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Bath trustees get review of year from department heads

2/7/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Pam Lifke

The Bath Township Board of Trustees heard year-in-review presentations from all department heads during the Feb. 4 meeting.

Police Chief Michael McNeely, noting that Bath is a very low crime area, reported the department answered 6,237 calls for service. The department investigated one rape, two robberies, one aggravated assault, 20 burglaries, 149 thefts and 579 traffic crashes.

McNeely noted that many of the thefts were from the Montrose commercial area, and he outlined the creation of the Montrose Retail Theft Alert Network, which was implemented to improve communication among loss-prevention officers when an incident occurs in the area.

Fire Chief Walter Hower said his first year as chief was a busy one. The department answered 1,336 total calls between the two fire stations. Of those, more than 900 were for emergency medical services and 409 were for fire. The department also put into service three new vehicles, a water tender, a medic unit and a vehicle for the fire chief, Hower said.

Interim Service Director and Parks Director Mike Rorar estimated there were more than 110,000 visitors to Bath parks in 2012, with 2,018 reservations made for athletic fields and pavilions. He also outlined improvements to the parks, including eradication of invasive plant species and restoration of wetlands at the Bath Nature Preserve.

Zoning Inspector William Funk reported zoning permits rebounded slightly in 2012, with 131 permits issued. They included 16 new home permits, 34 residential additions, 30 accessory structures, two commercial additions and two subdivisions.

Funk also reported the Zoning Commission is nearly finished with a rewrite of the township zoning resolution, and he said he expects to have the revised resolution ready for review by trustees early this year.

Interim Township Administrator William Snow noted several long-time township employees retired in 2012. They included Snow, Service Director Bob Wilson, Administrative Assistant Helen Humphrys, Police Officer Scott Barb, firefighter/paramedic Cynthia Norris and Jim Miller, who worked in the Service Department. Others who retired have been rehired as part-time employees, he said.

Snow reported the township was in a “pretty good position” financially, despite a decrease of $470,000 in revenue due to reduced property taxes and a reduction in state assistance to local governments. The largest portion of the township’s $10.4 million income is from property taxes, Snow said. The largest township expenditures are for the Fire Department, at $2.28 million; the Police Department, at $2.92 million; and the Road Department, at $1.99 million, he reported

In other business, trustees:

• approved awarding a one-year $18,450 bid for preventive maintenance and service of township heating and cooling systems to Gardiner Trane Co.;

• accepted the 2012 highway mileage certification of 62.465 miles of roadway from the Summit County Engineer’s Office;

• received a 60-day notice, as required by the Ohio Revised Code, that retired police and fire employee Kevin Hylbert will seek to be rehired as a part-time police officer; and

• appointed township resident Leslie Pavelka to the trustees’ Advisory Council, effective Feb. 4. She will replace Susan Lyons, who resigned her position.

Upcoming events include:

√ Chillin’ on the Hill at the Bath Nature Preserve, Feb. 10 from noon to 3 p.m.; and

√ State of the Parks presentation at The University of Akron Field Station at the Bath Nature Preserve, March 21 at 7 p.m.

The board’s next regular meeting will be Feb. 19 at 4 p.m. in the trustees’ meeting room of the Bath Administration Building, 3864 W. Bath Road. The meeting is delayed one day because of Presidents’ Day.

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