Zoar Council is a vote short on fire contract

Zoar Council is a vote short on fire contract

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Zoar Council held a vote at its Nov. 9 meeting to approve a fire contract with Bolivar Fire Department and Lawrence Township. Councilwoman Judy Meiser, who has ties to the Zoar Volunteer Fire Department, abstained, and with the absence of Joe Potelicki, the measure fell short of passage by one vote. Mayor Scott Gordon said he will advise council of the date for a special meeting to vote again on the contract.

Mayor’s report

Gordon said the Army Corps has completed field test work for the trench that will constitute part of the repairs to the Zoar Levee. The corps is waiting for a final report on soil and vibration testing. The next step in the process will involve the removal of pavement and 6 inches of top soil from the work area.

Gordon said in the feedback he received from residents, no one indicated having a strong desire to connect to county sewer services. He will report the feedback to the Lawrence Township Board of Trustees.

Gordon thanked the Zoar Community Association, residents and all others involved in the ZCA Trick or Treat, which drew more than 200 children this year.

Gordon said Haueter Landscaping will not renew its contract at the end of the year for opening and closing graves. He asked Mark Gaynor to find a company to take over the duties. The village currently pays $375 for vault burials on weekdays and $500 after 4 p.m. and on weekends.

Street commissioner report

David Irwin asked for $162 from the insurance rebate to purchase safety cones and other safety equipment. He also said a number of street signs need to be replaced or added including speed limit, no parking and narrow bridge signs. Council approved a budget of $800 to cover the purchase.

Meiser suggested adding a stop sign at the end of the one-way alley between Third and Second streets. Gordon asked Bolivar police officer Alex Thomas, who was in attendance, whether or not a stop sign was necessary. Thomas said the only places that don’t require stop signs are private drives and parking lots.

Other reports

Tom Klingaman, safety committee chair, said Gayle Potelicki attended the Tuscarawas County Emergency Mitigation Plan kick-off. Attendance is required in order for the village to be eligible to receive emergency FEMA funds.

Patrick Martinez of the Bolivar Fire Department reported on a number of purchases the department was able to make recently through a $238,000 grant, including new life packs and two new LUCAS chest-compression systems.

Gordon said the village needs to provide better guidance to homeowners and construction companies as to zoning requirements, particularly regarding the preservation of historic homes and the maximum weight of vehicles permitted on village streets. He suggested amending zoning to hold contractors responsible for the cost of repairing damage to streets, water lines, storm drains or other village property.

Public comments

Jon Elsasser said the Zoar Community Association has developed new resident packets to welcome newcomers to the village. At this time the packets contain only information about ZCA. Elsasser suggested the village provide additional materials for the packet including a brochure containing important phone numbers and another brochure summarizing village zoning requirements.


Council voted to do the following:

—Reinstall Patty Smith as fiscal officer, replacing Heather Lehmiller on Jan. 1.

—Provide a $500 donation to the Lawrence Township compost fund.

—Vacate village streets including West Street to allow for levee repairs.

—Contract with the public defender’s office for legal services for the indigent at a cost of $300 per case.

The next meeting will be Tuesday, Dec. 14 at 6 p.m. at the Zoar School House.