The Press Newspaper
The economic impact of passenger rail service in Ohio will be the focus of the spring meeting of the Northwest Ohio Passenger Rail Association June 11 at the Holiday Inn French Quarter in Perrysburg.
Issues such as where the major train stations will be when passenger rail increases in Ohio and what increased rail traffic will mean for development around the depots will be addressed at the meeting, organizers said.
The meeting will start at 11:30 a.m. and is scheduled to end at 1:15 p.m.
Scheduled speakers are Mandy Kisling Bishop, co-deputy director of the Ohio Department of Transportation; Shane Imwalle, of Woolpert, a design and engineering firm, and James Richardson, III, of Forrest City Commercial Group.
The Toledo Metropolitan Area Council of Governments works with the Northwest Ohio Passenger Rail Association, Ohio Rail Development Commission, Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority, All Aboard Ohio, and Southeast Michigan Council of Governments for more passenger rail service for the region.
TMACOG’s passenger rail committee has a goal of compiling a list by October of recommended projects and initiatives for inclusion in the council’s 2011 update of its long-range transportation plan.
Northwood City Council on May 27 gave a first reading to proposed ordinances that would increase the income tax rate and establish a trash fee. The measures have two more readings before there is a final vote by council.
Council is giving three readings to give the public time to offer input on the ordinances.
The proposed .25 percent hike in the city income tax would increase the tax rate from 1.5 percent to 1 ¾ percent. It would provide funds for capital improvements, capital reinvestment and operating expenses of the city within the general fund. The increase would bring in $500,000 annually.
If a majority of council approves the tax increase, the measure would go on the ballot, where voters would have the final say.
The $10 per month trash fee would start July 1 and bring in $220,000 annually.
The city currently pays for garbage pickup as part of its contract with Waste Management of Ohio, which owns the Evergreen Recycling and Disposal facility, a solid waste landfill located at Wales Road and East Broadway. Northwood receives 22 cents per ton tipping fee, and 23.75 cents per ton host fee from Evergreen, which automatically deducts a monthly charge for unlimited garbage pickup for residents.
The Wood County Board of Commissioners will recognize 2010 Spirit of Wood County Award recipients at a special ceremony at 2 p.m. on June 13. The ceremony will be held at the Wood County Historical Center, 13660 County Home Road, Bowling Green.
Scheduled to receive awards are: Harold Bower of North Baltimore; Mary K. Williams of Portage; Bernard Murphy of Perrysburg; Richard Edwards, Edie Olds, and Jayne Roth of Bowling Green. Former Bowling Green resident Raymond Fischer is also scheduled for recognition.
The awards, presented in conjunction with Wood County Heritage Days, are awarded to county residents who show qualities in bettering Wood County as a whole. The categories include: Agricultural Leadership, Education for Civic Responsibility, Industrial/Economic Development, Liberty Through Law/Human Freedom, Lyle R. Fletcher Good Citizenship Award, Religion and Liberty, and Self-Government.
The commissioners have been honoring citizens since 1987.
Library board OKs placing levy on ballot
The board voted last week to begin the process for placing a 1.1-mill, 5-year levy on the ballot – the first time in the library’s history it is asking for local property tax revenues, said Georgina Huizenga, library director.
If approved by voters, the issue would generate about $250,000 a year, she said, and would be used to restore cuts in the library’s operating hours, buy more materials, and replace the position of early childhood services coordinator.
Residents in the library’s service area, which includes Allen and Clay townships and all of Harris Township except for a portion in the Benton-Carroll-Salem School District, would vote on the issue.
The library has a branch in Genoa.
Due to cuts in state funding, the hours at both buildings were reduced – from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday to 12:30-7:30 p.m. Saturday hours were reduced to 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., three hours earlier than prior to the cuts. Friday hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
By approving an austerity plan that reduces spending in the next school year by about $350,000, the Lake school board and administration see the district being in “survival mode,” Jeff Carpenter, district treasurer, said last week.
After conducting public forums with local elected officials, business and community leaders, and residents, board members concluded any request this year for additional property tax revenue would fail at the ballot, he said, adding the board intends to only seek the renewal of two levies in November.
“With the economy being in the shape it is, the board realized there was no chance of being successful with a levy this year,” Carpenter said. “So they’ve outlined a plan to survive through 2011-12.”
At a meeting earlier this month, the board agreed to eliminate the position of high school principal, implement an expanded early retirement incentive plan for teachers, and approve a two-year contract with the teacher’s union that includes no increases in the base pay.
The responsibilities of principal Marty Schloegl will be assumed by the high school assistant principal, the middle school principal, and the superintendent.