Sidewalk improvement resolution passed

TIPP CITY — A resolution regarding maintenance and replacement of sidewalks was passed at Tipp City Council’s Tuesday meeting.

The resolution fulfills the requirements of the Ohio Revised Code to declare by resolution of necessity repairs within the public right-of-way intended to be assessed to property owners sharing a boundary with sidewalks, curbs and gutter, and driveway aprons.

Mayor Joseph Gibson asked if the process of determining what sidewalks needed to be re-poured were complaint-oriented, or if the city inspects each street and sidewalk, as well as if there is a priority list on which sidewalks get replaced first. Tipp City Manager Tim Eggleston clarified that the city is broken up into sections and that the city is focused on cleaning up trip hazards in the community. Residents are able to contact the city manager’s office if they notice their sidewalk is in poor condition or presents trip hazards. Eggleston also said that residents are allowed to take care of the issue themselves and that the city would give credit back to the individual.

“Anybody can fix their sidewalks at any time, if they want to remove that liability themselves through the insurance company, having somebody trip and fall. Unfortunately, we’re put in the position where we have to do this,” Eggleston said.

Also discussed under ordinances was an ordinance amending and modifying the codified ordinances in order to eliminate outdated language and policies under Chapter 35, Division of Public Safety; Police and Fire Divisions. The biggest concern, according to Eggleston, was in regard to weapons disposal from the Tipp City Police Department.

“Chief Burris looked at this and we all had a little heartburn over the fact that we would be auctioning off weapons. His suggestion is that we turn these over and sell them to a federal firearms dealer and let them take the liability to whom they sell these to,” Eggleston said.

On the emergency services side of things, Eggleston said that he and fire chief Cameron Haller discussed changes that would be more generic in how the department functions and allow some flexibility in running the department. According to Haller, some of the significant changes were making the ordinance complaint to current practices within the department.

“The key elements of all the fire and EMS were combined into this revised document, with specific name changes of emergency services versus fire and EMS. When you read through the document, you can see very clearly the key elements of service are still there and they were not changed in that aspect. The records are still there, the fire prevention is still there, the volunteer fire personnel, although changed, is still there,” Haller said.

The last change that, according to Haller, does affect council’s previous directions, is that fees were struck for when the department was dispatched and transportation was not rendered. Haller said they found that because the fees are not collected on a regular basis, it’s costing the staff and city money in the long run due to the collection rate being low.

“There’s a $50 to $75 transportation fee that has just been a problem collecting,” Eggleston said. “We’re finding that it’s just not cost-effective to do it, and if our collection agency (…) goes to collect, by the time they take their cut, there isn’t really much left to deal with. It doesn’t generate a huge amount of money so the finance director, chief Haller and I just decided it was time to eliminate it.”

The following were also unanimously approved at Tuesday’s meeting:

• A resolution authorizing the city manager to sign and execute any agreements and contracts associated with the milling and resurfacing of Main Street (State Route 571) between Tippecanoe Drive and Hyatt Street and specifies Tipp City is responsible for 20 percent of the total estimated project.

• A motion appointing William Schindler to the Board of Zoning Appeals for a three-year term expiring Dec. 31, 2023.

• A motion appointing Brad Andringa to the Board of Zoning Appeals filling an unexpired term expiring Dec. 31, 2022.

Tipp City Council will meet at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 23 to continue discussing the departmental results study with Monroe Township Trustees. The next regular council meeting will be held at 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 1.