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Local Archived News February 2005

Destination Imagination teams advance to international competition
Triad may begin school later
Triad focused on improving scores
Reservoir plans on back burner
Honda of America president leaving for higher post
Council OKs sewer deal
Fairbanks to feel impact of Glacier
Bill allows MHUC to own The Gables
Opinions vary on plant site
Glacier a go regardless of decision
Suspect charged in Feb. 16 armed robbery
MHS Mock Trial teams  ready for state competition
A family's perspective on selling to developer
Area set to boom
Jerome OKs zoning change
A mall  in Union County?
Fairbanks eyes facilities - Public meetings will solicit input on future projects
Area businesses raided
Darby Township will send zoning survey to farmers
County curbing waste
State funding crunch will smack local entities
Fire deaths ruled homicides
Child seat safety check planned
Suspect in bomb hoax identified
Bomb threat at Goodyear found to be a hoax - Lonely security guard reportedly made call
Getting gassed - Industrial park hit with installation bill that was   nearly three times the estimate
An African adventure - Local resident learns the intricacies of the dark continent
'Honk' has Marysville flavor
Tracing the trail of his forefathers
Grants available for first time home buyers
Council, mayor blasted
Union County Mock Trial teams hit the courthouse
Why Black History Month is important
Prosecutor: Health dept. can't stop development
J-T family honored by ONA
Honda Civic Si concept makes debut
Twain impersonator charms crowd during concert series
Unionville Council discusses flooding - Purchase of sump pump questioned by members
Cemetery fees  questioned in Jerome
Contest winner named
Signs note historic uptown area
Armed robbery, attempted carjacking reported
Board chooses new voting system
Interim director in place at YMCA
List of prospects narrowed to three for jail administrator job
New drug dangers loom
Mill Valley to get medical facility
Health dept. vs. development
Informational meeting on plant held
N.L. Council votes for 4-percent wage hike
Enforcement to be stepped up on Super Bowl Sunday

Destination Imagination teams advance to international competition
From J-T staff reports:
It's off to the internationals for members of Marysville's Destination Imagination teams.
Competitors from Creekview Intermediate School and Mill Valley
Elementary won their challenge division at the state tournament
Saturday. They will travel to Knoxville, Tenn., May 25-28 to compete
against teams from around the world.
Marysville Middle School brought home the second place trophy, which
also earned them a trip to the global tournament.
The first place trophy was earned by Creekview fifth-graders Chris
Williams, Kyle King, Tyler Miller, Stephanie Johnson and Bryan Langlois
and Mill Valley fourth-grader Danielle Langlois. Team managers are Curt
Langlois and Scott Johnson.
They competed against 11 other elementary level teams and invented a
vehicle powered by a cordless drill. It carried a team member around a
track, completing lap detours while other members performed an
eight-minute skit they wrote. Included were props made for the skit.
 The Marysville Middle School team included Gabby Campisano, Liz Gates,
Michelle Gregory, Caroline Rogers, Gabby Walsh, Cara Clarridge and Evan
Zimmerman. They presented a radio show from the 1950s, including
technical sound effects and neon lights for station WMMS. Their team
manager was Linda Campisano.
Now competitors must brainstorm about fund-raising possibilities.
The international Destination Imagination will host approximately 4,000
participants from 47 states and 15 other countries. The program aims to
build lifelong skills such as teamwork and critical thinking as the
pupils discover the fun and hard work that goes into creative problem

Triad may begin school later
Officials mull pushing back opening bell
Triad high and middle school students may be sleeping in a little more next year.
The district's school board discussed the possibility of changing the
school hours for all three buildings for the 2005-2006 school year.
Currently, the middle and high schools hold class from 7:25 a.m. to 2:20
p.m. The suggested new hours would be from 9 a.m.-3:20 p.m. The
elementary hours would also possibly change from 8:45 a.m.-3:30 p.m. to 8 a.m.- 2 p.m.
District superintendent Dan Kaffenbarger said the change in hours would
help alleviate some district transportation problems.
Additional positives discussed included helping with the morning commute
in regard to weather issues especially with high school drivers,
allowing time during the school day for teachers to meet for
professional development and promoting more alert students in the older grades.
Negatives discussed included issues with childcare and pushing back work
hours for older students.
Middle school principal Scott Blackburn said it would allow his students
and staff more time earlier in the school day for state mandated
intervention programs for students needing to pass state achievement
tests. The quality of the intervention will be better given they will be
able to work with a smaller group of students.
Jan Ferryman, a seventh grade science teacher, was in favor of the
change because it would allow her more time to prepare for the school day.
"I think it would be wonderful," Ferryman said, "I would appreciate the
extra time in the morning."
Treasurer Jill Smith reported that the district would be receiving about
$1,000 in assistance from FEMA for snow removal this winter.
Dr. Joe Linscott, a member of the Citizens for Triad Schools committee,
spoke to the board regarding the final push before the .5 percent income
tax levy appears on the May 3 primary ballot.
Linscott reported that the campaign has gone well.
"The truth is out there and that has been our main goal," Linscott said,
"The board has done a great job answering a lot of questions and I want
to commend you for that."
There will be a steering committee meeting open to the public  on April
27 at 7 p.m. in the high school library.
"There should be no questions from a voter out there where this is
headed and what needs to be done for the education of our students," Linscott said.
Elementary school principal Craig Meredith presented to the board a
video on the STEPS (Students using Tools to Evaluate Progress toward
Success) program being using for the second year at the elementary.
The progress-monitoring program allows students, struggling in a subject
area, to meet frequently one-on-one with a teacher or staff member.
Together the student and tutor set a goal and actively work to improve
the student's aptitude using a progress-monitoring graph.
"This year the program has expanded and grown in capacity," Meredith
said, "Eventually we will have every teacher in the building using the
progress monitoring in the classroom, which is very effective."
The board adjourned into executive session to discuss employment
compensation and for an attorney conference regarding pending legal
action. No action was taken on either issue. The next board meeting will be May 16.
In other business, the board:
.Recognized Irene Carpenter and Michelle Isaacs for receiving gold
ratings in the interpersonal communications skill event at the FCCLA Rally
.Approved the FFA's attendance at the State convention on May 5-7 a the
Ohio Expo Center in Columbus. All costs will be absorbed by the FFA chapter.
.Approved the mini-grants awarded to Shawna Cardoza, Will Nichols and
Erica Boone in the amounts of $800, $911 and $975 respectively to be
deposited into the middle school, high school and elementary principal
funds. The grants were awarded from the Madison-Champaign County ESC for
the purpose of purchasing software, cameras, camera repair and
activities for 5th and 7th grade science, math and technology programs.
.Approved the middle school classroom fees of $35 for the 2005-2006 school year
.Approved certified contract renewals for Olivia Frost and Missy
Masters, one year; Becky Carpenter, Lindsay Quirk, Katherine Manley,
Betsy Reminder and Orrin Stanforth, three years; Crystal Burgel, Shari
Dixon, Deb Hayslip, Joyce Holland, Sue Hughes, Christie Kilbride, Kacy
Moore, Payton Printz and Vincent Spirko; five years; Terri Mayo, two
years; and Vonda Fairchild, Mark Hunt, Richard Kaffenbarger, Deb
McKenzie, Darlene Rice and Stella Rogan, continuing.
.Approved Becky Creighton as technology coordinator for a five- year
contract beginning 2005-2006 school year.
.Approved Susan Hughes as school psychologist for a five-year contract
beginning 2005-2006 school year
.Approved certified employment transfer of Meredith Ford from 6th grade
science teacher to teacher of Title 1 Reading at the beginning of
2005-2006 school year
.Approved one year contract of Annette Watson as kindergarten teacher
for the 2005-2006 school year.
.Approved one year contract of Melissa Lasley as middle school teacher
for the 2005-2006 school year.
.Approved Betsy Reminder for the classified supplemental position of
assistant track at the middle school.
.Approved the 8th/9th grade trip for the 2005-2006 and 2006-2007 school
years per the presentation on a three-year freeze in student cost at the
April 13, 2004 board meeting.
.Approved the tentative list of the Triad high school graduation class
of 2005 as presented by the high school principal.
.Adopted the revised Inter-District open enrollment policy 5113,
pursuant to section 3313.98 of the Ohio Revised Code permitting
enrollment of students from any Ohio district.
.Approved the 2005-2006 schedule-planning guide.
.Approved the 2005-2006 middle school faculty handbook.
.Approved the 2005-2006 middle school student handbook.
.Approved the Use of Facilities application for Citizens for Triad
Schools for high school auditeria on April 17, 2005 for the purpose of a
Pancake and Sausage breakfast and meeting.
.Approved records retention meeting and disposal of historical records for FY05.
.Amended appropriations and certificate of estimated resources in
various grant, general and debt fund allocation amendments.
.Approved donation from PTO in the amount of $292.21 for kindergarten
and 1st grade field trips.
.Approved a donation from the administration at Hi-Point Career Center
in the amount of $120 for the class of 2009 class trip to Hi-Point on April 13.
.Approved the three-day early release for the class of 2005 contingent
on good behavior. .Approved the entry year teacher FY05 grant in the amount of $1,100.

Triad focused on improving scores
Triad Schools are aware of a problem and they are set on fixing it.
In August, the Ohio Department of Education released its report cards
for all the school districts in Ohio for the 2003-2004 school year.
Triad Schools were placed in the continuous improvement category and
were originally said to have met only three of the seven indicators
associated directly with the high school.
"We didn't get credit for everything we should have," superintendent Dan
Kaffenbarger said, "The high school did meet five of their seven
indicators, not three as was released by the state."
Kaffenbarger said he received a letter from Deputy State Superintendent
Bob Bowers acknowledging that missing data was the reason the rating for
the high school was incorrect.
Much of the ODE report card's basis is student proficiency and achievement tests.
Given the continuous improvement rating, Triad has been working hard
this year to ensure better student scores this March.
The district conducted practice tests for many of the students to better
prepare them for the state-mandated tests given each spring.
"The purpose of the November practice tests was to get a baseline of
student achievement before the tests in March," Brenda Boyd, director of
curriculum and instruction explained.
The tests chosen were state practice tests and state screeners.
"We did have to purchase diagnostic tests for fifth, seventh and eighth
grade math, eighth grade reading and seventh grade writing," Boyd said.
The time-consuming effort included obtaining an almost all-volunteer
force of licensed teachers to act as graders. The majority of the
volunteers were from outside of the district.
Boyd said the use of volunteers helped to lessen the workload and
pressure on district employed teachers.
Boyd met with all 15 graders beforehand to read through every test and
discuss the state grading system.
"We wanted to establish high expectations for grading material," Boyd explained.
After the practice tests were graded, the district strategically worked
through each test to recognize overall weak areas. The final scores were
then calculated and the student's results were divided into three
categories: on track, borderline and not on track.
Boyd said it is important to note that the tests measured student
knowledge based on end of the year instruction and the average passing
or proficient score was 75 percent.
"On tests new to the 2004-2005 school year in which the state hasn't
established a passing score we used the 75 percent cutoff, with the
understanding that students performing at this level demonstrate a good
grasp of grade level indicators," Boyd explained, "We want to
continually set the benchmark high for our students."
The practice tests results have been very informative to better help
district teachers target those students in need of extra help.
"We did find district-wide that we have a problem with math," Boyd said.
The district is taking great strides to help combat the lower scores by
attacking the problem in various ways.
Since October, teachers have been working to improve student test taking
skills and there has been a considerable increase in the number of
correct responses for short answer and extended response questions.
Various middle and high school teachers have taken the practice tests as
a way to thoughtfully detail how they arrived at a correct answer to be
more effective when instructing their students.
Boyd said the district has also worked to develop curriculum maps in
order to align together state indicators to create more consistent
instruction between the different grade levels.
The math classes are also working on math goals coupled with math
assessments to better target students in need of extra help.
After school tutoring at the Meadows has also been successful. Around 35
students at any given time during the school year can and have received
one-on-one instruction three nights a week from 4-5:30 p.m.
"We do not have a core math program due to the lack of funding," Boyd said.
The district recently purchased a core reading program which in effect
wiped out the supply budget for all three-district buildings.
"If we help our students be better readers they can perform better in
other subjects," Boyd said.
A standard core subject program can range in price from $65,000-$112,000.
Boyd said she has also traveled with 20 other teachers to high
performance schools to help trade ideas among educators.
"We are also seeing an increase in parental involvement which will
definitely help our kids," Boyd said. Overall the district is pleased with
magnitude of information that the practice tests have provided.
"Dr. Kaffenbarger and I feel we have made great progress by knowing
where we stand in advance to better prepare the students for the March
tests," Boyd said.

Reservoir plans on back burner
The next step in Marysville's quest to build a city reservoir was
showcased through an informational hearing Thursday night.
City administrator Kathy House reported that in no way is the reservoir
top priority for the city at this time - that role belongs to the
wastewater plant. She said preliminary design plans have been drawn up
and the city hopes to finish the project by the end of 2007.
House stressed that the plans conducted by the Columbus engineering firm
Gannett Fleming are only 95 percent complete and need further tweaking.
Completed drawings should be done by mid-April.
Those design plans were on display for property owners who live near the
site off Raymond Road north of Dog Leg Road. The city sent out letters
to these homeowners informing them of the meeting.
City engineer Phil Roush, city service director Tracie Davies and House
were present to answer questions. Several city council members were in
attendance for updates on the project.
Plans show water pipelines going north along Mill Creek's walking trail.
Where the creek nears Mill Wood Boulevard, the lines go west to the site
off Raymond Road.
Roush said the city owns 180 acres on the west side of Raymond Road for
the site and another 40 acres on the east side. The reservoir will hold
1.2 billion gallons of water.
Roush said water lines will go from 24-inch raw water lines connected to
36-inch lines hooking to an inflatable dam in Mill Creek. House said the
dam would be controlled as needed to control creek levels.
The reservoir will be situated 150 to 200 feet off Raymond Road and will
rise 45 feet over the road's general elevation. The dig for the
reservoir would also leave the city with 200,000 cubic feet of dirt to get rid of.
Several residents looking over plans said they had concerns about how
drainage would affect their farms. Other concerns included how the
reservoir would affect their property values.
House said she has met with property owners and discussed with them how
their field tiles would be treated. She said one of the main hurdles for
them would be that a portion of Raymond Road will be closed and traffic
will be re-routed to Dog Leg Road during construction. The city will
work with landowners to ensure they stay informed on the reservoir process.
House said that by the fall the city hopes to have a water master plan,
which will include a 40-year projection for the project. At this time,
she said, they have not discussed how the project will be funded. She
said  the city is in no rush.
"We have more pressing needs," she said, referring to the wastewater
treatment plant.

