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Northwood - Budget cuts take bite out of mosquito spraying
Written by Kelly Kaczala   
Thursday, 01 July 2010 15:18

Northwood, which is struggling with budget cuts due to reduced income tax collections, will not pay for insecticide used for mosquito spraying this summer.

Currently, the city is using insecticide left over from last year, Administrator Pat Bacon said to city council at a committee of the whole meeting June 3.

“When it’s gone, it’s gone. We’re not purchasing more,” said Bacon.

A 55-gallon drum of insecticide would cost the city $4,400, she said.

The city will continue to use larvacide in the catch basins, she added.

“Putting in the larvacide in the catch basins is very important, and we’ll continue to do that,” she said after the meeting.

Mosquito spraying only benefits those living in subdivisions, not in rural areas, she said.

“We only go into residential subdivisions, so we’re not servicing the entire city. We’re not going out where the industry is, we’re not going out on Curtice, Fostoria and Bradner roads. We’re only doing it where the subdivisions are. If you’re not benefiting the entire community, that’s one of the first things to eliminate. We’re all taxpayers, but only those who live in the subdivisions have the benefit,” she said.

 
Ralph Doren sentenced again in Meeks murder
Written by Kelly Kaczala   
Thursday, 01 July 2010 15:19

Ralph Doren, who was found guilty in 2006 of aggravated murder in the slaying of Northwood resident Deanna Meeks, was convicted again in the Wood County Court of Common Pleas last month after an appeals court last year overturned the first conviction.

Doren was sentenced to life in prison with eligibility for parole after 20 years.

Meeks was 19 when she was found slain in her Lester Avenue Home on June 7, 1991.

Doren, 59, had been a co-worker of Meeks’ mother’s boyfriend at the time he burglarized the home, unaware Meeks was in the house. He killed her so she couldn’t identify him.

The case went cold for years until it was re-opened in 2003 by former Northwood Police Chief Gerald Herman and Capt. Trent Schroeder, the lead investigator in the city’s cold case unit.

The trial court convicted Doren in 2006 for aggravated murder and sentenced him to life in prison with eligibility for parole after 20 years.

But the Ohio Court of Appeals 6th Appellate District on Jan. 19, 2009, overturned the conviction, saying an error had violated Doren’s fundamental right to a fair trial. The court, in a 2-1 decision, vacated Doren’s conviction and remanded the matter for a new trial.

 
Northwood - Council eyes Redflex revenue for general budget
Written by Kelly Kaczala   
Thursday, 01 July 2010 15:17

In 2005, when Northwood City Council reviewed a plan by the police department to install Redflex automated photo speed and red light enforcement cameras at two intersections, the city’s share of the revenue from citations issued to motorists were only to be used for traffic safety improvements.

The continuous right turn lane on Wales Road and the flashing lights at Lark School are examples of such improvements. The revenue is also used as compensation for a police officer who had been laid off.

Now, with the city struggling with budget cuts and reduced income tax collections, council is considering redirecting the funds into the general budget, which is down by 7.3 percent this year.

Earlier this year, council voted 4-3 in support of a new, three year contract with Redflex Traffic Systems, Inc., of Arizona, which operates the automated photo speed and red light enforcement cameras at the intersections of Woodville and Lemoyne roads and Wales and Oregon roads.

The city is receiving a greater share of the revenue received from traffic citations issued as a result of the cameras.

 
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