City of Piqua hires new assistant city manager


PIQUA — Piqua City Manager Paul Oberdorfer announced at the Piqua City Commission meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 13, that Amy Welker will be promoted to assistant city manager in the upcoming weeks from her current position of director of environmental and recreation services with the city.

“We’re really excited,” said Oberdorfer, while discussing Welker’s responsibilities which will “give (Oberdorfer) more time to do other things.”

One resolution the commission approved was the purchase of land on Nicklin Avenue and West High Street from the Piqua City School District. The city plans to sell the land to the Piqua Improvement Corporation in order to facilitate redevelopment on the properties. The city will purchase the land for $300,000, according to the resolution.

Another resolution authorized a project agreement with the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) for the Mia-Looney Road resurfacing project. The agreement allows the city to stay in compliance since the project utilizes partial funds from the federal highway funds, according to Chris Schmiesing, community and economic development director. Schmiesing also said that the project is expected to be accomplished in summer of 2024.

Commissioner Kazy Hinds commented, “We have needed this for a long time.”

Then, the commissioners approved a contract with the fraternal order of police for a three-year contract. The contract provides wages and responsibilities for the Piqua police department.

Another resolution repealed a previous resolution for a purchase of Dell hardware and other equipment and authorized a new resolution to reflect an increase in cost for a new total not to exceed $123,000 from a previous total of $120,000.

The next resolution authorized an agreement and payment to the Springcreek Township Board of Township Trustees for a total not to exceed $326,000 due to the annexation of land parcels from the township into the city.

The commission also authorized the usage of $76,698 from the 2022 CHIP Program to make “necessary home improvement” to a property on the 700 block of Cottage Avenue. According to Schmiesing, “the project is a rehabilitation project.” He went on to describe what a rehabilitation project entails which allows for any work on the property that needs done to be accomplished.

Frank Patrizio was contracted as the city’s law director for 2023 for a cost of $123,600. The resolution also authorized McCulloch, Felger, Fite, and Gutmann Co. LPA to provide legal counsel services. Vice Mayor Kris Lee recused himself from voting due to personal conflicts.

Then, the commission approved a resolution authorize the use of an employment service through the banquet coordinator for the Fort Piqua Plaza Banquet Center to hire any staff needed for events. The cost of the service was $58,000, which was $8,000 over the budgeted amount.

The power system department was approved to purchase a bucket truck with 67,305 miles which is expected to be received in 2025 for a cost that is budgeted to be $300,000.

The 2023 calendar of meetings for the commission was established.

Several resolutions and ordinances were approved which allowed for the financial department to perform necessary temporary loans and transfers between funds, including an emergency amended ordinance which was approved to waive the three-reading rule.

The commission also authorized amendments to chapter 33 in the Piqua code which reflects changes to employee wages in order to adjust to changes in the cost of living and the state minimum wages.

The commission was asked and approved to continue to table the ordinance involving repealing chapter 33 and enacting a new chapter 33 until union negotiations are finished, according to Catherine Bogan, human resources director.

Ed Krieger, power system director, provided an update on the launch of SmartHub, the city’s new web payment portal and mobile app. According to Krieger, about 1,283 accounts have been created with some of those accounts utilizing a paperless option. The first billing was scheduled and was in the process of being sent out during the meeting. Krieger wanted to remind residents that citizens who pay after the due date will not be charged late fees.

Commissioner Chirs Grissom commented, “I think it’s working pretty seamlessly.”

The next meeting will be held Jan. 3, 2023.

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