Honda of America president leaving for higher post
Honda Motor Co. has announced that Koki Hirashima, Honda of America Mfg.
president and CEO since June 1998, will be returning to Japan effective
April 1 where his responsibilities will increase to oversee Honda's
global manufacturing as chief officer of production operations.
In addition, Hirashima will assume the role of senior managing and
representative director on the Honda board of directors in June upon
shareholder and board approval.
Honda of America's new president and CEO will be Akio Hamada, currently
the president of Honda Engineering Co. Ltd. in Japan. Hamada has
extensive experience managing both engineering and manufacturing
operations. Prior to leading Honda Engineering, Hamada was president of
Honda of Canada Mfg. from 1999 to 2001.
Under Hirashima's strong leadership, Honda of America has significantly
increased its production flexibility to meet the needs of customers with
a growing number of car, light-truck and motorcycle products. As leader
of Honda's manufacturing in North America, Hirashima led Honda of
America as the company increased responsibilities to support the
expansion and maturation of Honda manufacturing operations throughout
North America. In addition, Honda of America solidified its commitment to its
surrounding communities and positioned itself as a business leader in
Ohio and the automotive industry.
Other organizational changes effective April 1 include Anna Engine Plant
Manager and Vice President John Pleiman (Ft. Loramie) and East Liberty
Auto Plant Manager and Vice President Dan Smith (Dublin) exchanging positions.
Pleiman will now head the East Liberty Plant that builds Civics,
Elements, Accords and is preparing to introduce CR-V production to the plant in 2006.
Smith will take over management of the Anna Engine Plant, which
currently builds more than 1.1 million engines annually for Honda
products in North America.
Honda of America Vice President and Plant Manager of the Marysville
Motorcycle Plant Dane Espenschied  (Powell), will become senior vice
president at Honda South Carolina. Replacing Espenschied will be Bob Axe
(Milford Center) who is currently an assistant vice president in North
American Purchasing. Honda of America employs 12,700 associates at its four plants in Ohio.

Council OKs sewer deal
Despite complaints from future neighbors, city council voted to allow
Marysville Mayor Tom Kruse to sign the purchase agreement for the future
wastewater treatment plant in Millcreek Township.
Residents of the township packed council chambers Thursday night for the
final reading of the resolution. Out of six council members present, Dan
Fogt and council president John Gore were the only members to vote against the signing.
Fogt said that Millcreek residents had raised valid questions about the project.
"I do not agree with certain portions of the purchase agreement," he said.
Fogt explained that he has been involved in the planning process on the
plant for several years. In that time the city chose a site on Hinton
Mill Road but after studies were made it was determined that Industrial
Parkway was the best site. It stayed that way for more than a year.
"Then basically, without any consultation, pretty much we were just told
that the site had been relocated to Beecher Gamble road," Fogt said. "So
that's why I am opposed to this legislation."
Millcreek Township residents Phyllis Evans, Steve Anderson and
professional engineer Dick Noland requested to address council before
the vote was made. All three referred to a "race toward annexation" and
how Marysville chose Beecher Gamble Road only because it was cheaper for
Glacier developers. The company holds options for thousands of cares of
development in the area.
Kruse has said that if the project were halted it would be devastating
for the city. Service rates would skyrocket in the city and the Ohio EPA
could halt future growth, rendering newly-enacted residential TIFs worthless.
Noland said this morning that it will take time before he and other
Millcreek residents get over being upset at how Marysville deceived them.
"This has been about annexation all along," he said.
Kruse said he is now looking toward working with a representative of
Millcreek Township to be involved with the design aspects of the plant.
"I hope they honor their invitation," Noland said.
"We are not going away as a group," Millcreek Township citizens group
representative Marian Jacques said. "In fact, we'll probably get stronger."
Jacques said they will hold more strategy discussions and plan to create
a committee with a township trustee involved. She said they hope to work
closely with Marysville on the design aspects.
"I do feel it is the best site," councilman Ed Pleasant remarked before
stating his vote. He added that he is against annexation.
Pleasant also hoped the city would pursue joint economic development
with Millcreek Township to help control growth.
Gore reported that Article F in the purchase agreement stated that
Marysville would agree to a "good faith effort" to provide developers
with an easy annexation process but because of contention, he said, the
item has been removed.
Councilman David Burke explained that after reading the purchase
agreement he had several questions to pose to city law director Tim
Aslaner, namely, is the city obligated to annex for developers if the
agreement is signed? The second question was what will happen to the
free tap-in fees for developers after the one-year purchase agreement term expires.
Aslaner reported that the city is not obligated to annex for developers
through the agreement. He said if annexation does not take place in the
one-year term specified in the agreement, the city will begin the
process to pay for the land in cash. They will then have another 120
days to make the cash payment.
Noland said that throughout this entire process the city has claimed to
have reports to explain why the Beecher Gamble Road site was the best.
He said those documents have not been made available. He would like that to change.
"The city has stated that they researched the impact on property
values," Noland said. "Can we who are directly impacted see the actual
results of that study? What were the other communities who collected the
information and data and what were the design features of the plant,
what processes were used for odor control and what were the topographic
features in proximity of the plant? Unless your desire is to continue
spending millions of dollars to promote annexation, I do not believe
that all the city's work is complete."
Noland requested that Marysville grant Millcreek residents another 30
days to gather more information to present their case that Industrial
Parkway at Fladt Road is the more economical and easier location. That
request was not addressed. Gore said he appreciated the work the residents put into their research
but he said the city had numerous engineers involved in the planning.

Fairbanks to feel impact of Glacier
Transforming fields into a commercial and industrial center would be the
best thing to happen, said Fairbanks School District superintendent  Jim
Craycraft, by generating additional resources.
Craycraft is speaking specifically about the Glacier Development, a
master community for thousands of acres south of Marysville along U.S.
33 and 42. Much of the land under option is in the Fairbanks School
District. The development would include a mix of industrial and office
space, commercial businesses, parks and a variety of residential
neighborhoods, as well as space for school facilities and a research park.
Bill Schrader, a Union County native and participating land owner in the
Glacier Development, said the plans include a site for a community
college and tech school. His family has negotiated with Glacier to
donate a school site for Fairbanks.
"Glacier feels strongly about education and will work to help support
the needs of schools in the area," Schrader said.
That is good news to Craycraft.
The Fairbanks School District is planning Vision meetings April 7, 21
and 28 to consider future construction plans. Craycraft said the
district's three buildings have space for approximately 100 more
students before they reach capacity and class sizes will have to be
increased. The elementary school was built in 1914. The high school was
built in 1961 and the grades five to eight building was built in 1977.
Three other residential developments in different stages are currently
being planned for the Fairbanks School District and will add a total of
450 new homes. That could mean 600 children. Craycraft explains that
even though property may be annexed into Marysville for utility
services, the school district lines do not move and children living in
the new neighborhoods will go to Fairbanks.
"We know we need to do something, especially with the elementary
school," Craycraft said. Faced with this residential growth, the idea of more business
development will help with school finances. School districts, generally,
lose money for each residence built in the district. Businesses, on the
other hand, create more revenue for school districts and less costs.
In addition to commercial and industrial sites, Glacier Development is
planning a variety of residential neighborhoods.
"The people are not here yet who will need the schools," Craycraft said,
but that doesn't mean the new home owners cannot help pay for new
construction. Craycraft points to the New Albany community that faced a
similar situation. New homes were assessed a surcharge that paid for school construction.
"If the community grows, then the school district has to make changes,"
Craycraft said. "The Glacier group has been very open with us."
He said Glacier contacted the school officials about a year ago and
invited superintendents from several districts to discuss what they
would like to see educationally in that location. "They have gone out of their way," he said.

Bill allows MHUC to own The Gables
From J-T staff reports:
The Board of Trustee of Memorial Hospital approved a resolution at
Thursday's meeting to accept operational authority for The Gables at Green Pastures.
CEO Chip Hubbs explained that in the past, Ohio law stated that
county-affilitated nursing homes could not be owned by any entity other
than the county. House Bill 239, the County Home Bill, passed on Jan.
20, changes that law. As of May 1, Memorial Hospital will become the
owner as well as the operator of The Gables.
The hospital took over the old County Home on Route 4 in 1995 and in
2001 opened The Gables. Because of the old law, the hospital could not
legally own the property, even though it built and operated the facility.
Chief operating officer Lori Whittington said this move will have good
economic effects in that the hospital can now include The Gables in
contracts, purchasing pools and other cost-saving methods. She said the
hospital board of trustees and Hubbs will now have full authority over The Gables.
The resolution is pending the county commissioners' acceptance of the agreement.
Jesse Conrad, chairman of the Hospital Development Council, gave a
report on the council's work over the past year. He reported that
outstanding pledges total just over $1 million and total contributions
for the year were $475,000.
The development council's emphasis in 2004 was on the Women's Health
Center. Conrad said the project for this year will be to raise $1
million for a new multi-use Cat Scan for the hospital.
The board approved the following staff appointments: Sanjay Yadav, M.D.,
consulting provisional staff, hematology/oncology; Abha Gupta, M.D.,
active provisional staff, rheumatolgy; Xiamomei Gao-Hickman, M.C.,
neurology, Robert Hoover, M.C., cardiology, and Lawrence Kohn, O.D.,
emergency medicine, conclusion of provisional privileges; Victor
Trianfo, D.O., family practice/ER, change from ER to active provisional;
and Elaine Beed, M.D., oncology.
The board adjourned into executive session to discuss personnel. No action was taken.

Opinions vary on plant site - Former engineer says it's too costly; city officials say he is wrong
A former engineer involved in the planning of two Delaware County
wastewater plants has voiced criticism of Marysville's choice of
location for its future wastewater treatment plant. Marysville city
officials continue to disagree.
Richard Nolan was a registered professional engineer from 1982 until
1996 and was part owner of Burgess and Niple, the engineering firm
involved in designing and planning the Delaware County wastewater
treatment plants. Nolan said he pored through Marysville's Wastewater
Master Plan and came up with his own conclusions on best site options
based on construction costs.
Nolan came to the conclusion that the Industrial Parkway/Fladt Road
location is the most economical. He took these results to Mayor Tom
Kruse and Marysville City Council members and, along with dozens of
Millcreek Township residents, he is hoping the city will change its site
location from Beecher Gamble Road.
Marian Jacques, representative of a Millcreek Township group against the
plant, said Marysville has reported for a year and a half that
Industrial Parkway was going to be the plant's location. Suddenly the
city changed course and Millcreek residents had only a few weeks to gather information.
"They have given us less than two weeks to make a response," Nolan said.
"We're in the middle of a fight."
Nolan believes the city is trying to create a bridge for developers who
want large scale development with Marysville. Jacques said it screams
"aggressive annexation" to Millcreek residents.
The last chance residents have to keep the site away from Beecher Gamble
Road will be at the Marysville city council meeting tonight. No public
hearing will be held and council members will vote on the final reading
of an ordinance to allow the city to enter into a purchase agreement for
the Millcreek Township site with Glacier developers. Kruse is not
expected to be attending the meeting.
Nolan reported that he found three possible locations for the future
Marysville WWTP but he focused on two sites. The first is located across
from the Goodyear plant on vacant farmland between Industrial Parkway
and U.S. 33. Part of this site could be within the Marysville
Corporation limits. The second is the Beecher-Gamble Road site east of
U.S. 33 in Millcreek Township that the city has chosen, currently
consisting of farmland and homes. Planning in the area is for residential zoning.
Nolan said the first is the most economical for Marysville and the site
on Beecher Gamble Road is the most expensive. The additional
construction cost to move from the first site to this location he
estimated at $14.5 million.
"If the treatment plant is located anywhere in the Industrial Parkway
corridor the discharge from the wastewater treatment plant must be piped
to Mill Creek," Nolan wrote. "The discharge pipe for all alternate
wastewater treatment plant locations must pass through parts of New
Dover and/or Millcreek (township)."
Judging from the reaction of residents outside of Marysville to past and
present sites, he said, eminent domain proceedings will be required in
any location not jointly agreed to by all three government entities and landowners.
Kruse said he has spoken with Nolan about the plans, but disagrees with the outcome.
"He never evaluated what he said," Kruse said. "Essentially the numbers are incorrect."
Kruse said he admits that it would seem cheaper to run sewer lines to a
plant closer to town, such as the Industrial Parkway/Fladt Road spot.
But he explained that at the Millcreek location they would be able to
keep effluent contained underground in pipes 6 to 8 feet in diameter.
The lines will support heavy flows without needing aboveground ponds,
keeping odors at a minimum.
Kruse said the problem is that Nolan was not involved in the planning of
the plant. The cost of an acre of land at the Industrial Parkway
location was around $40,000, compared to $27,000 per acre in Millcreek.
That alone raised the price to more than a million dollars.
Another reason is that the city would have to relocate two acres of
wetlands existing on the site. Since the EPA requires cities to replace
the relocated wetlands twofold, they would have to create four acres of wetlands.
But Nolan wonders if that is even true.
Mike Sapp of the Ohio EPA said he was not aware that possible wetlands
were a reason for not placing the plant on Industrial Parkway. What he
understood was that the city was not choosing that site because the soil
elevation was not conducive for waste gravity flow to the plant. Instead
it would have to be pumped, which is more expensive.
Kruse said another reason for choosing Millcreek was because there are
too many homes near the Industrial Parkway site.
Nolan said he has read every city council minutes posted on the city web
site since Aug. 24 when the engineering report indicated Industrial
Parkway was the best location. What he found interesting is that since
the city declared this, not one person came before city council to
complain - a big difference from council meetings full of upset
Millcreek residents.
He also said council minutes show that the city promised that numerous
public meetings would follow their decision to go with Millcreek. This
did not happen. Residents were given one informational meeting and one
public hearing before council.
Nolan said what will be debated are his numbers but he stands behind
them. He noted there could be from 10 to 20 percent differences. But
that does not change the fact that the Millcreek site will cost the city
millions more. He also questioned whether the city has even contacted
landowners in the Industrial Parkway/Fladt Road area. He knows of three
who said they were willing to talk about selling land.
City council minutes also do not show an analysis for engineering
studies on alternative sites, he noted.

Glacier a go regardless of decision
From J-T staff reports:
Glacier Development will go forward, whatever decision the Marysville
City Council makes tonight about locating a new wastewater treatment
plant on Beecher Gamble Road.
Glacier is planning a master community for thousands of acres south of
Marysville along U.S. 33 and 42. The vision includes a mix of industrial
and office space, commercial businesses, parks and a variety of
residential neighborhoods, as well as space for school facilities and a
research park. Developers have said there will be no forced annexations
and that 100 percent of the landowners in the proposed development have
signed options. Commercial development will start at the intersection of
U.S. 42 and U.S. 33 and extend outward from there. Residential
development will start at the same time about half a mile from the interchange.
Glacier spokesman Bill Schrader, a Union County native and participating
land owner with the Glacier group, said Marysville was given a choice of
all Glacier's optioned land and officials selected the 100-acre site
along Beecher Gamble Road.
He said Glacier has offered to sell the property at cost to the city for future taps.
"We're asking only for a good faith effort for annexation. There are no
secret deals. Nothing has been signed," Schrader said.
Regardless of council's vote, Schrader said the Glacier project will be
able to tap into public utilities. "Development occurs where there is interest," he said.
The city's new WWTP, wherever it is located, is built for additional
taps and expansion for development. If the WWTP is located along
Industrial Parkway, Schrader said, the development will run lines to the optioned properties.
"This is a complex project. Malcolm Pirney is a huge firm and they have
spent a lot of resources examining this problem and designing a
solution. The sewer plant for Marysville is going somewhere and the
overall design is for expansion," Schrader said.

Suspect charged in Feb. 16 armed robbery
From J-T staff reports:
A Marysville man sits in jail today after robbing two people at gunpoint.
Lance Grimes, 18, of 606 Chestnut St. is charged with two first-degree
felony aggravated assault charges after he used a weapon to allegedly
rob two juveniles in Taylor Township Feb. 16.
If convicted of the charges Grimes could face 26 years in prison.
Union County Sheriff's Detective Jeff Stiers reported this morning that
a warrant had been issued for the arrest of Grimes. He was reportedly
picked up on Friday night by Grove City police officers and placed in custody.
Grimes will have his preliminary hearing in the Union County Common
Pleas Court at 8 a.m. Friday. He is represented by attorney Alison Boggs.
The Union County Sheriff's Office did not release the initial Feb. 16
report to media and reportedly could not release additional information
until the hearing.

