PAULDING – Paulding Village Council will seek $1 million in funding aid to replace aging sewer lines in a residential area.

Council met Tuesday, Sept. 6, postponed from Sept. 5 due to the Labor Day holiday.

Council suspended the rules to pass as an emergency Resolution 1393-22 authorizing the administrator and mayor to apply for financial assistance under the Ohio Public Works Commission’s Financial Assistance Program. The village is seeking help to pay for a sanitary sewer replacement project in Emerald Acres.

Phase 1 of the project is projected to cost $1.2 million. The village is asking OPWC for a $500,000 grant plus a $500,000 loan toward the cost.

The sewer replacement was discussed at a committee of the whole (the entire six-member council) meeting Aug. 26. Village administrator Jason Vance told council the Emerald Acres sewer lines are all original from when the development was built more than 60 years ago.

Worse, the lines are simply 8-inch clay field tiles laid end-to-end. The unsealed joints allow surface water and roots to infiltrate the tile, and sewage to leak out.

Vance noted that tiles are showing evidence of flattening, which likely will lead to collapse unless the lines are replaced.

“It’s at the point where we need to do something,” Vance said.

Village officials believe replacing the sewer lines in this subdivision will alleviate much of the town’s groundwater infiltration problems.

Vance said the OPWC application deadline is Sept. 9. OPWC won’t announce grant recipients until next summer.

If the application is rejected, the village may have to break down the project into smaller segments and start with the worst area.

Erica Noggle, director of the Paulding Chamber of Commerce, requested council approval for alcohol to be served at some upcoming events at Herb Monroe Community Park. The first is a chamber event on Sept. 28. No alcohol will be sold.

Council approved Noggle’s request, pending review by solicitor Harvey Hyman.

Noggle also asked about approval to utilize the alley section between Holly, Wood & Vine and Signature Embroidery for events. This would involve prohibiting motor vehicles from using this section. Hyman will research options and report to council.

Finance Director Cheryl Halter reported the new utilities billing software conversion hit a snag because not all of the data transferred correctly. She said it might take several days to resolve the problems, delaying the planned online launch for customers.

Halter said office employees J.J. McClain and Allison Annoy completed their six-month probationary period and recommended they be promoted to regular full-time status.

Halter has been researching the potential effects of raising EMS rates, as the village is looking at hiring two full-time EMTs. She reported the village already is charging more than Medicare will pay, so she doesn’t think raising rates would help much.

A recent safety committee meeting included discussion on proposed pay scale changes for EMTs and squad members.

At the end of the meeting, council adjourned into executive session regarding personnel. EMS coordinators Sue Crossland and Dave Foltz and EMS member Greg Reinhardt were invited to attend the executive session. No further action was taken.

In other matters, Vance reported Officer Zachary Blue has completed his six-month probationary period. Vance and Police Chief Randy Crawford recommended moving Blue to regular full-time status.

The village has received two quotes for fencing around the brush pile behind Live Oak Cemetery, ranging from about $7,500 to $8,000. Neither contractor is available until after December.

Vance also said asphalt crack sealing has been completed on Ohio 111 and the brush pile grinding is done.

Mayor Greg White commended the street department employees for their work in cleaning up storm damage after a recent wind storm.

Councilwoman Barb Rife reported the buildings and grounds committee met Aug. 19 to review mausoleum repairs and maintenance. The committee recommended to accept a quote for $5,211 for concrete floor coating. They also suggested no payments be made until all the work is completed to the village’s satisfaction.

Council suspended the rules to unanimously accept the village’s tax levy amounts and rates as determined by the budget commission, authorize the necessary tax levies and certify them to the county auditor.

The police department during August responded to 206 service requests and four traffic accidents; issued two traffic citations; wrote two parking tickets; completed 516 security checks; sent one junk notice letter; and issued no junk ordinance citations.

In August, Paulding EMS had 94 calls and 96 patients for a year-to-date total of 583 calls and 538 patients. The squad missed three calls due to lack of personnel and provided mutual aid once for Payne.

The next regular council meeting is 6:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 19. The public may watch live via Zoom at https://us02web.zoom.us/j/4451352151. The meeting ID number is 445 135 2151.