|Purple Heart Flag, plaque to hang in Legion|
|Wednesday, May 22, 2013 12:21 AM|
BY STEPHANIE GROVES
FORT JENNINGS — Village council’s agenda was extensive on Tuesday night. Among the topics up for discussion were the village’s Purple Heart designation, Second Street reconstruction, park construction, street and park tree removal and street crack-filling and sealant.
Mayor Jim Smith discussed with council members a proposal to hang the Purple Heart Flag and plaque at the American Legion Post. He said he did not want to put the flag outside long term, but rather fly it during special occasions; Aug. 7, Purple Heart Day; on Aug. 17, the official declaration of the Purple Heart Village; and perhaps display it at the monument.
“The people who will appreciate it the most are the people who go to the Legion,” Smith explained.
Another idea is to have a Purple Heart recipient carry the flag into the church during the festival for the Veterans Mass.
Additionally, council proposed “Purple Heart” signage at the entrance ways of the village.
The Police Committee & Officers’ Report included: a house burglary that Van Wert police assisted with; feral cat complaints; and a decrease in cars being broken into. Police Chief Ethel Vaughn reported that Fort Jennings students’ last day will be today and she will be on patrol to make sure the kids are behaving.
During the maintenance report, council discussed complaints surrounding the abandoned house on First Street, which the bank has walked away from. Smith said attorney Gary Lammers has all the information to complete the legal actions needed so that the county can add it to their list of properties to demolish. The village is currently mowing the property, which now needs an application of Roundup to kill off the weeds. Also, neighbor kids are playing in and leaving toys in the yard, which have to be picked up and removed before mowing.
“It’ll cost [the bank] more to deal with it than to forgive the loan,” Smith said. “I’ll reach out to Gary again.”
Councilman Duane Hoersten gave the Park Board Meeting report, which detailed a structural problem with one of the shelterhouses the Eagle Scouts were to reshingle. Recently, when Chad Wurst was on top of the shelterhouse inspecting the shingles, the structure shifted under his weight. Reports indicate that three rafters are broken and there were no angle braces.
“John VonSossan has a good plan,” Smith said. “We can take care of it ourselves; shore it up with bracing.”
During April’s council meeting, Smith addressed upcoming road maintenance work by showing council members a color-coded plan of the village’s streets. The plan identified streets that have not been sealed in 5-7 years. Council weighed in on Elm, Oak, John Kennedy Dr. and High Street and determined they are in really bad shape. Council member Walt Pitney indicated Second Street was in really bad shape. The project’s paperwork will be ready at the bank this Monday. The bank is taking care of a portion of the cost of the project.
Smith said the project will be put out for bid in June and the contract will be awarded until after July 1.
“This should take one week to 10 days,“ Smith detailed.
In addition, council was looking at the conditions of many of the village’s streets and requested an estimate for crack-filling and pavement-sealing. The estimate included three areas — two on Second Street and one on Main Street — to be treated with infrared, which will cost $610. The estimate also included sealing nine streets, including; High, Liberty, Martin, Elm and Oak. Council discussed the use of the sealant Gem Seal, a product the village has used previously, and a new product called Poly Tar, which is reported to be a superior product with a price tag of close to $1,589 more than the Gem Seal. Council approved the use of the Poly Tar and infrared work.
“Every two years, we want to consider sealing cracks,” Smith said. “The vast majority of areas look good. Cracks will be filled first and then Poly Tar will seal them.”
The other grant project in the works is the park restroom facility. In April, Park Board President Jerry Siefker reported excavation had been started but the work was on hold since the ground was too soft from all the rain. Currently, work has resumed and will not be completed in time for the festival.
In March, council approved Our Tree Service to remove five trees in the village for $1,470 and no more than $3,000 to remove four Ash trees in Fort Jennings Park. Village Maintenance Supervisor Ted Wrasman reported that tree removal could begin today and the crew will be looking for dry work, not in the mud. With the park grounds still heavily saturated with water, Smith thought the crew should start with the trees they can reach from the asphalt.
“The state grant team got all of the trees down,” Smith reported. “When advancing to the dike area, the state told them to stop.”
Smith approved paying Turf Concepts for the removal of an additional four Ash trees, which will cost the village $250. The Lion’s Club will also chip in $250 to cut down and remove a large Elm tree.