The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

Two mainstays in Oak Harbor's local government recently attended their final village council meeting.

Mayor Bill Eberle, who was defeated in his quest for re-election, and councilman Jon Fickert, who resigned after serving in his position for 10 years, said goodbye after serving a combined 15 years.

Both men talked about what their experience serving has been like, why they chose to serve, and why they value the village so much.

“The village has done a lot for me. It’s given me a place to live. I love all the families, (and) I just wanted to give back," said Eberle, who moved from Port Clinton to Oak Harbor in 1987. "There's low crime, a 24-hour police force, (and) you're within driving distance, about 15-20 minutes, of everywhere you have to be. You don’t have the big-town atmosphere and it’s an excellent school system, and you don’t have to worry about your kids (when) sending them off to school."

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is taking its weather forecasting capabilities one step further — it is now at the forefront of ecological forecasting, too.

That includes forecasting harmful algal blooms in the western basin of Lake Erie, says Dr. Deborah Lee, who became director of the NOAA’s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL), based in Ann Arbor, Mich., about one year ago.

Dr. Lee says protecting the world’s freshwater supply has never been more important because invasive species and harmful algae blooms can affect the lake’s ecosystem and food chain, and not just because the toxic blue-green algae microcystis that blooms in late summer is poisonous to humans. She was speaking to over 50 guests at the University of Toledo’s Lake Erie Center on Bayshore Road, Oregon, as part of the LEC’s public lecture series.

The Office of the Ohio Consumers’ Counsel and an energy aggregation coalition are opposing a proposed rate plan settlement filed by FirstEnergy this month with state regulators.

The settlement outlines an eight-year rate provision included in a power purchase agreement with Ohio power plants, including the Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station, W.H. Sammis Plant in Stratton, Ohio, and a portion of the output of the Ohio Valley Electric Corp. in Gallipolis, Ohio and Madison, Ind. The Sammis and Ohio Valley plants are fueled by coal.

According to FirstEnergy, a typical residential customer using 750 kilowatt-hours of electricity per month could expect to pay about $3.25 more for the rate provision during the first full year of the plan. But the company estimates customers will save more than $560 million over the plan’s eight-year term as retail power prices increase.

Oregon City Council on Monday voted to keep Councilman Dennis Walendzak as council president.

Sandy Bihn and Steve Hornyak, newly elected members of council, also took their seats on council. Walendzak, 44, or Grand Bay Drive, was first elected to council in 2009. He was re-elected in 2011 and 2013. He is vice president of Environmental Management Services

“I appreciate you having the confidence in me to continue the presidency of council,” said Walendzak said to council. “As we just got done discussing in our finance committee meeting, I think we have a lot on our plate this year. There’s many projects that are going to be coming forward – a lot of decisions we have to make as a council that will improve the city of Oregon for the foreseeable future. I look forward to working with all of the council members.”

Once again the building that housed the former Millbury Elementary School appears to be headed for sale.

Jerry O’Reilly, who purchased the building at auction in 2008 from the Lake Board of Education for $45,100, said last week he’s been moving items to a larger building in downtown Toledo.

O’Reilly had operated an electronics store in the kitchen area of a newer section of the building but said he’s grown frustrated with zoning disputes with the Village of Millbury and has decided to vacate the building.

Meanwhile, a non-profit organization formed in 1996 to preserve the building after the school board decided to consolidate district operations on the Lemoyne Road campus, has filed a notice with the Ohio Secretary of State to dissolve.

Summer Olympics

Are you watching the Summer Olympics in Rio?
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