THPA speaks to MC Commissioners on opposition to load test


By Eamon Baird

[email protected]

TROY — Martin Stewart, of the Troy Historic Preservation Alliance (THPA) expressed displeasure about a required load test on the IOOF Building at the Miami County Commissioners meeting.

The THPA purchased the 112-118 W. Main St. building on Dec. 22, 2023. As part of the agreement, THPA has until April 30, 2024, to make repairs to stabilize the building.

Stewart, a THPA board member, addressed the commissioners at the meeting.

“This unneeded load test will cost our donors $50,000 and put a $1.3 million investment funded entirely by private donations at risk. No tax money is going into any of the work that you’re seeing,” Stewart said.

The city of Troy issued a press release on Thursday, March 21, addressing the load test requirement.

“[Chief Building Official Shawn] Winn determined that a load test is needed to comply with chapter 3405.2.1 of the Ohio Basic Building Code. The agreement includes language in section III(B)(3)(A) that specifically allows Winn to ‘add items to repair or replace portions of the list if he determines that such items are required to stabilize the building and lift adjunction order No. 36.’”

Commissioner Ted Mercer addressed Stewart’s concerns at the meeting.

“I understand why you’re asking the question, and quite frankly, I’d like to have an answer to that myself besides this legal opinion, but we can continue to look at this and see if there are other decisions that are made or other answers to this problem. I’d like to know what they are,” Mercer said.

“I think an important distinction is that we are stabilizing the building. We are not restoring the building. This building when we’re done will be stable, the street can be open, but it will in no way shape or form be ready for occupancy. Load tests typically have to do with occupants,” Stewart said.

Commissioner Wade Westfall thanked Stewart and the THPA for their efforts on the project.

“It’s amazing to the citizens that you have raised the amount of money that you have in a very short period of time. So, keep moving forward, and hopefully we’ll have good result here shortly,” Westfall said.

The commissioners also heard a special report from Joel Smith, Miami County EMA director, after the tornado that hit the county last week. Smith said the tornado damaged 30 properties in Miami County, including three that were completely destroyed. He added that FEMA will be out to do a damage report sometime next week.

“The same tornado started 25 miles into Indiana, so the entire path of the total tornado that hit us was 50-miles-long,” Smith said.

Smith added that 20 tornadoes have hit Miami County in the last decade.

The commissioners authorized the temporary suspension (effective March 18, 2024, to terminate in 180 days) of generation fees and the Ohio EPA fee ($4.75/ton) resulting from the tornado.

The commissioners also passed the following resolutions:

• To authorize and sign a contract with the Miami County Child Support Enforcement Agency (CSEA) and Miami County Juvenile Court to purchase services for the effective administration of the support enforcement program. The contract, effective Feb. 1, will run through Jan. 31, 2025. The federal reimbursement is $66,209.62, and the local share responsibility is $34,107.99, for a total contract cost of $100,317.61.

• To authorize and sign the attached one-year agreement with Artistic Inspirations LLC, of Tipp City, to provide marketing services for the Miami County Solid Waste District for $30,000. The contract term is effective April 26, 2024, through April 25, 2025.

The commissioners announced they will attend Pioneer Electric’s 88th Annual Meeting on Saturday, March 23, at 8:30 a.m. at Graham Elementary School in St. Paris.

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