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Council approves emergency legislation

November 7, 2012
By DAVE GOSSETT - Staff writer ( , The Herald-Star

STEUBENVILLE - City Council approved emergency legislation Tuesday night to authorize the city manager to waive formal bidding requirements and sign a contract with Buckeye Pumps for emergency repairs at the Bryden Road lift station.

The project cannot exceed $60,000 in total costs.

"There are two pumps at that lift station but only one works. The electrical system is a travesty. If the working pump goes out we are at risk of pumping sewage into a nearby creek. And the lift station has become a danger for our line crew working on the equipment," sewer department Assistant Superintendent Chuck Murphy told council members last week.

Council also heard and approved the third reading of an ordinance authorizing the payment of $8,250 to Attorney Joseph M. Corabi for negotiating an oil and gas lease of behalf of the city.

Council met as a whole prior to the regular meeting for an update report from Code Enforcement Officer Shawn Scott.

"Maintenance and Repair Superintendent Bob Baird and I attended an Ohio Environment Protection Agency meeting in Columbus to learn about available grants for the city. This year the city qualified for $8,000 for tire clean-up efforts. We know there are a lot of tires in the community so we will hold a tire collection effort from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Fort Steuben Mall near the Sears Automotive Center for city residents to drop off auto and small truck tires," explained Scott.

"We will be taking the tires to the Lasting Mulch Co. on North Fifth Street and this collection won't cost the city any money," added Scott.

"We hope to be able to use that grant money for a spring tire collection and hopefully a third tire collection campaign next summer," he said.

"I am also looking at a litter clean-up and litter prevention campaign in the near future. I am also looking at our enforcement. I am looking at grants for the enforcement against illegal dump sites in the city," Scott explained.

Third Ward Councilman Greg Metcalf said he has seen several dilapidated garages in LaBelle alleys with no doors.

"Trash is thrown into the garages and it becomes a perpetual problem. If the dilapidated garages are torn down the concrete pad could be used for parking. I would like to see a fall large bulk item pickup like we used to have in past years," said Metcalf.

"We need to take the leadership role in this effort," cited Mayor Domenick Mucci. "We need an educational program for our school system to build up pride in our community."

Second Ward Councilman Rick Perkins suggested a concentrated neighborhood enforcement.

"Maybe we need to take a day, pick two blocks on LaBelle and issue a warning. Then go through those two blocks and look for violations. After you finish those two blocks, your team could move on to the next two blocks. It would send a message to all violators," remarked Perkins.

"This is a team effort. We have landlords, Realtors and banks. We can ask City Manager Cathy Davison to contact them to see what we can do about dilapidated properties. And I would like to see the court make violators to live in the neighborhoods and houses that they won't clean up," urged 1st Ward Councilman Gerald DiLoreto.

"I agree with Councilman Perkins. The answer is to make violators personally responsible for their mess," said Councilman at large Kenny Davis.

In other business, Mucci appealed to all political campaigns to remove their signs from public right-of-way areas as well as private properties as soon as possible.

"The law calls for the signs to be removed within 10 days of the election, but I hope the signs are gone within the next day or two. And I would like to ask the appropriate city departments to notify all candidates in future elections of city ordinances governing the size of political signs and where they can be placed," requested Mucci.

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