By Matt Clevenger
For Miami Valley Today
WEST MILTON — Members of the West Milton Village Council have appointed new council member Tim Dues, filling an empty seat left vacant since former council member Karen Grudich’s departure in January.
Dues was sworn in Tuesday, Feb.25, during a special session held before village council’s regularly scheduled workshop meeting. A formal swearing-in ceremony will be held later this month, during council’s monthly televised meeting on March 10.
“It’s something I’ve always wanted to do,” Dues said. “I’ve always been interested in local government. I wanted an opportunity to serve my hometown, and I’m excited to finally have the opportunity to do it.”
Village council members serve two-year terms, and are appointed through a vote by council following an extensive interview process.
“This was a tough decision,” Mayor Anthony Miller said. “We had a lot of discussions.”
“It’s always difficult,” Miller said. “It’s amazing to see the folks here in town who are committed to serving the town, and just the willingness to show up and give it a shot. I think that says a lot for everybody who put in a resume.”
In other business, council members also discussed possible changes to clarify language in the village’s RV/camper/utility trailer ordinance to allow for trailers or campers that are stored indoors.
The current ordinance prohibits any RV over 30 feet long from being stored on residential properties in the village. Several complaints have been filed regarding large campers or RVs stored indoors, but investigating the complaints could possibly require a search warrant if the vehicles are stored inside private buildings.
“It’s getting very ugly,” municipal manager Matt Kline said. “It’s going to be nearly impossible to administer this ordinance the way it is written. I have to see it; I have to see and verify that it is there for more than 72 hours.”
Council agreed to have alternative language prepared, to be discussed at their next meeting.
“When we were looking at this ordinance, this was brought to us because there were some really run-down, shabby-looking trailers just sitting around town,” Miller said. “The intent of this was not to say you’re not allowed to have trailers. To me, if it’s stored inside then it’s not an eyesore; we’ve achieved the intent that we were looking for initially.”
Council members also approved a resolution authorizing the city manager to proceed with an approximately $1 million loan forgiveness program offered through the Ohio EPA. The program, which functions much like a grant, will be used to cover part of the costs associated with extending village sewers to Ludlow Falls.