Tipp City to participate in opioid litigation settlement plan

TIPP CITY — A resolution authorizing the city of Tipp City to participate in a proposed opioid litigation settlement plan and declare an emergency was unanimously approved at Monday’s council meeting.

The settlement plan involves claims against distributors in lawsuits against AmerisourceBergen, Cardinal Health and McKesson. The resolution was added to the agenda at the start of the meeting due to the urgency of the situation. According to Law Director Jonathan Freeman, the state wants documents in approval of the settlement signed by Aug. 13. Freeman said that the reason for declaring an emergency was primarily because of the fast-approaching deadline.

“What we’re doing is basically authorizing either myself or Mr. Eggleston to sign the documents in approval of the proposed settlement,” Freeman said. “Some of those terms, I don’t know if they’ll be exactly those numbers. They’re approximates. I don’t know what the city is going to get from it, but we’re hoping anything is a recovery in this specific instance.”

Mayor Joe Gibson asked if funds received from the settlement going toward recovery would go specifically toward emergency services. Freeman said that funds are supposed to be directed toward treatment and things such as use of Narcan used to revive patients who have overdosed.

“As many of you know, we’re still in the same crisis. I see plenty of these cases still come through the courts. It’s a continuing battle that needs to go towards that end,” Freeman said.

Also approved at Monday’s meeting was a resolution authorizing Tipp City Manager Tim Eggelston to enter into a contract totaling $60,578.10 with Outdoor Enterprises for the 2021 off-channel wetland excavation project. Other bids received for the project were $706,744.50 from R.D. Jones Excavating; $268,562.91 from Webber Company; $191,830.65 from Finfrock Construction Company; $175,003.40 from T.C. Holzen and $119,810.02 from Performance Site Development. Additionally, the city has received a $254,023.50 grant for the project; any grant funding that is not used will go back to the state.

Tipp City has a history of working with Outdoor Enterprises on improvement projects around the city. According to Eggleston, part of the reason the bid was so low compared to the other companies was because they will keep some of the “spoils” from the project that they will be able to resell later — top dirt, gravel, fill dirt, et cetera.

“This is part one of two parts. Once this is done, there will be some restoration of that excavated area that U.S. Fish and Wildlife plans to spend a little of funds on that, as well. We still believe we’ll be under the grant dollars that were given to us. We were hoping that bids would come in favorably so that there would be additional funds to do some kind of restoration work and things in that area,” Municipal Services and Engineering Director Eric Mack said.

Council also approved the following at Monday’s meeting:

• An ordinance modifying the pay range for the Assistant Chief of Emergency Services;

• An ordinance amending and modifying the 2021 Annual Operating Budget to appropriate additional money for various unanticipated events that have occurred during the 2021 fiscal year;

• An ordinance amending certain statutes of the city’s traffic regulations to comply with state statute;

• An ordinance amending certain statutes of the city’s general offenses to comply with state statute;

• An ordinance modifying current language in the Tipp City Code of Ordinances regarding sick leave for employees not covered by a collective bargaining agreement;

• A resolution declaring a 2007 Chevrolet Impala and a 2011 Ford Expedition as surplus property and authorizing their disposal;

• A resolution authorizing the city manager to purchase one Terex 2021 Commander 5050 Digger Derrick truck on an M2 106 Chassis for the electric department at a cost not to exceed $249,619; and

• A motion to make appoint Adam Blake to the Tree Board filling an unexpired term expiring Dec, 31, 2022.

The next meeting of Tipp City Council will be held Monday, Aug. 16 at 7:30 p.m.