BELMONT — Belmont Village Council voted at the Oct. 4 meeting to appoint Michael Grob as this year's non-voting council member, seconded by Grant Williams. Grob is a junior at Union Local High School and discussed what he is interested in doing after school. Mayor Sobel said Grob has helped at many of the village events and is a great worker. Solicitor TJ Schultz swore Grob in as a non-voting council member.
Bev Yoe made a motion to appoint James Saksa to fill the vacated seat on the Board of Public Affairs, seconded by Dan Scott. Motion passed. Dan Scott made a motion to accept Richard Funkhouser's resignation as the water superintendent, seconded by Cathy Caretti. Motion passed. Grant Williams made a motion to hire Richard Funkhouser as the village's water superintendent but as an independent contractor non-employee being paid $325 per month, seconded by Cathy Caretti. Motion passed.
Fiscal Officer Burkhead informed council that Belmont will receive $26,300 local government monies next year. Rick informed council that the OPWC Grant we applied for scored a 385. Burkhead said this is a very nice score for an application. The county will hold a meeting to add additional points to four projects sometime in October. Dan Scott made a motion to hire Daniel Williams for an EMT position, seconded by Grant Williams. Motion passed. Rick and Kenny both discussed the proposed water rate ordinance. Rick stated that the billing will change in that residents will be billed for what they use rather than having a minimum 2000 gallons as the billing is done now. Also the increments for the meters being read will be rounded to the nearest ten gallons which will eliminate big fluctuations in water bills as long as people use a consistent amount of water. Currently, the bills are rounded up to the next thousand gallons. He said the proposed water schedule would move the debt service amounts out of the water and sewer rates where it is calculated now, and be put into a debt service charge which will be an equal amount for all residents and will be a flat fee per month. He said the proposed rates are as follows: $0.075 per ten gallons for water, $0.115 per ten gallons of sewer, and a flat debt service charge of $20 per month. Kenny, Mayor Sobel, and Council discussed the water rates and structure. Grant Williams made a motion to declare tonight the first reading of Ordinance 2018-9, seconded by Dan Scott. Motion passed. Mayor Sobel thanked the county commissioners for waiving their portion of the local government funding. Mayor Sobel said this a major help to all of the local communities in the county.
Kaye Hall said there were seven fire called and 31 squad calls of which 17 were billable and there were six transports. Hall said the trailer has been delivered. The boat was damaged when responding to the drowning at BarkCamp. Kaye said 911 is purchasing new pagers for the fire department. Kaye stated that two new members are going through fire training. Kaye stated that the fire department has been looking at purchasing a new fire truck as it is going to cost a lot of money to refurbish the old truck. Kaye stated that the department is also looking at purchasing a new squad. Kaye said the fire department has talked about building a new firehouse on the school property. Kaye said the fire department needs a new electric cot which costs $19,625 and new heart monitors are needed which cost $22,000. Kaye stated that she has filed for a grant for these two items. Kaye said the Physio is offering a zero percent interest loan to purchase these two items. Burkhead suggested that we wait to purchase these items until we see if the department is awarded the grant that Kaye has applied for. Shaun asked if we should wait and see how long the zero percent interest is good for. Dan Scott stated that he hopes that we get the grants that Kaye has applied for. Shaun asked if we purchase a set now and if we get the grant, can we purchase a second set for backups. Kaye stated that we could. Kaye stated that she is applying for a fire truck through a FEMA grant. Shaun Bruce made a motion to purchase the cot and the monitors, seconded by Grant Williams. Motion passed.
Water Board President Kenny Davis said they had a leak in the sewer system where storm water was leaking into the sanitary sewer. Davis said they had over 100,000 gallons being processed when we found the issue. Davis said this will cost the village due to Belmont paying Belmont County for sewer treatment. Davis said the issue has been fixed. Davis said they are actively looking for any other issues and correcting them. Davis said he is asking TJ to draft something that will ask the residents with clay tile in their basement floors, to replace them with plastic pipe. Davis said some of these basement issues are also leaking into the sanitary sewer system. He said the water department has been profiling some residents water usage to find some issues. A couple leaky toilets have been located. Kenny stated that in mid October, the water tank will be sand blasted on the inside and out and painted with an epoxy that should last for 20 years. Burkhead said the money from the issuance of bonds has been deposited into our account and that the first half payment for the project will be made. Kenny stated that he would like to have a man door installed in the basement of the gym by the street garage entrance. Kenny stated that it will cost around $2,000 to do this. Shaun Bruce made a motion to approve the project up to $2,000, seconded by Dan Scott. Motion passed.
Mayor Sobel said there has been an information center put up beside the post office. Mayor Sobel said the prison donated the materials, and the labor to construct and paint it as well as install it. Mayor Sobel stated that the Warden was there when it was put into service. Mayor Sobel thanked him and the prison for their donation to Belmont. Mayor Sobel said the Land Bank is still working on ideas on how to proceed with the Belmont School abatement and demolition. Mayor Sobel stated that the Land Bank suggested that we put a fence up around the school citing liability issues. Mayor Sobel stated that the estimate for a fence is $2,800 for one year rental, installation, and removal. Solicitor TJ Schultz also recommended that this be done. Cathy Caretti made a motion to approve the fence rental, seconded by Dan Scott. Motion passed.
PK Wilkinson said there was one burial last month. Wilkinson said they no longer have a person to weed eat the cemetery which is a major task. Mayor Sobel said the cemetery has been mowed 17 times. Wilkinson said they are looking for a third trustee for the cemetery board. PK asked us to advertise for a third member. Mayor Sobel said he needs a written resignation for the person who is quitting the cemetery board.