Local Archived News April 2004


MR/DD cuts lunch program - Levy defeat forces board to end program
Plea agreement angers judge - Defendant pleads to five of original 17 counts
Ranco ending production -  220 jobs will be lost, 150 upper level jobs will stay
Local youths involved in shootout
Georgia lawman, three suspects wounded in incident
Honoring the northern
Union County veterans
Masked friend causes crash
ORW inmate dies after hanging
Jerome looks to stop annexations
Board handles tabled issues
Guidance goof discussed
Parents say athlete was ineligible because advisor misinformed her
Richwood council finalizes budget
Ann Allen proud of service to Memorial Hospital
Pryce defends Honda
Three reach rank of Eagle Scout
Residents bemoan land sale
MHUC installs vice   presidents
United Way adds Salvation Army
N. Union Veterans Memorial kickoff scheduled
Tom Morgan promoted to chief deputy
Ketch Road ditch project nears completion
Planning for U.S. 33 growth
City, county, township officials discuss impact of rapid development
Evans, Evans & Hoffman keeps law in the family
Trash issue remains tabled
Fairbanks discusses renewal levy
Oberlin enjoys life's many twists and turns
Setting the record straight
Sprucing up the downtown
Just what land does the city of Marysville own?
Money=votes: Not in Union County
Vandalism spree ends with chase
Triad teachers agree to wage freeze
County cracks down on skateboarders
Berbees picked Marysville for base of seed company
Richwood zeros in on sewer plant
Grant writing company will help village seek money
Nothing can slow down Miriam Hildreth
City to borrow $1 million
Knowing weapons laws critical
Locals line up for gun permits
City hopes property sale won't affect homeowners
Kempfer's Framing formed from a dream
Scotts: rumors of layoffs untrue
N. Lewisburg announces plan to move covered bridge
Sheriff warns of scam
Local artist draws from her life for inspiration
Schools rocked by events
Crash claims life of eighth grader; high school teacher dies suddenly

Sewer plant expansion eyed
Local churches outline holy week services
Nowhere to go but up 'There goes the vacation''
Locals talk about effects of higher gas prices
An unlucky lot  on Woodview Drive
Second home since late 90s burns down at same address

MR/DD cuts lunch program
Levy defeat forces board to end program

By CINDY BRAKE
The food service program is definitely closing for the Union County
Board of Mental Retardation/Developmental Disabilities at the end of the
school year.
During this month's regular meeting, board member Steve Streng asked the
board to rethink a March decision to close the program. Four of six
board members, however, stood by their previous decision to shut the
program down on June 11. Board members Bob Box, John Anson, Dr. Helen
Ahlborn and Beth Ayars offered no reasons at the time of their vote for
their decision to close the program. Voting to keep the program were
Streng and Paul Whiteford.
The program has lost more than $30,000 annually for several years and a
new fire suppression system costing $15,000 is needed prior to the start
of a new school year.
Calling the program a "great service," Streng reasoned that it was one
of the ways MR/DD takes "care of the whole person."
That opinion was echoed by several preschool parents in a recent survey
on the program.
"We think eating with a group helps the child with social interaction.
If cutting the meal out will help the school stay open, we are for that.
If raising prices (double or more) will keep the program, we are okay
with that also," said one respondent.
Another parent wrote, "His school work probably won't be affected, but
his overall skills learning to eat new tastes and textures would
decrease. We also consider the eating/lunch program to be valuable for
speech and therapy skills."
All of the respondents found the breakfast/lunch program at the Harold
Lewis Center to be important, although 21 said that if the meals were
not offered they did not think their child's performance would be
affected at school.
Facilities director Rick Morris has inquired about other public entities
providing meals to the preschoolers, however, the solution isn't as
simple as it first appears. MR/DD was the only preschool in the county
that provided meals. MR/DD will continue to provide a nutritious snack.
Even with the closing of the lunch program, it appears that the kitchen
area will still be utilized by other MR/DD programs such as WorkNet,
Support Services offices and other adult services programs.
Also at the regular monthly meeting, the board voted 5-1 to request that
the Union County Commissioners place a 2.4-mill, six-year replacement
levy be placed on the Aug. 3 ballot. Ahlborn was the lone dissenting
vote. The board is scheduled to meet with the three-member board of
commissioners May 6 at 1 p.m.
A similar levy request failed in November and March. The current levy
generates $1,893,500 and will cease collection this year.
At a March meeting with MR/DD board president Bruce Davis, the
commissioners said they could be more supportive of a levy request if
the board did some "tweaking."
The tweaking issues include employee salaries and benefits, an
explanation of the agency's $2.6 million in carryover funds and reasons
why a waiting list for services exists as well as the high cost of
services per consumer in comparison to surrounding counties. The
commissioners also raised the question of replacement versus renewal.
At the April MR/DD meeting, the board unanimously passed a 0 percent
cost of living increase for all levels of the salary schedule and an
average merit step increase of 2.6 percent for staff with an acceptable
annual evaluation. This year's budget had included a 4 percent
across-the-board pay raise.
A comparison of other private and public entities in the county reveal
an average pay increase of 3 percent. Marysville teachers received a 3.7
percent increase on the base salary with automatic step increases for
staff up to step 12 of 6 percent annually.
Budget constraints were listed as the reason why there will be no lawn
maintenance contract this year. The contract had been for mulching beds
and fertilizer applications.

Plea agreement angers judge
Defendant pleads to five of original 17 counts
By RYAN HORNS
A Union County man considered to be the head of a satellite television
scam accepted a plea bargain on five felony counts Thursday morning in
common pleas court.
Charles E. Bradley, 52, of 14298 County Home Road was sentenced Thursday
morning for six months in prison. The sentence was handed out Thursday
morning by an angry Union County Court of Common Pleas Judge Richard
Parrott, who expressed his dissatisfaction with the bargain, made at the
last minute between Assistant Union County Prosecutor John Heinkel and
Bradley's defense attorney, James Owen of Columbus.
The charges stem from activity that took place between Jan. 1, 2001,
through April 22, 2002, in which Bradley and his family are believed to
have re-programmed DirecTV satellite television cards to receive free
satellite channels. He then allegedly reproduced the cards and sold them
to friends for his own benefit.
The Union County Sheriff's Department had released names of numerous
residents throughout the county who had been involved in the scam in
April of last year.
Parrott said the case had just now come to trial because Bradley was not
indicted until Feb. 3 of this year.
Bradley was originally charged with 17 felonies in connection to his
involvement in the DirecTV scam. These charges, to the dismay of
Parrott, were plea bargained down on Thursday morning to just five
charges.
Parrott explained to jurors that these dropped charges included a
second-degree felony charge of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity
that could have put Bradley in prison for up to eight years.
Bradley pleaded guilty on two fifth-degree felony counts of unlawful use
of a telecommunications device, one fifth-degree felony count of
possession of criminal tools, and two fifth-degree felony counts of
unlawful possession of a dangerous ordnance.
Parrott ordered Bradley to return to the Union County Sheriff's Office
on May 4 at 9 a.m. to be transferred to start his six-month prison
sentence at the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections
facility in Orient. He has been granted six days of jail credit.
As part of his sentence, Bradley is ordered to pay all costs of
prosecution and court fees, as well as a fine on each count of $500 for
a total of $2,500. Bradley is also ordered to forfeit any criminal tools
used in the crime. Those tools included a nine pin card reader/writer;
numerous computer equipment; "After Shock" card reader with black power
cord and nine pin adapter; 20-gauge shotgun and a 12-gauge shotgun.
Bradley is also ordered to make restitution to DirecTV in the sum of
$9,600.
Parrott was visibly upset regarding the sudden change in charges against
Bradley.
"The prosecutor waits until this morning to agree to a plea bargain,"
Parrott told jurors. "It's a waste of your valuable time . and it's not
fair to me."
Heinkel explained to Parrott in court that Thursday morning the defense
approached him about the plea bargain and he accepted. The hope for the
prosecution was that Bradley would serve his time consecutively for the
individual charges. This did not pan out.
Owen told Parrott that Bradley did re-program those cards and also
purchased the tools to do the crime.
"But because my client cannot read or write," he said, "he was not very
successful at it."
Owen also pointed out that the crimes were committed among friends and
that it could not be considered organized criminal activity.
"Charlie is guilty on those five," Owen said, "but he is not guilty on
the rest. There was no organized activity."
Parrott eventually disagreed with this statement and referred to the
crime as part of organized criminal activity during the sentencing.
Bradley's wife, Valerie, 44, reportedly made a deal with prosecutors in
March, pleading guilty to two of the 12 felony counts associated with
the scam.
Their son Charley Hay, 27, still faces one felony count of unlawful use
of a telecommunications device and one felony count of unlawful
possession of a dangerous ordnance.

Ranco ending production
 220 jobs will be lost, 150 upper level jobs will stay
By CINDY BRAKE
All manufacturing at the Ranco plant near Plain City will end Sept. 30.
Employees were notified Wednesday about the company's plans to transfer
all manufacturing operations to their China plant.
"The Ohio facility today cannot compete on price from China for similar
products. Several of the Ohio plant's leading customers, accounting for
approximately 50 percent of sales, told management they would buy from
Asian competitors unless Invensys could meet the lower prices," states a
press release from Ranco's parent company, Invensys Climate Control.
The average American receives $15.50 an hour. The average Chinese worker
receives 50 cents an hour, said a company spokesman.
Approximately 220 jobs will be eliminated between July 2 and Sept. 30.
The plant makes valves for commercial and residential heat pumps and a
smaller line manufactures refrigeration pressure switches, both under
the brand name Ranco.
"Sadly, we had to make this decision or risk the certain loss of
significant business. We hung in as long as we could, but if we did not
make this decision, we would not be able to compete and would lose major
business to lower-cost competitors. Our customers told us they would go
elsewhere," said Gale Maxwell, director of manufacturing.
One 32-year employee, who wished to remain anonymous, wasn't surprised
by the news yesterday.
"We knew. It was just a matter of time," she said about the announced
closing. The employee said valves from China have been shipped to Plain
City for the past three to four months where engineers check them before
sending them to customers. "It's been right in front of our face."
Over the years, manufacturing jobs at the Ranco facility have been
transferred to Mexico and rumors about the plants closing have
circulated.
Employees will be offered severance packages and outplacement support in
finding other employment.
The news still leaves a lot of people troubled about their future,
especially seven couples who both work at the plant and others who have
two generations of one family there.
"It has always been a family operation," said the employee, who said she
will continue to work as long as Ranco is open, then, "I'll have to find
another job," she said.
In spite of the plant closing, approximately 125 employees will remain
at the Route 42 facility. They include engineering and lab personnel, as
well as finance, accounting, marketing, customer service, human
resources, purchasing and facilities workers. The company will continue
to pay property taxes, which totaled $28,734.68 in 2003.
The Ranco plant was built in 1953 as a "mom and pop" factory, said one
employee. In 1986 it was purchased by Siebe and in 1999 Siebe and BTR
merged to form Invensys. Invensys is a global automation, controls and
process solutions group with corporate headquarters in London, England.
The U.S. headquarters are based in Richmond, Va.


Local youths involved in shootout
Georgia lawman, three suspects wounded in incident
By RYAN HORNS
A police officer is recovering from a gunshot wound and three suspects
were wounded after a high-speed car chase in Georgia ended with a
shoot-out believed to be started by a Marysville teenager.
According to Marysville Police Department Detective Douglas Ropp, a
Marysville suspect and his three passengers were stopped for speeding in
Houston County, Ga., Monday.
The four suspects were identified Tuesday as Marysville residents
Charles B. Wright, 19, and his sister Jennifer M. Jones, 21, of 527
Buckeye St. and Heather Elizabeth Michael, 18, and Zachary James Potter,
19, of Lakeview. All were charged by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation
with three counts of aggravated assault on a police officer and one
count of criminal attempt to destroy or injure a police dog. The four
suspects were originally held in police custody on one count of
aggravated assault on a police officer.
According to police reports, the chase began after 2 p.m. Monday. The
four suspects were on their way to Tampa, Fla., in a stolen pickup truck
when a Houston County Sheriff's deputy attempted to stop them for
speeding on Interstate 75. Wright failed to stop and the chase lasted
several miles before it ended after he lost control and crashed into a
utility pole. Other law enforcement agencies were also involved in the
chase.
As authorities were approaching the crash scene, two suspects got out of
the left side of the truck and one opened fire at the deputies with a
.45-caliber pistol. It is believed that Wright shot Perry Police
Department Sgt. Chris Sutcliff in the forearm as he approached the
vehicle.
The injury caused Sutcliff to drop his gun and another suspect picked it
up and fired at other officers, including a police dog. Three of the
suspects were shot as law enforcement officers returned fire.
A bullet reportedly grazed Wright's head. Jones was shot in the buttocks
and the bullet entered her abdomen. Zachary Potter was shot in the hand.
None of the injuries are considered to be life-threatening.
The Macon Telegraph reported that Wright is in a Macon hospital and is
expected to be released into jail custody today. Jones was released from
Perry Hospital Wednesday and was being held in the medical unit of the
Houston County jail. Michael and Zachary Potter remained in the Houston
County jail Wednesday.
Sutcliff was initially treated at Perry Hospital and was expected to be
transferred to another facility.
"Today he is undergoing his second round of surgery," Perry Police Chief
George Potter said Wednesday. He added that Sutcliff will have months of
rehab ahead of him because the bullet shattered a bone in his forearm.
When asked about the condition of the Ohio suspects, George Potter said,
"To be honest, I really don't care."
 The Telegraph reported that authorities from nearly every Houston
County law enforcement agency arrived on the scene. The GBI took over
authority of the investigation.
In Tuesday's reports, Wright was believed to be the one who fired first
but Wednesday the GBI reported that it is unclear which of the four
suspects fired on police. What is known for sure is that the suspects
started shooting first.
Perry City Police are now trying to piece together why the four Ohio
suspects fled police and then became violent. Police in Marysville and
the Logan County Sheriff's Department are also wondering why the group
went to Georgia. None of the suspects have relatives in the state.
The Telegraph reported Tuesday that all suspects have kept quiet about
any crimes they might have committed between Ohio and Perry since their
arrest.
Ropp reported Wednesday that Wright and Jones are currently being
investigated in Marysville on a March 17 theft of a credit card. Jones
has prior misdemeanor arrests on her criminal record out of New York.
Wright is also under investigation regarding an April 22 theft of a gun
from the owner of the Buckeye Street residence where he had been staying
with Jones.
Marysville assistant police chief Glenn Nicol said today that their
mother also lives at that address where she provides care to the home
owner.
"They were not known to us before these last two reports," Nicol said
about Wright and Jones.
Wright and Jones were free on bond for allegedly breaking into a Logan
County convenience store in March and stealing alcohol and cigarettes,
detective Joe Layman of the Logan County Sheriff's Office reported.
Layman said Wednesday that the group was last seen by friends at Indian
Lake, where they had apparently been staying, either Saturday or Sunday.
He said that neither Zachary Potter nor Michael have a recent criminal
history and the department's preliminary investigation indicates that
the two may have just been along for the ride. He said Michael may be
romantically linked to Wright and Zachary Potter may be romantically
linked to Jones. The Lakeview suspects have relatives in Marysville.
Layman said the possible romantic link between the four is a guess at
their involvement in the crime. He said the owner of the truck driven by
the suspects reported having never met the suspects and has since
reported the vehicle stolen.


Honoring the northern
Union County veterans

By CHAD WILLIAMSON
The landscape may be speckled with small villages, townships and schools
but when the people of Northern Union County dream, they dream big.
The North Union District Veterans Board unveiled its design Wednesday
for a veterans memorial to be placed in Richwood Park. The structure,
projected to cost between $100,000 and $150,000, will be complete with
two walkways, a circle of honor for North Union area veterans, flags and
the signature piece, an engraved granite monument.
More than 100 veterans, county officials and area dignitaries attended
the ceremony.
Executive Director of the Union County Veterans Service Office Gail
Degood-Guy detailed how the idea was hatched.
Area veteran John Hoskins donated a piece of ground for a ball field in
the area of park. When the plans for Veterans Memorial Field were
complete there was still a portion of the land which would be unused.
In 2002 the local VFW was brought in to begin planning a veterans
memorial for those who served in the armed forces and have a connection
to the area served by the North Union School District. The planning
process soon blossomed into a community wide project.
Degood-Guy said 18 months of planning and 13 public meetings led to the
development of the memorial.
"This is our opportunity to build a landmark," she told the crowd.
Memorial designer Beth Arden of Schorr Architects Inc. of Dublin
unveiled the artists rendering of the plaza and detailed its elements.
She said the memorial will have a "plaza" design with two brick walkways
leading into a circle of honor where bricks will be engraved with the
names of area veterans. There will also be nine stars which will bear
the name of veterans service groups in the area.
Three flagpoles across the back of the memorial will hold the American
Flag, the state of Ohio Flag and an MIA/POW flag.
The focal piece of the memorial will be an 81/2-foot tall black, white
and gray speckled Barre granite monument. Each branch of the service
will be represented on medallions affixed to the base of the monument
and a golden glove will adorn the top, symbolizing the worldwide
presence of the American military.
The monument will be inscribed "To our North Union veterans: You stood
ready in time of peace. In war, you suffered its horrors, were wounded,
were Prisoners of War, are Missing In Action, or died. We salute you all
for protecting freedom at home and around the world." Below that marking
will be "All veterans gave some. Many veterans endured more. Some
veterans sacrificed all."
But the scope of the project also brings the hefty price tag.
"Now we need the whole community to pay for the monument," Hoskins told
the crowd.
He explained that NU area veterans may have their names in one of 3,500
bricks in the circle of honor for $50. Area residents and businesses can
purchase stones in one of two sizes for $150 or $500.
DeGood-Guy said the group first needs to raise $13,000 to bring Arden on
board as the overseer of the project. After that, the full construction
costs must be raised before the project can begin.
DeGood-Guy also touched on the relationship of the Union County Veterans
Memorial which is in the planning stages right now. That monument will
be a symbol for veterans of the entire county.
DeGood-Guy said the northern county memorial was planned before the
countywide effort got off the ground. She said the land was available
for a North Union monument and the people of the northern end of the
county deserve a memorial they can view without traveling to other parts
of the county

Masked friend causes crash
Raccoon jumps on man's head resulting in chemical spill
From J-T staff reports:
A masked bandit reportedly attacked a truck driver Tuesday morning,
causing him to drive off the road and spill hundreds of gallons of a
dangerous chemical into a field.
According to Union County Sheriff's deputy Josh Campbell, the "bandit"
was later identified as a raccoon.
Campbell said truck driver Gary Boerger, 48, of 3880 Boyd Road in Plain
City was headed north on Unionville Road to Robinson Road in a grain
truck at approximately 11:23 a.m. Tuesday. He was hauling a large
container of anhydrous ammonia on the back.
"Somehow a raccoon had gotten inside his cab," Campbell said this
morning. "When he was driving the animal jumped on the back of his head.
When he tried to get the animal off he ended up driving off the right
side of the road into the ditch."
He said the ditch was steep and forced the truck over onto its side.
When it went over, the ammonia container burst open and spilled across
the field.
The raccoon was reportedly still inside the truck cab when fire crews
arrived. Pleasant Valley Fire Department and deputies from the Union
County Sheriff's Office were on the scene for several hours dealing with
the spill. The fire department was unavailable for comment and has not
returned calls regarding the spill. The Ohio Environmental Protection
Agency was reportedly contacted about the incident.
Campbell said the spill was being treated as an environmental hazard
because it did not cause any injuries to the driver.
Boerger was not available for comment and had not returned phone calls
before press time.

