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Akron-Peninsula Road project on track

4/5/2012 - West Side Leader
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By Kathleen Folkerth

DOWNTOWN AKRON — Summit County Council adopted a resolution at its April 2 meeting that will allow improvements on Akron-Peninsula Road to take place this year.

The resolution will allow the county to execute a Local Public Agency agreement with the Ohio Department of Transportation for shoulder improvements on the road in Boston Township. Joe Paradise of the Summit County Engineer’s Office said the project is 100 percent federally funded through a U.S. Department of the Interior grant. The project cost is $705,000.

Also Monday, Council adopted a resolution allowing the executive’s office to execute an intergovernmental agreement with the city of Barberton for printing services.

Jason Dodson, chief of staff for the County Executive’s office, said Barberton Mayor Bill Judge, who had worked in the county’s office of Finance and Budget, asked about using the county’s printing services after he took office in January.

“This is a revenue source from our end,” Dodson said. “We don’t anticipate any hiring of additional staff.”

Councilman Nick Kostandaras (D-District 1) asked if there’s the chance other local governments could consider using the county for their printing needs.

“We wanted to make sure we had this in place,” Dodson said of the Barberton agreement. “There is a point at which we’d need to bring on an additional staff person.”

Also during the meeting, Council adopted by a vote of 10-1 a resolution to remove some lower-level positions from the county’s hiring freeze. Councilman Bill Roemer (R-at large) voted against the resolution.

County officials said the two-dozen job titles included in the exemption are mostly lower paying jobs. The decision to exempt the positions from the hiring freeze came after representatives from several offices repeatedly were coming to Council for exemptions to the freeze to hire from outside the county, as there were often few or no interested applicants in the county’s system. Some of the jobs are part-time.

The resolution had been amended so that it would affect positions that were only vacated after the resolution’s adoption or in the three months prior to its adoption.

In other business, Council adopted a resolution to allow the Internal Audit Committee to hire a full-time deputy director and a full-time internal auditor to replace two staff members that recently resigned.

At the meeting’s end, County Executive Russ Pry said the county received a certificate from FirstEnergy for taking part in its energy-efficiency program. The county also will receive a check in the amount of about $73,000 for the county’s efforts, he added.

County Council will next meet April 9 at 4:30 p.m. for committee meetings in Council Chambers on the seventh floor of the Ohio Building, 175 S. Main St.

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