The Press Newspaper
In an effort to cut costs, Walbridge is offering non-residents the use of its pool this summer at a discounted fee to help cover costs to operate the pool.
Walbridge Mayor Dan Wilczynski wrote letters to the mayors of Northwood, Millbury, Rossford, and the president of the board of trustees in Lake Township to inform them that he would open up the membership and daily admission to the village pool to neighboring towns.
“If we can double our membership and daily admission fees, we can operate at a net zero cost,” he said in the letter.
“In rethinking how we all operate and in hopes of moving other items of each of our operations to a more regional approach, we would like to offer several options to you and your councils for your collective support,” he continued. “With your support, we will make this offer available to your residents in the same manner that we do with the Walbridge residents.”
Wilczynski offers two options: Residents from neighboring communities would only have to pay $125 for the season or $2 per day if their local government contributes $2,000 to the pool’s operating budget; residents from neighboring communities would pay $175 per season or $3 per day admission without their government’s $2,000 contribution. The village usually charges non-residents $250 per season or $5 per day to use the pool, which is located near Meadow Lane.
It is not every day that a groundbreaking for a new commercial building in Pemberville occurs.
Wednesday morning at 8 a.m., village representatives and business owners celebrated the groundbreaking of the Baker Building being constructed just inside the village limit at 531 East Front Street.
Attending the groundbreaking were Mayor James Opelt, Council President Gordon Bowman, the buildings’ owners, Lance and Darla Baker, and project foreman Mark Cairl from Midwest Construction Inc.
“Because of these bad economic times, we’re very happy that this is happening,” Mayor Opelt said.
The 2,250 square feet Baker Building, located just east of the railroads tracks off State Route 105 just before one leaves Pemberville heading towards Woodville, will house up to four businesses.
The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) will delay construction of the Wales Road overpass for one year so that BP Refinery can build an electric substation that would replace overhead wires near the site.
The $14 million project, which was going to be bid this December, with construction slated next year, will now have to wait until 2012, Northwood Administrator Pat Bacon told city council at a meeting April 1.
Bacon said she was contacted by Mike Ligibel, ODOT’s district two administrator, last month to inform her of the problem.
“Mike said, `Pat, we have a problem.’ When ODOT says we have a problem, it’s usually pretty major,” said Bacon.
FirstEnergy has major lines at Wales Road that feed electricity to the BP refinery, said Bacon. To relocate these lines would require a shutdown of the plant, which would cost ODOT $1.5 million.
“And that’s a really big deal,” said Bacon. “ODOT would be responsible to pay the $1.5 million because the problem is being created by the project, so therefore that would add to the cost of the project. It would come from taxpayers’ money.”
FirstEnergy’s Bayshore power plant will be required to install technology to reduce fish kills at the plant’s intake system.
“Ohio EPA has decided, for the first time, FirstEnergy will be required to install technology that is designed to minimize fish mortality,” said Dina Pierce, Ohio EPA’s northwest district coordinator.
The plant will install devices called “reverse louvers,” she said.
“Once those are in place, FirstEnergy will be required to study the effectiveness of the devices,” said Pierce. “If the study proves the technology effective, then the company will have to permanently install the devices. If the study shows the technology is not effective, then Ohio EPA will require the company to pursue another solution to the fish impingement and entrainment problem.”
The fish impingement and entrainment issue is particularly important at this location near where the Maumee River drains into the Maumee Bay because it is a very productive fish spawning area, according to Pierce.
FirstEnergy conducted detailed studies on I&E and on the thermal plume created by heated water discharged into the Maumee Bay from the plant’s cooling system. Ohio EPA asked an independent environmental engineering firm, Tetra Tech, to examine FirstEnergy’s studies and the technologies available to reduce the Bayshore intake system’s impact on fish and determine which ones would work best at the plant. Ohio EPA also held a public information meeting in Oregon in March, 2009 to review the studies and get feedback from the public.
Lake Township trustees are hoping a new fiber-optic telephone and Internet system for the administration building on Cummings Road will not only cut costs and improve service but also give a boost to economic development.
The trustees Tuesday approved a 3-year contract with Buckeye Telesystems for $1,000 a month for the new system, which will expand the number of available phone lines at the administration building to 25 from the current 14.
Phone numbers for township offices won’t change but the trustees said the new system will streamline service, which now is a “patchwork” of phone networks by three providers, AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint.
The township last month paid about $2,500 for phone and Internet service, said Melanie Bowen, who chairs the board of trustees, adding the new system is “state-of-the-art.”
Three nearby businesses, Tri-State Expedited Services, Inc., Nagle Companies, and Service Spring Corp., have indicated they would also purchase service from the new system and any business that locates in a Joint Economic Development District that was established on the grounds of Metcalf Field will also be able to purchase the service, said Richard Welling, a trustee.
He said the fiber-optic system is part of the township’s on-going effort to make the area more attractive to business and create jobs.
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