ORW inmate dies after hanging
By RYAN HORNS
A woman incarcerated at the Ohio Reformatory for Women reportedly died
Monday as the result of hanging herself in her cell bathroom.
Candace Vansickle, 21, of Johnstown was pronounced dead at 4:45 p.m.
Monday at the Ohio State University Medical Center.
According to ORW administrative assistant Maralene Sines, Vansickle had
been serving an eight-year sentence for theft and burglary charges and
had been admitted to the prison on Thursday. She was set to be released
on Jan. 30, 2012.
Vansickle was sentenced on April 19 after pleading guilty to committing
20 burglaries and stealing a vehicle during a five-month crime spree
last year, allegedly with her mother Georgia Messer, 40.
Her mother faces trial on 24 felony counts.
She was reportedly at her daughter's bedside on Monday and had been
asked by the OSU Medical Center staff to take her daughter off life
support. Vansickle was found to be brain dead upon arrival but was being
kept alive by hospital respirators.
She was removed from life support and Franklin County Coroner Brad Lewis
has reported that her family donated her organs for possible transplant.

Vansickle's emotional state was considered to be very unstable when she
was sentenced on April 19, according to reports by her Columbus
attorney, Samuel B. Weiner. He reportedly had written a letter to the
ORW to keep his client on suicide watch. He has claimed that the prison
made a mistake in releasing her from the watch too soon.
Prison spokesperson Andrea Dean said this morning that ORW received
letters by Weiner on April 19 and April 20. She said the prison staff
waited for Vansickle's arrival and prepared for her assignment to a
medical area on April 20. She said the prison's psychiatrist,
psychologist and physician all examined and interviewed Vansickle. They
were reportedly satisfied she no longer posed a danger to herself when
they removed her from suicide watch on April 21.
Dean said it was not as if Vansickle was not being watched. She had been
placed in an infirmary on Wednesday and was still under watch by medical
staff and was receiving care.
"The medical staff were more concerned with her withdrawal from a heroin
addiction," Dean said.
Vansickle was checked on by staff at 10:30 a.m. and was last seen alive
when a nurse checked on her again at 10:45 a.m., Dean said. At around
12:13 p.m., Vansickle was found unconscious, hanging from her neck in
her infirmary bathroom. She had reportedly formed a noose out of a bed
sheet and secured one end to a doorknob and placed the other around her
neck.
Vansickle was transported to Memorial Hospital of Union County at 12:32
p.m. and was flown to the OSU Medical Center in Columbus at around 8
p.m.

Jerome looks to stop annexations
By CINDY BRAKE
After losing hundreds of acres to annexation and dealing with numerous
referendums, Jerome Township officials talked about cutting a
development deal with a neighboring municipality Tuesday night during a
special tri-board meeting.
With whom and what kind of deal has yet to be answered.
Entities mentioned were the cities of Dublin, Columbus and Marysville,
as well as Millcreek Township.
"Who is your biggest fear? What is your biggest fear?" asked Union
County Economic Development Director Eric Phillips to the 13 township
officials that serve on the board of trustees, zoning board and zoning
appeals board.
Dublin was the inferred answered, after the group decided they want to
meet with Dublin officials within the next 30 days.
Zoning board member Mike Buchanan said Dublin has made "several offers
from several directions to enter into discussions." Buchanan said he was
referring to conversations he and his wife had with Dublin officials who
are personal friends.
Referring to a property in the Hyland Croy area, trustee Sharon Sue
Wolfe said Dublin would like to enter into an agreement with the
township.
Phillips encouraged the group to ask Dublin to bring numbers, terms and
ideas to the meeting.
Tuesday's meeting was called to discuss two development tools referred
to as a JEDD (Joint Economic Development District) and CEDA (Cooperative
Economic Development Agreement).
JEDDs create an income tax district on land zoned industrial/office (M1)
within a township and stipulate a moratorium on annexations for a
certain period of time. A CEDA establishes a plan for annexation and a
service agreement is created for negotiated payments. CEDA agreements
are not limited to industrially zoned properties and can include
residentially zoned land.
"You're preplanning annexation and getting a fee for it," Buchanan said
about CEDAs.
Joe Sullivan, a member of the zoning board, said a JEDD would guarantee
what the area will look like.
Phillips said Union County has no JEDDs or CEDAs but that a lot of
communities in the state are using both. He said a recently completed
economic development plan recommended using both.
The biggest advantage for the CEDA is the opportunity to work
cooperatively with another municipality; more control over economic
development; and planning for the future, Phillips said. JEDD advantages
are that they prohibit annexation and generate taxes and entities work
cooperatively with other jurisdictions.
"I think it's a pretty good idea myself," said trustee Freeman May about
JEDDs.
Trustee Ron Rhodes, however, said he was "very suspicious of Dublin." He
said the Planned Unit Developments would offer a township a similar
vehicle to control quality development.

Board handles tabled issues
By CORINNE BIX
Triad School Board held a special meeting Monday night to discuss issues
tabled earlier this month at the board's regular meeting.
After adjourning into a two-hour executive session on April 12, the
board opted to put off approving agenda items concerning the retirement
date for superintendent Steve Johnson as well as the approval of many
supplemental contracts.
On Monday, the board unanimously approved Johnson to officially retire
June 1 rather than in July.
Johnson said he was happy with the decision. "I was pleased with that
because it will allow Dr. Kaffenbarger a chance to get started in the
superintendency and allows me the opportunity to retire June 1 which I
wanted."
Board members approved the standard 48 days of severance pay for
Johnson. As part of his retirement package he will be paid for 24 days
at full salary in January 2005 and 24 days at full salary in January
2006. This part of his contract coincides with the same laws and
regulations of the teacher's union contract.
The board also approved a one-year wage freeze for non-union employees.
"They agreed to taking a wage freeze along with what the teachers union
agreed to," Rick Smith, board president, said, "Everyone is joining in
to help until additional funds come into the district."
The non-union employee wage freeze will affect six district employees
including the EMIS coordinator, payroll/food service coordinator,
secretary to the superintendent, maintenance supervisor, assistant
maintenance supervisor and special education supervisor. Johnson said
the savings to the district should be around $7,200.
Lastly, the board added two supplemental contract items to the evening's
agenda. Both positions had been tabled two weeks earlier. Tim Lacy was
approved as head boy's basketball coach for the 2004-2005 school year
with a vote of 3-1 with one board member abstaining. Bruce Schlabach was
unanimously approved as head girl's basketball coach for the 2004-2005
school year.
The next regular board meeting will be May 17 at 7 p.m. and the levy
committee will meet May 12 at 7 p.m. in the high school library.
In other business, the board:
 . Approved the following contract renewals for certified teaching
personnel: Becky Carpenter, Katherine Manley, Lindsay Quirk, Betsy
Reminder, Christy Savill and Orrin Stanforth, one-year; Mike Braun, Jan
Ferryman, Holly Hall, Jason Malone, Jennifer Reminder and Tammy Walls,
three years; Vicki Flack, Lisa Hawley, Mandee Sarrazine, Janet
Schlabach, Jack Stout and Kristi Talbot, five years; and Tina Campbell
and Lee Claypool, continuing.
 . Approved the following contract renewals for supervisors: Matt
Alexander, maintenance, three years; Mary Reiser, special education,
five years.
 . Approved the list of graduating seniors from the class of 2004 as
presented by the high school principal. Graduation is contingent upon
students meeting all mandatory criteria.

 

Guidance goof discussed
Parents say athlete was ineligible because advisor misinformed her
By JUDY BOEHLER
A problem with a student athlete's eligibility and a guidance
counselor's responsibility was brought before the Marysville Board of
Education at Monday night's meeting.
Mark and Kelly Daum, parents of senior Megan Daum, a member of the track
team, told the board that Megan was disqualified after the first track
meet because she was not taking enough credits. Although Megan was
enrolled in five courses, one of them, sports conditioning, is a
half-credit course. Kelly Daum said the schedules sent to parents after
arena scheduling list only the courses, not the credits.
Megan lost her position as captain of the track team and eligibility for
scholarships, Kelly Daum said.
The Daums said Megan checked with her counselor, Ed Starling, last
spring after arena scheduling and he told her she had enough credits to
participate in track. Kelly Daum said that in September, Megan again
talked to Starling who again assured her that she did have enough
credits.
According to an e-mail Kelly Daum sent to superintendent Larry
Zimmerman, Starling told Mark Daum in a telephone conversation that it
is not his job to make sure the students are taking enough classes to
participate in sports. He said he did not remember the September
conversation with Megan.
Zimmerman said Starling told him he checked Megan's courses but did not
certify her.
Kelly Daum said she talked with Ohio High School Athletic Association
Assistant Commissioner Duane Warns who handled eligibility issues. He
said class credits are to be checked by coaches and athletic directors
before the season starts. He said guidance counselors are sent
guidelines at the beginning of each sports season.
According to Kelly Daum's e-mail to Zimmerman, Warns said that "for Mr.
Starling to say it is the student's job and 'not his job' is a tragedy."

"It's a shared responsibility ? parents, athletes, us," Zimmerman said.
The Daums said their reason for bringing the issue to the board is that
arena scheduling begins today at the high school and they want to make
sure no other students have this problem when their sport begins.
High school principal Greg Hanson said signs are posted at arena
scheduling so student athletes will be aware of the five-credit rule and
software that will print both courses and credits is being investigated.

Board members urged the high school administration and athletic
department to take steps to prevent this problem from developing again.
The board took the second step to put a 6.56-mill renewal levy on the
ballot in August. That levy was first passed in 1989 and has been
renewed every five years since. It will generate $3.5 million a year and
will cost the owner of a $100,000 home about $105.
In other business, the board:
 . Accepted the donation of work stations from Velocys, a division of
Battelle; a Kramer Scientific projection microscope from Memorial
Hospital of Union County; an office filing system from the Lewis family;
a tent for the cross country team from Carla and Robert Karn; a donation
of $2,600 from the Edgewood PTO for a climbing wall at the school;
 . Approved fees for Creekview Intermediate School and elementary
students.
 . Recognized Amy McCarthy as Employee of the Month.
. Adopted changes to board policy.
 . Approved the 2004-05 MMS Student Handbook and the Parent-Student
Handbook for the high school.
 . Adopted the textbooks "Algebra: Integrated Mathematics," "Clothes &
Your Appearance" and "Housing Decisions."
In personnel matters, the board:
 . Accepted the resignations of teachers Bill Steele, Lynn Ellis,
Kathryn Medley and Deborah Johnston; head bus mechanic Kenneth Welch;
Patricia Phipps, head cook; and John Koke, middle school in-school
suspension.
 . Approved a one-year as-needed contract for Candace Sweeney, school
psychologist, effective Aug. 1; and approved the part-time as-needed
employment of Linda Versluis as school psychologist for the remainder of
the 2003-04 year.
 . Non-renewed the contracts of teacher Connie Martin because the
teacher whose position she filled will return from a leave of absence;
interpreter/aide Karen Collins because of uncertainty of how many
students will need her services; high school in-school suspension and
evening school teacher Janice Smith; and all extended time contracts.
 . Approved summer school teachers Cheri Barker, Angie Loftus, Melissa
Bailey, Dawn Burns, Kenny Chaffin, Mary Ann Corbin, Holli DeWitt, Scott
Forney, Matt Gerderman, Judi Green, Stephanie Hoehn, Dustin Jasinski,
Joe McSwords, Linda Overly, Candy Parke and Victoria Parker.
. Approved Tricia Dearwester as after school study session supervisor.
. Approved one-year probationary contracts for teachers Anne Annan and
Deana Taylor for certification technicalities.
 . Approved Morgan Hallwachs, Brent Johnson as substitute teachers for
the 2003-04 school year.
 . Approved Shawn Andrews as middle school track coach for the 2003-04
school year.
A list of contracts extended will appear in the newspaper later in the
week.


Richwood council finalizes budget
By CHAD WILLIAMSON
Richwood's village budget for 2004 was approved by village council
Monday night.
The $1,966,000 budget includes a 3 percent pay increase for village
employees, who had been under a wage freeze. Council approved the budget
with a 5-0 vote, as member George Showalter was absent from the meeting.

The budget also includes $20,000 to continue improvements to the village
hall. Some new windows were installed at the structure last year and
additional windows and a new door are planned for the near future.
Council member Arlene Blue noted that the village hall renovation fund
is not far, perhaps $30,000, from reaching its goal for the renovation
of the first floor. As such, Blue announced she will be holding a
kickoff for the renovation project Thursday at 7 p.m. at the village
hall.
The general fund will chew up a large portion of the budget at $734,000,
followed by the water and sewer operating funds at $332,000 and $342,000
respectively.
Other budgeted amounts were: streets, $185,000; industrial park
development, $150,000; water debt service, $81,000; parks $41,000; sewer
debt service, $41,000; and sewer construction $20,000.
Mayor Bill Nibert also brought up a problem with standing water that
needs to be corrected. Nibert said homes near the corner of Beatty and
Wood streets have had standing water in their yards for several days.
"The whole backyard is nothing but a lake," Nibert said.
He added that the village had discussed standing water in the area at
least a year ago and nothing has been done.
Village administrator Ron Polen explained that there is a drain into
village storm water tiles in the yard but it apparently doesn't work. He
said the drain would need to be connected to another nearby line in
order to carry the water away.
That procedure would require time, manpower and money as it would
require cutting across a street to connect the lines. Pollen said his
crews would get to work on the project.
In other business, council:
. Voted 5-0 to approve the bid of the Window Factory for installing a
steel door at the village hall at a cost of $3,962.
. Voted 5-0 to vacate Hastings Street per a court ruling. The property
owners in the area of the small street took the village to court over
ownership of the land. Two area property owners felt the street was
already vacated and that they owned the property. The court ruled that
the village should vacate the street and the three property owners in
the area should use it as a shared driveway.
. Heard from Polen that residents can help village crews running the
brush chipper by putting debris near a main street rather than an alley.

. Learned that the street committee will be meeting to discuss possible
changes to parking and traffic flow on Grove Street.

Ann Allen proud of service to Memorial Hospital
By CORINNE BIX
Ann Allen has devoted her retirement years to lending her support and
passion for quality healthcare as chairwoman of the Memorial Hospital
Board of Trustees.
At 66, Allen is currently serving her second term as chairwoman,
however, she and her husband, David, have had an avid interest in the
hospital since moving to Marysville in 1964.
"I think this community is so fortunate to have Memorial Hospital,"
Allen said, "Both my husband and I have always had an interest because
we feel the hospital is an invaluable resource."
Allen and her husband moved to Marysville early in their marriage. She
attended the Ohio State University and received her bachelor's degree in
political theory and history. She worked several years as a claims
representative for the Social Security Administration in Columbus after
graduation.
After David had served  in the military as a JAG officer, the Allens
decided to settle in Marysville near their Richwood roots.
"We had both grown up in Richwood and met in high school," Allen
explained.
David joined Joe Grisby's law practice and she stayed home with the
couple's two young children, David and Cathy. When Cathy started school,
Allen began her second career, as a teacher.
"At that time there was a shortage of teachers, so the district was
willing to hire people with degrees to fill the positions," Allen
explained.
She worked for a year and a half as an art teacher and later a
kindergarten teacher before returning to school full-time to obtain her
teaching certification.
"I taught second grade for 11 years and then went into the reading
program for the remainder of my career," she said. Allen retired in
1997.
Allen's involvement with the hospital board of trustees came 25 years
after her husband's involvement with the board. It has been interesting
for the hospital advocates to have front row seats to the hospital's
growth over the last 40 years.
"Memorial has grown in its services and its ability to provide excellent
care for the patients," Allen said.
Allen's position as board chairwoman is completely voluntary as are the
other board member positions. Allen averages anywhere from two to five
hours a week at the hospital, meeting with various committees and
leading the monthly board of trustees meeting.
One of the hospital's most recent endeavors is the building of the new
women's health center. Allen has had a hand in the development of the
project since discussions began three years ago.
The hospital broke ground on the center last summer and an open house is
planned for sometime this fall.
Allen said the need for bigger and better maternity services has been
growing over the past 30 years. She said she could remember when her
husband served on the board in the early 1980s that there were even
talks about closing the maternity ward, given the low number of births.
That has all changed and today the hospital averages more 600 births a
year with 654 in the year 2003, ranking 10th in central Ohio.
Some of the features of the new women's health center include a room for
women-focused education classes, a new mammography unit equipped with
the newest developments in mammography technology and Jacuzzis in some
of the birthing suites.
As an advocate of the hospital and an advocate for women, Allen is
pleased with the hospital's strides in recent years.
Allen is also a longtime member of the Philanthropic Education
Organization (PEO) which provides educational opportunity for a wide
variety of women in pursuing post-secondary education.
Throughout her years as a teacher, along with her work with the hospital
and PEO, Allen said, she is glad that she has always been open to new
opportunities.
"I believe you need to always be willing to try new things," Allen said.

