The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

The ink was barely dry on the contract authorizing the demolition of the Lake Township administration building before it was razed.

Crews from Cousino-Harris Co., Perrysburg, tore down the building Wednesday morning after the township trustees approved a contract the day before for the demolition.

The building, located near the intersection of Cummings Road and State Route 795, had been destroyed by the June 5 tornado.

The township’s insurance carrier is to cover the cost of the project set at $36,064, according to Tom Hays, township solicitor.

The trustees also contracted with Cousino-Harris to construct a new restroom facility at Friendship Park for $52,486. The contract includes the cost of demolishing the old restroom, which was also damaged by the tornado.

Costs will be covered by the township’s insurance.

The trustees have set Aug. 24 as the deadline for accepting statements of interest from architectural and engineering firms for designing a new administration building.

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Public officials and community leaders joined Penn National Gaming, Inc.k-casinodrawing Thursday for the groundbreaking of the $250 million Hollywood Casino-Toledo to open in the first half of 2012.

Local news anchor Jerry Anderson, who emceed the ceremony, called the event a “historic and wonderful occasion for Toledo, Rossford, Wood County, and the region.”

“There are those watershed moments that change a community and its landscape physically, and I think we are at one of those moments,” Anderson said.

The broadcaster then began introducing a wide range of local and state public officials. Toledo Mayor Mike Bell was first in line.

“In our city, a lot of people here underestimate what we can do,” Bell said. “It’s very easy for people to be critical of good things. I found out as mayor we have to change the culture of how we do things here. I think we can do that.

“What we have to do is bring it together, because if we don’t fix the ship here we are all going to sink. Penn National has given us a lifeboat here,” Bell continued.

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Until the right development deal is found for the Marina District, At-Large Toledo City Councilman Joe McNamara wants the site maintained “in a sustainable fashion.”

“We are very optimistic about the future of this project,” McNamara wrote in a memo to Mayor Mike Bell last month. “This beautiful new vista will one day be redeveloped into an amazing new neighborhood in the heart of Toledo. Waiting for the right proposal to present itself is the responsible course for this asset.”

The city, he continued, should explore short-term urban agriculture uses in the Marina District.

Urban agriculture could provide four major benefits to the Marina District:
• a productive use of city property;
• soil improvement;
• erosion prevention;
• beautification of riverfront property.

“We really need to do something to deal with soil erosion issues between the road and the river, and so some sort of short-term agricultural project makes sense. It also helps with beautification, which makes it more attractive should a developer come along to do a traditional development deal,” McNamara told The Press last week.

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One Call Now, an emergency notification system that the city contracted with last spring, has been annoying some residents with repeated calls.

Mayor Mike Seferian and some members of council have received several calls from residents complaining about the service, which allows the city to notify the public of emergencies or events.

“I was getting a lot of calls,” said Seferian at a council meeting last month. Council members Jerry Peach, Sandy Bihn and Terry Reeves also received several calls from irate residents about repeated calls from the service.

Seferian said he called Mike Scott, of One Call Now, repeatedly to try and get the system fixed.

“He was out of town, and his voice box was full. I think after 67 tries, he realized I’m pretty good at re-dialing. He did call me back then. I told him to get that thing shut off in the next 15 minutes, or we won’t have this program anymore. He said he couldn’t because he was out of town. I said, `You ought to be able to find someone to hit this thing with an axe or something, but shut it off.”’

Someone was finally able to disarm the system.

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For the last several years, Oregon officials have been discussing the possibility of constructing a new senior center at a site near the municipal complex on Seaman Road.

The current senior center on Bay Shore Road, a former sewage treatment facility, is outdated and too small.

At a council meeting Aug. 9, Mayor Mike Seferian questioned the availability of a $1 million grant from the Area Office on Aging. In fact, Seferian said he doesn’t know for sure if the agency ever had money available for a senior center in Oregon.

“There was always the belief there was $1 million, and that it could come here,” said Seferian. “It is still possible that somewhere around $1 million could come from the Area Office on Aging. It was rumored that there was money out there in a fund that they could get and bring to this area two to three years ago. And I think it is almost as possible now as it was then.”

The Area Office on Aging, said Seferian, “suggested it may be able to produce $1 million.”

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