get people involved in local government,” said Franks, who served a term on village council before running unopposed for the mayor’s office. “We’ve had a hard time filling our zoning commission also. We’re supposed to have five seated members. We only have three.”

Lizzie Smith, a senior at Cardinal Stritch Catholic High School, knows what it is like to see a loved one suffer through cancer treatment. Her mother was diagnosed with ovarian cancer when Lizzie was just 12 years old.

She also knows how lonely one can feel as they go through the treatment process. That’s why she decided to step-up and help others who were going through the same painful process.

On Sept. 12, Smith held a day-long Cancer Patient Retreat. Throughout the day, patients were able to make blankets, go on a nature walk, or participate in a number of other activities. There were also speakers who came in and talked to families, including a nutritionist and yoga instructor.

Including my children, five generations of the Reese family have worked and played in the old barn on my parent’s property — that is a lot of pitch forking and hay fort building.

When faced with a decision about the future of this incredible, historic structure, my parents made the decision in 2010 to hire a gifted Amish crew to give it a major makeover for future generations of Reeses to continue to work and play beneath the ancient rafters of this grand old barn. Based on the saw marks on the beams, the style and the roofing material, it has been estimated that the barn was built between 1870 and 1880. Think about how Ohio agriculture has changed since then!

My parents are the third generation of the Reese family to own the farm. My great-grandfather, Pearl Jay Reese, and his wife, Jessie Mae, purchased the farm in 1918. Here is more about the barn from the Hancock Historical Society.


Based on the current refugee vetting process, should the U.S. suspend the program allowing Syrian and Iraqi refugees into the country?
1677038400 [{"id":"82","title":"Yes","votes":"6","pct":66.67,"type":"x","order":"1","resources":[]},{"id":"83","title":"No","votes":"2","pct":22.22,"type":"x","order":"2","resources":[]},{"id":"84","title":"Not sure; need more information.","votes":"1","pct":11.11,"type":"x","order":"3","resources":[]}] ["#194e84","#3b6b9c","#1f242a","#37414a","#60bb22","#f2babb"] sbar 160 160 /component/communitypolls/vote/35-refugees No answer selected. Please try again. Thank you for your vote. Answers Votes ...