Pryce defends Honda
Speaking about the need to produce hybrid cars in the US, Senator John
Kerry dismissed Honda and its 16,000 non-union employees as a domestic
car manufacturer saying, "I want them made by the UAW."  Congresswoman
Deborah Pryce today issued the following statement regarding Senator
Kerry's remarks:
"Senator Kerry pledges to create jobs for willing Americans, but
Americans should read the fine print that comes along with his pledge,"
Pryce said. "It seems non-union employees, like Honda's 16,000 Ohio
workers, don't qualify in Senator Kerry's book.
"Conveniently-to back his recent criticisms of an overly outsourced
America-Senator Kerry is choosing to ignore a prime example of a foreign
company that employs thousands of Americans on U.S. land, fuels the
state of Ohio with lively business and economic activity, and has a
history of never having laid off a single worker.
"Americans looking for work need a leader who cares about finding them a
job-not signing them up for a union that will contribute to his
campaign. Once again, Senator Kerry chooses political pandering over
sound policy-the wrong choice for hard-working Ohioans at Honda and all
American workers who are committed to producing the best product at the
best price.
"While President Bush recently visited Ohio to recognize Honda as a
leader in the in-sourcing of thousands of American jobs, Senator Kerry
has managed, in just a matter of a few words, to dismiss 16,000 of
Ohio's talented men and women in an attempt to push his pro-union
agenda. Ohio workers and their families deserve more."


Three reach rank of Eagle Scout
From J-T staff reports:
Three area Boy Scouts have recently earned their Eagle Scout ranks.
Ryan Dougherty, son of Gregg and Vicki Dougherty and a member of Troop
101 at the First United Methodist Church, received his award from
Scoutmaster John Eufinger at a ceremony at the Liberty Township
Community Center March 6.
Dougherty joined Tiger Cubs at age 7 and advanced through Cub Scouts and
Boy Scouts. He attended camp each summer and has been a leader and
mentor to a class of first-year Scouts. In 1999 he spent two weeks
hiking at Philmont Scout Ranch in New Mexico.
Dougherty's Eagle Scout community service project was demolishing and
replacing the wood baseball backstop at the Keckley Rural Life Center
which is used by Scout troops throughout the year. He and some friends
built a new chain link metal backstop, added team benches and repaired
playground equipment.
Dougherty plans to continue with membership in the National Eagle Scout
Association. His brother, Brent, earned his Eagle Rank in 2000.
Josh Hodnichak began his Scout experience as a Tiger Cub in DeBary, Fla.
He is the son Jim and Dina Hodnichak. As a second-year Webelo, he earned
the Arrow of Light and joined Troop 560 in 1999, eventually achieving
all ranks through Life Scout. He was initiated into the Order of the
Arrow Micconopee Chapter in the fall of 2000 and became involved on the
ceremonial team.
After moving to Marysville in 2001, he joined Troop 634 and became Troop
Guide and OA representative. He is a member of the Order of the Arrow
Mkw'alaakwa Chapter and ceremonial team and has obtained Brotherhood. He
has earned 28 merit badges and is a member of Venture Crew 8 which
reenacts World War II. He has attended summer camps at Camp LaNoChe in
Florida, Camp Thunder in Georgia, Sky Mount in Tennessee and Woodland
Trails in Ohio.
Hodnichak's Eagle project consisted of constructing an amphitheater and
mulching trails leading to it at Creekview Intermediate School. He
worked with science teacher Suzi Clarridge to develop the area so
students can have hands-on experience outside. The Creekview PTO,
Bluefish Group Ltd., Scott's, the city of Marysville and Kokosing
contributed to the project and fellow troop members and adults helped
with labor.
Hodnichak is a sophomore at Marysville High School and is the catcher on
the JV baseball team. He plays the bassoon in the wind ensemble and
received the Archie Griffin Sportsmanship Award in the spring of 2002.
He is an active member of Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church and enjoys
playing the guitar.
Chris Weeks, son of Scott and Loretta Weeks, joined Pack 634 as a Tiger
Cub. He earned his God and Me and God and Country awards and the Arrow
of Light before bridging to Boy Scouts. He has served as Assistant
Patrol Leader, Patrol Leader, Senior Patrol Leader and Den Chief. He
attended Camp Falling Rock, Seven Ranges and Camp Berry. He was inducted
into the Order of the Arrow in 2001 and joined Venture Crew 2037 in
2003.
Weeks has earned 28 merit badges and is a BSA registered lifeguard,
working last summer at Pastime Park in Plain City. He arranged and
participated in the 10 Commandment Hike for his troop with the help of
five area churches and he completed the 21-mile Historic Logan Trail in
Tar Hollow.
Weeks volunteers with the Plain City Food Pantry and the Personal Needs
Pantry. His Eagle project was to build shelving at the Personal Needs
Pantry with the help of donations from Marysville contractors Steve
Bell, Bill Laurenson, Jim Wing and Andy Weeks and 84 Lumber and
McAuliffe's Hardware. Scouts and adults from Troop 634 assisted in
cleaning the building and installing the shelves.
Weeks is a sophomore at Marysville High School and is involved with the
soccer team and Ski Club. He is a member of the Marysville First United
Methodist Church and works for Weeks Plumbing Inc. He has taken part in
automobile racing in quarter midget to dwarf cars and will run in the
E-mod division of modified cars this summer with adults from across the
country.
An Eagle Scout Court of Honor will be held at 1 p.m. May 1 at the
Methodist Church to honor Hodnichak and Weeks. Troop 634 is sponsored by
Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church.

Residents bemoan land sale
By RYAN HORNS
It started with the best of intentions but the issue of selling unwanted
city lands continued to receive a negative response from residents at
the Marysville City Council Thursday night.
Council members and administration were questioned about the sale of
each of the properties.
Concerning land at Scotts Circle, it became a problem of whether it is
even owned by the city of Marysville.
Scotts Circle resident Don Howard said he believed Marysville was
involved in a 99-year lease of the property from The Scotts Company. The
deal was apparently made for $1 decades ago. He said residents have not
been able to find proof of this yet but he saw the papers at one point
when he built an addition to his garage and had to get approval from
Scotts. He asked that council table the ordinance indefinitely.
Gore said if this is true, the city can't sell what it does not own. He
recommended tabling the issue until May 27 for further investigation .
Mayor Tom Kruse said he would also like to find out for sure. If the
city does own the land, he proposed subdividing it into lots that
connect to existing properties. This would make the land unappealing to
developers and more appealing for residents to purchase. They could do
this to other properties up for sale as well.
Regarding the property of Raymond Road and West Fifth Street, council
member Mark Reams said the land is adjacent to the cemetery. After
checking with public service director Tracie Davies, he found out that
the cemetery will need to expand in 15 years.
Reams suggested postponing the issue and moving it to the Public Works
Committee. The resolution will be reviewed again before council on May
13.
Concerning the properties of Barrhaven Park, 410 S. Main St. and 441 S.
Plum St., all three lots were met with debate from residents.
Council passed second readings on all of them but explained that the
resolutions merely allow the mayor to get appraisals on the land and
open the bidding process.
Resident David Creviston said the city should not sell Barrhaven Park.
It is only open space and trees, he said, since the city never put up
any signs distinguishing it as a park. He said the land is used by
Barrhaven addition residents and by children in the nearby apartments.
It is more like a nature preserve now and should remain that way. The
issue will return for third reading at the May 13 meeting.
Council member Mark Reams maintained that the lot for sale at 410 S.
Main St. was designated for future city government expansion. He said
the Downtown Assessment Resource Team, which recently came to study the
town, recognized that one of the city's strengths was having its
governing body downtown. Reams said they need to keep the site until
they identify a better one.
Gore said that 82 percent of polled residents overwhelmingly disagreed
with building a new administrative building and council member Dan Fogt
added that a vacant house sits on that land.
Councilman John Marshall said that if the city sells the land it would
probably be bought by the county commissioners for future use by
Memorial Hospital of Union County. He said the county would just do what
the city has done and the vacant house would stay. If the city allows a
business to buy the property, it could be taxed and bring in more funds.

"If it sits vacant it is not benefiting anyone," Marshall said.
In other issues discussed:
. After months of debate and revisions, the plan for the Walker Meadows
Planned Unit Development set for construction at Route 38 and Boerger
Road came back before council approval.
Planning Commission chairman Alan Seymour reported that two or three
sketches have been reviewed with public participation. The project
brought about the first use of the S-R zoning, which is a lower density
district. He said neighbors seem happy with the final result.
. Kruse said he had concerns about state representative Tim Grendell of
Chesterland who plans to run for the State Senate and attempt to delay
the initiation of the gas tax set to go into effect in July. The 2-cent
gas tax was expected to bring in an estimated $98,000 designated for
street repairs in Marysville. Kruse asked council to exercise any
influence they may have at the state level.
"That two cents has a big impact on what we want to do with the
streets," he said.
. Regarding political signs, councilman David Burke recommended that the
resolution be tabled and referred back to the Public Affairs Committee.
He said that discussions with council vice president John Gore and city
law director Tim Aslaner have led to the decision that the proposal
should affect all signs instead of just political signs. The issue will
be back at the May 13 council meeting.


MHUC installs vice   presidents
From J-T staff reports:
The Board of Trustees of Memorial Hospital of Union County heard at
Monday's regular meeting that three acting vice presidents have been put
in permanent positions.
Mike Samogala now holds the position of vice president of facilities and
business development. He previously served as acting vice president in
that area. Samogala began his career at the hospital as director of
imaging services, followed by acting assistant vice president of nursing
services.
Named as vice president of nursing services is Jackie Haverkamp who had
been filling that position as an acting vice president. She was formerly
the director of the ambulatory care clinic.
Adam Bauman, who joined the hospital as director of pharmacy and was
later named acting vice president of clinical services was also named
vice president.

 

United Way adds Salvation Army
The Salvation Army's Homeless Prevention Program has been named to
member agency status with the United Way of Union County.
Investors can designate their annual United Way pledges to The Salvation
Army through the annual fundraising campaign.
The Salvation Army will have additional funds available to help make
ends meet. Rent and utility assistance are available.
"It's definitely been a success," said Kara Murphy, director of housing
for The Salvation Army.
Since mid-January, 55 Union County families in housing crisis have been
assisted. A case manager works with clients to connect them with other
resources, such as employment services or child care assistance, and
serves as an advocate with a landlord to help them maintain their
housing.
"Salvation Army has a wonderful track record of providing needed
programming and accountability to the community and the consumers they
serve," said Barb Nicol, one of the United Way trustees who reviewed The
Salvation Army's request for membership. "In addition, I have been
personally impressed with the staff people who are here in Union County.
They are very responsive to needs identified by the folks they serve as
well as the agencies involved. I'm very impressed with their will to
build collaborative efforts utilizing all of the agencies and funding
sources that have been available."
Additional funding for the program is being sought from the Ohio
Department of Development and the local Emergency Food and Shelter
Program. This, in addition to annual United Way support, will enable the
program to become a full-time operation (it currently operates part-time
out of a cubicle in the Department of Job and Family Services) and
include a direct housing component for homeless households while
providing more thorough case-management elements.
Through its involvement on the Union County Housing Coalition, United
Way was instrumental in bringing this program to Union County last year.
The United Way was the first local entity to financially support the
program, granting The Salvation Army $11,500 last October to get the
program off the ground.
"I think those working with housing issues in our community have been
surprised at how great the need was," Nicol said. "I think we all knew
that families were having difficulty finding affordable housing, but the
need was so much greater than any of us could have imagined and just
reinforces our belief that The Salvation Army can help us address the
issue."
With The Salvation Army on board, the United Way of Union County now has
24 Member Agencies. It is the first added since February 2003 when the
Marysville Victory Center became a member agency.


N. Union Veterans Memorial kickoff scheduled

The campaign to build a North Union District Veterans Memorial will kick
off at 2 p.m. April 28 at the memorial site at Richwood Lake. All
veterans and citizens of the North Union District and local, county and
state officials are invited to attend.
The memorial was designed by Beth Arden, a Dublin architect, and her
design will be unveiled at the ceremony. Sidewalks leading up to a
Circle of Honor will be composed of 4-inch by 8-inch bricks and
8-inch-square pavers which may be purchased by the public. All
contributions for the memorial are tax deductible and will be held by
the Union County Foundation until construction begins.
The project began when Mr. and Mrs. John Hoskins donated land near Lynn
and Veterans Way at the lake. The idea of a veterans memorial soon took
root. The memorial will recognize all veterans who were born, lived at
an time, attended school at Richwood, Claibourne, Essex, Magnetic
Springs, Pharisburg, York or Byhalia, died or are buried within the
boundaries of the North Union School District.
They may have served in peace or war in the Army, Air Force, Army Air
Corps, Navy, Marines, Coast Guard, Merchant Marine, Reserves or National
Guard at any time since the Revolutionary War. Applications to honor
veterans will be available at the kick-off, at local businesses or by
contacting Gail DeGood-Guy at (740) 943-3604, Jack Moore at 942-9288,
Larry Nibert at 943-3163 or Paul McCrary at 943-2538.
In case of rain the ceremony will be held at the shelter house.

Tom Morgan promoted to chief deputy
From J-T staff reports:
Lieutenant Thomas L. Morgan has recently been promoted to the position
of chief deputy by Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson.
Morgan's new duties will include assisting the sheriff in the daily
operations and coordination of the Union County Sheriff Office's
Divisions as well as being commander in the absence of the sheriff.
Nelson honored Morgan at a promotional ceremony April 14 at the Union
County Justice Center. Attending the celebration were Morgan's wife,
daughters, parents, grandmother and many staff members.
Morgan has been active in law enforcement for the past 17 years. He
began serving the Sheriff's Office part-time as a
communications/corrections officer in 1987 while he furthered his
education by completing the Ohio Peace Officer's Training Academy in
1989. Graduating from the Ohio State University with a bachelor's degree
in natural resources and Columbus State College as a certified EMT,
Morgan was sworn in as a full-time deputy sheriff in 1991. He has served
the Union County Sheriff's Office as a D.A.R.E. officer, public safety
officer, sergeant and lieutenant.
He graduated from Northwestern University School of Police Staff and
Command in 2002. In February of 2004, he achieved the designation of
Certified Law Enforcement Executive (CLEE) through the Ohio Association
of Chiefs of Police and the Law Enforcement Foundation.
Morgan lives in rural Union County with his wife, Heather, and their two
daughters, Katelynn and Madison.

Ketch Road ditch project nears completion
From J-T staff reports:
A "quagmire" and "very long process" moved one step closer to reality
Wednesday when two Jerome Township trustees signed a contract for Ketch
Road storm and road improvements.
A ground breaking is planned for May 3 when the contractor is expected
to begin clearing trees and off-site storm sewer work, said consulting
engineer Mark Cameron. A pre-construction conference is planned for next
week.
The problems of standing water along Ketch Road have been an issue
before township officials for years.
Officials at one time attempted to solve the problem  with an
unsuccessful ditch petition. More recently, improvements were stalled
when a former township clerk stated that public funds could not be used
for a private property problem.
With the deterioration of the road due to the water problem, the
township trustees committed $112,000 to the project and obtained a grant
for $337,090 from the Ohio Public Utilities Commission to improve the
ditch. Total project cost is $449,454.
Work was stalled for a year when problems arose with easement
acquisition and questions raised about a wetland in the area.
"Due to the 'wetlands' issue and to follow the guidelines set forth by
the Army Corp of Engineers, it was decided that the project must not
have any construction within any delineated wetlands," Cameron said.
The project was altered to reduce the total run of the storm pipe
replacement. Cameron said the alteration has meant a net savings of
$4,000.
Ketch Road is expected to close May 3 and be open only to local and
emergency traffic.
No other business was conducted during the Wednesday board of trustee
meetings.

Planning for U.S. 33 growth
City, county, township officials discuss impact of rapid development
By CINDY BRAKE
A Dublin city councilman is concerned about development in Union County
and school districts being impacted.
A Jerome Township Trustee doesn't want to see another 'City of Dublin'
sign sprout in his jurisdiction.
A Washington Township of Franklin County trustee believes money needs to
come before development.
And one Union County commissioner just wants an honest discussion.
The city of Dublin invited elected officials to a meeting Tuesday.
Invited representatives were from Dublin City Council, Washington
Township Franklin County, Dover Township, Jerome Township, Millcreek
Township, Paris Township and Union County Commissioners along with the
Union County Engineer. All the entities were all talking about
development along the U.S. 33 corridor between Marysville and Dublin.
Missing from the table were land owners and developers, entities who
need to be involved, said Denise King, a Washington Township trustee.
"Growth is happening at every level," said Dublin Senior Planner Brandol
Harvey, who mentioned a proposed development north of Brock Road that
could include 4,000 to 5,000 dwelling units.
Calling it a "gateway to each jurisdiction" present, Harvey defined the
corridor area as land between Marysville and Dublin along U.S. 33 that
extends from Industrial Parkway to the rail line.
During the two-hour meeting, each entity was invited to share visions
and concerns.
Speaking on behalf of Jerome Township, trustee Ron Rhodes said his
vision is for Jerome Township to be its own community within the
boundaries of Union County. He said referendums have halted development
in the township and led to annexations into the city of Dublin.
"Under which boundary will we grow?" Rhodes asked.
He also wanted people to define what they meant by "rural character."
Rhodes also asked, "Who is heading this up and for what reason?"
Rhodes, as well as others, wanted to know if each entity would be
equally represented.
Dublin's vision is to reduce traffic, maximize economic opportunities
and create an area where people can work, live and play.
Marilee Chinnici-Zuercher, mayor of Dublin, said the discussion was
about sharing and building, not giving up anything. She said her vision
is to develop a "healthy community."
Speaking on behalf of the city of Marysville, council president Nevin
Taylor talked about controlling the "growth monster," a point echoed by
Paris Township Trustee Don Lowe.
Another council member stated that some of Dublin's "positive" ideas
were not necessarily seen as positives for Marysville.
Union County Commissioner Tom McCarthy said this isn't the first time
the county has been approached with plans by well-intended groups
outside the county that have regional plans which "step on who we are
and what we want to be." Specifically, he referred to an unsuccessful
federal plan to create the Darby Refuge, COTA's recently announced plans
to locate a rail yard near Marysville and the city of Columbus marking
water rights within an area that Union County currently serves. McCarthy
also pointed to successful cooperative efforts for the Metro Park and
road improvements.
The Union County Commissioners agreed to host a second meeting, although
no date was set.

