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Richfield Village Council agrees to purchase pumper

5/15/2014 - West Side Leader
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By Jeff Gorman

Two weeks after voting against purchasing a pumper truck for the Richfield Village Fire Department, Village Council reversed course and approved the purchase May 6.

Councilman James Kahoe said Council had voted against the purchase after receiving only one bid, from Pierce Manufacturing Inc., for $563,542. Then, Council reached out to other companies to discuss why they didn’t submit bids, Kahoe said.

Also, Council Vice President Andy Ellis said the Safety and Finance Committees met with Fire Chief Jason Mihalek and Assistant Chief Phil McLean to discuss the pumper.

“The meeting lasted over an hour and a half, but it was time well spent,” he said.

After approving the pumper, Council also approved the purchases of a fire lifting bag and control package ($4,100), equipment for the pumper ($46,268) and vehicle radios and chargers ($6,414).

In other news:

  • Mayor Bobbie Beshara said the annual Richfield Night at the Akron RubberDucks baseball game is July 18. Tickets are available at Town Hall for $6.
    Also, the mayor said a drawing will determine which Richfield resident will throw out the ceremonial first pitch.
    Beshara also stated horses are not allowed on the Carter-Pedigo Hiking Trails or trails in the Eastwood Preserve and Richfield Woods Park.
  • Police Chief Keith Morgan reported the Ohio Department of Public Safety is offering a free smartphone application that provides connection to a 9-1-1 dispatcher and real-time traffic reports.
  • McLean reported the Fire Department staged a mock accident drill at Revere High School to illustrate the dangers of drinking and driving.
    The Bath Fire Department and the University Hospitals MedEvac also participated in the drill, which included extrication of student “victims” from wrecked vehicles in front of the school.
  • Service Director Melanie Baker said the three-year project to improve Interstate 271 will include the addition of the word “Richfield” to the Broadview Road bridge heading north and the state Route 303 bridge heading south. There will be no cost to the village, Baker said.
  • Recreation Director Ruth Jocek said residents brought 4,000 pounds of paper to be shredded and 2,000 pounds of computer equipment to be recycled at the Project Pride Cleanup event April 26.
    Kahoe added that on the same day, residents took home 2,800 trees in the annual Arbor Day tree giveaway.
    “The weather cooperated, and it was an enjoyable day,” he said.
  • Council introduced legislation that will allow the village to join the township in a joint park and recreation district. Its purpose would be to help with the acquisition and management of the Crowell/Hilaka Girl Scout Camp.
    The Western Reserve Land Conservancy and the Friends of Crowell/Hilaka have been working with the village and township on ideas for the property, which includes more than 300 acres. Council did not vote on the resolution.
  • Council voted in favor of raising its competitive bidding threshold for village expenditures from $25,000 to $50,000.
  • Beshara said a “very big event” called the 3095 Freedom Ride will take place on May 17 at 12:30 p.m. The mayor said 2,000 to 3,000 motorcycle riders will gather at Whitey’s before riding to the Ohio Veterans Memorial Park in Clinton.
  • Pat Healy, of Hawkins Road, said rather than planning for more parking spaces in the center of town, the village government should concentrate on the buildings in that area.
    “All three buildings need maintenance and improvements,” she said. “I think we’re protecting the wrong thing.”
    Council President Rick Hudak replied, “It’s kind of a give and take. We’re trying to figure out how to preserve green space and provide reasonable parking.”
    Also, Hudak said the Finance Committee will have a work session May 27 at 6 p.m. in the meeting room near the mayor’s office.

The next Richfield Village Council meeting is scheduled for May 20 at 8 p.m. at Town Hall, 4410 W. Streetsboro Road. A public hearing will take place at 7:45 p.m. regarding a proposed change to the zoning code that would eliminate use variances.

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