MHS Mock Trial teams  ready for state competition
From J-T staff reports:
Two Marysville High School Mock Trial teams will travel to Columbus
March 10-12 for the state contest at the Franklin County Justice Center.
The state championship round will be held in a Senate hearing room.
Team #1 competed in the Union County District competition Feb. 11 and
placed first out of six teams. Members are Kathy Connolly, Amanda
Cramer, Aaron Fancey, Larsa Ramsini and Jan Shanklin. Connolly and
Shanklin were named outstanding attorneys and outstanding witness awards
went to Fancey and Ramsini.
Team #2 is made up of Caitlin Cullman, Stephanie Devine, Moira Dietsch,
Danny English, Virginia Rogers, Caleb Speicher, Zack Stillings and Molly
Westfall. They competed in the Franklin County District Feb. 11 and
placed in the top five of 32 teams. Stillings was named outstanding
attorney twice and Dietsch was named outstanding witness.
The case this year involves Biotec Labs vs. the Animal Rights Foundation
in a dispute about animal testing. Mock Trial teams argue whether or not
the information posted on the animal rights group's Web site is
responsible for an attack that occurred on the lab. Team members serve
as witnesses and attorneys and the cases are tried by sitting judges.
Mock Trial is coached by Laurel LaFrance, Brandt Siegel, Dick Smith,
Connie Strebe and Laura Terlesky and John Eufinger serves as legal

A family's perspective on selling to developer
Eighty years ago, Pearl Bouic bought a farm on Watkins California Road.
"He bought it to provide for his family. If he were alive today I think
he would say if you think this is the best use of the land to provide
for the family, then that's what you should do," said his daughter Doris
Bouic Schrader about the family's decision to develop their 500 acres
that can be seen easily from U.S. 33 and 42 near New California.
Her oldest son, Bill, admits that the decision to develop was not an
easy one, especially for his mother. She remembers as a young girl
walking back a lane that cuts through the farm to Sugar Run ditch where
she would sit on a bridge and 'fish' with a bent pin.
"It's home," he said about the land that he and his brother were raised
on and where they have both chosen to raise their own families.
However in the late 1990s the family sat down and decided that it was
time to follow some other advice passed on by Pearl Bouic.
"Grandpa told Dad when U.S. 33 came through to not ever sell this ground
because someday it would be worth a whole lot of money," Bill Schrader said.
That day had arrived for the Schraders.
The ultimate decision, however, rested with Bill Schrader's mother,
Doris. The family told her to decide and if it was too tough, they would
not sell. She told her sons that they were in charge now.
"You do what is best for the family," she said.
They believe what they are doing is not only best for their family, but
also the community. Bill Schrader illustrates his point by looking down the road to Charlie
Wilcox's place. "Charlie came to us and asked how to rezone his own land so he could do
well for his family." Wilcox is dead now and his ground is still zoned agricultural.
"I'll never forgive those who stood in his way. It is a sore point that
Charlie never got to see the sale of his land."
The Schraders rezoned 300 acres of their farm for commercial and
residential uses in the late 1990s. It is one of the few rezonings to be
approved in Jerome Township in recent years. When going through the
rezoning process, the family made one promise to the community - they
would be involved in any development of the land. They would not hand it
off to a big-city developer.
They have worked hard to keep that promise, Bill Schrader said.
While the family investigated ways of running water and sewer to their
land, a parade of developers came knocking at their country home. Some
made big office presentations, others made unreasonable offers and some
were just kind of slimy, Bill Schrader said. Eventually they all
disappeared, he said, except for a group known as Glacier Development,
that includes several central Ohio businessmen, that came knocking with
the best plan the Schrader family had seen. The difference with this
group was that they wanted to work with the Schrader family and they had a vision.
"The Glacier plan became the Schrader plan," said Bill Schrader. "Our
family name means a lot to us."
Schrader said the proposed development includes a signature community
that will enhance land values. Calling it a "good plan," he believes it is "a chance for Marysville and
Union County to develop into a community to be proud of."

Area set to boom
Plan in motion to bring Easton-style mall and other opportunities to Union County
Editor's note: This is the first of a three-part series revealing plans about a huge commercial
and residential development in southern Union County.

Upscale shopping, restaurants, entertainment, education facilities,
hotels, offices, a place to live, work, shop and play - that and more is
included in a master community plan for thousands of farm acres south of
Marysville bordering U.S. 33 and U.S. 42.
Bill Schrader, a Union County native and participating land owner with a
development called Glacier, said a group of central Ohio businessmen
would like to see the area as more than something to fly over.
"It was never a question of whether development was coming. It was
always a question of when and who would do it," Schrader said recently
as he laid out the vision for several thousand acres which Glacier holds
options on to purchase. The area includes Schrader's family farm where
his parents live. "If Marysville doesn't want this growth then it is a
signal to developers that we need to look elsewhere."
That "elsewhere" is the city of Dublin or Plain City.
Schrader said the group prefers to work with Marysville.
"I was born in Marysville. Marysville is a Union County city. It just
makes sense to partner with Marysville," he said. "This is their chance
to position Marysville for the next 30 or 40 years - Dublin's poor
step-sister or the central city of Union County. It is a unique chance
to work with a developer with a major master plan for several thousands
of acres that includes roads, water, sewer lines and storm drain lines
and the infrastructure to support this kind of development, all designed
from the start to work together as a whole. We want this to be something
that everyone can be proud of."
Schrader said Glacier West is ready to begin developing 2,000 acres
south of Marysville bordering U.S. 33, Harriott Road and U.S. 42.
The vision includes restoring agricultural ditches to natural meandering
streams and preserving existing tree stands with trails and paths. The
plan also includes creating upscale shopping similar to the Easton
shopping experience in Columbus and creating a technology research park,
along with a wide variety of housing choices.
"This development has to support itself. It will provide a positive flow
of money to Marysville," Schrader said.
A proposed map of the area includes space for school facilities,
industrial and office space, commercial businesses, parks, town homes,
condominiums and single family homes.
Schrader said there will be no forced annexations and that 100 percent
of the landowners in the proposed development have signed options to
sell. Commercial development would start at the intersection of U.S. 42
and U.S. 33 and extend outward from there. Residential development will
start at the same time about half a mile from the interchange.
Schrader said extensive negotiations are underway regarding the
development of a retail mall at the intersection. He said they have been
anticipating for several years the development of a retail mall in
southern Union County.
"Retailers are anxious to see the commencement of development of the
mall since this site is a prime location positioned at the intersection
of two major roads linking Delaware, Plain City, Marysville and Dublin.
The windfall of sales and payroll taxes for the city and the county are enormous."
Schrader said his family's phone has "rung off the wall" at times with
calls from business people looking for land for office and industrial sites.
"We've always seen our land as primarily retail and commercial. Glacier
has assembled land along U.S. 33 that is well suited for
office/industrial use and is working on a plan to market and develop
sites for new businesses for Union County. This will bring in thousands
of good paying jobs and taxes for Marysville and Union County."
Plans include a site for a community college and tech school. The
Schrader family has negotiated with Glacier to donate a school site for Fairbanks.
"Glacier feels strongly about education and will work to help support
the needs of schools in the area," Schrader said.
Another important aspect of the development is the connection of Home
(Blaney) Road to Fladt Road.
Schrader said the new roadway will provide a much needed east/west
connector highway in southern Union County.
Glacier intends to put in place standards for the preservation of
existing stands of mature trees and the Schrader family has been in
discussions with national environmental groups about preserving natural
landscape features.
Schrader said no one is aware of any project of this magnitude ever
being undertaken in the Midwest. Developers liken it to the New Albany
development, although that project began with smaller acreage and then expanded.
Schrader admits that the Glacier development is being driven by the
uncertainty of Jerome Township where growth has been halted in recent
years because of referendums on rezoning petitions.
"We can tell from all the phone calls we've received over the years that
there is heavy demand for office, industrial and retail development in
the area. That demand has been totally suppressed by the no-growth
factions in Jerome Township but that chapter in the book is coming to an
end and a new chapter of smart and prosperous growth is about to begin,"
he said.

Jerome OKs zoning change
The Jerome Township Board of Trustees unanimously approved a rezoning
application that opens the door for a 53-lot residential development at
the northeast corner of the intersection of Mitchell Dewitt and McKitrick roads.
A public hearing was held Tuesday night and followed by a regular
meeting where the three trustees voted to accept the township zoning
board's recommendation to approve an application submitted by Romanelli
and Hughes to rezone 43.9 acres from rural district (U1) to a planned
unit development (PUD).
Trustee Sharon Sue Wolfe called the proposal "a nice development," and
trustee Freeman May thanked the developer for working with the zoning
board and neighbors. May said the development was the type of project
the township has been wanting.
Attorney David W. Fisher, who represented the developer at Tuesday's
public meeting, said the estimated value of the homes will be between
$400,000 and $500,000. He noted that curbs, sidewalks and gutters were
omitted from the plan at the request of the community and the plan
includes seven acres of open space. He said the township code requires
four acres of open space and the original plan had included more than
seven acres but that amount was reduced at the request of the zoning
board and lots were made larger. A buffer of trees will surround the
neighborhood which will be connected to public sewer and water.
Fisher said a proposal is being discussed with Glacier Ridge Metro Park
to extend a trail through the community.
Several of the approximately 40 residents at the public hearing had
concerns about increasing taxes and increasing traffic.
Kelly Transue, a McKitrick Road resident, said the project was
"upsetting" to her, saying that if taxes continue to increase she may no
longer be able to afford to live in her home on property that her
grandfather purchased 70 years ago. Her taxes, she said, increased by 53
percent one year. She said she challenged the hike and appealed it to
the state. She said the ordeal took two years and now with the recent
reassessments, her taxes have increased again.
Transue also asked whether existing properties will be required to
connect to water and sewer lines run to the development. The township
zoning inspector said sewer hookups are required for any homes where the
foundations are within 300 feet of a connecting line. The developer has
agreed to set up an escrow account to assist neighboring homes that
might be affected.
In other business, during the regular meeting:
. A resident and trustee Ron Rhodes raised a concern about a possible
violation of the open records law. The resident and Rhodes have been
seeking two documents involving a Ketch Road project for two months.
Clerk Robert Caldwell said he would send a letter to the consulting
engineer requesting that the documents be delivered in five business days.
. Responding to citizen concerns, trustee Rhodes said he would contact
officials about the condition of railroad tracks on Fladt and Warner roads.
. Trustee Rhodes said the prosecutor had authorized a $1,000 refund to a
property owner who had been incorrectly told they needed a zoning
variance. Wolfe delayed the payment, saying she still had a question and
was awaiting more information.
. Board president Wolfe stated that she would enforce the township's
code of conduct. Persons wishing to speak, including trustees, must be
recognized by her before they speak and the public should raise their
hand to be recognized and give their name and address. Individuals will
be given three minutes to talk unless she chooses to extend their time.
Wolfe said the board president has discretion as to what is disorderly
conduct. She said she will give one warning if she believes an
individual has been disorderly and then call the sheriff. The individual
may then be charged with disorderly conduct.

A mall  in Union County?
Series will reveal developers' plans for area
Southern Union County is on the cusp of change that could bring an
upscale shopping mall and more.
As rumors fly about possible development along the U.S. 33 corridor in
Millcreek and Jerome townships, a developer who holds options on
thousands of acres will share his vision for a master community plan
that would transform farm fields into a place to live, work, shop and
play. Union County residents may not realize the scope of what is about
to happen here. In a three-part series beginning Wednesday, the Marysville
Journal-Tribune goes directly to the source to inform readers about the
development being discussed, what it means to those living in the area
and what could happen if the city of Marysville turns its back on the

Fairbanks eyes facilities - Public meetings will solicit input on future projects
New building or renovations? That's the question the Fairbanks Board of
Education is facing in its plans to improve facilities.
To assist with answering that question, a series of public meetings has
been set to gather ideas, opinions and the general feelings of community
and staff members. The "vision planning" sessions will be conducted by
TMP Architecture of Powell, the design firm which has been hired to
oversee the planning.
Kevin Harrison of TMP made a presentation to the board to demonstrate
what his firm will do. Meetings will be held April 7, 21 and 28 and a
letter will be sent to district residents, informing them of the plans.
The outcome of those meetings will determine whether a construction levy
will be placed on the November ballot and what type of funding will be sought.
An assessment of Fairbanks facilities will be conducted April 27 and 28 by TMP.
After Harrison's presentation the board approved an interim services
agreement with TMP Architecture to conduct planning sessions, an
evaluation of school facilities and, if a financing option is passed on
the November ballot, to act as architect for the project at a fee of 6.5
percent for a new build and 7.5 percent for renovations. TMP will also
assist in the levy campaign
Superintendent Jim Craycraft presented to the board information from
Lutz Enterprises on an annexation of Fairbanks land into the city of
Marysville for 87 acres of the Bunsold property. Craycraft said that
under the conditions of the annexation, 1 percent of the income tax of
future residents of the area will go to Marysville and .75 percent will
go to Fairbanks. Property taxes will go to the Fairbanks school district.
The board reviewed the information and felt the move would be positive
for the district as long as the district does not lose financing
generated by the development but no formal resolution was made.
In other business, the board approved:
 . The donation of a trailer purchased by the Music Department Boosters.
 . A trip to Washington, D.C., May 17-20 for eighth grade students.
 . the calendar for the 2005-06 school year.
 . The High School Course of Study Handbook for the 2005-06 school year.
In personnel matters, the board:
 . Approved as substitute teachers Margaret Burkey, Pet DeWolfe, Michael
Fantin, Edwin Hendricks, Sue Walters, Adam McCampbell, William Baker,
Cheryl Thiel, Shawn Will, Joyce Barker, Larry Griffin, Shari Moffett,
Tonya Samsel, Christine Simpson, Gary Sitz, Michele Camona, Sara Chrusciel and Grace Lotsu.
 . Approved Gail Bennett as a tutor for a high school student and Carrie
Hurst as a tutor at St. Paul Lutheran School.
 . Approved as tutors for the after-school tutoring program at a rate of
$20 per hour Debbie Hegenderfer, Tony Hammond, Ruth Nicol, Angela Luke,
June Ackley, Matt Humphrey, Joe Newell, Nancy Thomas, Marian Eberhard,
Jeanie Walter, Amy Fowler, John Moore, Marion Boggs, John Finney, Lisa
Keller, Dena Komula, Patty Pease, Kara Pinkerton, Karen Saffle and Andy Pinkerton.
  . Approved athletic contracts for Bryan Burson, JV boys basketball;
Duane Daniel and Mark Mehl, assistant softball; Carleton Cotner,
spring/summer weight lifting; and Steve Kolcun, reserve baseball.