 Evans, Evans & Hoffman keeps law in the family
A local law firm that can trace its history back to the 1930s is still
in practice today in Union County.
Now known as Evans, Evans & Hoffman L.L.P., the firm was located at 21
N. Franklin Street in Richwood until 1987 when it moved into a new home
at 15 Ottawa Street.
Evans, Evans & Hoffman L.L.P. is a general practice law firm providing
legal services throughout central Ohio. The practice started as Allen &
Allen in 1932. The firm name was changed when F. Leroy Allen left the
practice to become Union County Common Pleas Court Judge and Robert F.
Allen left in 1960 to become Union County Probate Judge.
The Evans name came into the picture when Robert E. Evans Jr. started at
the practice in 1955 and the firm became Allen & Evans. Evans was
admitted to the bar in 1955 in Ohio and attended the Ohio Northern
University Law School. He was also a judge for the Marysville Municipal
Court between 1958 and 1982. His practice areas in law include probate,
elder law, trusts and estates.
Jeffrey Evans joined his father when he graduated from Ohio Northern in
1981 with a law degree. He was been acting judge in the Marysville
Municipal Court in 1987 and village solicitor for Richwood between 1981
and 1997. His focus areas in law are real estate, estate planning,
guardianship and probate.
Scott Hoffman attended Ridgedale High School and later graduated from
the Syracuse University Law School in 1982. Before joining his uncle and
cousin in legal practice, he was a partner in the 300-member law firm of
Nixon, Hargrave, Devans & Doyle L.L.P. in Washington, D.C.
There he specialized in international project financing, banking and
real estate which required him to travel to India and Brazil, among
other destinations. He is also experienced in sales and purchases of
businesses, environmental law, real estate transactions, construction
contracts, trademark and copyright law and tax-exempt bond finance.
Ultimately, Hoffman wanted to spend more time with his family and joined
his cousin in the local firm in 1996. His practice areas include banking
and business law, project finance and international project finance.
What he also enjoyed about the switch from Washington to Richwood was
working with his clients face to face instead of over the phone.
According to a survey, attorneys in large city law practices
increasingly yearn for a practice that imposes fewer demands and provide
more family time. The small town practice, such as Evans, Evans &
Hoffman L.L.P., can give attorneys more of a chance to meet and know the
people they help.

Trash issue remains tabled
M.C. council members wish to better inform public
By CINDY BRAKE
For a second time, Milford Center Village Council voted to table
legislation that would create a recycling/trash program.
At Monday's regular meeting, councilman Ron Payne said village officials
have done an inadequate job of informing the community about the
advantages of the Pay As You Throw Program (PAYT). Payne, Chris Burger
and Russell Clark will create a question and answer sheet to better
inform the public.
The proposed program would cost each single family dwelling $8 a month
for weekly collection of solid waste and recyclables. Homeowners would
be required to purchase either PAYT bags or a sticker for their trash
cans. Bulky item tags would be available. PAYT charges would be
suspended automatically whenever water usage falls below
minimum-occupied levels for any billing period. At an earlier meeting,
council stated plans to amend the ordinance to provide a 10 percent
discount for anyone over the age of 60. Multi-family dwellings,
commercial, institutional and industrial waste generators will be
unaffected by the ordinance.
Ordinances require three readings before they are enacted. Council has
had first and second readings on the ordinance and tabled the third
reading twice.
Village administrator Keith Watson recommended accepting a bid submitted
by Ohio Water and Waste Supply Co. of Plain City for water meters.
Watson said problems with Railroad, Pleasant, West and Short streets
will be repaired by the company hired to do the work last year. Work
will not begin until after May 15. Watson said the problem appears to be
from a source of "dirty" stone that was used in repaving the roads.
Upon the recommendation of the finance committee, council unanimously
voted to increase the maintenance supervisor salary by $1 an hour,
bringing the rate to $11.72 an hour and compensate members who attend
the zoning appeals board and planning commission at a rate of $15 a
meeting.
Gloria Richardson presented a plan for perennial plantings at Liberty
Park. Council approved expenditures of $900 for materials. Volunteers
are needed to help with the planting on May 15 at 9 a.m.
In other business, council:
. Set May 1 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. as Community Yard Sale Day and
Clean-up Day on May 22 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. At clean-up day, residents
must present a picture identification and utility bill for proof of
residency.
. Agreed that Trinity Chapel could hold a cruise-in parade on June 27.
. Agreed to pay half of the monthly lighting bill for the Civil War
memorial at the township cemetery. LeRoy Holt said the bill was
originally estimated to be $20 a month, but has been as much as $40.
. Instructed the village solicitor to draft a letter to property owner
Jack Kessler as a final attempt before litigation. Council is concerned
about the public safety of buildings owned by Kessler.
. Heard a citizen's concern about traffic speeding through the Mill
Street traffic light now that the speed limit is 35 miles per hour. The
village can control the light sequencing. The village administrator was
instructed to meet with the public safety officer to adjust the light.
Present at the regular meeting were mayor Cheryl DeMatteo, village
administrator/maintenance worker Keith Watson, clerk/treasurer/utility
billing clerk Kathy McCoy, zoning inspector LeRoy Hold and council
members Russell Clark, Chris Burger, Josh Combs, Robert Mitchell, Jeff
Parren and Ron Payne.


Fairbanks discusses renewal levy
By JUDY BOEHLER
Levy renewal was the subject of a finance meeting at Fairbanks Monday
night prior to the regular board meeting. The board is considering
placing a renewal of an existing operating levy on the November ballot.
That levy was first passed in 1995 and renewed in 2000. It is due to
expire at the end of 2005.
Discussions on the issue will continue.
In regular session, superintendent Jim Craycraft briefed the board on
housing developments being planned in the district. Those are located at
Route 736 and Robinson Road and in the New California area. He said he
was contacted by a Millcreek Township trustee who asked him to sit on a
planning commission which will consider development along U.S. 33.
Craycraft told the board that there are 59 applicants for the high
school principal position which will be vacant when interim principal
Larry Bettler leaves at the end of the year. He said the field will be
narrowed to six before interviews begin.
In other business, the board:
 . Approved the eighth grade trip to Washington, D.C., May 11-14.
 . Authorized the treasurer to advertise for bids for the purchase of a
71-passenger school bus.
 . Tabled the proposed additional staffing structure for the athletic
department until the May meeting.
In personnel matters, the board:
 . Accepted the resignation of T.J. Kohler as a full-time substitute
teacher for the remainder of the school year and Delena Foster, media
director, effective at the end of the school year.
 . Approved Sallie Cleveland and Elizabeth Obenour as substitute
teachers for the 2003-04 school year.
 . Approved continuing contracts for Lisa Keller and Larry Morris; high
school; three-year contracts for Marion Boggs, Mitzi Noland and Karen
Saffle, high school; Stephen Fillman, middle school; and Tony Hammond,
Pam Hammond, Heather Galsterer and Katy Phillippo, elementary school;
two-year contracts for Carleton Cotner and Dena Komula, high school;
Jason McClelland, Paul Mooney and Jennifer Waddle, middle school; and
Michelle Burns, elementary school; and one-year contracts for June Smith
and Jane Riedmiller (if funding available), elementary school.
 . Approved supplemental contracts for the 2003-04 school year for John
Moore, assistant athletic director (1/3 year); and Carleton Cotner, JV
baseball (3/4 year).
The board adjourned into executive session to discuss personnel. No
action was taken.

Oberlin enjoys life's many twists and turns
By CORINNE BIX
Avanelle Oberlin believes strongly in the bible verse found in
Ecclesiastes that begins "There is a time for everything under heaven."
As a woman who broke through popular stereotypes in the 1950s, she has
made time in her life to fulfill all of her dreams and work every day to
be a better person.
Oberlin graduated from Wittenberg University with a double major in
chemistry and biology. She was one of two women to graduate in the
pre-med program and went on to become a chemical analyst for Nestle.
However, her story only begins as a woman who excelled in a
male-dominated field. She went on to raise five children, have a second
career as a teacher and continues to work during her retirement years as
an avid community volunteer.
Oberlin grew up in London, Ohio. When she decided on Wittenberg and
later a position with Nestle's it was nice to be near home.
"It was comforting to me and my parents being close to home," Oberlin
said.
Before graduating from Wittenberg, Oberlin said it was assumed that
women didn't go on to medical school and become doctors. Oberlin was one
of only two women to graduate in her class with a chemistry major.
"Our advisor didn't help the women as much in terms of applying to
medical school," she said, "You didn't get much encouragement so it
became easier to (forgo medical school) get a job."
Oberlin was the only female chemical analyst at Nestle's. She said her
job consisted of doing analysis on raw materials and finished products.
Oberlin worked in Marysville during the week and would spend weekends at
home with her family in London.
She first began her long list of volunteer contributions to Marysville
while working for Nestle's. She began to volunteer as an advisor for
4-H.
"It gave me something to do in the evenings," Oberlin said. She
volunteered for almost four years before marrying her husband, Bob, in
1955.
Oberlin left Nestle's and started a family. She dedicated herself as a
full-time mom for eight years while she raised her five children,
including one set of twins, all born within six years
When her children were all of school age, Oberlin felt it was time to
start the next chapter of her life.
"I approached the superintendent of Marysville schools and inquired
about a teaching position," Oberlin said.
Given her education, which included a strong background in math and
science, she also had a good background in English and history. The
superintendent was looking for a special education teacher and was
willing to hire Oberlin on the spot.
"It was a little scary at first," she said. Oberlin taught
developmentally handicapped students for 25 years at both the middle and
high school levels. She said she enjoyed the challenge of the work and
was always looking for innovative ways to teach her students.
"You were always trying more to help the students," Oberlin said. She
took education classes throughout her career until she retired. She
received her master's degree in education from the Ohio State
University.
She said she believed it was of utmost importance to constantly
challenge her students. "If you don't give them the opportunity to learn
all that they can, you are handicapping them more for the rest of their
lives." Oberlin said, "I think it was a matter of that I really love
children, and I wanted to learn more and give them the opportunity to do
all that they could."
The need to know more is still with her. As she put it, you never get
beyond it. Oberlin has been retired for almost a decade but that hasn't
slowed her down any. She is in the time of her life where volunteering
and lending her years of experience are at the forefront.
"As you live you become wiser from your experience," she said.
Oberlin serves on many advisory boards and committees within the county
and in Columbus. She works with the United Way of Union County, the
Marysville Art League, and the Ohio Reformatory for Women Advisory
board.
She has served as state president in 1992 and 1993 for the teacher's
society, Alpha Delta Kappa. She has also served on their international
by-laws committee and their membership committee. Oberlin is also the
district director for the Ohio Retired Teachers Association.
Governor Taft appointed Oberlin in 2002 to the Cemetery Conflict
Resolution Committee, which resolves conflicts which people have with
cemeteries and cemetery managers. She said many would find that the work
is "very fascinating."
Her latest project has been helping to start the Community and Seasoned
Citizens of Marysville. The aim of the group is to address the needs of
area seniors while participating in activities and staying involved in
the community.
The CASC's slogan is "Have fun, Meet people, Always something to do, Go
on trips, Be active, Line dance."
In many ways, the group's slogan reflects how Oberlin has lived her life
as a whole: knowing that there is a time for it all and to enjoy each
passage as it is occurring.
"Enjoy everything to the 'nth' degree because it will be over before you
know it," Oberlin said.


Setting the record straight
By CINDY BRAKE
Local women work to fix monuments at Amrine Cemetery
From a distance some look like old stones that have fallen to the
ground, but the weathered monuments in Amrine Cemetery are reminders of
the county's founding fathers and war heroes to three women.
For years, Linda Prosser, Lynne Hall and Karen Haller each knew that the
little cemetery tucked along the east side of Raymond Road was the final
resting place for many of their ancestors - the Amrine, Reed and
Westlake families. What they hadn't realized until recently was that
they were related and the condition of the inactive cemetery was
deteriorating.
"It was late last summer, early fall, when we met with John Amrine and
Bob Parrott about the history of the Amrine Settlement and Cemetery that
we found we were all related," Prosser said.
Prosser and Haller are fifth great-granddaughters of Revolutionary War
veteran George Westlake and Hall's husband is a fifth great-grandson.
Hall and Prosser also share ties to Revolutionary War veteran Abraham
Amerine.
"When we were at the cemetery, we were disturbed with the condition,"
Prosser said. "Since this is the oldest cemetery in Paris Township, we
felt something should be done."
Prosser and her husband, Bob, took pictures and created a searchable
data base that will contain all the tombstone pictures. Hall hopes to
compile biographies, as well as obituaries, of those buried in the
cemetery. She also obtained a historical marker for the settlement and
cemetery. Haller tracked down a monument company that could restore the
stones. All have searched the embankment for lost stones and the old
mill stone but have had no luck.
The three then contacted the Paris Township Trustees with their concerns
and township officials approved restoring the cemetery. Restoration work
includes resetting and repairing, if possible, grave markers. Work began
recently by a Hardin County company. A dedication for the Ohio
Historical Marker is planned for June 13. The marker is one of 250 being
erected to celebrate the state's bicentennial.
In preparation for the dedication, the women are seeking biographical
information on any person buried at Amrine cemetery. Information on
veterans of the Revolutionary War, War of 1812 and Civil War are
especially sought. These individuals include Abraham Amrine, Adrian and
Smith M. Amrine, Abraham Beightler, Simon Coder, Jere Edginton, John
Evans, George Grow, Peter Hall, Thomas Peacock, James Marshall, Ransom
Reed, Theodore Reed, Simon Staley, Robert Stout, Samuel Welch and George
Westlake.
Information can be sent to Hall at hallwood@urec.net or Prosser at
lprosser@starband.net.
Surnames found in the cemetery include Allen, Amarine, Amerine, Amrine,
Barker, Beighler, Beightler, Burris, Coder, Darling, Donley, Edginton,
Elliott, Evans, Ferree, Ferris, Golden, Grow, Hall, Harrington, Layton,
Marshall, McAdams, Moore, Parthermer, Peacock, Power(s), Redman, Reed,
Shipley, Shuster, Smith, Staley, Stout, Timmons, Timones, Turner, Welch,
Westlake, Wolford and Wood.
The oldest tombstone in the cemetery at this time is Mary Wolford
Amerine, wife of Abraham Amrine. The spelling of the Amrine name has
varied through the years. These are the spellings listed on the
monuments. It is dated September, 1823. The last person buried in the
Amrine Cemetery is Elizabeth Westlake Amrine, wife of Smith M. Amrine.
She died April 13, 1915.
Prosser said the only information about the first burial is a story that
a little girl who was playing at the bottom of the hill was struck and
killed by a rolling log.
Other recollections state that Abraham Amrine of Belmont County bought
1,000 acres in Union County for $2 per acre and moved from Belmont
County in 1817. He and his family, wife Mary and son John, Andrew,
Moses, Frederick, Jeremiah and Abraham Jr. and their families came in
1817. Abraham Sr. built his log cabin just west of Raymond Road and near
Mill Creek where he eventually built a mill.
He gave each son 100 acres and other settlers joined them. By the time
the county was created, the Amrine settlement was thriving. Abraham Sr.
died in 1849 at the age of 87.
A monument and article tell a bit about the life of Ransom Reed.
The monument states that he was the son of William and Mary Reed. He
volunteered with the U.S. Army on June 10, 1861, and was killed in the
battle of Carnfax Ferry, Va., with the 13th Ohio Regiment when serving
as pioneer under Col. Smith. He was 21 years, four months and 12 days
old when he died on Sept. 10, 1861.
A lengthy article in the Marysville Tribune dated Oct. 9, 1861, page 3,
tells of Edwin Turner traveling to Western Virginia "to procure the body
of Ransom Reed ... After an arduous journey of about a week, he arrived
at the place where the body had been buried. The body was exhumed and
placed in a metallic coffin and put en route down the Kanawha and Ohio
via Cincinnati ... Mr. Turner arrived with his charge on the 6 o'clock
train on Saturday evening from Springfield. A large concourse of our
citizens were in waiting at the depot, to testify their respect for
Union County's first offering on the battle field support the
Constitution and Laws of the country." Following a funeral service, the
body was preceded to the Amrine Cemetery by a fife and drum. A squad of
men commanded by Capt. Phillips of Milford fired three volleys over the
grave.
"Thus ended the funeral of one who in the flush and vigor of manhood
went forth to uphold the banner of his country and fell thus early in
the war made by unholy men to subvert the government of the county. He
has offered his life as a ransom for that country. Who can do more. He
now sleeps peacefully on the banks of Mill Creek, where the memory of
relatives, friends and patriots will often revert in sympathetic pride
..."

