WM Council considers changes to sidewalk ordinance


By Matt Clevenger

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WEST MILTON — Members of the West Milton Village Council are considering changes to the village’s regulations regarding sidewalk construction, alterations and maintenance.

Council members heard the first reading of an ordinance to amend the village’s current sidewalk ordinances during their regularly scheduled meeting held on Tuesday, March 12.

“It’s really just clarifying what our policies have always been,” Service Director Ben Herron said. “I think we have a responsibility to make it more clear.”

“We learned from our survey that approximately 25% of the village doesn’t have sidewalk,” Municipal Manager Jeff Sheridan said. “Without curb or gutter that makes it more likely for the street to deteriorate, because it allows moisture to get underneath the surface of the street and that’s what causes a lot of the deterioration.”

“The curbs are extremely important to try and keep in good repair,” Herron said. “It’s a very hard job; there’s a lot of curb out there in need of repair.”

The proposed ordinance would clarify current regulations, including the process for emergency repairs if needed. The village would be required to notify property owners in writing if repairs are needed, and when repairs must be completed. The municipal manager would also be authorized to have temporary repairs made or to barricade areas of sidewalk that prevent safe use by the public.

Property owners could protest non-emergency repairs or construction, by filing a written appeal with the village’s Board of Adjustments.

Bills for repairs made by the village would be payable within 30 days, and would include the costs of all labor and materials, plus a charge for administrative costs of $10 or 10% of construction costs, whichever is greater, not to exceed $25 for all bills, to be applied to the outstanding balance of any bills not paid by the due date.

Bills not paid after 30 days would be certified to the Miami County Auditor for an assessment against the abutting property.

In other business, council members also adopted a resolution awarding a $1,031,000 contract for construction of the Hayes Street water main replacement project to Finfrock Construction, and a $72,277 contract for micro-sealing and pavement markings on Calumet Road to Strawser Construction, of Columbus.

“This is another example of the village working cooperatively with another unit of government, in this case the township,” Sheridan said of the Calumet Road project. “I try to encourage any opportunity where we can work together with nearby communities; we should take advantage of those opportunities.”

Council members also adopted resolutions authorizing an agreement with Priority Power Management for electric and natural gas aggregation, authorizing the purchase of four sets of turn-out gear for the West Milton Fire Department at a cost of $15,992, and a 5% increase in the Municipal Manager’s salary to coincide with a similar increase that was previously approved for all municipal employees.

“I think it’s well deserved,” Council member Casey Metz said.

Council members also discussed a current vacancy on the village’s Planning Board, and the upcoming Solar Eclipse party planned for April 8.

“On April 8, we are having a party in the park,” council member Sarah Gregory said. “We want everybody there; it’s going to be a lot of fun.”

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