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Richfield trustees move forward with plans for new office

10/10/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Jeff Gorman

The Richfield Township Board of Trustees continued to take steps toward the construction of a new office building at the board’s Oct. 3 meeting.

The township plans to construct the building on the Boston Mills Road property that also includes its service garage.

Administrative Assistant Debbie Bluso Rogers told the trustees that since natural gas exists on the property, it should be used to heat the building. The original plan was to use geothermal heat.

“Geothermal would be three times more expensive,” she said. “It just doesn’t make sense.”

The trustees plan to meet with architect Rodwell King to examine a model of the building and to choose paint colors.

Drawings may be completed in time for the Oct. 17 meeting, so the township can begin soliciting bids for a general contractor, Rogers said.

Also during the meeting, the trustees approved a proposed lease with Richfield Village for the building they currently occupy behind the fire station on West Streetsboro Road.

Before approving the lease, trustees proposed the removal of language that would allow Richfield Village to meter the building’s water and sewer usage at any time.

In other news:

  • Fire Chief Jason Mihalek said the Insurance Service Office (ISO) has been in Richfield compiling data on water supplies, hydrants and fire inspection.

Mihalek explained the ISO uses this information to assess his department’s firefighting capability in order to calculate insurance rates for business and residential properties.

The fire chief also credited Lt. Robert Jones and firefighters Kevin Urban, Dan Dopslaf, Chris Najsztup and Mark Tibbs for their work on a recent medical emergency.

“They found a patient in full cardiac arrest with no pulse or breathing and were able to get the patient back to spontaneous breathing,” Mihalek said.

  • Police Chief Keith Morgan said Richfield is now providing dispatch services for fire and EMS to Boston Heights. The Valley Fire District signed a contract to provide fire and EMS services to Boston Heights, and Richfield handles dispatch for Valley Fire.
  • Zoning Inspector Laurie Pinney reported an increase in zoning certificates in 2013, including eight new residents.

“I hope this means we’re seeing a turnaround in the market, with people being able to build new residences and move old ones in a sale,” she said.

Pinney also said the Zoning Commission and Board of Zoning Appeals have openings for new members. The next Zoning Commission meeting is scheduled for Oct. 24 at 6:30 p.m.

In addition, Pinney said she will attend a meeting on the proposed extension of Columbia Road in the Light Industrial/Office district. A concrete company based there plans to install the road, and the township would maintain it after it becomes accepted as a dedicated road, she said.

Pinney also reported a Medina Line Road property owner received an unsafe building order from the county and expressed the intention to bring the property into compliance. She said she is also dealing with zoning violations on Boston, Black and Streetsboro roads.

  • Township Administrator Linda Bowmer said the final week of brush chipping is this week, starting Oct. 7. She said the Road Department will try to get a head start since it will be losing a member near that date. Bowmer said the township hopes to hire a new road crew member to start in early November.

Bowmer also reported she received an email from the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District reporting the 8th District Court of Appeals has ruled against its fee to fund the Stormwater Management Program.

While Richfield Township was dropped as a party to a lawsuit challenging the fee, some Richfield Village residents were being assessed the fees, Bowmer said. Trustee David Wyatt said he wouldn’t be surprised to see the case move on to the Ohio Supreme Court.

The next Richfield Township trustees’ meeting is scheduled for Oct. 17 at 6:30 p.m. at the township offices, located behind the fire station on West Streetsboro Road.

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