 

Sprucing up the downtown
By RYAN HORNS
It is the little details of history, architecture and style that give a
city its personality.
A group of almost 70 leaders from the Marysville business and government
community are meeting today at the Union County Services Center on
London Avenue to outline a goal for cleaning up the Main Street area.
They all share the belief that  Marysville has the potential to have a
great downtown.
The meeting was run by members of the Main Street Ohio program's
Downtown Assessment Resource Team. The group is scheduled to discuss the
good, the bad and the ugly of downtown Marysville, then make
recommendations on how to give it new life.
Marysville is looking to join dozens of cities who have benefited from
the services of the Ohio Main Street Program. A total of 1,787 cities
nationwide are currently involved in preserving historic buildings and
bringing more business into their communities. The DART tour is the
first step in becoming a part of Ohio Main Street.
Thursday afternoon, county economic development director Eric Phillips,
members of the community and the DART team walked around Main Street and
Fifth Street, looking at buildings and businesses to get an idea of how
economic and community conditions could be improved.
State Coordinator of Ohio Main Street Pauline Eaton said today that just
walking around downtowns can help people learn new things about their
towns. She learned from local historian Bob Parrott that President
McKinley used to give motivating speeches from the building which now
houses the Marysville Fire Department. She also learned about the
700-pound "giant" with the P.T. Barnum and Bailey Circus who used to
live in town and saw the former one-room school house where Barbara
Bush's father once went to school.
"The stories we heard about this community fascinated us," Eaton said.
Some cities make the mistake of thinking they need a theme to purvey
their town, she said. You can find buildings that look gothic or
buildings done in Swiss style that have nothing to do with a town's
history.
"You don't need to make up a phony balogna Dutch theme," she said.
What she finds wrong with many cities looking to revitalize is that
their buildings have been "remuddled." For example, she said, historical
brick or tile store fronts are often buried beneath cheap wooden or
aluminum coverings. If the coverings are taken away, it brings a whole
new life and history to a town. She noticed several examples of this in
Marysville.
The DART team also commented on how the city's town run could be cleaned
up and made to look more attractive.
Phillips said the city has many plans but also has many obstacles to
accomplishing them. They have discussed moving the town run but it is a
$1.5 million dollar project. Someday they also hope to expand the brick
courtyard where Fifth and Main streets meet to include more streets.
Many buildings they would like to remodel, but the price tag is too
high. Even the federal government can make it difficult to get work done
because of the rules they have set up.
"To remodel some of these buildings," Phillips said, "would be like
pulling teeth from a grizzly bear as far as the feds are concerned."
The DART team pointed out buildings where businesses have done an
excellent job of remodeling. Eaton said she started in community
revitalization as a stay-at-home mother who got involved in trying to
save a historic building in Galion from being torn down and replaced by
a Taco Bell. The community got together and won.
She said the whole idea of Main Street Ohio is to reflect community
pride. She has since worked with Wooster, Galion, Mansfield and other
cities and watched them pull together and bring in new life and
business.

Just what land does the city of Marysville own?
A quick look at the 51 spots which are city property
By RYAN HORNS
As five city-owned properties sit before city council for potential
sale, many Marysville residents are wondering if the grassy field next
door may be going on the market. The uncertainty has many wondering what
land the city actually owns.
The public hearing on the land sale resolutions is scheduled during the
April 22 council hearing.
The city owns 51 properties situated in Marysville but according to
council member Ed Pleasant, specifics on the acreage are hard to come
by. Even with the help of the city engineer, the Public Works Committee
had trouble defining exact acreage in order to compile the list of the
five parcels they hope to sell.
He said once those lands are dealt with, the city will begin to
determine which properties may be sold next. Factors deciding this
include the marketability of the land, what the city's short and long
term goals are for the area and what kind of funds can be brought in
from the sale.
Since Thursday's council meeting, Oakdale Cemetery has expressed
interested in the property for sale across the street from them on
Raymond Road. Pleasant said it had not occurred to the Public Works
Committee that the cemetery might want the land for future expansion.
In the coming weeks, he said, the committee hopes to learn similar
options for parcels of land. A list of all city-owned properties was
submitted by city finance director John Morehart on Jan. 23, 2003. Not
included in the list are immaterial small properties or easements.
City park land
Lewis Park; American Legion Park; Central Park; McCarthy Park; Mill
Creek Park; Mill Valley Park; Schwartzkopf Park; Aldersgate Park;
Southland Park; Trinity Park; McCloud Park; and Eljer's Park (currently
under lease agreement).
City water tank lots
Route Four North; property on Grove Street (next to Lewis Park); Water
tank (Route 38); Water tank (Fladt Road); and 400 Dunham Ave..
Major properties
City Hall property; fire house property; parking lot west of city hall;
parking lot north of city hall, parking lot at corner of Plum and Fourth
streets; Oakdale Cemetery; water treatment plant property; property
behind water treatment plant; property on Raymond Road for reservoir;
111 West Eighth Street and 421 South Main Street (location of old Lumber
Company); wastewater treatment property; Brookside property (purchased
from school in 2002); Singer building property; swimming pool; property
east of Raymond Road; and the public service center (Central Park).
Other properties:
Charles Lane (west of McDonald's); Delaware Avenue (parcel of land
between Delaware Avenue and McDonalds); Sycamore Street (land on south
and north side of railroad between North Maple and Sycamore streets; 455
North Maple Street (property on the west side of Maple Street north of
the drive into the Public Service Center); Scott Circle (property
located inside circular roadway); property next to cemetery across from
the church on Raymond Road; Suntra Way (off Industrial parkway);
property at intersection of routes 38 and 736 (purchased in 2002);
property located north of East Ninth Street; property on North Walnut
Street (by railroad); Amrine Mill Road (northwest section of Central
Park); property on Watkins Road (easement on force main).
Properties the city currently intends to sell:
Barrhaven Park; 410 S. Main St.; 441 S. Plum St. (former Penn Oil site);
A location at the corner of Raymond Road and West Fifth Street; an area
near Scott Circle, located to the north behind homes.

 

 

Money=votes: Not in Union County
By CINDY BRAKE
Money didn't necessarily translate into votes during the March primary
election with two of the biggest spenders losing at the polls.
Friday was the deadline to file post-election campaign finance reports
with the Union County Board of Elections for any committee receiving or
spending a minimum of $1,000. Post-election reports are unofficial until
May 4 when the board meets. Pre-election reports were filed by Feb. 19
and have been certified. The total figures are a reflection of the post
and pre-election reports, as well as annual reports filed in January.
The Committee for Union County Prosecuting Attorney Alison Boggs appears
to be the biggest spender in the March primary election with total
expenditures of $20,678.48. Boggs lost the Republican nomination to
David Phillips by 382 votes. Citizens to Elect David Phillips Prosecutor
list total expenditures of $9,311.93.
The second largest spender in the primary was the Union County Board of
MR/DD Campaign Committee with total expenditures of $16,151.20. The
MR/DD replacement levy went down to defeat for a second time, coming up
short by 555 votes.
Two other levies that went before voters for a second time after failing
in November passed with their committees spending significantly less
than the MR/DD campaign. The Marysville Library Levy Committee won their
new levy by 174 votes and spent $4,270.41. North Union Local School
District voters passed a renewal levy by 179 votes and the levy
committee spent $1,231.68.
A look at the three-way race for a seat on the Union County Board of
Commissioners reveals a similar pattern between votes received and money
spent.
The candidate spending the least amount of money in that race came up
with the most votes, although this was the second time for this
candidate to run. Charles Hall won the seat with 1,958 votes. The
Committee to Elect Charles Hall for Union County reports total expenses
of $3,225.93. The committee of Rausch for Commissioner lists total
expenses of $3,752 and the Committee to Elect Steven C. Westlake reports
$3,385 in total expenses. Westlake captured 1,908 votes and Jack Rausch
received 1,874 votes. This was the first time Westlake and Rausch ran
for a seat on the commission.
Total expenses by committees for the following uncontested candidates
are Sheriff Rocky Nelson - $505.95; coroner David Applegate, $62.80;
recorder Teresa Markham, $433; engineer Steve Stolte, $0; treasurer
Tamara Lowe, $0; commissioner Tom McCarthy, $0; clerk of courts Paula
Pyers Warner, $0.
Committees for political parties report the following total expenses:
The Union County Republican Judicial Fund, $0; Union County Republican
Central Committee, $11,384.10; Union County Republican Party, $1,512.15;
Union County Democratic Party, $0.
Individuals supporting the various committees with significant
contributions in the post-election reports include:
. Committee to Keep Alison Boggs Prosecutor - David Burke of Marysville,
$99; Kim Greene of Gahanna, $500; Madeline Greene of Gahanna, $200;
Everette Humble of Marysville, $100. In-kind contributions were listed
for Fred Johnson of Marysville for $250.80 and John Heinkel of
Marysville for $1,100. Robert and Alison Boggs of Marysville loaned the
committee $11,500 and this loan has been forgiven.
. Citizens to Elect David Phillips Prosecutor - Samual Shamansky of
Columbus, $500; J.D. Cooke of Marysville, $200; Susan A. Chongson of
Marysville, $250; Daniel D. Connor of Westerville, $250; Friedman and
Mirman of Columbus, $250.
. Union County Board of MR/DD Campaign Committee - Harold Lewis Parents
Activity Committee, $300; MR/DD staff, $105.
. The Marysville Library Levy Committee - Richard and Arleen Leslie of
Marysville, $100.
. Keep Rocky W. Nelson Sheriff - Gary Lee of Marysville, $100.
. The committee to Elect Charles Hall for Union County received a $150
loan from Hall.
. Committee to Elect Steven C. Westlake - Dr. John Evans of Marysville,
$100; Dr. Kevin Cowgill of Marysville, $100; John Eufinger of
Marysville, $100. In-kind contributions of $920.4 were received from
Westlake.
. The North Union Levy Committee - Carol Young of Richwood, $200; Jon
Hall of Richwood, $100.
. Teresa L. Markham committee - Markham of Richwood, $192; Gary and
Marcia Lee of Marysville, $100.
.
Vandalism spree ends with chase
From J-T staff reports:
Today two 14-year-old males are sitting in the Central Ohio Youth Center
after being caught by police vandalizing cars and homes throughout Union
County.
At 2:41 a.m. Today police received numerous phone calls concerning
criminal damaging. The males had used an aluminum baseball bat to smash
car windshields and house windows on Meadowlark Lane, Palm Drive, 10th
Street, Northwoods Drive, Greenwood Boulevard, Marantha Drive and Glen
Ellen Drive.
Police finally received a tip describing the suspects' vehicle and Plain
City police officers spotted it on Industrial Parkway near Brock Road.
The juveniles gave a short pursuit before they finally stopped and later
confessed to the crimes.
The Union County Sheriff's office reported that the incidents will be
combined into one report to be filed with the Union County Prosecutor
for possible charges on vandalism and driving without a license.

Triad teachers agree to wage freeze
By CORINNE BIX
The Triad school board ratified a contract with the Triad Education
Association Tuesday night. The teachers agreed to a wage freeze along
with no increase in their health insurance for next school year.
"The teachers understand the situation we are in due to the lack of
state funding," superintendent Steve Johnson said. "Another option if
they had kept fighting was to have had to cut more teachers."
 Due to an income tax levy failure in the March election, Johnson said
the district, like many others statewide, has had to make some serious
cuts to the budget. Doug Kitchen, president of the Triad Education
Association, said the teachers have been aware of financial constraints
on the district for some time.
"No matter who you want to blame or if there is blame to be placed, you
can't get money if money is not there," Kitchen said. "In negotiations
we were careful to make sure that despite the wage freeze, teachers
wouldn't lose money and the school district would absorb any increase in
health insurance for next year."
Kitchen also said that teachers who are due for steps or "years of
experience" pay increases would still be eligible as stated in their
current contracts.
District cuts have also led to the decision to have the incoming
superintendent, Dan Kaffenbarger, carry on his duties as high school
principal for next school year.
 "It will be a very difficult year on me personally I think just because
of the scope of both jobs," Kaffenbarger said.
He added that since both positions are fulltime, the responsibility will
be immense. Kaffenbarger is also concerned that, given it will be his
first year as superintendent along with splitting his time as high
school principal, the community may be disappointed in the level of
service, given Johnson's availability over the years.
"The school board has been really concerned and sympathetic to the
situation," Kaffenbarger said.
The Board adjourned into a two-hour executive session to discuss
employment and compensation.
After re-adjourning, the board decided to table three items on the
evening's agenda.
These items included an addendum to the superintendent contract with
Johnson's duties to end on May 31. Currently, Dr. Johnson's contract
ends in July. Kaffenbarger will assume the superintendent's duties June
1.
The board also moved to table two items dealing with both classified and
certified supplemental personnel.
"We would like to have more discussion on these items," said board
president Rick Smith. "We felt tonight was not the night to continue our
discussions."
The board agreed to call a special meeting on April 26 for further
discussions.
Teachers Richard Kraemer and Vinnie Spirko presented to the board a more
cost-effective plan for the annual eighth and ninth grade trips to
Washington, D.C., and Maryland.
Kraemer said that through World Strides Travel a fixed price of $654 per
student has been negotiated for a three-year contract. Students will
also receive a 5 percent savings if they register early.
In the past, costs to the school district included covering the cost of
teachers to lead the trips and substitutes to cover classrooms left
vacant by the traveling teachers. Kraemer and Spirko's plan would reduce
or eliminate the need for substitutes by having existing teachers
combine classes of non-traveling students at Triad.
 Kaffenbarger reported to the board that this year's senior class has
done extremely well. The board approved the traditional three-day early
release for this year's graduating seniors contingent on behavior.
Johnson reported to the board about the recent advisory levy meeting.
The next meeting will be on May 12 at 7 p.m. in the high school library
to gather more information for the levy issue to be re-introduced on the
ballot in November.
The next board meeting will be on May 17 at 7 p.m.
In other business, the board:
 . Recognized and presented plaques to Power of One Award Winners Irene
Carpenter, Manny Larsen and Brittany Wilson.
 . Approved transfer of Amy Yoder from Title IV-R teacher to
kindergarten teacher beginning with the 2004-2005 school year.
 . Approved Becky Creighton as .25 math teacher for the 2004-2005 school
year.
 . Approved John Sharritts for a continuing contract beginning 2004-2005
school year.
 . Approved the following supplemental personnel for the 2003-2004
school year: Mike Klise and Shawn Graves as softball volunteers.
 . Approved a records retention meeting and disposal of historical
records for FY04
 . Approved Anti-Bullying Grant in the amount of $2,800 through the
Mental Health, Drug and Alcohol Services Board of Logan and Champaign
counties
 . Approved a certificate of completion for Badger Excavating.
 . Accepted the donation of books from Kyle Huffman in the amount of
$611.00 to Triad high school library
 . Accepted a $100 donation from Steven Carter for the second grade trip
to Columbus Conservatory
 . Approved the elementary parent/student handbook for the 2004-2005
school year
 . Approved the following substitute teachers for the 2003-2004 school
year: Benjamin Hager, Vanessa Orahood and Christine Burnside.

County cracks down on skateboarders
By RYAN HORNS
Union County relations with skateboarders reached a breaking point after
employees at a county building saw a skater jump off the steps on his
board and fall down on the street in the path of oncoming traffic on
West Sixth Street.
A car braked hard and avoided the juvenile but the close call witnessed
by county employees has officials worried about someone getting hurt.
"That's what sent it over the edge," Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson
said.
Nelson and the county commissioners may be concerned they are going to
come across as being against skateboarders but safety has become too
much of a factor for them when it comes to what goes on at county
buildings. He said the county will begin charging skaters with criminal
trespassing for skating on county property, but only if skaters allow it
to get that far.
"We tell them they don't need to be there and it's gotten to the point
that we are telling the same kids over and over again," Nelson said.
"I hate to charge a juvenile for criminal trespassing over
skateboarding," Nelson admitted.
At the same time, he said, anyone can take a look at the hand rails at
the county buildings and it becomes obvious that some skaters don't care
about how they are damaging property.
The issue of where to allow skateboarding in Marysville has long been a
topic of debate. A skate park was built by the city at McCarthy Park
last summer and some thought the problem might be solved. But it became
clear that as long as parking lots with plenty of concrete exist in the
city and as long as hand rails create great opportunities for jumps,
skateboarders will go there. County buildings have proven to be ideal
spot for them.
As a result, on April 8 the Union County Commissioners passed a
resolution that states that people are using the parking lots, sidewalks
in front of the county buildings and sidewalks leading up to the county
buildings for bicycles, skateboarding and other wheeled devices.
The resolution states that the people move county property, including
benches, and obstruct or impede pedestrians and the public seeking to
use the county buildings and parking lots. With their use of skateboards
and other wheeled devices on county property, people constitute a risk
of injury to themselves and others and create a nuisance.
The commissioners ruled that no person shall ride, use or operate a
bicycle, skateboard, scooter, roller blades, roller skates or similar
device on county property or premises located at 233 West Sixth Street,
221 W. Fifth St., 940 London Avenue and the county courthouse at 215 W.
Fifth St., including parking lots and sidewalks surrounding or leading
to the entrances of the buildings.
The county will post signs in these areas stating that violators who use
county property as prohibited by this resolution shall be charged as a
delinquent child or adult with criminal trespassing.
Nelson said his department will come up with a procedure of when
deputies will call parents and when they will charge a juvenile. Law
enforcement will begin keeping track of skaters they have warned and
parents will be contacted.
The county hopes to develop a procedure that will be fair to everyone
and still make their point known that damage on county property from
skateboarders must stop, Nelson said.

Berbees picked Marysville for base of seed company
Local family-owned Leo Berbee Bulb Company set its sights on Marysville
in 1974 after its owners moved to the United States from the
Netherlands.
The result has been more than 30 years of local family-run gardening
service. The business was founded in 1930 by Leo Berbee and his brother,
Pieter. It has since become one of the hundreds of flower companies in
Holland looking to capture the world's bulb market.
Leo's son, Henk Berbee, is the current owner of the Marysville location
of the Berbee Bulb Company.
He said in 1974 his family wanted to relocate their bulb business to the
United States. Ohio was the number one state in horticulture at the time
and Marysville was the perfect choice because of its proximity to
Columbus for trucking, storing and distribution services for their
flower bulbs.
The business has been located at 18443 Route 4 ever since. The spot has
served them well. During the first five years, their sales doubled.
Since then the building has grown to seven times its original size.
"Being in Marysville has put Berbee on the map," Berbee said.
In 2003 the Berbee Company grew again with the addition of the
12,500-square-foot Dutch Mill Greenhouse. The new store was a way the
family could include retail plant sales just 50 feet away from their
original building on Route 4.
Berbee said the store is the next path for future Berbee generations,
such as his wife Marianne and their children, Marjolein and Bob, to
carry on the family business.
"Each generation of my family has developed the business one more step,"
Berbee said.
His grandfather started with bulb production, his father included flower
production and now Berbee has expended to include retail sales.
When the Berbees came to Marysville, they found people who wanted to see
their town grow. The farm on which the company now sits belonged to Gene
Dawson and his family who agreed to rent the farm buildings to Berbee.
In 1978, the Dawsons sold the buildings and five acres to the bulb firm.

