The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

Chances are if you’ve attended a festival or football game in the Genoa or Elmore areas the past few weeks someone has given you a brochure promoting a levy issue on the November ballot in support of the Harris-Elmore Public Library.

Georgiana Huizenga, library director, said library supporters have relied heavily on face-to-face contact to promote the levy.

Voters in the library’s service area, which includes all of Allen and Clay townships and Harris Township except for a portion in the Benton-Carroll-Salem School District, will decide a 1.1-mill, 5-year property tax levy.

It’s the first time the library – based in Elmore with a branch in Genoa – has gone to voters for local millage.

“We have gotten our message out by passing out stickers at the Woodmore/Genoa football game, distributing literature at the Genoa Street Fair, and holding a bake sale and distributing literature at the Elmore Irish Fest,” Huizenga said. “We have also spoken to the Elmore and Genoa village councils, the Harris, Clay, and Allen townships trustee meetings, and various other organizations.”

If passed, the levy would generate about $250,000 annually.

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A 94-year-old Harbor View woman told Western Lake Erie water keeper Sandy Bihn she can remember a time when the Toledo area was the place to be for tourists.

SandyBihn
               Sandy Bihn

“From May to Labor Day, this used to be the most happening place in the United States. It was the fishing and the swimming,” Bihn said.

It was a time in the early 20th Century when this area produced more jobs for recreation than for industry. Bihn interviewed the woman two years ago for a documentary being produced about the Toledo Harbor Lighthouse.

The woman told Bihn that European dignitaries would arrive “just to be here.” 

The woman recalled pristine beaches at Presque Isle, and Bihn says Toledo Blade articles would talk about so much fish “you could walk on them.”

That was before pollution began lowering the quality of natural resources at this end of Lake Erie, Bihn alleges. She says we are still not protecting that resource, and the problem continues to worsen.

Bihn noted that the Great Lakes have more U.S. shoreline that the Atlantic Ocean, Pacific Ocean, and Gulf of Mexico combined.

“We have more shoreline here, but the laws don’t work the same for us because it’s not considered a coastline,” Bihn said.

Lake Erie is the 11th largest lake in the world, but because it is shallow with 11 million people living along its shores, it is in vast need of “more wetlands, more foresting, and we don’t have it,” Bihn said.

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Local businessman and college professor Ray Nissen says if you are out of work, you should take the initiative and start a business. In doing so, pick a business you have a passion for.

“Unfortunately, the days of the big paying factory jobs are gone. People are struggling out there, and if they just look at some of the things they can do,” Nissen said.

“Five percent of the new jobs are created by small businesses and start-ups. Right now is a perfect opportunity to become an entrepreneur because a lot of corporations, even my family business that I work for, are sitting on their hands,” Nissen continued.

“They are not taking any risks because they are afraid of what the economy is going to do, you know. There is a lot of opportunity out there, and that is the first thing I talk about. It’s like the bigger the problem, the bigger the opportunity for people to hurdle.”

Nissen should know. In 1983, he left the University of Toledo, where he was a business instructor, and joined three others in a start up called Thermal Gard of Ohio.

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Dennis Recker, former administrator of the village of Whitehouse, is the new administrator of Northwood.

Recker will replace current Administrator Pat Bacon, who is retiring at the end of this month.

Northwood City Council unanimously approved Recker, upon Mayor Mark Stoner’s recommendation, at a special council meeting on Oct. 7. Recker will work with Bacon until she leaves office.

Recker told The Press that he applied for the job because the city has many strengths, including its attractive business environment and proximity to mass transportation.

“Northwood is situated in such a way that it has major outstanding features that could lead to further development,” said Recker. “They have it all – a good, strong workforce, excellent transportation – just a very, very fertile area for growth and development as we weather this economic downturn.”

As the administrator of Whitehouse, which has a population of 4,300 compared to Northwood’s 5,500, Recker prepared a downtown revitalization plan that was the basis for a major revitalization grant. The village secured pledges from over 80 percent of business operators and commercial property owners to participate in active improvement projects under the grant program. The village also worked with a local manufacturer and a local property owner to fund an expansion of the village industrial park.

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Tiger Ridge Exotics in Stony Ridge has been open to the public for over 30 years.

Owner Kenny Hetrick only asks for donations to help feed and care for over 30 tigers, lions, cougars, leopards, wolves, and bears.

Due to recently upgraded regulations by the United States Department of Agriculture, which regulates exotic animal farms, Tiger Ridge is in need of 1,700 feet of fencing, fence hardware and attachments, concrete, poles, wood, nails, screws, paint and other materials to comply.

The Press obtained copies of the USDA report, dated September 29. The deadline for Hetrick to upgrade is November 1.

“That’s the almost impossible part. I’ve worked on this daylight to dark since they were here. There’s a lot to do,” Hetrick said.

“They came out here and said my regular fence, which is 10 foot high, has to be 12 feet with a three foot overlap. I still haven’t figured out how I’m going to do that (overlap),” Hetrick continued. “My four-foot perimeter fence, that’s my outside perimeter fence, has to be eight feet. All my poles have to be cemented in, and I need eight foot fence bad and I can’t find any anywhere other than new.”

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Trick or Treat

1377550557 [{"id":"25","title":"Yes","votes":"0","pct":0,"type":"x","order":"1","resources":[]},{"id":"26","title":"No","votes":"1","pct":100,"type":"x","order":"2","resources":[]}] ["#194e84","#3b6b9c","#1f242a","#37414a","#60bb22","#f2babb"] sbar 160 160 /component/communitypolls/vote/11-trick-or-treat No answer selected. Please try again. Thank you for your vote. Answers Votes ...