Area businesses raided
Tack Room, Smokers Paradise focus of probes by Department  of Public Safety
The Ohio Department of Public Safety has had its eye on two county
businesses, culminating in two raids Wednesday and Thursday.
Union County Sheriff's deputies and public safety's Liquor Enforcement
Division agents raided the Tack Room bar in Magnetic Springs Wednesday
at 7:55 p.m. On Thursday at around 2 p.m. agents also raided Smoker's
Paradise at 1117 W. Fifth St. for possible gambling violations.
During the Tack Room raid, DPS agents were investigating possible liquor
permit violations.
According to sheriff's reports, during the search of the bar, bartender
and manager Freddie Ray, III, 41, of Kenton was arrested for obstructing
the search of premise and obstructing official business for refusing to
open a storage room door.
DPS agents reportedly found alleged narcotics and obtained a search
warrant to look for more. The sheriff's office K-9 unit, Jordy, and a
deputy discovered alleged marijuana and cocaine on the premises along
with drug paraphernalia.
Union County Prosecutor David Phillips was on the scene to advise and
assist law enforcement. Ray was reportedly taken into custody and
transported to the Tri-County Regional Jail. He has since been released on bond.
The substances will be sent to the state laboratory for analysis and Ray
may face additional charges depending on the outcome of the tests.
Suann Cook of the Ohio Investigative Unit and DPS agent in charge
reported that three complaints concerning the Tack Room had received in
the past year. The complaints had to do with narcotics and possible nude
dancing going on at the club.
She said agents found no evidence of nude dancing at the bar but rumors
have also indicated possible prostitution going on, although agents have
received no complaints on that.
"As far as we're concerned, they are just rumors," Cook said. "That is
not to say that it isn't going on."
She said it is a "privilege, not a right" for businesses to receive
liquor permits. As a result, permit holders agree to abide by rules and
restrictions ordered by the state. One of these rules is that DPS agents
or local law enforcement may inspect their business during business
hours in order to check on possible violations. As liquor permit
holders, they must oblige them. Ray did not comply with the entire
search and was arrested.
A female employee of the Tack Room answered the phone Thursday
afternoon, but preferred to not be quoted. She reported that the
business remains open.
Union County Sheriff's Lt. Jamie Patton reported this morning that the
bar could possibly lose its liquor license, depending upon the results
of laboratory results concerning alleged illegal drug activity on the premises.
In Marysville, DPS agents also had their eyes on Smoker's Paradise for
allegedly having electronic gambling devices on the premises. It is
illegal to have gambling in an Ohio premise that also serves liquor and tobacco.
According to Marysville police, who assisted in the raid, no arrests
were made. The business was closed for a short period of time during the
search but was re-opened.
Cook said her department received complaints about possible gambling
machines at the carry-out store. During the raid agents found "several
gambling machines and instant lottery bingo tickets." Four machines were
removed along with miscellaneous gambling items and several thousand
dollars associated with gambling.
Cook said both cases happening this week is mere coincidence. Agents had
received complaints on both establishments.
Both businesses will remain open in the meantime. Cook said DPS does not
have the power to close anyone down. Instead, the violations will go
before the Ohio Liquor Control Commission which will decide if the
businesses should remain open.

Darby Township will send zoning survey to farmers
After countless meetings and discussions over two years about updating
the Darby Township zoning resolution and map, the five-member commission
decided Thursday to ask farmers what they want.
In a split vote, Ron Scheiderer, Merrill Nicol and Don Bailey voted to
send a questionnaire to all farm owners asking them if they prefer a
more restrictive agricultural (A1) zoning or farm residential (FR) which
mirrors the current undeveloped (U1) zoning. The motion stated that
those who do not respond to the questionnaire will be zoned FR.
Voting against the questionnaire were commission chairman David
Gruenbaum and David Boerger. Both preferred to move forward with a plan
that makes A1 voluntary and would allow for change at no cost.
Responding to a citizen's survey that showed a majority of residents
wanted to preserve the township's rural atmosphere, officials decided to
eliminate the U1 zoning which covers most of the township and has long
been identified with farms.
U1 will be replaced with A1 and FR. Both allow for agricultural uses as
defined by the Ohio Revised Code, as well as stables and ponds. The
primary difference between A1 and FR is in development standards. FR
permits one house for every five acres. A1 allows one dwelling for every
20 acres in a parcel, thus limiting the number of buildable lots on a
property. A1 lots could range from two to five acres.
Until this week, the commission seemed intent to make all existing U1
ground A1 even though recent meetings have been packed with farm owners
who said they preferred FR zoning. Many said they believed the citizen
survey had been swayed by small property owners who are not affected by the change.
Making a 100-degree turn, Gruenbaum opened Thursday's work session by
introducing a zoning map where all existing U1 ground would be zoned FR
unless a property owner requested the more restrictive A1. He also
suggested that the township waive rezoning fees for a period for land
owners who wanted A1 zoning.
"We don't want to take away people's rights," Gruenbaum said, adding
that he hopes the next generation will someday look back and say someone
did their best. Boerger called it "a great compromise."
Bailey said he had a lot of questions about the map but did not voice them.
Most of the 50 individuals present at the meeting seemed pleased with
Gruenbaum's recommendation.
"It all boils down to choice," said farmer Gary Greenbaum, who said he
was pleased with Gruenbaum's suggested map.
The Gruenbaum map also identified a school and church property along
Route 736 as residential. The property is next to a 75-lot housing
development. Residential zoning would allow the developer to build an
EPA-monitored wastewater package plant instead of 75 septic systems.
The issue was dropped when Rob Beck, a vocal lawyer whose family owns
farm land on Brown Moder Road, raised a question about the conflict
between church and state.
Boerger moved to accept Gruenbaum's map, but it failed for lack of a second.
Scheiderer said he thought the Big Darby Creek should act as a
separation for A1 and FR land.
His proposal received no response from the other board members. He then
suggested that a questionnaire be sent to CAUV land owners.
Questionnaires are to be sent out in a couple of weeks and the board
plans to meet again on March 24 at 7 p.m. to survey the results.

County curbing waste
Industrial  recycling high; residential rate lags
The good news is that Union County industries are properly disposing of
50 percent of their recyclable materials.
The bad news is that when residents are factored into the mix, the
county as a whole is only turning in 10 percent its recyclable material.
"We'd like to see more, said Shawn Sech, director of the health
department's Community Recycling and Litter Prevention program.
"Recycling should be second nature, a daily routine."
She explained that during a study conducted by the Ohio Department of
Natural Resources in 2003, waste was sorted at 14 public and private
landfills within solid waste management districts. Union County's waste
was sorted at the Cherokee Run Landfill in Logan County where Buckeye
Waste takes its trash. That examination produced the 50 percent and 10 percent figures.
 Sech said industrial recycling amounts to 7 pounds per day per person,
while residential and commercial recycling averages 4.77 pounds per day
per person. Newspapers are recycled at a 40 percent rate.
Sech said a very big improvement could be made if government offices
recycled their paper waste.
In the city of Marysville, residents can use the blue bins provided free
of charge. Newspapers and cardboard can be set in or beside the bins if
the weather is dry. Cardboard should be cut down to 2-foot by 2-foot sections.
County residents outside the city, however, cannot participate in
curbside recycling and must either take their materials to Union
Recyclers or the Jerome or Richwood monthly pickups.
Sech said her department is working constantly to improve recycling. It
sponsors a design-a-billboard contest each fall in the schools and a
decorate-a-grocery-bag contest at local supermarkets and design a
T-shirt contest in the spring in conjunction with Earth Day.
Presentations to civic groups and schools are made regularly by Sech and
Merry Smith and a video is available for use upon request.
In addition, green paper retriever bins have been placed in 22 sites
around the county for drop-off of newspapers and magazines. Last year,
277,893 tons of paper were collected from those bins.
The Union County Community Recycling and Litter Prevention program is
sponsored by a $45,000 grant from ODNR and matching funds and a $16,000
education grant from the North Central Ohio Solid Waste District.
Union Recyclers is located just east of town on U.S. 36 and is open from
8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. Aluminum cans, the only
recyclables which can earn money for the donors, are accepted from 8
a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday
The Jerome United Methodist Church, 10531 Jerome Road, accepts materials
from 8:30 to 9 a.m. on the second Saturday of the month and the Richwood
Fairgrounds accepts materials from 9 to 10 a.m. on the fourth Saturday.
Questions about recycling may be directed to Sech at 642-2053.
Oh, and those pesky little styrofoam packing peanuts? Those can be taken
to the UPS Store.

State funding crunch will smack local entities
Elected officials from throughout Union County gathered Wednesday to
hear how the governor's proposed state budget will affect local budgets.
The news was not good.
John Leutz, policy analyst for the County Commissioners Association of
Ohio, told the approximately 50 individuals present that the state
budget introduced on Tuesday would cut local funding to counties and
cities by 20 percent, to villages and townships by 10 percent and to
libraries by 5 percent.
"They are robbing Peter to pay Paul and we're Peter," Leutz said to
elected officials representing township, county, city and village governments.
State Representative Tony Core, Ohio 87th District, cautioned that the
budget is still a proposal and the legislature will be considering each
item. He did acknowledge that many of the former champions of local
government funds are no longer in the legislature.
"Don't think that it is law," Core said, adding that "we all need to be
concerned about this."
The primary concern of those present at the evening meeting was the
future of Local Government Funds (LGFs).
Leutz said LGFs pay for "essential everyday local services" such as
police/sheriff patrol and response; fire and EMS response; Homeland
security; sanitation, recycling and yard waste services; libraries;
criminal justice/public safety; parks and recreation programming; and
winter road/street removal.
During his hour-long Power Point presentation, Leutz said these all are
services that only local governments provide to "keep our residents safe
and secure in their homes and in their communities." He added that local
governments are being asked to share a disproportionate share of the
financial cuts. LGF will be operating at 1997 numbers under the new proposal.
Leutz said LGF contributions are the only source of funding for 176 of
Ohio's 251 library districts and make up to 15 percent of counties'
general funds, an average of 10 to 25 percent of municipalities and in
many townships provide more than 50 percent of the budgets. He added
that the LGF contributions to park districts is significant.
The reason $1.25 billion in LGFs has been targeted, Leutz said, is
because it is the exact amount generated by a temporary sales tax that
expires at the end of June. Little discretionary funds are available
with the majority of the general fund revenue going toward Medicaid and education.
LGFs were created during the Great Depression in 1934 as a way to
support local government activities. At that time, Leutz said, 40
percent of a 3 percent sales tax went to the LGF. Today the LGFs come
from 4.2 percent of four state taxes, kilowatt hour tax and dealers in
intangibles tax. The state taxes are personal income tax, sales and use
tax, corporation franchise tax and public utility tax.
He cautioned those present to be on guard of the "rhetoric" and "spin
running around Columbus."
Taylor Township Clerk Pat Laird said the information was a warning of
what might happen, while Allen Township Trustee Dan Fancey said it is
obvious that local government officials cannot keep their heads in the sand.
"We have to be involved at the state level," Fancey said, adding that
state decisions could be "devastating" to local governments.
Claibourne Township Trustee Jeff Swartz said Leutz had offered a lot of
material to digest, while Plain City councilman Jason Milligan said
Leutz had offered a good overview of the governor's proposal.

Fire deaths ruled homicides
From J-T staff reports:
The cause of death for the two young boys killed in an early December
fire has officially been ruled a homicide.
The fire on Dec. 8 at 10510 Fulton Creek Road in Richwood claimed the
lives of William "BJ" Channel, 9, and his brother Brett Channel, 8.
Their bodies were found in an upstairs bedroom. The rest of the family
was able to escape.
"Based upon forensic autopsy and toxicological investigations, the cause
of death has been determined to be carbon monoxide poisoning (smoke
inhalation) for both boys," Union County Coroner Dr. David Applegate II
reported Tuesday afternoon.
Because of the state fire marshal's Dec. 22 report that the cause of the
fire was an act of arson, Applegate said, the two deaths are now
considered homicides.
He reported that the laboratory studies also showed that toxic, nearly
lethal, levels of cyanide were also found in their systems. He explained
that cyanide is produced by the burning of plastics and other synthetic
materials commonly found in homes.
As a homicide case, he said, details of the autopsies and toxicological
investigation are turned over to the Union County Prosecuting Attorney, David Phillips.
Questions regarding how the fire was started, why law enforcement
officials believe it was an arson, who the suspects might be and where
the fire started in the home have still not been made public.
"At this point we can't release any information on that," Phillips said
this morning. "Those are facts that are still necessary to keep (from the public.)"
Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson and the state fire marshal are
reportedly actively investigating the case.

Child seat safety check planned
A free child car seat check will be held Thursday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
and 4 to 7 p.m. at the Marysville Fire Department. Seat checks will be
conducted on a first-come, first-served basis.
If a child does not have a car seat or a booster seat, if the seat is
more than seven years old, is on a recall list, has been in a crash, the
crash history is unknown or if necessary information is missing from the
seat, the family will receive a free seat. For more information, those interested may call 642-2053.

Suspect in bomb hoax identified
From J-T staff reports:
Marysville Police released the name of the man who made up a story about
masked men threatening to explode a bomb at  Goodyear Tuesday morning.
Daniel E. Walker, 29, of 460 Windmill Drive was in Marysville Municipal
Court this morning to face a fourth-degree felony charge against him.
The charge may be increased to a third-degree felony, depending upon how
much revenue Goodyear lost after shutting down production for five hours
and evacuating its entire staff.
At 1:37 a.m. Walker reported to Marysville police that two unidentified
males approached his guard post in an older model black vehicle and
threatened to cause an explosion at the plant. He said the suspects then
fled the area south on Industrial Parkway.
Police later discovered the report was a hoax made up by Walker.
Investigators would not go into further detail about why Walker made up
the story until after the scheduled court hearing.

Bomb threat at Goodyear found to be a hoax - Lonely security guard reportedly made call
From J-T staff reports:
Area police and fire officials responded to what ended up being a fake
bomb threat at Goodyear this morning.
Charges are now pending against a 29-year-old contracted security
officer at the plant who admitted to lying about the bomb threat. The
suspect's name could not be released before press time due to charges
being transferred to Union County Prosecutor David Phillips for review.
According to Marysville police, at 1:37 a.m. they received a report that
two unidentified males had threatened to cause an explosion at the
Goodyear facility at 13601 Industrial Parkway.
The bomb threat was discovered to be false after the incident was
investigated by Marysville police officers. Allegedly the suspect made
up the incident because he was "lonely."
When the call came in, fire crews from Marysville, Pleasant Valley,
Union Township and Jerome Township were initially dispatched to join
police at the scene.
Goodyear spokesman Skip Scherer of the Akron Corporation reported that
production at Goodyear was shut down for five hours. Plant employees
were evacuated while fire crews and police investigated.
Scherer would not speculate on how much revenue the plant lost from the incident.
"Our workers were our primary concern," he said. "I'm glad it wasn't something serious."
Scherer said he wanted to thank the local police and fire crews for
arriving at the scene as quickly as they did for what could have been a "potential catastrophe."