The business prides itself on offering diverse choices for consumers.
Not only does the company market and distribute a portion of the
millions of flower bulbs to enter the United States every year but it
also markets and distributes products produced in the United States as
well.
Originally, Berbee's sold bulbs from Holland exclusively and now much of
its market involves products produced in the United States as well.
Currently, four members of the Berbee family are involved in the company
operations. Henk is president and CEO, his wife, Mariane is
secretary/treasurer, daughter Marjolein is in charge of customer service
and son bob is the greenhouse manager.

 

Richwood zeros in on sewer plant
Grant writing company will help village seek money
By CHAD WILLIAMSON
With water line improvements nearing completion, Richwood Village
Council is setting it sights on its next infrastructure projects.
Ed Bischoff of the Bischoff and Associates engineering firm said the
village needs to look at its sewer plant. He noted that the village has
a serious inflow and infiltration problem, meaning that after a heavy
rainfall hundreds of thousands of gallons of groundwater makes its way
into the sanitary sewer system lines.
This leads to a spike in the volume of water flowing into the plant and
forces it to deal with more water than it was designed to handle.
Richwood is currently under order from the Ohio EPA to fix the problem.
Village administrator Ron Polen noted that patching up the sewer lines
would be pricey. He said a more cost effective way to deal with the
groundwater spikes would be to build a large holding tank where the
water could be stored and later put through the plant at a controlled
volume.
Bischoff introduced council to John Rauch of Rural Assistance Community
Program (RACP). RACP helps rural areas find federal money to fund large
water and sewer projects.
Rauch said his group's services would be free to the village, with the
exception of a handful of duties which could be requested. He said his
company's job is to find grant money for villages and put together the
most manageable means to fund large projects.
Rauch said he would need to see the village's water and sewer rate
schedule, learn its residents' median income and learn the scope of the
proposed project before proceeding.
In other business, council:
. Learned of a problem with collapsed field tiles in a field in the area
of Hoskins Road. The tiles are outside of the village limit but do carry
village runoff. Polen said he would check with Union County Engineer
Steve Stolte to see if the village could legally assist in repairing the
tiles.
. Received invitations to the unveiling of the artists rendering of the
Northern Union County Veterans Memorial at the Richwood Park. The
unveiling will be held April 28 at 2 p.m.
. Received a comprehensive study of the village infrastructure from
Bischoff. The study was funded by Community Development Block Grant
money. Bischoff said the document is flexible and is meant to be used as
a planning tool.
. Opted to go forward with additional window repairs at the town hall.
. Discussed the dedication of the town hall Bicentennial marker on May
15 at 1 p.m.
. Decided to open the restrooms at the village park.
. Decided not to hold a spring cleanup day for the village.
. Learned that the village wood chipper is being used again but is
intended only to service limbs felled by storms, not landscaping
projects.
. Opted to begin the village streetsweeping program for the warm-weather
season.
. Decided to deny an application for village water and sewer services
for a business just outside the village limits.

Nothing can slow down Miriam Hildreth
By CORINNE BIX
Miriam Hildreth has lived many lifetimes in her almost 88 years as a 4-H
advisor, businesswoman, jeweler, poet, composer, musician and community
contributor.
Hildreth will be honored next month as the 2004 Union County Inductee to
the 29th Annual Central Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame.
Born and raised in Union County, Hildreth began to build her long list
of accomplishments while just barely an adult. At age 19, Hildreth was
newly married and began her work as a 4H advisor.  She first became
involved with the group when she was 9 years old.
Hildreth also founded the 4-H endowment fund in 1995 for Union County
youth. The money from the endowment fund is used to help supplement
local 4-H funds. This year will mark her 70th year as an advisor.
Along with volunteering her time through 4-H, Hildreth and her husband,
Harold, owned Hildreth' Jewelry Store from 1940-1995. Hildreth's was
located in the area that now houses the Union County Foundation.
Hildreth herself is a graduate of the Gemological Institute of Los
Angeles.
Harold passed away nine years ago. "If he had lived one more month we
would have been married for 60 years," Hildreth said.
Together Hildreth and her husband ran their store for 55 years until a
fire destroyed the property in 1995. Over her many years as a business
owner, Hildreth received awards and accolades for her business savvy.
"I was the first president and a charter member of the Marysville
Business Professional Women (B.P.W.) in 1946," Hildreth explained, "I
was later named the Marysville B.P.W. Woman of the year in 1986."
In addition, she was nominated for the Women of Ohio Hall of Fame in
1996. While leading a successful professional career in the community,
Hildreth was also indulging in a favorite pastime, writing poetry, song
lyrics and composing her own music.
"I'm always jotting things down here and there on the backs of
envelopes," she said.
Hildreth said poetry and lyrics have always come to her and when struck
with an idea she never hesitated to write it down. Every so often she
would make a point to go through all of her scraps and put the various
lines together to create poems and lyrics.
Over the past 15 years, Hildreth has had countless works published
nationally and internationally. Two of her many awards include an
editor's choice award for outstanding achievement in poetry by the
National Library of Poetry in 1996 and 1998. In 1996 she was asked to
read her poetry in Washington, D.C., at the International Society of
Poetry Convention.
In 1996, the National Library of Poetry published Hildreth's hymn, "Hear
the Savior's Voice on High," in the book "Best of the 90s." She has had
several other works published in NLP publications over the past decade.
Mary Ellen Dillion nominated Hildreth for the Central Ohio Senior
Citizens Hall of Fame. Dillion first officially met Hildreth six years
ago through Dillion's father.
"My father got Alzheimer's and he met Miriam through local senior
citizen trips," Dillion explained, "Miriam and I became good friends
over that situation."
However, Dillion said she has always known of Hildreth since she was a
child, given her vast list of accomplishments
"Everything she has ever done has been for the benefit of others,"
Dillion said, "She's so community oriented and she sacrifices her own
wants and needs for the good of others."
One of Hildreth's recent contributions includes sending more than a
dozen boxes of clothing and supplies to Native American reservations in
Oklahoma, Montana and South Dakota.
"The Native Americans are the forgotten people," Hildreth said. She has
worked with 10 tribes and is primarily involved with the Soaring Eagles.

Dillion describes Hildreth as a spectacular woman who is positive and
always smiling. "She shows no sign of stopping and the community is
enriched by her presence," she added.
When asked if she is looking forward to next month's Hall of Fame
ceremony, Hildreth said it was nice getting the congratulatory letter in
the mail. Her secret to success is believing that age is only a number.
"People will say to me 'Miriam you don't look your age' or 'you don't
act your age' and I respond, 'why should I?" Hildreth said.
She also has a very strong faith and has been an active member in the
Marysville First United Methodist Church and the Pharisburg United
Methodist Church. Hildreth said she believes in staying close to the
Lord and doing what you can for other people by helping where you are
needed.
Hildreth also plays saxophone and piano and runs Hildreth's Gift Granary
out of the Hildreth family home on Sandusky road. The home was
originally built in 1850. More information on shop hours may be obtained
by contacting Hildreth at 644-0252.

Knowing weapons laws critical
By RYAN HORNS
As Union County residents continue applying for concealed carry permits,
the question for both law enforcement and the public will be "Are we
prepared?"
Scott Wagner, law enforcement commander at Columbus State University,
held a class for Union County Sheriff's deputies April 2. He told
officers that the people taking his classes on the new law are not the
kind of people law enforcement might expect. They have included county
public safety officers, business men, former military professionals and
even auctioneers.
"They have been the ones you cheer for when they shoot a burglar in
their house or stop a robbery," Wagner said.
So are law enforcement officials worried about putting more guns in the
hands of citizens they are paid to protect? Wagner said officers he has
spoken to are mainly concerned about following procedure.
During his discussion with Union County deputies, he reminded them that
the concealed carry laws are new and because of this, they contain
errors and vague language. He also warned that legislators have already
announced they will make no changes until the laws have been in effect
for a year.
Union County Sheriff's Department weapons instructor Eric Yoakam said
law enforcement officials may want to consider the way they approach a
vehicle during a traffic stop. Using the passenger side window is one
way to avoid danger in cases of high traffic but it may also be a good
way to see inside when concealed weapons are involved. The majority of
people are right-handed and they would naturally place the weapon on the
passenger side.
Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson offered a few recommendations for
drivers to follow if they are pulled over in their vehicles.
He said drivers stopped with a legal weapon inside their vehicle should
not get out of the vehicle. A check on the license plate will show
whether the driver is a concealed carry permit holder or not. When the
officer approaches, the driver must immediately inform him he has a
concealed weapon permit and where the weapon is located.
He said drivers should also keep their hands on the wheel or in plain
sight and perhaps even turn the dome light on. Drivers should not reach
for the weapon because even touching it inside a vehicle is against the
law.
Nelson said the idea is to make the situation easier on the police
officer. A tense environment can be created when weapons are involved.
"Be aware of your movements," he explained.
Other mistakes drivers may make, he said, include being forgetful about
the weapon. Someone may have his gun properly contained in his vehicle
and decide to make a stop at a place of business or a government office
where weapons are illegal.
"The driver may put the weapon underneath the seat while they go inside
and then forget about it," Nelson said. "If they drive off and get
pulled over, they can be charged."
Yoakam said residents can think of the laws applying to carrying their
weapon while walking on the street as opposite to having one in their
vehicle. The weapon should be concealed from view on the street but the
minute they step in their car they must have the gun holstered in plain
sight.
In Union County, Wagner said, trainees shoot what they plan to carry
after getting their license, he said. In other places instructors may
provide small handguns even though people may own a larger pistol. He
said they may not be prepared for the difference in the weapons.

www.ag.state.oh.us Revised 4/8/2004
Concealed Carry FAQ

Q. Where do I apply for a license?
A. At the sheriff's office where you reside or in an adjacent county.
Q. When can I apply?
A. You can apply on April 8, 2004
Q. Do I have to get a license before I get training?
A. No. In fact, it's recommended that people get training now.
Q. If I have been trained already, do I have to do it again?
A. No, as long as the training occurred within three years of your
application for a license and was done by a certified instructor who
teaches the law's minimum educational requirements.
Q. How much training do I need?
A. A minimum of 12 hours, including two hours on a firing range, and a
written and physical test provided by a certified trainer.
Q. If I am active or retired military or a law enforcement officer, how
do I get a license to carry a concealed handgun?
A. Under H.B. 12, your competency certification may take the form of a
document that shows your active or retired status, and must also
demonstrate that, through your position, you acquired experience
handling firearms equivalent to the statute's minimum educational
requirements. You must have obtained the equivalent experience within
six years before you apply
Q. How do I find a licensed instructor?
A. You can search for a licensed instructor on the Ohio Attorney
General's website at
www.ag.state.oh.us/web_applications/concealcarry/About.asp where you
will find the following links, "Search for OPOTC Certified Concealed
Carry Instructors" and "Search for NRA Certified Instructors."
Q. How do I know if someone is certified?
A. Ask to see their certificate and verify that they will teach the
law's educational requirements. For more information, you may also want
to refer to the Attorney General's Concealed Carry Training Fact Sheet.
Q. Is cost of training part of the license fee?
A. No.
Q. What does the license cost?
A. The law says up to $45, however, if a federal criminal history check
is made of an applicant who has been an Ohio resident for less than five
years, the fee can be the actual cost of $24 for the federal check, plus
the $45.
Q. Once I start the process, how long before I get my license?
A. The sheriffs expect a high demand initially. The law requires the
sheriff to issue a license within 45 days of receipt of a completed
application unless you do not qualify.
Q. Who keeps all this information and is it public?
A. The county sheriff keeps license information. Supporting
documentation, which is not a public record, must be destroyed within 20
days. Journalists may obtain the license holder's name, date of birth,
county of issuance and the type of license granted. The Attorney
General's office must keep statistical information about the licenses to
be compiled in an annual report to be issued no later than July 8, 2005.

Q. Do I have to carry the license with me?
A. Yes, as long as you have the gun with you, either on your person or
in your vehicle.
Q. Do I have to tell a police officer I have a concealed weapon?
A. Yes, if you are stopped by an officer and transporting a loaded
weapon inside the vehicle, you must promptly announce that you have a
license and that a weapon is in the vehicle or on your person. Officials
recommend that everyone, with a weapon or not, put their hands on the
steering wheel of their vehicle. Do not reach for anything. Doing so may
suggest to an officer that you are reaching for a gun. Do not get out of
the vehicle and comply with all instructions.
Q. How do I carry my concealed handgun while driving?
A. Make sure the handgun is in a holster on your person in plain sight,
locked in a glove compartment or locked in a transport box in plain
sight.
Q. If I have a (CCW) license and I encounter a place where weapons are
prohibited by law, such as a business with a posted sign or a government
building, what can I do with my handgun?
A. It's best to secure a handgun out of sight in your vehicle. If you
have a permit and intend to leave your gun in your car, you must store
it in a locked glove compartment or locked gun case that is in plain
sight (R.C. 2923.16.). It is also instructional to refer back to the
current law on transporting a weapon in a car (even if you do not have a
concealed carry license). Under current law (R.C. 2923.12.), the gun
must be unloaded and stored in either:
 . A compartment that can be reached only by leaving the vehicle such as
a trunk or lockbox;
 . In plain sight and secured in a rack or holder made for the purpose;
 . In plain sight with the action open or the weapon stripped or, if the
firearm is of a type on which the action will not stay open or which
cannot easily be stripped, in plain sight. Always remember to use
extreme caution when unloading your gun.
Q. Should I bring my gun with me when I apply for a license at the
sheriff's office?
A. No. You cannot carry a gun into a sheriff's office.
Q. Can I carry the gun concealed everywhere else?
A. No. Weapons are prohibited at some locations such as schools and
government buildings. Also, local businesses will decide whether to
allow guns on their property and employers will decide whether employees
can bring guns to work. For more information, please refer to page 9 of
the Attorney General's Concealed Carry Law publication.
Q. How will I know?
A. Those who prohibit guns must post a sign at the entrance of their
facility. For the full Concealed-Carry Weapons law, go to
www.ag.state.oh.us.

Locals line up for gun permits
Editor's note: This is the first of a three part series looking at the
local impact of House Bill 12 which will allow Ohioans to carry
concealed weapons.
By RYAN HORNS
Today marks the first day citizens of all 88 Ohio counties will be
allowed to start applying for the right to carry concealed weapons. It
is a law that has left many Ohioans happy and many others debating right
to the very end.
According to Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson, 25 percent of the
100,000 population in Muskingum County is expected to apply for permits
to carry concealed weapons this week. While he doesn't expect as many
people to apply in Union County, his office has been preparing for the
controversial new concealed carry law to go into effect.
This morning at the courthouse a total of 22 applicants had already
filled out their paperwork before 10 a.m.
On Jan. 7, House Bill 12 was passed by state legislators. The next day
the bill was signed into law by Governor Bob Taft. The change in law
means Ohio will be the 37th state to grant the licenses.
Nelson said his office has scheduled reasonable hours for Union County
applicants and they will accept applications from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. every
day. The cost to the department so far has been $8,200.
His office received the final application forms on March 22. Since then,
he said, things have been moving fast - maybe a little too fast. To
prepare, deputies have been receiving training in how to handle the new
law and staff members have been shifted to help with processing
applications.
Union County residents hoping to obtain the new licenses have been
joining training classes to meet the requirements. To apply, Ohio
citizens must contact their local firing range or the local National
Rifle Association for certified training. Every applicant needs a
minimum of 12 hours training by a certified instructor, including two
hours on a firing range and 10 hours of class time explaining their
weapon and the new law.
The organization Ohioans For Concealed Carry is asking those applying to
have a completed application, proof of training, and a 2-inch-square
color photo ready at the time of application. The web site
www.ohioccw.org contains information on the new laws.
Most of all, OCC reports, people should be patient with what could very
well be long lines. Sheriff's departments across Ohio will be
undertaking a new responsibility, with new forms, new machines and new
background check procedures.
State law sets permit prices at $45 but the price goes up an additional
$25 if a federal criminal history check must be performed. Any applicant
who has been a resident of Ohio for less than five years will need one.
The sheriff's department has 45 days from the date an applicant submits
the required documents and payment to perform background checks and
issue a license or deny the applicant.
But be aware, Nelson said, anyone applying for the permit will need to
know the 26-page Ohio's Concealed Carry Law handbook like the back of
his hand. Not following the rules laid out in the handbook or even
misunderstanding the laws could result in misdemeanor and felony
offenses.
Applicants will need to know about laws concerning entering businesses,
what to do when being pulled over by police and how to properly store
and carry their guns. There are 15 procedures to follow for applying for
the concealed carry permits.
Nelson said businesses will also need to educate themselves on the new
concealed carry law. While no-gun policies are already established for
places like liquor stores, bars and government buildings, the rules for
local businesses aren't as easily determined because allowing weapons
inside their stores is entirely up to business owners. If they do not
allow guns, they must place a conspicuous sign on their window or front
door. A printable version of the sign is available at the Ohio Attorney
General web site, http://www.ag.state.oh.us.
Nelson noted that residents should not bring their weapons to the
sheriff's office when they apply since it is illegal to take weapons
into a government building.
Today Nelson will also be joining Ohio Attorney General Jim Petro in
Columbus for a state meeting on the law. Petro will explain concealed
carry rules and the work his office and the state law enforcement
community has done in preparation for it. Joining in the discussion will
be Fairfield County Sheriff Dave Phalen, Franklin County Sheriff James
Karnes and Summit County Sheriff Drew Alexander.

City to borrow $1 Million

By RYAN HORNS
The big discussion of Marysville city council Thursday night was not the
sale of city land but the more familiar topic of street repairs.
The third and final reading on an ordinance allowing Mayor Tom Kruse to
borrow $1 million for street repairs was heavily debated. In the end,
council members voted 6 to 1 to grant him the power to move forward with
his plan. Kruse has proposed borrowing the money for a five-year period.

