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County Council OKs OVI task force funding

10/4/2012 - South Side Leader
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By Kathleen Folkerth

DOWNTOWN AKRON — Summit County Council approved several public safety grant requests on first reading at its Oct. 1 meeting.

Among the items that got the OK was a resolution regarding a grant of $208,450 in federal funds for operating the countywide OVI task force for the next year. The task force, overseen by the Summit County Sheriff’s Office, includes the Springfield Township Police Department.

Inspector Bill Holland, of the Sheriff’s Office, said the grant money helps pay overtime costs for conducting sobriety checkpoints throughout the county. Receipt of the funding stipulates that the county must operate a certain number of checkpoints each year, he said.

Council also adopted a resolution allowing a High Visibility Enforcement Overtime grant from the Ohio Department of Public Safety in the amount of $78,201. Holland said that funding would provide funds for speed enforcement overtime, particularly in the communities of Green and Coventry.

Also Monday, Council unanimously voted to endorse the Summit County Children Services (SCCS) renewal levy, Issue No. 73 on the Nov. 8 General Election ballot.

SCCS Executive Director John Saros appeared before Council and stressed the levy is not a new tax.

He also told Council the agency currently has 524 children in custody, which is about half the number from a decade ago.

“What we’ve tried to do is focus on being as creative and innovative as possible,” Saros said.

[For more information on the SCCS levy, see related story on Page 1.]

On the late filing agenda but pulled before the meeting was a resolution of support for the Akron Public Schools (APS) levy, Issue No. 61.

After the meeting, Council President Jerry Feeman (D-District 6) said APS officials had asked earlier in the day if the levy could get Council’s support, so he drafted the resolution. Before the meeting, however, he reconsidered because several other school districts also have levies on the ballot.

Feeman said instead he encouraged Council members to express their support for the APS levy through individual endorsements.

Also Monday, Council adopted several resolutions regarding contracts for employee insurance, including a new plan for prescriptions with Medical Mutual.

Council also adopted a resolution confirming a contract with AE Security Group for security upgrades at the Ohio Building, where most county offices are located. The contract, not to exceed $66,300, will allow the addition of secure access points at 10 places in the building.

County Council will not meet Oct. 8 because of the Columbus Day holiday. Council will meet for committee meetings Oct. 15 at 4:30 p.m. in Council Chambers on the seventh floor of the Ohio Building, 175 S. Main St.

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