Getting gassed - Industrial park hit with installation bill that was nearly three times the estimate
Sometimes an estimate isn't worth the paper it's printed on.
Richwood Village Council members and Union County Economic Development
Director Eric Phillips were left scratching their heads Monday night
after Columbia Gas' estimate to install lines in the industrial park nearly tripled.
Phillips explained the situation to council in detail. He said he was
faced with compiling estimates for utilities for a grant application but
had trouble dealing with Columbia Gas.
The company eventually gave him an estimate, in the form of an e-mail,
for $25-$35,000 to run lines in the industrial park. Phillips said he
penciled in $30,000 for gas service on the grant application.
After the application was approved, the money was awarded and
infrastructure work on the park began. In October, the park's first
business, MAI, contacted Columbia Gas to set up service.
The company said service to the park would carry an $88,000 price tag.
Phillips said the company had originally not realized that it would
require a four-inch gas line to serve the park and prepared the original
estimate based on a two-inch line.
Phillips said propane and other gas providers were considered as an
alternative but either did not meet the needs of the facility or were too expensive.
Phillips said he and Union County Engineer Steve Stolte met with
representatives of the company about the issue and before any
negotiation took place the estimate dropped to $68,000. From there the
price again dropped to $55,000.
Phillips said another utility installation had come in $10,000 under
budget so he applied that money to the cost, leaving it at $45,000. On
that figure, which was $15,000 more than the original estimate, Columbia
Gas offered to offset half the difference.
Phillips said he tried to get the company to swallow the entire overrun,
but Columbia Gas would not pay more than $7,500 of the difference.
Council members wondered if they had any legal recourse. Scott Jerew
said estimates for such work should be more binding.
"I'm dumfounded," he said. "It's just wrong."
He reasoned that if a contractor on a house came back with a jacked-up
bid for work, the owner has legal rights. Phillips said the difference
here is the fact that the village is dealing with a public utility.
With no other options, the village could pursue legal channels but in
the meantime the company would have no gas service. With MAI slated to
begin operations in late March, the gas service is needed.
Amid much grumbling about the cost, the council eventually decided that
paying the $7,500 was the best course of action based on time
constraints. The village had budgeted $25,000 for expenses of the
industrial park for the 2005.
Council also discussed a pair of street issues.
Jerew announced that the street committee secured a price of $30,000 for
a widening and repaving project for Grove Street. The village would be
working with the county on the project which will increase the width of
the street by 48 inches. Council approved the work with a 5-0 vote, as member Jim Ford was absent
from the meeting.
Increased school bus traffic on the street was discussed and council
considered putting vehicle weight restrictions on the road. Because the
school district does transport some students who live on the road, it
was decided to discuss the issue with the district in an effort to keep
down bus traffic for vehicles that are simply traveling to and from the
transportation facility in the area.
Council member Arlene Blue also introduced the fact that the village may
need to begin planning for a levy for street repairs in the village.
Although no firm millage amounts were discussed, Blue said the village
has costly repairs that are desperately needed and funds for such
improvements are not available in the budget.
In other business, council:
 . Discussed a piece of property in the village that may be
undevelopable, despite recently being purchased as a home location.
 . Discussed discrepancies in the pay scale for village police department employees.
 . Learned from village administrator Jim Thompson that the village is
experiencing a problem with residents using sump pumps to pump water
from their homes into the village streets. Thompson said such action
rapidly deteriorates the streets and can cause ice hazards when the
temperature drops. He said residents may pump the water into the storm
sewer system but may not pump into the sanitary sewer.

An African adventure - Local resident learns the intricacies of the dark continent
The year 2004 was a notable one for Laura Lee Roebuck. The longtime
Marysville resident turned 80, went to Mexico to help build a church,
hiked in the New Hampshire mountains and spent almost three weeks in Africa.
The African trip came about because Roebuck's son, Bill, takes a group
of students to the University of Pretoria every year to study the
ecology of South Africa. Bill is a professor of toxicology at the
Dartmouth Medical School in New Hampshire and he for the past several
years, he has spent October through December in Pretoria. He teaches for
one quarter and conducts cancer research the rest of the year. Roebuck's
daughter Virginia, who lives in Connecticut, traveled with her.
Many areas in Africa and even in Pretoria are labeled criminal areas and
because of this, Bill and his wife Karen live in a compound. He told his
mother and sister to leave the house only in the daylight and to "look
homely, not flashy." His students live with middle-class African families.
Roebuck said white Africans in Pretoria are mostly from England and the
Netherlands, Afrikaners are native Africans and coloreds, as they called
in the region, are of mixed race. Restrictions on marriage are very
firm, she said.
Roebuck said that driving around Pretoria, it is hard to tell it is
South Africa. She said she saw the biggest shopping mall she has ever
seen in Pretoria. "And I've seen shopping malls all over the eastern
part of the U.S.," she said.
But off the freeways, things are different. Many natives live in large
villages of shacks built of whatever materials are available, Roebuck
said, but they are lucky compared to many Africans in that they were
able to come in from the countryside and find jobs.
During their travels outside Pretoria, the Roebuck family visited a huge
crater near Pretoria whose existence was not known until modern times.
Another trip took them to Giant Castle in South Africa, a cave with
hieroglyphics which date back to before the time of Christ. The trip to
the cave took many hours of driving and a long trek on foot up a mountain.
In Swaziland, they visited a village on top of a mountain where the
natives barely make a living with crops and animals but there was a
school for the children.
Also in Swaziland, they stayed at a village where the natives had, at
the suggestion of Bill's students, built a compound which serves as a
motel. The huts are made of grass and they have concrete floors. Guests
pay $70 a night to sleep in their sleeping bags on the floor and some
meals are included.
Roebuck described a meal made of sausage, tomatoes and beans, served
with a type of cornmeal bread. A pan of water is passed so guests can
wash their hands, then the food is eaten with fingers from a tin plate.
In that same village, Roebuck learned more about native culture. The
most important house in the village is the "grandmother house" where the
most revered members of the society live. Boys and girls have no contact
with each other and when a young man, usually at the age of 24 or 25,
can prove he has enough cows and goats to support a family, he goes to a
grandmother. She talks to the mother of a young woman and the mother
talks to the father.
Once permission is given, the young couple is married in the cattle pen,
which is their "bank" and will play a important part in their lives.
Another trip took Roebuck's family to a game preserve where they saw
baboons, guinea fowl, elephants, giraffes, rhinoceroses and zebras. She
saw aloe trees that are 14 feet tall, much larger than the plants many
people have in their homes.
Roebuck said many trees line the roads and some of them have been
imported from Australia. Their need for water causes problems in the
arid regions of Africa. She said another common sight along the roads is
bundles of grass which are drying out for use in building huts.
During her travels, Roebuck said, she encountered a lot of anti-American
and anti-Bush feelings. She said fellow travelers from many countries
were very vocal about U.S. foreign policy and couldn't understand why
the American people re-elected Bush.
With all the events of 2004 behind her, what will Roebuck do next? She
said she plans to join the Mexican mission trip again this year and she
definitely wants to go back to Africa.

'Honk' has Marysville flavor
Local students working on Children's Hospital production
Two Marysville students will be making their Palace Theater debut as
they lend their talents to the production of "Honk the Musical" on Feb.
18, 19 and 20.
Evan Zimmerman, 14, will be starring in the show as "Ugly" and Chris
Murray, 11, plays one of the duckling brothers in the Pleasure Guild of
Columbus's Children's Hospital annual production.
Sara Bunsold, a graduate of Marysville High School, will play Ida, the
duckling mother.
"'Honk' is the musical version of the ugly duckling which is a story of
love and acceptance," Bethanne Tilson, director of annual giving for
Children's Hospital, said. "The 'Honk' cast is the best ever and this
production is to be the best that the Pleasure Guild has ever produced."
Zimmerman said he feels it is a great honor to play the lead in a
production that has become a time-honored tradition for almost 50 years.
The Pleasure Guild has presented a professional produced children's play
ever year since 1958.
"I was surprised and honored to receive the lead of Ugly," Zimmerman
said, "This has been so amazing and it's for a great cause."
All proceeds from the show go directly towards the hospice program at
Children's Hospital, Tilson said.
The acting bug bit Zimmerman at a young age. His older brother, Jarrod,
played the lead in the 1996 Pleasure Guild's production of "Pinnochio."
"I loved going to see my brother perform and that's what got me
started," Zimmerman said.
Chris Murray is excited to be part of such a large production.
"I've been in other local productions and I wanted to try something
bigger," Murray said. "I was pretty much speechless (when I got the
part) because I didn't think I would make it on my first try for a big production."
Both boys have performed locally in various musicals and plays including
last summer's "Tom Sawyer." Zimmerman played Tom and Murray played one
of the boys in Tom's gang.
Zimmerman has also played the leads in other Columbus-produced musicals
including the Columbus Children's theater's 2002 "The Best Christmas
Pageant Ever" and in 2003's "You're a Good Man Charlie Brown" at the
Davis Discovery Center.
Both young men have been hard at work at rehearsals since the end of
last year. Rehearsals run four to six nights a week for more than two hours each evening.
However, all the hard work has made Zimmerman and Murray want to work harder.
"I think when I grow up I want to make acting my profession," Murray said.
Zimmerman hopes to follow in his older brother's footsteps by attending
Northwestern University and majoring in theater. Both said they have
dreams to someday perform on Broadway.
"I've always wanted to be in 'Honk' and it makes it more special because
all the money goes to Children's Hospital," Zimmerman said.
More information on tickets for "Honk the Musical" may be obtained by
contacting Ticketmaster.

Tracing the trail of his forefathers
Local man joins group that traces route of Lewis and Clark
Bob Anderson has returned to Marysville after living for more than a
year like his great-great-great-uncle, George Shannon, who was an
original member of the Lewis and Clark Expedition.
Anderson and other descendants of the original expedition are following
the 8,000-mile path blazed 200 years ago across the United States of
America. The group of re-enactors has ranged from 14 to 75. Anderson is
the only person to have traveled the complete trail to date. Joining
Anderson on the trip is a grandson, Joshua Loftis, who graduated early
from high school so he could be part of the adventure.
 The 28-month trip began in May 2004 and will end in September 2006.
Last winter Anderson stayed at Camp DuBois in Wood River, Ill., just
like his ancestor. He said it was a real learning experience with a
fireplace as his only source of heat during single digit weather. This
winter, the group stopped at Fort Mandan in Washburn, N.D., but were
unable to stay in the rebuilt fort. The group will winter in Astoria,
Ore., in 2005 and are awaiting official permission to stay in that fort.
Relying on journal entries by the original expedition, Anderson said the
modern-day weather has been very much like that of the 1800s, although
he believes his group of adventurers is eating a lot better than their ancestors.
When the re-enactors go "hunting," he said, they are going to the grocery store.
For him, the journey has included many special moments. Some of the most
enjoyable have been the simple experience of sailing three hours near
Omaha one day or enjoying the natural landscapes along the river near Yankton, N.D.
"That was so great. I really enjoyed it," Anderson said.
Anderson left the boats from Aug. 26 to Sept. 11 to follow the Shannon
Trail in Nebraska. The trail was named after George Shannon who went to
look for horses that had wandered off during the night. He eventually
found the horses but had some difficulty in returning to the expedition
because they had stopped along the way.
The modern-day trip even had a confrontation with Indians.
Anderson said one older man, who was part of the modern-day Indian
protest, said he didn't like the trip and wanted the group to turn back.
The Indians believe that the original expedition was the end of their
people, bringing diseases like small pox, killing buffalos and
destroying their life and culture, Anderson said.
Another memorable event for Anderson occurred in Fall City, Neb., where
his grandmother, Beaulah Cashell, was born. She met his grandfather,
Harry Cashell of Raymond, when he built a train station in Fall City.
Anderson was able to locate the burial site of his great-grandmother and
discovered no burial marker had ever been laid. He was able to take care
of that while he was there.
In Dakota City, Neb., a group of re-enactors dressed in period clothes
including Anderson marched his grandson to the local post office to sign
up for the draft on his 18th birthday.
Anderson is currently keeping busy by sorting through the many items he
has been sending home over the past year and a half, however, he has no
plans for staying here for long. He said he will be returning to the
journey when the boats leave in April.

Grants available for first time home buyers
The city of Marysville will be offering home ownership classes once
again through the CHIP program.
Marysville city administrator Kathy House said that the classes will be
for first-time home buyers. Sessions will be held Feb. 26 and again
Saturday, March  5,  from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Marysville Public
Library, 231 Plum St. in the Community Room.
The Marysville income guidelines to be eligible are $38,300 for a
one-person family size, $43,800 for a two-person, $49,250 for a
three-person, $54,700 for a four-person, $59,100 for a five-person,
$63,500 for a six-person, $67,850 for a seven-person and $72,250 for an
eight-person family size. Eligible repairs include furnace/heating
systems, leaking or poor roof systems, faulty plumbing and electrical
systems, lead based paint hazards and more.
Grants are available up to $8,000.
Scheduled class topics include credit and budgeting, working with
realtors and lenders, insurance and home inspection. Participants will
receive a certificate of completion that will help them obtain mortgage financing.
Down payment assistance will be available for income-eligible applicants
up to $32,000 for purchase and rehabilitation of a home within the city limits of Marysville.
Classes are sponsored by the city of Marysville Community Housing
Improvement Program (CHIP).
Those attending are asked to bring lunch and a photo I.D.  The classes
are free. Credit reports will be offered free to the first 10 participants.
For more information contact Shelly Rouse at (800) 886-6772 or Barb McCoy at 645-1028.

Council, mayor blasted
Millcreek Twp. residents accuse officials of having secret deal with developer
Heated, emotional and even outright ticked off, Millcreek Township
residents turned out in full force to speak against Marysville putting
its future wastewater treatment plant at the Beecher Gamble Road site.
The public hearing on a resolution authorizing Marysville Mayor Tom
Kruse to enter into a purchase agreement for the Marysville wastewater
treatment plant site was held Thursday night.
Millcreek residents packed the chambers, telling council that Marysville
has acted "shady" in its past dealings, that the proposed site is not
the best option, that it could cause environmental problems for the
rural area and that Marysville better not be planning to annex Millcreek
Township in some deal with developers.
At one point the meeting dissolved into chaos, as residents became more
and more angry. The word "sewage" turned into more colorful words.
"We're trying to be open-minded and listen," council president John Gore
said. "This is becoming an attack here."
Many Millcreek residents pointed out what they believe have been
"secretive" and "misleading" statements from Kruse, especially that
there are no homes within 1/2 mile of the site location when some fall
within several hundred feet.
But the topic of utmost concern is the fear of annexation. Millcreek
residents do not want to lose their identity. If annexation is not the
city's goal, then why is annexation included in the purchase agreement?
As one woman asked - what is the city's real deal with the Glacier Ridge developers?
Millcreek resident Jim Lawrenz pointed out that the land purchase
agreement states, "The purchaser must make a good faith effort to
approve any reasonable annexation, zoning and utilities request
consistent with this agreement."
"This looks like a conflict of interest or a quid pro quo on the city's
part," Lawrenz said. "I always thought it was the responsibility of the
city to represent its citizens, not prostitute itself to the developer."
Speaking on behalf of a Millcreek citizens group, Paul Detwiler said
that Marysville would put itself in a bad situation if it makes this
deal with the Glacier Ridge developers.
"Do the math. If the developer controls 4,000 acres, a conservative
estimate would be the potential for 4,000 new homes," he said. "The
future development will need services that the city will be forced to
offer. How can the city say no to any annexation petition? After all,
they climbed into bed with this developer by accepting his 100-acre sewer plant deal."
Regarding the site selection, the Millcreek citizen's group
representative Marian Jacques said the Beecher Gamble Road location is not the best.
"The Industrial Parkway corridor is a more appropriate location for a
sewer treatment plant. The county comprehensive plan, road development
and majority of local zoning support this type of facility on Industrial
Parkway," she said. "The current site is being considered only because
of the deal offered by the developer."
Jacques said the developer is "selling" the 100 acres to the city for
$2.7 million dollars. However, she said the mayor himself said no money
will change hands because the developer is receiving $2.7 million in tap-in fee credit.
"This is why all other sites have been removed from consideration,"
Jacques said. "Obviously there is much more to this proposal than just
building a new sewer plant."
In response, Kruse said that the city is interested only in building a sewer plant.
"We are not delegated to annex anything the seller wants us to annex. If
we did not allow them to annex after one year then the city could
exercise the option of requiring us to pay cash for the property. We
have given up no right whatsoever of our ability to decline," Kruse
said. "I have no deal whatsoever with Glacier Ridge. Only a proposed site."
Kruse also pointed out that the city could have just used eminent domain
and dealt with the repercussions in court later on.
Councilman John Marshall said it's any landowner's right to sell his
land to anyone he wants, especially if the price is right. The point is
that growth is coming to this entire county and there are only two ways to deal with it.
"We can either manage growth or we can stick our heads in the sand and
wake up to find a community we don't recognize anymore," Marshall said.
Regarding concerns over the sewer plant destroying the Millcreek
environment, Marshall said people can be sure the Ohio EPA will be "all
over the environmental concerns."
Council vice president Nevin Taylor said that there were many new
questions raised during the meeting that he would like answers for.
"Our homework is not done yet," he said. "I don't want to see a
multi-million dollar investment without all the Ps and Qs."
Taylor did say that he has yet to see a site location better than the
Beecher Gamble Road spot.
Gore said he would try to get answers to questions raised placed on the
city Web-site for easy viewing.
Millcreek trustee Bill Lynch said the purchase agreement sets off alarm
bells. Working through a developer is just going to cause problems.
"Just pay for the land," he said.
Trustee Keith Conroy said that if council passes the resolution,
trustees have several requests. He wants council to provide a
knowledgeable representative for their monthly meetings to ensure their
citizens are up-to-date; that the city invite Millcreek representatives
to partner with city decision makers on the facility's technical design,
architecture, screening, buffering and more; that the city work with the
township regarding the project's impact on roads; to continue the U.S.
33 Corridor meetings which help create dialogue; the township already
has a formidable policy on addressing citizen complaints. He hopes
Marysville will do the same. The final reading on the ordinance comes at the Feb. 24 city council
meeting. At this time, council members must decide to approve the purchase agreement or not.