Council member Mark Reams was the only dissenting vote. He proposed
tabling the issue for further discussion, stating that he was concerned
about taking a city budget that was already balanced and spending more
revenue than it received. Several council members and administrators
disagreed. The question to be answered was the difference between good
debt and bad debt.
Gore said he has also struggled with borrowing the money to start fixing
streets. At first he planned to vote no but he began receiving petitions
from residents who wanted their streets fixed first.
"The city is in dire need of street repairs," he said. "I think it has
reached a point of people being tired of driving on a washboard."
City finance director John Morehart pointed out that borrowing money for
streets would not put the city in bad debt. He explained that with the
recent increase in gas taxes, the city will be getting more revenue to
pay off the debt service in the next four to five years.
"There is a method to this whole thing," Kruse said.
He explained that it is a five-year loan and the city may be in a
position to pay off the debt service before then. His plan is to use
funds from the city's reserves to pay off the first couple of years and
as the city begins to bring in more revenue from growth and gas taxes,
it can shift away from using the reserves funds.
As the city's economic development plan kicks in, he added, growth would
also give the city more revenue to deal with. Kruse added that the
city's debt is not as big as it has been made out to be. He said there
is currently $2.3 million in the city reserves.
"We're not a bank here," he said. "We should be using money for people's
benefit."
Council member Ed Pleasant said he opposed tabling the issue, adding
that waiting has only added to the cost of the projects.
Members then voted to allow Kruse to go forward.
Regarding the sale of city lands, Marysville residents have already
begun criticizing the city's plan to sell its unwanted properties. The
result was a council chamber full of people waiting to hear an
explanation.
Residents were quiet during the first reading of all five land sale
resolutions apparently because council and administrators explained
their side of the issue and stressed that they have the resident's best
interests in mind.
Gore said residents do not need to be concerned about the land sales.
Council's public works committee has looked at 51 city-owned properties
and picked five to start with. But he said the actual process of how to
sell the land is not clear at this time.
"There is nothing imminent of any property being sold at this point," he
said.
Kruse said the city will be very careful about how the sales might
affect adjacent property owners and will work with adjacent land owners
before land bids are put out publicly.
"Just because the resolution authorizes the administration to sell
lands," Kruse said, "it doesn't mean we have to. Each one needs to be
looked at carefully."
Reams expressed his dislike of the city possibly selling the 410  S.
Main St. location to Memorial Hospital of Union County which has stated
its interest in purchasing the land for expansion. Reams said that land
was purchased as the best site available for a future city
administration building and he asked that it not be sold unless another
location can be chosen first. He asked everyone to consider the future
and what they might need the property for 10 to 15 years down the road.
Kruse said the hospital is a part of the community as well and the city
needs to consider their future and how they can better serve the well
being of the citizens. He said if the land were to go to a public
bidding process, someone else might buy it, which would hamper any
future expansion for the hospital.
In other topics:
. Municipal Court Judge Michael Grigsby swore in Floyd Golden as the new
Marysville Chief of Police. Golden introduced his family in the audience
and thanked the mayor for the opportunity.
. Council's third and final reading declaring opposition against the
Intermodal Railyard was passed. The decision was met with audience
applause.



City hopes property sale won't affect homeowners
By RYAN HORNS
The Marysville City Council meeting may have a larger attendance tonight
because of a number of for sale signs that may go up around town.
Adjacent property owners have already begun voicing their concerns after
the city revealed this week that the first reading will be held on five
resolutions to accept bids on the sale of city properties.
The city Public Works Committee has been studying which properties to
sell or lease since 2003 in a process that began during former mayor
Steve Lowe's administration.
While the topic was raised by city council at that time, as the city
searched for ways to bring in more revenue, Mayor Tom Kruse said the
sales are not intended to be used as money makers.
Kruse explained that the purpose of the land sales Wednesday afternoon.
He said the point is not to simply acquire quick cash for the city
because the amount of money the sales could generate would be nominal in
the grand scheme of things. The point is to dispose of land that costs a
great deal in maintenance for Marysville.
"Simply put, they are properties that the city somehow collected over
the years," he said.
Part of the lands the city received, he said, came from a parkland
development ordinance that gave developers the choice to donate land in
payment to the city in lieu of donating money. Kruse said the city now
makes that decision.
The sale of the land is also intended to help eradicate what he said has
become a maintenance headache for city workers. The lands the city hopes
to sell are properties they have no use for and the cost of keeping up
with mowing grass and making repairs finally needed to be addressed.
 Several residents have said they plan to be at the meeting tonight to
say it has been the neighborhoods maintaining those areas and not the
city. Some have also reported a fear of developers snatching up the
lands and then ruining their neighborhoods.
"I'm not going to allow that to happen," Kruse said.
An ordinance will have its first reading tonight which he said will
allow the city permission to set up some mechanics to sell those
properties.
Parcels up for sale include:
. An area near Scott Circle, located to the north behind homes.
. Barrhaven Park
. 410 S. Main St.
. 441 S. Plum St. (former Penn Oil site)
.  A location at the corner of Raymond Road and West Fifth Street
Kruse said the city intends to make sure the land sales do not create an
adverse impact on adjacent property owners.
For example, he said, there are a couple of pieces of property for sale
near Memorial Hospital of Union County and hospital administrators have
indicated they would like to discuss those pieces of land as an option
for future growth. He said they would like to discuss keeping their
options open.
After council approves the resolutions to sell the lands, Kruse said he
will set up a procedure to make sure they aren't sold to people looking
to develop the lands in adverse ways.
"Hopefully the adjacent property owners will be able to purchase the
property at nominal cost," he said.
For the time being, he said, the administration will come up with the
best mechanism possible to make the land sales an agreeable situation
for both the city and the adjacent property owners.


Kempfer's Framing formed from a dream
After almost three decades in Marysville, Kempfer's Framing and Art has
kept the public stocked with their artistic needs.
In 1973 Les and Darleen Kempfer bought the building which had been
built by John W. Starr in 1875 for a tailor shop. At the time, he was
moving his business from Plum Street.
Before 1973, Darleen said, the building was used as a barber shop,
beauty shop and Wright's Shoe Repair.
She said what is now known as Kempfer's Framing and Art, started out as
Les' dream to someday own his own business.
"From youth he collected old books and paper material," she said.
By May 2, 1975 he had a collection of 5,000 antique prints of collector
books and overstocks. She said people could not find frames for the odd
size antique prints so they added framing services.
"It became a very good business," Darleen said.
Because of the success, she said they changed the store name to
Kempfer's Framing and Art in 1978.
From there the business soon added art supplies and Les perfected his
abilities of restoring old frames for his customers. A local doctor soon
convinced them to start carrying art paints.
On July 6, 1987, Les suffered a heart attack and their son Mark helped
for some time, Darleen said. But she said his heart wasn't in it and
even with the help of her grandson, Justin, he could only work on
vacations and in the summer.
Now, after 29 years of running Kempfer's Framing and Art and 17 years as
a teacher, she plans to retire.
"Several people are interested in the framing part of the business," she
said.
The store is located at 120 N. Main St. and is open to customers between
10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Appointments are also available upon request. The
store will also be having a special sale on prints.
"This is a wonderful place to live and work," she said. "Thank you for
giving me such a wonderful life."

 

Scotts: rumors of layoffs untrue

By RYAN HORNS
Despite claims by a political action organization that the Scotts
Company is terminating its local Information Technology Department, the
company reports the rumors are untrue.
Mary Kirschenbaum of the Organization for the Rights of American Workers
claims  the local lawncare company is expected to lay off its entire
Information Technology Department, which handles its computer
operations. She also said the company plans to transfer the department
to India to be run by low wage workers.
Similar rumors concerning the future of the department have been
circulating throughout the community recently.
Scotts Company public relations representative Jim King said Tuesday
afternoon that Kirschenbaum's claim is not true.
"For her to say we made a decision is certainly flatly false," he said.
"Quite honestly we have not decided to do anything at this point."
Kirschenbaum said she learned of the alleged out-sourcing plan from a
Columbus contact. She refused to name the source of her information.
King said he has problems with Kirschenbaum's political agenda and her
use of anonymous sources to back up her claims.
Regarding the rumor, he said, what the company has decided to do is
conduct an internal survey to find out how the IT department can be run
in a more cost effective way. He said Scotts already took the IT
department aside several weeks ago and told them of this survey. Their
next step was to tell the entire staff.
"We have a lot of rumors and a lot of half truths circulating," King
said.
The Scotts Company, he said, is trying to have a full and open
disclosure of information with its employees about their options. The
point of the survey is to help determine to what extent Scotts will need
to use outside resources to handle its computer department costs.
King further explained that Scotts does not actively recruit or import
employees from other countries.
Scotts has had layoffs in the past. In the mid-1990s the Scotts Company
merged with Miracle Grow and other international lawn companies. The
result was that instead of one department handling certain operations,
there were suddenly four, King said. In 2001 the company worked to
streamline those combined operations due to the mergers.
"There were some redundancies," King said. "The 2001 restructuring was
based on that."
He said he understands that there is always some uncertainty during a
survey process similar to their IT department's. However, for
Kirschenbaum to report that Scotts has laid off its computer department
is completely false.
Until the internal survey is completed, Scotts does not know if they
will use "third parties outside here, third parties in the United
States, third parties overseas or any combination of that," he said.
King also explained that the survey could tell them not to change a
thing with the department.
"At this point nothing has been excluded from the discussion," he said

N. Lewisburg announces plan to move covered bridge
By CORINNE BIX
The North Lewisburg City Council agreed on Tuesday night to join forces
with the Union County Engineers in order to move the covered bridge at
North Lewisburg Road to the village's multi-use bike path.
It has been estimated that the one-lane bridge averages 1600 vehicles
per day. Due to the age and dilapidation of the structure a move was
evident due to the high traffic use. The bridge, originally constructed
in 1868, would be moved to the east end of the path and serve as an
entrance and exit onto the Village of North Lewisburg's multi-use path.
The village will partner with the Union County Engineers in submitting
an enhancement application to ODOT for funds to relocate the structure.
"It adds beauty and it adds history to our path," Barry First, village
administrator, said.
Council also authorized First to submit an application for a Community
Development Block Grant for general funds for the multi-use path. The
village hopes to spearhead a campaign with the Union County
Commissioners to extend the entire bike path from the village end point
at Inskeep Cratty Road to the Marysville Honda Auto Plant.
"If it all goes well we hope to get it to go farther than we thought and
in less time," First said.
Gary Silcott, village engineer, reported to the board on last week's
trip to Georgia to tour a wastewater treatment plant using a new
membrane technology developed in Japan. The village is in the process of
improving and expanding its current wastewater treatment facility.
Silcott traveled to Georgia with Andy Yoder, village water and
wastewater representative and two members of council. Everyone reported
to the board that the technology presented was very impressive.
"It really looks too good to be true," Yoder said.
Yoder admitted to the board that he was skeptical when he left for
Georgia but came back with very few concerns. His concerns included the
newness of the technology, the way the plant would operate in cold
weather and the possible need to do an extra cleaning due to the
hardness of local water.
However, all four men agreed the numbers make a big difference when
considering this new technology. This proposal would save $300,000 to
$500,000 for the village because the existing concrete structure can be
used. Councilman Dave Scott said he feels the new system allows for more
flexibility and more control for the operator.
 The plant in Georgia is located in a very well to do community and
because the technology is so advanced, the village engineers said there
iss very little odor even in the enclosed plant.
The North Lewisburg wastewater plant currently treats 170,000 gallons of
water a day. An original proposal, which included a traditional
renovation, would allow for 320,000 gallons treated per day and the new
membrane technology allows for 420,000 gallons.
The MBR or Membrane Bio-Reactor system is modular and can grow as the
village grows. Yoder said he feels the majority of his questions were
answered thoroughly and he added that he didn't see how the plant could
ever be hurt biologically.
Council authorized Silcott to move forward on a design for the MBR
system. Silcott said he expects the paperwork to take about six months
to complete and process through the EPA.
Mayor Richard Willis asked council to support him on a letter written to
the Rush Township Trustees. Willis has asked the trustees to take action
in eliminating a junkyard on the east side of the village. Since the
junkyard is over the corporation line the village has no jurisdiction
and can only offer to help to remove it.
Officer Kemp gave the Champaign Coutny Sheriff's Office report: Monthly
activity in the Village of North Lewisburg included 10 traffic
citations, six warnings issued for traffic violations, 13 incident
reports, 22 cases of assistance given to citizens, five arrests made,
three civil and criminal papers served, 16 follow-up investigations,
four instances of juvenile contacts, one open door and one auto accident
report taken.
In other business, council:
 . Authorized a contract with A-1 Pest for mosquito control for 2004 at
a cost of $2,420.
 . Reviewed a C-1, C-2 liquor transfer from Packman's IGA to Steve's
Market and Deli at 184 E. Maple Street
 . Shared a thank-you letter to council from the Friends of the Library

Sheriff warns of scam
From J-T staff reports:
Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson would like residents to be alert for
lighting rod scam artists in the area. Similar scams have been reported
in Putnam, Wyandot, Henry and Fulton counties within the past two weeks.
Nelson is releasing the following information on the alleged suspects:
A male suspect is using the name of "Pete Miller" and is described as 5
feet 9 inches tall to 5 feet 11 inches tall, weighing 170 to 185 pounds,
with brown hair.
He is approximately 25 to 30 years old and is accompanied by a man using
the name of John Collins, 6 feet to 6 feet 3 inches tall, weighing 210
to 230 pounds with graying hair, approximately 35 to 40 years old.
Suspects are possibly using a Texas or Louisiana identification. Their
vehicles include a gray SUV and a van type vehicle or green or grayish
color Jeep Cherokee.
Residents who are approached by these individuals are asked to call the
Union County Sheriff's Office 645-4100 and report the incident
immediately.


Local artist draws from her life for inspiration
By CORINNE BIX
Local artist Julie Robinson has always used her art to paint the
backdrop for a life built around her family.
Robinson, 44, has been painting and drawing since she was a girl. She
has been married for almost 23 years to her husband, Jeff, and together
they have four daughters. Robinson has always put her family first but
has relied on her art throughout her life as an emotional expression.
Originally from the Richwood area, Robinson has spent the majority of
her life in Union County. She married young and started a family
immediately. Little did the Robinsons know how big a family they were
starting. Twin daughters, Ashley and Erin, were born to the couple
within their first year of marriage and two years later came daughter
Hailey.
"I was extremely busy; my life was pretty much a blur for the first five
years of our marriage," Robinson said.
This left little time for art which came as a change for Robinson who
had fostered her talent throughout high school and early college.
Under the direction of Larry Joseph, a retired art teacher from North
Union, Robinson felt her interest in art was really sparked when she was
just a freshman in high school.
"I was awarded a scholarship to the Columbus College of Art and Design
under his guidance," she said.
In addition, Robinson won a prestigious best of show award in a Union
County art show in an adult category when she was still in high school.
After graduation she spent a year completing a program in fashion
illustration at a fashion merchandising college in Milwaukee, Wis., as
well as taking art classes at the Ohio State University.
However, Robinson knew that her eventual place in the world would be as
a wife and mother.
As her children began to grow, Robinson was able to return more to her
art. Her preferred mediums are drawing and watercolors.
"I feel I have a knack for drawing people," she said.
For the most part her watercolors have been still lifes but she does
recall a watercolor of Jesus Christ that she painted for a friend and
devout Christian in college.
Robinson has painted some murals in the area including a Noah's Ark
mural in a classroom at the Richwood First United Methodist Church and a
mural in the library of Claiborne Elementary School. She has been asked
to paint another mural in the new North Union elementary school once it
is completed.
"Over the years people would call and ask me to do some odds and ends
because they knew I was artistic," Robinson said.
One of these odds and ends was sketching the Richwood Opera House to be
used as a silk screen on the city's welcome flags found up and down
Franklin Street.
Robinson found her art to be more than a pastime when one of her
daughter's underwent a three-and-a-half year battle with anorexia.
Under the suggestion of a therapist, Robinson began to use her art to
express her feelings of despair over her daughter's devastating illness.
She said the "art as therapy" was very helpful and describes the artwork
from that time as being very dark.
Robinson said when she sits down to draw or paint she can already
envision the piece completed on her canvas. Oftentimes, she said, she
would dismiss her talent since it comes so easily to her, however, she
is reminded of her gift when she enters the home or business of a family
friend and is pleased to see one her works framed and displayed proudly.

Along with caring for her family and working on her art, Robinson is a
4-H advisor for a horse club in Richwood. She has just completed
painting a picture of a horse and Jack Russell terrier. The piece will
be put up for silent auction to help the Richwood fair board raise funds
for a horse barn on the fairgrounds.
Robinson also specializes in faux finishing and specialty Christmas
cards. Robinson, her husband and their youngest daughter, McKenzie, live
on Route 4.



Schools rocked by events
Crash claims life of eighth grader; high school teacher dies
suddenly
By RYAN HORNS
Grief counselors at Marysville schools are helping students and teachers
deal with the loss of two of their own over a two-day period.
On Tuesday morning a Marysville eighth grade student was killed in a car
accident near Irwin. The day before, Marysville High School teacher
Dennis McKee, 57, died unexpectedly.
A sharp turn in the road near Irwin has long been considered a hazard
for local residents. Tuesday morning an accident at the turn claimed the
life of Tiffany S. Phillips, 14, of 255 W. Third St. Phillips was
pronounced dead at the scene by Union County Coroner, Dr. David
Applegate.
At around 11 a.m. a 1993 Dodge Shadow driven by Matthew T. Straight, 19,
of 71 W. Ninth St. was southbound on Route 4 when it went left of center
on the curve and struck a northbound semi head-on. The truck collided
with the front passenger side corner of the Dodge and left the vehicle a
crumpled mess of twisted metal where Phillips was sitting.
The 1992 Kenworth semi truck, filled with giant springs and other large
metal automotive parts, was driven by Howard F. Hendrix, 59, of
Cincinnati.
At the scene, fire department crews commented that Hendrix may have
broken his leg in the incident. He was the first victim to leave the
scene and was transported by Marysville medics to Memorial Hospital of
Union County. Hospital employees reported this morning that he was
treated and has since been released from care.
Fire crews from Pleasant Valley, Union Township, Allen Township,
Mechanicsburg and Catawba and officers from the Union County Sheriff's
Department and the Ohio State Highway Patrol responded to the accident.
Traffic was tied up for more than an hour.
Neighborhood residents came out of their homes and stood on their front
lawns asking questions about the accident. Many commented that they had
always known the sharp curve was dangerous and that something should be
done.
The tone of medical crews and firefighters was grim as they worked
steadily at cutting the entire top off the Dodge to free Straight and
Phillips from the wreck.
A MedFlight helicopter soon arrived and reportedly transported Straight
to the Ohio State University Hospital. Phillips was transported from the
scene in Applegate's vehicle.
According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol Marysville Post, Phillips and
Hendrix were both wearing their seat belts when the crash occurred. As
of late Tuesday afternoon troopers had not been able to determine if
Straight had been using a seatbelt at the time. It was also reported
that alcohol was not a factor in the crash. Lt. Marla Gaskill, commander
of the Marysville post of the state patrol, reported that the incident
is still under investigation.
While little information about McKee's death was available at presstime,
it was known that arrangements for his funeral are being made through
the Novak Funeral Home in Columbus. He was a teacher and freshman
football coach at the high school.
According to Nancy Streng of the Marysville schools grief counseling
team, plans should be finalized later today for the district to deal
with the tragedy. Streng said counselors will probably begin seeing
students and teachers tomorrow. She added that one counseling center
will be set up to help individuals deal with both tragedies.
Streng also said that transportation to McKee's out-of-town funeral and
viewing will be made available to students.
She said the grieving process could be particularly long and difficult
for students as the district is currently on spring break.
Anyone seeking information on the counseling sessions or transportation
to the funeral may call the board office, 644-8105, the high school,
642-0010, or Streng, 578-8280.