Union County Mock Trial teams hit the courthouse
2005 squads take on Web sites   and the first amendment
From J-T staff reports:
The challenge today for students from Marysville, North Union and
Fairbanks high schools is to argue a first amendment case as part of the
Ohio Center for Law-Related Education's 2005 Mock Trial competition.
First round competitions will be held today at the Union County
Courthouse from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Students play the roles of attorneys
and witnesses, and must be prepared to argue both sides of a hypothetical case.
The 2005 Ohio Center for Law-Related Education's High School Mock Trial
case before the students involves a lawsuit brought against the Animal
Rights Foundation (ARF) by Biotex Labs LLC for printing inflammatory
statements on their Web site against the Zanesville laboratory that was
performing animal testing for an antidote to the nerve gas Sarin. Biotex
claims that because of the Web site's declarations, the building was
attacked by those incited by the statements on the site, years of
research was destroyed, equipment was smashed and the animals were let
out of the cages, putting their work back at least six weeks. ARF claims
it did nothing wrong and is not responsible for the actions of those who read their Web site.
Team members have spent weeks preparing their cases, working with a
teacher coach and local attorney. They will compete in trials lasting up
to two hours in which participants are scored for creativity and persuasiveness.
Judicial panels of local judges and attorneys select the winning teams
and also choose the best individual student "lawyers" and "witnesses"
for special recognition.
More than 3,000 students representing more than 250 high school teams
are competing at 31 district sites across the state. The top 48 teams
will advance to the state finals in Columbus on March 10-12. The final
championship round will be played at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus.
The Ohio High School Mock Trial competition is the third largest in the
country behind California and New York.
OCLRE is sponsored by the Supreme Court of Ohio, the Ohio State Bar
Association, the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio Foundation and
the Ohio Attorney General's Office.
In addition, the Ohio Mock Trial competition is made possible in part by
a grant from the Ohio State Bar Foundation.

Why Black History Month is important
Black History Month
Editor's note: This story is supplied by Nigal D. Felder, pastor of
Allen Chapel AME Church in Marysville. The newspaper will supply
additional stories on Black History month from this author and others
throughout the month. February marks the beginning of Black History Month - an annual
celebration that has existed since 1926. But what are the origins of Black History Month?
Much of the credit can go to Harvard Scholar Dr. Carter G. Woodson, who
was determined to bring Black History into the mainstream public arena.
Woodson devoted his life to making "the world see the Negro as a
participant rather than as a lay figure in history."
In 1926 Woodson organized the first annual Negro History Week, which
took place during the second week of February. Woodson chose this date
to coordinate with the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and Abraham
Lincoln, two men who had greatly impacted the African American population.
Over time, Negro History Week evolved into the Black History Month that
we know today, a four-week-long celebration of African American History.
What is the significance of this celebration and how should it impact
the broader society? Well, from this writer's perspective, it is the
most relative time of our year and it is appropriate that it occurs
toward the beginning of the year because I believe if we are to
appreciate the value of African people everywhere we must as a nation
and community appreciate the reality that African people have been here
from the beginning. We have been here, not just impacting what has
happened in America, but also impacting the world since the start of civilization.
When you look at a map, what you will find is a division between Africa
and Egypt. This is an inaccurate depiction of the truth. Africa and
Egypt are not separate and never have been separate but it was important
to show this separation in order to build a case for some of the
religious thoughts that have come forward over the course of time. It
was important to separate the great thinkers of religious thought from
Africa but that is impossible because the great thoughts of some of
Christianity's forefathers were born in Northern Africa and after those
thoughts begin to spread all over the world, they were the foundation of
what we know today as Christianity.
Names like Tertullian, the great pagan who converted to Christianity was
from Carthage in Northern Africa. He is famous for the phase, "What has
Athens to do with Jerusalem? Or the Academy with the Church."  This is a
theological debate that has covered centuries of discussion and debate.
It challenges the idea of faith and reason and the ability to
intellectually think about God. That is another subject for another time.
I raise this fact only to highlight in a meaningful way the fact that
Africa has always been apart of the thought, development and
consciousness of the world in that African people have always been a
people of great wisdom and intelligence. Why is this so important? It is
important because in a world where disinformation can spread faster than
the truth, our citizenry should be armed always with the truth.
African Americans come from a proud legacy of intelligent minds and a
great heritage. When we were taken captive and brought to the Western
Hemisphere to be slaves, we were not ignorant creatures. Rather, we were
a proud people forced to endure great hardship and struggle. We were a
people disconnected from our ancestors and brought to a place where we
were beaten and punished in an effort to make us disown and renounce our
heritage. Native language and names were taken and we were given names
that suited those who claimed ownership to us because just as in the
Bible, whenever you are given ownership of something, you must name that
something to take authority over it.
So why is Black History Month important? It is important because just
like the events that surrounded the Holocaust, that terrible tragedy
that impacted European Jews, a society should always understand the
ramifications of hatred and ignorance that spirals out of control. We
must know that if we allow such ignorance to persist in isolated
pockets, the whole world, our country, our state and all our
communities, small and large, will suffer from these injustices.
African American history should be taught in our schools, colleges and
universities as a central theme within American culture but it isn't. I
realize more today than ever the need for increased sensitivity to the
cultures of other people because our immediate communities are now mixed
with more and more people who do not look like me.
It is very easy to only see yourself and your surroundings as central to
your existence. The old Negro spiritual says it like this, "Nobody knows
de trouble I see." This is a fact of life for all people. Unless you
come to know another culture and their history, you will never know what
it means to truly be who you are.
Think about the uses of history. Realize that history has been used to
justify a multitude of conditions, institutions and events. Perhaps most
of all, history has been used as the raw material of national identity, pride and power.
Can history be employed to produce an identity of power for a population
of African Americans and promote respect and appreciation for Black
identity in those Americans who are not Black? This is what African
American history seeks to do. It becomes essential to the task to ask
questions, and to engage in intellectual activism ? that is to say, to
seek answers and to do something with those answers.
Who are African Americans today? Where are Black Americans now? What
role does African American identity play in the overall American
identity? And how did Black Americans get to this point? Did you ever
wonder what the politics of African Americans are all about? Or why the
economic situation of Black people seems to differ so dramatically from
the rest of America. What is Black American culture, and how it fits ?
or doesn't ? with the rest of America? Is there an African American
community, and if so, how did it develop and why? What are the
contributions to America from Black Americans? Are those contributions
limited? How and why? Is there a future for people of African heritage
in America? This text will break all that down in the words of those who
experience African America. That means all of us, but especially those
of us who are Black. In my next article, I will answer in detail some of those questions and
discuss some of the unique contributions African Americans have made to our society.

Prosecutor: Health dept. can't stop development
Does the Union County Health Department have the power to halt growth in Marysville?
Union County Prosecutor Dave Phillips said he doesn't think so.
In response to questions raised by Union County Health Commissioner
Martin Tremmel, Phillips wrote in his opinion, "I find no legal basis
requiring or authorizing the Union County Department of Health to
approve subdivision plats utilizing a public sewer system prior to
recording. Thus, I am compelled to conclude that the board's directive
has no effect on the subdivision approval process, and the plats should be recorded."
County Recorder Teresa Markham, County Auditor Mary Snider, County
Engineer Steve Stolte, and the Board of County Commissioners have also
requested this opinion, Phillips said, on the effect that the Board of
Health directive has on the approval and recording of plats. Because
these issues are intertwined he answered them as well.
"I have found no authority for the Board of Health to approve or
disapprove a subdivision plat when a public sewer system is proposed to
be utilized; rather, this appears to be a practice developed from the
county's subdivision regulations," Phillips said.
He explained that the Union County Board of Commissioners adopted
subdivision regulations years ago that stated the board of health
approval of the plats is not required. The plat is to be submitted for
"study and recommendation" by the health department. The plan approval
should come from that service provider, namely the City of Marysville and the Ohio EPA.
 A similar conclusion was reached by the Attorney General in 1960,
Phillips said. The opinion concluded granted no authority for the board
of commissioners to require the approval of the county health
commissioner before endorsing its approval of a plat. The opinion also
recognized that adoption of such a policy would amount to an
impermissible delegation of authority by the board.
"I am therefore advising the County Auditor to endorse any plat which is
otherwise in compliance with the subdivision regulations, and advising
the County Recorder to record such plats, even without an "approval"
signature from the Union County Health Department," he wrote. "Because I
do not believe that the board of health has any authority to disapprove
a plat, it necessarily follows that it has no duty to do so."
Phillips also stated that Tremmel may continue attaching a "letter of
concern" to subdivision plats before submitting them for further action.
This action appears appropriate, under the board's directive to study
and make recommendations.
Last week the health department voted that Tremmel should not sign off
on development plats affecting an already over-capacity Marysville
Wastewater Treatment Plant. The board also sent Phillips questions
asking what the repercussions of their actions would mean for future
developments in Marysville.
"If we don't have the authority to do anything." Tremmel said, prior to
hearing Phillips' decision, "we can accept that."
Tremmel said the next question is why the health department is even
involved in the process of signing off on plats. The health department
is in a difficult position in signing these when they have a
responsibility to protect the public health and sometimes the sewage
goes directly into Mill Creek.
Tremmel said the department's stance on the issue is not a new one. The
board has been making its case known to developers as well as city and
county officials for years. He said it is their duty to call attention
to "a public health dilemma."
According to Marysville Mayor Tom Kruse, the health department would
first need to show that it has the authority.
He said the health department's own Web site answers the question. Under
the section "Environmental Health" the site states, "Public systems are
not regulated by the health department and are governed by the Ohio
Environmental Protection Agency."
"You know the ramifications of stopping any additional developments,
residential or otherwise, are just horrendous," Kruse said. "I mean
hundreds of millions of dollars are at stake here - not just the
developers, the school system has sold bonds based on these TIFs. And
our financing package for the WWTP, we figured in with revenues that
would be generated from the TIFs. Without development there isn't going to be any revenue."
Marysville schools superintendent Larry Zimmerman said this morning that
bonds have not yet been sold on the TIFs but the process has begun.
Kruse said Marysville is doing exactly what the EPA has requested.
Before any development starts the city has to have a permit to install
from the Ohio EPA - which the city has.
Mike Sapp, of the Ohio EPA, was not available for comment today.
"I wish I knew what it was all about," Kruse said. "I don't understand
all this . Yes, we have some problems with the (wastewater) system or we
wouldn't be building a new one."
Kruse said in order for the development halt to occur, the health
department would first need to demonstrate a specific standard that the
city is violating and establish what its specific authority over
Marysville's sewer lines would be. He added that the health department
would not be able to just issue an order, they would first have to hold
hearings as an administrative agency.
"It's our position that they don't have any authority and that seems to
be verified on their own Web site," Kruse said. "And consequently we're
going to continue doing what we're doing at this point."
Tremmel said this morning that the Union County Health Department is
"very supportive and remains very supportive" of Marysville's efforts to
fix its wastewater situation. The concern is what will happen over the
next several years before the new plant is put into service. Commercial
and residential developments are coming in and adding to an outdated plant.
The health department's issue with Marysville may also have to do with
the division of funds coming from future residential Tax Increment
Financing districts. The Marysville school system has decided to share
its revenue, whereas the city of Marysville is not because it is
attempting to repair its wastewater system and streets. By law the city
is not obligated to give any tax money generated in these districts to
entities such as the library, MR/DD and the health department
"I spent a great deal of time discussing TIFs with him. It's not like he
wasn't privy to the same explanations," Kruse said about Tremmel. "In
fact, he probably got more than some of the other agencies. We had
meetings with the Chamber of Commerce - the library was there and Jerry
Buerger from MR/DD, the county was represented and they all had their
board chairmen. (Tremmel) was there at one of them. He's been privy to all of this."
"The other thing is, all the questions that the health commissioner
seems to ask are all addressed in our WWTP plan that was done by Malcolm
Pirnie," Kruse said. "And we furnished him with a copy of that early on,
so it's clear to me something was lost in translation there."
Regarding the question of TIF funds, Tremmel said it is a "totally
separate issue." He did comment that it was unfortunate that smaller
agencies such as the health department, 911 services, the Marysville
library, MR/DD and more would be excluded for the next 30 years from
this revenue. The result is that these agencies will have to make their
funding troubles known through levies and hope the public will support them.
If the Union County Health Department does end up halting future
developments in Marysville, Kruse said it would not end up well.
"There would be lawsuits all over the place," he said. "Everybody's
going to get sued."

J-T family honored by ONA
Receives First Family of Ohio Newspapers Award
From J-T staff reports:
The Gaumer-Behrens family, owners of the Marysville Journal-Tribune for
the past 101 years, was honored today with the First Families Of Ohio
Newspapers Award presented at a luncheon during the Ohio Newspaper
Association (ONA) convention in Columbus.
Accepting the award was Journal-Tribune Publisher Dan Behrens.
The award, established in 1996, is the highest honor bestowed by ONA,
the trade association of Ohio's 84 daily and 90 weekly newspapers. It
recognizes "distinguished service and family dedication to newspaper
publishing and community journalism."
In 2004, the Gaumer-Behrens family marked its centennial year of family
ownership of the newspaper in Marysville. It was in 1904 that Bruce B.
Gaumer purchased the weekly Union County Journal. He bought the daily
Marysville Tribune in 1951 and merged the two into the Journal-Tribune.
He died in 1956 and his son, F. T. Gaumer, and daughter, Mary Elizabeth
Gaumer Behrens, became joint owners. Mrs. Behrens and her husband,
Winfield, purchased her brother's interest in 1961.
Their sons David and Daniel, became involved in the business. Winfield
Behrens died in 1994, David in 1997 and Mrs. Behrens in 2002 leaving
Daniel as publisher and president. His son Kevin is general manager of
the newspaper and represents the fifth generation of the family to be
involved in the newspaper business.
Other family members at the luncheon were Dan's wife, Melanie, his son
Mike and his wife, Jennifer, and Kevin. The award was presented by ONA
President Tom Smith, publisher of the Bellevue Gazette. It recognizes
service and achievement over several generations if related to family
ownership and over an extended period of time if related to corporate
ownership with family origins.
The recipient is chosen by the ONA president in consultation with the
ONA Convention Committee and presented each February at the
association's annual convention.
A custom-designed award, suitable for wall-mounting, was presented to
Behrens for display at the Journal-Tribune office. A commemorative plate
will be added to the permanent plaque displayed at the ONA office in Columbus.
In accepting the plaque, Behrens said he was very honored and proud to
have his family chosen for the award. He pointed out that his
grandfather's purchase of the Tribune was a bit unusual in that he was a
Democrat with a semi-weekly newspaper and he bought the daily Republican
paper in a largely Republican town and county.
He added, "I have learned two valuable lessons in the 36 years I have
worked at the newspaper. One is that for a family newspaper to be
successful, the family owners must take an active role in its operation
... The second is that employees of the newspaper are its greatest
asset. The Journal-Tribune has been blessed over the years with the
finest employees any newspaper could hope to have."
Speaker at the luncheon was Robert Novak, noted syndicated columnist and
frequent television personality on various news-related programs.
Past winners of the First Families of Ohio Newspapers Award are: 1996 -
Clarence J. Brown and Brown Publishing Co.; 1997 - Ed Heminger and the
Findlay Publishing Co.; 1998 - R. Victor Dix and Dix Communications of
Wooster; 1999 - Arthur Hudnutt and the Lorain County Printing &
Publishing Co of Elyria and Medina County; 2000 - James M. Cox family
and Cox Enterprises, owners of the Dayton Daily News and Springfield
News-Sun; 2001 - W. D. "Tom" Thomson and family and the Delaware
Gazette; 2002 - the Block family and the Toledo Blade; 2003 - Harold
Douthit and family, owners of 12 suburban weekly operations in the Lake
Erie region; and 2004 - John F. Wolfe and family of the Columbus Dispatch.

Honda Civic Si concept makes debut
Editor's note: The following information was provided by Honda of America.
The Civic Si Concept, making its world debut today at the Chicago Auto
Show, provides a strong indication of the styling and performance
direction for an all-new production Civic Si Coupe scheduled to debut later this year.
The production Civic Si Coupe will serve as the performance leader for a
completely redesigned 2006 model Civic lineup that will feature more
emotional styling, added performance and the latest generation of
"intelligent" i-VTEC engine technology.
The 2006 Civic lineup, launching this fall, will include a 4-door Sedan,
a 2-door Coupe and Si Coupe, an even more fuel efficient Civic Hybrid
and a natural-gas powered Civic GX. The Civic Si Concept celebrates the
20th anniversary of the Civic Si legacy in the U.S. and builds on its
performance heritage with a 200-horsepower, 16-valve, DOHC i-VTEC engine
with an 8,000 rpm red line, mated to a close ratio 6-speed manual
transmission.  Helping to put all that power to the ground is a
helical-type limited slip differential for improved launch traction and cornering performance.
Other performance features of the Civic Si Concept include 18-inch cast
aluminum wheels, 225/40R18 high performance tires and 4-wheel disc
brakes with large cross-drilled brake rotors and 4-piston Brembo calipers.
"The 2006 Civic Si Coupe will be the most powerful, fastest and
fun-to-drive Si we've ever put on the street, and the Civic Si Concept
sets the direction in terms of its styling, package and performance," said John
Mendel, senior vice president of American Honda. "It's part of a new
family of Civic vehicles that build on the already class-leading values
of the Civic in terms of safety, styling, performance and fuel efficiency."
Designed as an "Advanced Personal Compact," the Civic Si Concept
incorporates a sweeping roofline and ultra-fast windshield rake that
highlights the vehicle's advanced one-motion profile, low and wide
stance, and superior aerodynamic performance. The long trunk deck, with
its frontward sloping bumper, accents the forward motion conveyed by the
overall vehicle shape.
Wheel openings have been optimized to minimize the gap between the tire
and the body.  Special aerodynamic features include a full front and
side aero kit, rear deck wing and a lower rear bumper diffuser with an
integrated center exhaust system.
The 2006 Civic Si Coupe will be the sixth generation Si, which first
appeared as a three-door hatchback in 1986 with subsequent Civic Si
models appearing in 1989, 1992, 1999 and 2002. The production Si will
make its world debut at the 2005 Specialty Equipment Market Association
(SEMA) show in November. The Civic Si Concept was designed at Honda R&D
America's Los Angeles design center.

Stay-at-home moms start  businesses
Three local stay-at-home moms have banked on their creativity as a way
to supplement their family income all from the comfort of their own homes.
Michelle McConnell, 35, started her Designs by Michelle bracelets three
years ago after attending a craft show.
"I saw a mother's bracelet that I wanted but the $85 price tag made my
creative side come out and I did the research to make my own," McConnell explained.
McConnell said she enjoyed the process of creating and began taking
requests from family and friends. She said she enjoys making each
sterling silver bracelet a one-of-a-kind design. She said her jewelry
design allows her to be at home with her three children, ages 3, 6 and 9.
"Staying at home has been the best choice for my three young boys," she
said, "For me, I feel I can give them a good start on their futures and
help them better understand mine and my husband's values before they
venture into school."
Lori LaCella, 40, agrees that staying at home with her two children is
the best choice for her family. LaCella started her candle-making
business, Wix and Wax, in 2002.
"I enjoy sharing in the growth and new discoveries of my children," LaCella said.
The candle-making business is a creative outlet, which she says "keeps
me hopping." LaCella's workshop is in her basement where she personally
makes all her candle products.
"It's my time after the kids go to bed or when they are in school," LaCella said.
Like McConnell, after getting the initial idea, LaCella put a lot of
time and work into researching her product.
Terry Simon, 35, of Mill Valley has always enjoyed her crafts. Simon
makes decorated glass candleholders and lighted glass boxes in her home.
She saw a lighted glass box at a craft show and knew she could make them less expensively.
The holidays are the biggest times for the three mom entrepreneurs. This
past Christmas proved to be the biggest yet.
"This December I was making 30 to 40 bracelets weekly," McConnell said.
LaCella has started to do fundraisers where she has filled orders up to 800.
All three women said the majority of their business comes via word of
mouth and their commitment is to customer satisfaction.
They all agreed their biggest critics and supporters are their children.
McConnell said her boys are always blunt when she asks about new jewelry designs.
"They will tell me 'that's great' or 'try again,'" she said.
LaCella and Simon said their children have become their little
salespeople, accompanying them to craft shows.
All three moms feel that being at home allows them to take an active
role in their children's lives. McConnell, LaCella and Simon all work as
volunteers in their school-aged children's classrooms.
"It's great to get involved in their school work and see exactly what
they do during an average school day," Simon said.
McConnell said her small business has given her the outlet to be the
businesswoman she has always longed to be and the ability to be a better
mother to her boys.
LaCella said she hopes to one day have her own storefront when her children are older.
"I'm excited and I hope the business keeps growing," LaCella said.

Twain impersonator charms crowd during concert series
Editor's note: The following review was submitted by Kay Liggett, a
member of the Community Concert Association.
Mark Twain came to town last night.
We were mesmerized with yarns spun about his life on the Mississippi
from early childhood into his years as a newspaper editor. Jim Post
became Twain for us last night, dressed all in white as Twain did, for
the hot, humid South from whence he came. "The Laughing River," part
music, part drama, was indeed entertaining.
Twain was a wellspring of literary treasures. We have all met and loved
Twain in school English classes. One little-known fact is that Twain
sang tenor, played banjo, piano and guitar and loved to show off at
parties. This discovery gave Jim Post the basis for his own unique
interpretation of a musical Mark Twain.
Post composed 12 songs based on true life stories of Twain's childhood
and wove them into a musical presentation of dialogue and song.
It was a totally engaging evening. Post wrote exquisite, beautifully
grafted compositions for Mark Twain. He has presented this show of
Americana on television and radio and in Europe more than 1,500 times.
We are glad he came with his songs and hilarious insightful  monologues,
some serious and some in the witty wry humor for which Twain was famous.
"The Jumping Frog of Calaveras County" ? remember that one? Get it out
and read it to the kids. It's still fresh and charming humor.
About his glass of water ? "Marysville water tastes good. What's in it?
You've been so kind to me. Must be the water!"
"I can lie to people and they pay me for it!" That was Mark Twain.
You can expect that from a guy who was born flying into the world on the
tail of a comet. "Haley's Comet was my star!"

Unionville Council discusses flooding
Purchase of sump pump questioned by members
Flooding problems in Unionville Center's were the main topic of
discussion at Monday's village council meeting.
During the most recent heavy rains, water began backing up in the south
side of the village, a situation that has reportedly been a problem for
many years. Two Pleasant Valley fire trucks pumped water for two days,
said Mayor Gary Drumm, to try to keep water away from houses in the area.
To help take the water level down, Drumm bought a sump pump and he and
other council members kept it running for two days. Drumm said he bought
the pump because he did not want the fire trucks tied up any longer.
Council president Becky Troyer questioned Drumm's use of village funds
without approval by council. Drumm replied that he considered the
situation to be an emergency and consulted with the village attorney
before buying the pump.
Council member Denver Thompson said he did not consider the situation an
emergency and suggested that a pump could have been rented.
Drumm said he wants Unionville Center to be self-sufficient. He said the
pump will be available for use by any village resident, adding that the
resident would have to have some instruction in its use and would have
to supply gasoline. A notice to that effect will be put up in the village post office.
Drumm said he plans to attend an upcoming meeting at the Union County
Services Center to apply for reimbursement for storm costs from state
funds managed by the EMA.
Drumm told council he would like to find an area car dealer or other
entity that would donate a single-axle one-ton dump truck so the village
would not have to pay for snow plowing.
Council members said they were unsure of the practicality of owning a
truck because of the costs of insurance and maintenance.
Clerk-treasurer Karla Gingerich presented council with information on a
House bill which allows for amnesty from unpaid taxes for certain
taxpayers. Drumm said he will consult the attorney on the issue.
Council passed a resolution to join the county paving bid. The county
allows other governing units to join their bidding process to perhaps
save money on paving projects but allows them to drop out of the program
if the cost is too high. The village wants to resurface Railroad Street
from Main Street to First Street.
In other business, council:
 . Approved the purchase of the sump pump, hoses and gasoline.
 . Approved the payment of bills from Dayton Power & Light, $220.68;
Malibu Lawn Service Inc. for snow plowing, $180; a concrete saw rental,
$42.80; mileage for Ron Griffith, $10; and office supplies, $84.75.
 . Passed a resolution to advertise for bids to install storm sewer
drops in the area prone to flooding. The next meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. March 7.

Cemetery fees  questioned in Jerome
Question: If you've lived in Jerome Township 30 years and die but your
daughter who lives somewhere else buys the cemetery lot for you, what
fee is charged - the lower resident rate or nonresident rate?
That question is the dilemma faced by Jerome Township Clerk Robert Caldwell, plus a few more.
During Monday's regular meeting, Caldwell explained problems with the
current cemetery lot and footer fees.
While the higher lot fee for nonresidents can be justified, Caldwell
said he had legal concerns about accessing a higher fee for footers for
nonresidents. He also explained the difficulty in determining if an
individual is a resident. Trustee Sharon Sue Wolfe said she would give
Caldwell something to show the state auditor to substantiate the difference in fees.
Tempers flared several times before and during the meeting with trustees
Freeman May and Wolfe challenging citizens who spoke up during the
meeting and fellow trustee Ron Rhodes. Ultimately May asked two
sheriff's deputies to return to the meeting because a citizen questioned
why an agenda item was not being discussed. During a 10-minute break in
the meeting the deputies talked with the citizen and all three trustees.
Before the meeting continued a deputy asked the public to hold their
comments until the end of the meeting. The deputies then left.
During another exchange, Rhodes apologized to another member of the
public who was verbally attacked by Wolfe for speaking during the meeting.
May and Wolfe voted to not refund $1,000 to property owners who had been
incorrectly told they needed a zoning variance. Rhodes disagreed.
"We do owe the people the money. We charged them improperly," Rhodes
said, adding that current and past prosecuting attorneys have told the
trustees to refund the money.
May proposed building a salt barn and creating a tax for police
services. Wolfe and Rhodes said more information is needed before pursuing both proposals.
Wolfe said the township has authority to charge for false alarm runs.
After several months of discussion, minutes for the Nov. 1 meeting were
finally approved, as were minutes for meetings on Dec. 20, Jan. 3, 12 and 18.
A public hearing will be held Feb. 22 at 7:30 p.m., prior to the regular
board of trustee meeting. The hearing is to consider a rezoning request
for 43.9 acres at Mitchell Dewitt and McKitrick roads from U1 to PUD.

Contest winner named
Roger Glassburn of Hillview Road will receive a one-year subscription to
the Marysville Journal-Tribune after correctly guessing the total points
scored in the Super Bowl in the Pick Against the King Picker Contest.
Glassburn and one other entrant correctly guessed 45 as the point total.
A random draw resulted in Glassburn winning the subscription.
A total of 53 readers submitted entries to the contest with the highest
guess being 67 points and the lowest being 23. Aside from the two
correct predictions, three readers were within one point of the actual
total. King Picker Chad Williamson had missed the total by two points, with a guess of 47.

Armed robbery, attempted carjacking reported
From J-T staff reports:
A robbery and an attempted carjacking in Marysville over the weekend did
not result in any injuries.
Police are investigating the robbery of Arby's at 977 Delaware Avenue Sunday.
At 7:40 p.m. an unknown man wearing a bandanna and a black cowboy hat
reportedly walked into the restaurant, pulled a knife from his jacket,
jumped over the counter and demanded cash from the registers. The man
then fled on foot with an undetermined amount of cash.
Witnesses describe the suspect as a possibly 30-year-old male, with a
thin average build and approximately 6 feet tall. He was wearing a
western-style shirt and gloves.
According to Marysville Police reports, Sherman C. Wilfong, 33, of 326
N. Maple St. was arrested Sunday at 1:26 p.m. He was charged with
third-degree felony attempted robbery, third-degree misdemeanor assault
and unlawful restraint.
After an argument at home Wilfong reportedly left the house looking to
steal a car. On Maple Street between Third and Fourth streets he
attempted to carjack a vehicle driven by a 16-year-old female.
Wilfong reportedly jumped on top of the car and was able to get the door
open before a passerby grabbed him long enough for police to arrive.
Wilfong was maced and placed under arrest. He allegedly had tried
stealing three other vehicles before this attempt.