Off in a flash!
Teens expose themselves to numerous residents before being caught
By RYAN HORNS
Downtown homeowners and at least one businessman found themselves in the
middle of an illegal game of Candid Camera Tuesday night.
According to the Marysville Police Department, five 14-year-old males
were walking around knocking on doors in the 300 and 400 blocks of South
Main Street, the 300 block of South Plum Street and the Arbors
Appartment Complex between 7 and 10:30 p.m.
Police reported that the juveniles droped their pants and exposed
themselves when people answered their doors. Then the males shouted
obscenities before running off.
But for an added twist, police said, the males filmed the entire scene
with a video camera in order to catch the looks on the faces of their
victims.
At around 7:30 p.m. the juveniles made the mistake of trying the trick
on local attorney Don Fraser who was at work at the law offices of
Cannizzaro, Fraser, Bridges and Jillisky.
"I was sitting upstairs when I hear this pounding on the front door,"
Fraser said. "They pounded so hard it felt like it shook the building."
He expected it may have been a friend of his who often knocks on the
doors to say hello from time to time, he said, so he went to see who it
was.
"But I saw a kid looking through the side glass instead," he said.
When he opened the door the juvenile started yelling obscenities, which
was not what Fraser was expecting. He said after the boys finished
shouting, they all suddenly took off down the street.
"I decided to give a short chase and started down Seventh Street just to
make them run faster," Fraser said, laughing. "I suppose I yelled at the
top of my lungs, calling them chickens or something . They probably had
me on film."
He is not sure whether the juveniles had exposed themselves at any
point. They may have mooned him, he said.
Fraser said he saw a police cruiser parked near the Marysville Public
Library later on and assumed they were looking for the suspects. Police
reported receiving numerous complaints about the incidents and sent out
an unmarked cruiser. They later found the boys on West Fourth Street
standing outside one of their homes.
When he got home, Fraser said, he told the story to his wife.
"She said, 'You used to do the same thing when you were a kid'," he
laughed. "I told her I never did anything like that."
Fraser said the Monday night incident startled him a bit, but ultimately
it wasn't that bad.
"They shouldn't have been doing what they did," he said. "But no harm,
no foul."
All but one of the boys were from Marysville. Two reportedly live in the
500 block of West Fourth Street and another lives in the 500 block of
Mulberry Street. The fourth is reportedly from Raymond. The fifth
juvenile was with the others but allegedly did not commit any crimes.
All five were released into the custody of their parents Monday night
and the video camera footage was seized by police.


Sewer plant expansion eyed
By RYAN HORNS
Progress continues on addressing Marysville's infamous wastewater odors.

The city's wastewater treatment plant and collection system are being
watched closely by the Ohio EPA for emitting pollution into local
waterways during large rainstorms.
Marysville's growth over the years has strained the aging treatment
plant's capacity. Along with stormwater inflow problems, the plant and
collection system cannot always handle the inflow during wet weather.
Work has been underway on development of a Wastewater Master Study to
establish a short-term and long-term approach to solve the problem.
Earlier this week Marysville Mayor Tom Kruse, city council members Dan
Fogt and Mark Reams, city administrator Kathy House, city finance
director John Morehart, city engineer Phil Roush, wastewater plant
superintendent Tom Gault, Acting Utilities Director Terry Anderson, as
well as representatives from The Scotts Company and Honda met with
representatives from the Columbus-based engineering firm Malcolm Pirnie
to get up to date on progress being made on the Wastewater Master Study.

Tom Bulcher of Malcolm Pirnie presented to city officials five options,
explaining how the city can repair, modify and expand the treatment
plant and collection system and ultimately make the EPA happy while
sustaining growth.
Bulcher said the choices range from keeping the treatment plant where it
is and constructing an addition to the current treatment plant to
building an entirely new treatment plant at another site.
By the end of the meeting, Kruse and other officials said they were
leaning toward one proposal in particular. This plan includes modifying
the existing treatment plant to handle short-term needs while the
initial phase of a new plant is designed and constructed. For an interim
period, the newer part of the existing plant would be operated in
conjunction with the first phase of the new plant, with the older part
of the existing plant being available for standby duty.
As growth continues, a second phase of the new plant would be
constructed and the old plant would be taken out of service. As further
growth occurs, a third phase of the new plant would be constructed. As
the new plant is being phased in, improvements and additions in the
collection system would also be made. By constructing a new plant at an
alternate site, many of the existing aging pump stations which are
becoming overloaded because of growth could be eliminated.
Reams said the process is comparable to how school districts construct
new school buildings while continuing to use an old facility until the
new one is completed.
The construction would include making periodic repairs to the existing
plant to keep up with growth while making plans for the construction of
the new plant.
"It's a continuous thing," Roush explained.
Regarding the location of the future plant, city officials agreed the
Industrial Parkway area was the best bet. No specific site has been
decided upon yet.

Local churches outline holy week services
Next week is Holy Week and churches throughout the county will hold
special services to commemmorate the death and celebrate the
resurrection of Christ.
First English Lutheran Church, 687 London Ave., will hold Sunday School
classes at 9 a.m. Sunday with fellowship following at 10 a.m. Worship
services will begin at 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. with the chancel and
IHS choirs. Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services will begin at 7:30
p.m. An Easter breakfast will be served from 8 to 9:30 a.m. and worship
will begin at 10:30 a.m.
Palm Sunday services at St. John's Lutheran Church, 12809 Route 736,
will begin with an 8 a.m. traditional worship, Sunday School for all
ages at 9:15 a.m. and a traditional service with confirmation at 10:30
a.m. Maundy Thursday worship will be held at 4 and 7:30 p.m. and Good
Friday worship will begin at 1:30 and 7:30 p.m. Easter Sunday
traditional worship will be held at 8 and 10:30 a.m., with Sunday School
at 9:15 a.m. and an Easter egg hunt at 9:50 a.m.
Palm Sunday services at St. Paul Lutheran Church, 7960 Route 38, will
begin with an 8 a.m. contemporary worship, Bible class and Sunday School
at 9 a.m. and a 10 a.m. worship with confirmation. A Maundy Thursday
communion service and Good Friday service will be held at 7:30 p.m. An
Easter sunrise service with communion will begin at 7 a.m., followed by
an 8 a.m. breakfast and an Easter egg hunt. Sunday School and Bible
classes will begin at 9 a.m. and Easter festival worship with communion
will be held at 10 a.m.
Trinity Lutheran Church, 311 E. Sixth St., will begin Holy Week services
Palm Sunday with an 8 a.m. traditional service with the senior choir, a
9:15 a.m. contemporary service with the Praise Band and worship team and
a 10:30 a.m. spirited traditional service with the senior choir. Maundy
Thursday and Good Friday services will be held at 7 p.m. and the Second
Saturday Singin' will include an Easter vigil in song at 4:30 a.m.
Traditional Easter services will be held at 8 a.m. with the senior choir
and Trinity Chamber Orchestra, followed by a contemporary service at
9:15 a.m. with the Praise Band, worship team and orchestra. Easter
breakfast will be served from 8:45 to 10:45 a.m. The spirited
traditional service will feature the senior choir and orchestra. A
nursery will be provided for the two later services.
Holy Week masses at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church will begin with
a 4:30 p.m. Mass Saturday with distribution of the palm, followed by 9
and 11:30 a.m. masses Sunday with distribution of the palm at each Mass.
Masses will be celebrated at 7 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday and the Holy
Mass of the Last Supper will begin at 7 p.m. Maundy Thursday. Good
Friday services will be held at 1 and 7 p.m. and the Easter Vigil Mass
on Holy Saturday will begin at 8 p.m. Easter masses will begin at 9 and
11:30 a.m. The church is located at 1033 W. Fifth St.
The Marysville First Presbyterian Church, 210 W. Fifth St., will hold
Sunday School at 9 a.m. and worship at 10 a.m. Palm Sunday. Maundy
Thursday communion will begin at 7:30 p.m. and Easter Sunday worship is
at 10 a.m., preceded by Sunday School at 9 a.m.
The New California United Presbyterian Church, 10089 Industrial Parkway,
will hold a 10:30 a.m. service Palm Sunday at which the communicant's
class will join the church. A reception in their honor will follow the
service. The 7:45 p.m. Maundy Thursday communion service will include a
living tableau of the Last Supper. The Easter sunrise service be held at
7:30 a.m., followed by an 8 a.m. breakfast served by the youth group. An
Easter egg hunt will begin at 8:30 a.m. and Church School will be held
at 9:20 a.m. Traditional worship will begin at 10:30 a.m.
A communion service will be held at 11 a.m. Palm Sunday at the Woodstock
Free Will Baptist Church and a Feet Washing service will begin at 6 p.m.
Sunday. Easter worship will be held at 11 a.m.
Emmanuel Baptist Church, 309 S. Oak St., will hold Palm Sunday services
at 10:40 a.m. Easter services at 10:40 a.m. will feature the adult
ensemble and a special solo.
Calvary Baptist Church, 17376 Route 347, will hold Palm Sunday worship
at 10:30 a.m. and Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services at 7 p.m. An
Easter sunrise service will begin at 8:30 a.m., followed by breakfast at
9:30 a.m. Easter services will begin at 10:30 a.m. with baptism and the
Easter cantata.
The Milford Center United Methodist Church will hold traditional Palm
Sunday services at 10:30 a.m. with a Parade of Palms around the
sanctuary and special music by the chancel choir. Maundy Thursday
communion services will begin at 7 p.m. followed by a Tennebrae service.
Liberty Park will be the site of a 7:30 a.m. Easter sunrise service for
the entire community, weather permitting, followed by an Easter
breakfast at 8:15 a.m. at the church. Sunday School for all ages will
begin at 9 a.m. and a traditional Easter worship will be held at 10 a.m.
with special music. The church is located at 55 E. State St., Milford
Center.
The Ostrander United Methodist Church and Ostrander Presbyterian Church
will present the Easter cantata, "Out of the Shadow," Palm Sunday at the
10:30 a.m. service at the Presbyterian church and a 7 p.m. service at
the Methodist church. Refreshments will be served after the evening
performance. Maundy Thursday communion services will be held at 7:30
p.m. at the Presbyterian church and Good Friday services at 7:30 p.m. at
the Methodist church. A sunrise service and Easter breakfast will begin
at 7:30 a.m. at the Presbyterian church and each church will hold Easter
worship at 10:30 a.m.
The Marysville First United Methodist Church, 207 S. Court St., will
hold Palm Sunday services at 8:20, 9:30 and 10:45 a.m. and a 7 p.m.
special event will be the satellite showing of "The Case for Easter"
with Lee Stroble. Maundy Thursday communion services will begin at 7
p.m. Good Friday services will be held at noon and at 7 p.m. with a
Tennebrae service at the evening service. The Quake and Outbreak youth
groups will lead the 7 a.m. Easter SON-rise service and Easter
celebration worship will be at 8:20, 9:30 and 10:45 a.m.
Vineyard of Marysville, 913 W. Fifth St., will hold services at 6 p.m.
April 9 and at 10 a.m. Easter Sunday.
Christian Assembly Church, 1003 N. Maple St., will present the musical,
"Because He Lives," at 10:30 a.m. Palm Sunday and a Good Friday
communion service will begin at 7 p.m. The Easter sunrise service will
be at 6:30 a.m., followed by breakfast at 7:30 a.m. Easter worship
services will be held at 10:30 a.m.
Shiloh Chapel, 16435 Square Drive, will host an Easter egg hunt at 10
a.m. Saturday. Maundy Thursday services will be held at 7 p.m. and
Easter services will begin at 8:15 and 10:45 a.m.
Trinity Chapel, 77 W. Center St. in Milford Center, will hold Palm
Sunday services at 10:30 a.m. An Easter egg hunt will be hold at noon
April 10 for children through the fourth grade with a light lunch for
children. Those wishing to attend may call 349-3281 to register. Easter
services will begin at 10:30 a.m. Child care is available

 

Nowhere to go but up
'There goes the vacation''
Locals talk about effects of higher gas prices

By RYAN  HORNS
Locally, opinions on rising gas prices go from ambivalence to
disappointment.
London pastor Steve Smithberger said there's not much people can do when
the gas prices go up past $2 this summer.
"It will affect me," Smithberger said this morning, as he pumped gas
into his vehicle at the Marathon station on Main Street. "I don't have
much choice."
At the Shell station on East Fifth Street in Marysville, resident John
Simpson pumped gas into his truck. Simpson works for the Community
Action Organization, which he said helps out low-income families in
Union, Madison and Delaware counties. When he heard prices were going up
so much this summer, he was visibly disappointed.
"That's going to probably hurt," Simpson said. "There goes the
vacation."
The idea that the public may avoid vacationing this summer because of
gas prices has been a topic of national concern. Gas station owners may
also be concerned that people will stop buying items inside the store,
which is where they make the most of their money.
Lynn Simpson, manager of the Shell station on East Fifth Street, said
that contrary to what people think, stations don't make a lot of money
off of their gasoline. She said the majority of their money comes from
selling merchandise inside, such as food, drinks and lottery tickets.
"We make about .2 cents on the gallon for gas," Simpson said. "If
someone pumps $25 worth and then drives off without paying, we just lost
our profits for the whole day."
Simpson, no relation to John Simpson, said she believes there is not
much the public can do about the rising gas prices.
"People will do what they have to do," she said. "But they will complain
a lot - basically to us, when there is nothing we can do about it."
Simpson said one thing gas stations and police will see is more people
driving off without paying for gas.
"It'll cause a lot of problems," she said.
Marathon's manager Ira Webb said he has been working in gas stations for
the past 35 years. In that time, he has seen the prices go from 66 cents
a gallon in 1966 to the gasoline scare of the 1970s. He said he will now
prepare for the prices to skyrocket this summer.
"In the 70s we had gas lines all the way down the block and we were only
open three days a week," he said. "There was only so much we could sell
in a day. We actually had to call the police in order to have them shut
down the line. Everybody was scared to death they wouldn't be able to
get gas."
At that time, Webb said, he was a station attendant in Huntington, W.V.,
and he moved to Ohio when stations started shutting down in West
Virginia.
Webb said his station always tries to stay competitive with its prices,
setting them lower than Columbus at times. He said their business
probably won't be hit too hard by people using other modes of
transportation.
"We sell a ton of cigarettes," he noted.
Webb said the lowest he has seen gas prices recently was in the late
1990s when they hit 99 cents a gallon.
While Webb spoke about the history of the gas prices, a female customer
came in and paid for her gasoline.
"She only bought .50 cents of gas," he laughed. "That is only .307 of a
gallon."
"I think she was just trying to get enough to get to work," he said.
"Things have really changed over the years."

An unlucky lot  on Woodview Drive
Second home since late 90s burns down at same address
By RYAN HORNS
The home of a former county commissioner candidate exploded last night,
leaving behind only remnants of a two-story house built not long ago.
The fire also marks the second time a home has burned down at the same
address. A previous home on the same spot burned down in the late 1990s.

According to the Marysville fire department, the residence of Steve
Westlake at 17768 Woodview Drive caught fire and exploded at around 8
p.m. None of the family was injured.
Fire crews reportedly had the fire contained by today at 1:30 a.m.
At the time of the explosion, Westlake's wife Mindy was home. She told
fire crews that the large great room had a natural gas fireplace in it.
She said that after the start of the fire she heard an explosion, which
she thought to be the natural gas line.
Firefighter Steve Rausch was at the scene this morning with fellow
firefighter Chad Jolliff going through the rubble and investigating the
damage. He said the department is still investigating the cause of the
fire but that it appears to have originated from the fireplace, where
the natural gas line connected.
Rausch said the Wednesday night fire was reported in similar
circumstances as the previous fire at that address.
"In both cases the neighbor smelled smoke and called," he said.
In that incident, he said, the family was away on vacation.
As fire crews drove to the scene up Route 4 north, flames were visibly
rising from the chimney. Flames were also shooting out through the roof
of the home near the rear of the structure. It was noted that the
chimney was on fire from the foundation to the roof.
As firefighters advanced into the home to put out the flames, they went
in through the front foyer and to the stairs. At that time large pieces
of ceiling drywall and structural tresses fell on the crew. Fire
department reports state that other areas of the home suffered
structural collapse from the flames as crews fought their way inside.
During the initial collapse, firefighter Travis Headings was struck in
the back and shoulders by materials. He suffered minor injuries and was
transported to Memorial Hospital of Union County.
"He's doing fine," Rausch said. "He wanted to come back out but they
advised him to stay at the station."
Rausch said the Westlake family declined help from the Union County Red
Cross and are currently staying with relatives. The Union County
Emergency Management Agency arrived on the scene at 9:03 p.m.
Fire crews from Marysville, Ostrander and Union, Allen, Liberty, Jerome
and Leesburg townships responded to the scene to help put out the blaze.
Homes near the Westlake home were fortunately spaced far enough away
that they did not sustain any visible damage.