Signs note historic uptown area
From J-T staff reports:
Marysville's Uptown Renewal Team has taken another step in opening the
door to a successful downtown area.
New road signs have gone up over the past few days to direct the way to
Marysville's Historic Uptown business district. According to economic
development director Eric Phillips, 11 of these new signs are to be
erected by Marysville's Street Superintendent Joe Tracey and his staff.
Along with the Historic Uptown signs, Phillips said, the city is adding
directional signs to indicate publicly available parking lots to add
convenience and ease for customers.
"The signs will bring attention and more importantly, customers to the
Uptown business district which is home to unique antique shops,
specialty stores and restaurants," Phillips wrote.
The Marysville Uptown Renewal Team (URT), specifically the URT Design
Committee, initiated the sign project. The group is headed by Marysville
resident Liz Meeder.
URT is the city's official uptown revitalization committee which is
comprised of mostly business and property owners and is working toward
becoming a certified Main Street Community. This certification will
allow Marysville to apply for grants and funding to assist with revitalization.
Ultimately, these efforts are expected to improve the aesthetic
qualities and make Historic Uptown Marysville a vibrant hub of activity.
For more information about the main street program, visit this web-site:
The new signs will be installed at various locations on main routes into
the city. There will be two on the freeway, two on the off ramps at U.S.
36, two on the off ramps at Route 4, one on the off ramp at Route 31,
one on Route 4 on the south side of town at Milford Avenue, two on Route
4 and Route 31 coming into town from the north and one on U.S. 36
westbound across from the Harold Lewis School.
The Marysville Uptown Renewal Team meets at the Union County Chamber of
Commerce offices on the fourth Wednesday of each month at 5:30 p.m.
"We encourage residents and businesses interested in the Can Do! efforts
of URT to become involved," Phillips wrote.
For more information, those interested may call 642-6279.

Board chooses new voting system
Punch-card voting will soon become a thing of the past in Union County.
The four-member Union County Board of Elections unanimously voted to
select a vendor for new voting equipment earlier this week.
The punch card system will be illegal at the end of the year, said
Robert Parrott, president of the Union County Board of Elections. On
Jan. 12 the local board received a directive from Ohio Secretary of
State J. Kenneth Blackwell that a new voting system needs to be in place
by the November election and all counties are directed to use precinct count systems.
Union County began using punch cards in 1978 and has centralized
counting. A total of 69 counties in Ohio use punch cards. The punch card
system came into question during the 2000 presidential election with
problems in Florida and in 2002 Congress passed the Help America Vote
Act in response to the problems.
The act mandated that punch-card voting could no longer be used starting
in 2006 and provided federal funds to states in order to change to a
non-punch card voting system. The actual cost of the equipment is
unknown to the local board and ,while federal funds are available to
cover the cost, the local board members said they believe there will be
costs to the county. The new method of voting is called Optical Scan.
Voters will be given a paper ballot that is similar to standardized
tests. Each ballot will include all the candidates' names and issues to
be voted on. Voters will then blacken completely an oval beside their
choice with a provided marker. After voting is complete, the voter will
take their ballot and feed it directly into a scanner that processes
ballots at the precinct on election day and transmits its results to a
host computer. Parrott said Union County will continue to count the
ballots again at the board office.
Parrott said the scanner will return a ballot to the voter if there are
any questions. Voters can then correct the problem.
Prior to Tuesday's vote, board and staff members voiced concerns about
the two vendors that can supply optical scan equipment. The board voted
to go with Election Systems and Software. A company representative said
ES&S is the largest manufacturer of election goods and services and has
been in the business for 30 years.
Recounts of optical scanning equipment during the past presidential
election showed that the system had greater errors than the punch card system.
Staff said optical scan equipment in Hardin County was off by six votes
and optical scan equipment in Hancock County was off by nine. Union
County's punch card system was off by one. Hancock County used ES&S.
Hardin County used the other vendor under consideration, Diebold.
The next step in the process is to submit a request to the Secretary of
State, said staff members.

Interim director in place at YMCA
Former director and facility said to have been moving in  different directions
Marysville native Ron Smith has been named interim executive director of
the Union County YMCA and began work this week.
Smith retired in 2000 from the Columbus Recreation and Parks Department.
During his 36 years with the department, he held numerous positions
including recreation leader, center director and administrative
supervisor. Before retiring, he was responsible for 29 recreation
centers, 125 supervised playgrounds, 15 day camps and numerous other
programs including adventure programs and outdoor education. He also
helped design centers, supervised custodians, handled hiring and worked
with college architecture students.
He said the interim position is attractive to him for several reasons
including the fact that it is short-term and offers him an opportunity
to work again in a field that he has extensive experience. He also is
looking forward to helping out his hometown during this transition.
"I love people. I love this town," Smith said.
J.R. Kruse of the Union County YMCA board said Smith's appointment is
the second part of the board's three-part transition plan toward the
long-term strategy of better serving the local membership and making them happy.
Kruse said former director Bob Commings did a fantastic job of getting
the Y on its feet during the construction of the new facility but after
recent discussions it became apparent that the local Y and Commings were
moving in different directions.
"I think it is a very positive thing," Kruse said about the board's "clearer" focus.
The board is inviting members to offer their thoughts on what qualities
and characteristics they would like to see in a new director.
Suggestions are being sought through Feb. 14 and may be submitted in a
suggestion box at the YMCA or E-mailed to Individuals are asked to include their
name, address and phone number.
"We intend to use your feedback to create evaluation criteria for those
candidates we interview," writes board member Chip Hubbs in a Jan. 29
letter addressed to members.
Kruse said the board is optimistically hoping to have a permanent
director in place by the beginning of summer.
In his interim position, Smith said he will be helping to keep things
running at the local facility and helping with the search process for a
permanent executive director. He adds that while he is more familiar
with a different culture of leisure services, he hopes to offer fresh
ideas and suggestions to improve the operations.
He invites the public to stop by and say hi.
"I love this facility and am very impressed by the staff," he said.

List of prospects narrowed to three for jail administrator job
From J-T staff reports:
The Tri-County Jail in Mechanicsburg is down to three official choices
for its new jail director.
Former director Dan Bratka announced his resignation in December. Since
then jail commission members have been sifting through applicants.
Union County Commissioner Gary Lee said this morning that there were no
decisions made as a result of the executive session held during the
Thursday afternoon Tri-County Corrections Commission meeting. All that
remains are background checks, which could take up to three weeks.
Lee said the names of the applicants cannot be released at this time.
All three people are currently employed and their positions may be
negatively affected if they are not picked as jail director. One
applicant is reportedly from Marysville.
Lee reported on Tuesday that jail commissioners had narrowed their
choices down to two people. After the Thursday meeting, that number was
changed to three applicants. Commissioners conducted interviews with the
applicants in executive session. The meeting was spent on  interviews
and going over other topics such as pay rates.
The commission received a total of 13 resumes for the jail's top spot,
Lee said, giving them plenty of options.
"Every one of them would make an excellent jail director," he said.
Tri-County Jail captain James Davis was granted full authority over jail
business in Bratka's place. The designation, voted by the commission,
essentially gave Davis the power to hire and fire employees.
Lee said he and other jail commissioners have been very happy with
Davis' work and that he deserves a lot of commendation for his work,
especially after only recently being hired as Bratka's assistant.
"He is doing a very nice job for us," Lee said.
He said the jail board is going to take its time after background checks
are conducted and make sure they make the right choice for the
Tri-County Jail.

New drug dangers loom
Prescription drug abuse grows among area young people
Parents have always known to teach their children the dangers of drugs
like alcohol, marijuana or cocaine. But the reality is that an even
greater danger is inside the family medicine cabinet.
Marysville Police Department Detective Don McGlenn said prescription
drug abuse in Marysville is a problem that could use more attention. In
the last two months, two individuals overdosed and died from abusing
prescription drugs. In a third instance, a person nearly died of an overdose.
He said teenage deaths from prescription drugs have occurred in Union,
Logan, Hardin and Madison counties. Last month a 15-year-old Union
County student died from what may have been an overdose of morphine. At
this time, toxicology reports have not been completed.
"Parents need to be aware that there are other drugs than they are used
to thinking about," McGlenn said.
In 2004 police saw a rise in the use of pain killers such as morphine,
Methadone, Percocet, Vicodin and Fentanyl, a major source of teenage
drug abuse. Fentanyl patches, otherwise known as prescription morphine,
are provided to individuals suffering from chronic or severe pain. There
has also been an increase in deception to obtain drugs in the past three
years. Police documented 12 cases in 2003 compared to 4 cases in 2001.
Drug abuse cases have gone from 10 in 2002 to 27 in 2003.
The abuse of liquid morphine has also increased. This medication is
taken orally with a dropper and teenagers are taking it in high doses
and often mixing it with alcohol, making the abuse more threatening.
According to Marysville Middle School Resource Officer Dennis Flanagan,
another problem is Ritalin and OxyContin, also referred to as "hillbilly
heroin." What has become popular, in addition to taking the drugs in
their pill form, is grinding the pills into powder and snorting the
substance like cocaine. Percocet, Vicodin, Valium, Tylenol 3 w/codeine,
Zanex and Seroquel  are other drugs of choice. These types of drugs are
just as available as marijuana.
Detective Chad Seeberg said people who use marijuana or alcohol often
know how their body will react but the effects of prescription drugs
cannot be predicted and can be different from person to person. This is
why doctors prescribe precise dosages for patients.
"It's definitely a problem," Seeberg said.
It is believed that the drugs are being distributed in three ways.
People with valid prescriptions are selling the drugs on the street to
adults and juveniles - a single OxyContin tablet can go for about $10.
Other juveniles being treated for ADH or bi-polar disorders share their
medication with friends or juveniles are stealing the medication from their homes.
Another way is by "doctor shopping," in which suspects see multiple
doctors in order to obtain more pain prescriptions. McGlenn said that
last year there was an incident of a man receiving prescription drugs
from his veteran's hospital, then selling them.
"He was making enough to pay his rent," McGlenn said.
McGlenn said a woman who worked at a local pharmacy stole patient
information, forged doctors' signatures on stolen prescription pads and
charged the cost to insurance companies for up to $16,000.
Recently thieves broke into Dave's Pharmacy on West Fifth Street and
stole medications. Owner and city council member David Burke said
outright theft is rare in town because of Marysville's smaller size.
Compared to Columbus, it is harder for people to forge or steal drugs
from pharmacies because they can be easily recognized.
Instead, he said, abuse happens more because of people with a legal
prescription who do not store the drugs safely. The drugs often fall
into the wrong hands.
Sue Dill of the Memorial Hospital of Union County legal department said
physicians have a hard time writing prescriptions for patients these
days. Doctors are worried about giving pain medication to people who
don't need it and worried that they are not giving enough to those who do.
"They try to balance it," Dill said. "It's a tough decision for doctors
. they don't want their patients to be in pain."
She said some people illegally forge their prescriptions or change
dosage amounts. The Drug Enforcement Agency has even come out with a
60-page document which instructs doctors in assessing patients.
Dill said that last year a California doctor was sued for not
prescribing enough narcotics for a patient. On the other hand, a doctor
in Portsmouth had reportedly been handing out a large portion of Ohio's OxyContin supply.
McGlenn said that if parents find loose pills of unknown substances they
should contact the poison control center or the Marysville Police
Department. He said it is recommended that people throw away old
prescriptions and secure new prescriptions in a safe place.
Flanagan encouraged teachers and parents to set aside a few minutes this
week to talk to juveniles and let them know how dangerous it is to abuse
prescription drugs and to pay attention to rumors of drug abuse in the

Mill Valley to get medical facility
Memorial Hospital of Union County is in the early stages of planning for
a medical office building to sit on a 1.125-acre lot on Mill Wood Boulevard.
Located at the entrance to the Mill Valley subdivision on the southwest
corner of Mill Wood and Route 31, the property was purchased late last
year by Memorial Hospital and the county commissioners. The sale
agreement between the county and seller, Dominion Homes, clearly states
that a medical office facility must be constructed on the site.
"We are very excited that Memorial Hospital is building a facility that
is so convenient to the residents in Mill Valley," commented Joe Sugar,
Dominion's vice president of land acquisition.
Seeing a need to enhance the larger community's access to care
countywide, Memorial has been active in strengthening its physician
recruitment efforts in recent months.
"There is both a shortage of primary care physicians and physician
office space in Union County," said Chip Hubbs, CEO/President of
Memorial Hospital. "Mill Valley is one of several focal points for
Marysville's growth and we look forward to recruiting quality physicians
to this location and meeting the healthcare needs of our community."
While final decisions have not been made, hospital administrators
indicate that services currently being considered for placement in the
facility include primary care physicians, medical specialty physicians,
urgent care and diagnostics such as X-ray and lab.
Before the purchase was finalized, the county-owned hospital explored
its options on building specifications. The size of the lot limits the
facility to 10,000 to 12,000 square feet with approximately 50 parking
spaces. The hospital will work with Dominion in the process of selecting
and approving final design plans. Construction will likely begin this
summer with an aim to open the facility in early to mid-2006.
Memorial Hospital is a 92-bed independent community hospital. In 2003,
it were named a Solucient Top 100 Hospital. Central to the hospital's
mission of being the community's link to quality healthcare is the
provision of current medical practices with up-to-date technology.
Memorial places equal emphasis on delivering personal care with respect and compassion.

Health dept. vs. development
Agency will sign no more plats for projects while sewer plant is over capacity
The Union County Board of Health is not planning to sign off on any
future developments in and around the city until the Marysville
Wastewater Treatment Plant capacity problems are solved
During Tuesday's meeting, Health commissioner Martin Tremmel said the
board "directed (him) to not sign any future development plats which
discharge into the Marysville wastewater treatment system."  Instead, he
said, the board directed him to attach a letter of concern regarding
sewage treatment over-capacity issues and forward such plats to all
other signatories as notice of the health department's position until
the questions before the Union County Prosecutor's office and/or sewage
plant capacity issues are satisfactorily resolved.
Tremmel said Marysville is adding additional developments when its
wastewater treatment system is already inadequate to support them. Board
members Gary McDowell, Marge Myers, Rod Goddard, Al Channell and Erin
Harris were there.
Also attending the meeting was Marysville Mayor Tom Kruse, development
director Eric Phillips and Union County Commissioner Gary Lee.
Members immediately went into executive session to discuss, for more
than an hour, what Tremmel described as "potential litigation."
When they adjourned the executive session, Tremmel said the board of
health came to the decision that he does not have the authority to sign
any current wastewater treatment plats. Instead he will attach a letter
of concern with regard to capacity issues and then forward these plats
on until these questions are satisfactorily resolved.
Tremmel said the board also came up with two questions they will now
pose to Union County Prosecuting Attorney Dave Phillips - who was
reportedly planning to attend the meeting but was absent until after the meeting was over:
. What are the implications, liabilities and rationale for the Union
County General Health District in signing residential and commercial
development plan plats which discharge into the Marysville wastewater treatment plant?
. Can the Union County General Health District be held to some, or any,
degree of liability for approving plats into the existing Marysville
municipal sewer treatment system, when such sewage treatment systems
exceed Ohio EPA approved capacity and cause either public health
nuisance conditions and/or other harms to the public?
The questions surrounding this decision are many. If the board of health
stops signing plat approvals, would it ultimately halt future growth in
Marysville? Would the health board be making matters worse for sewage
backing up into homes if they keep signing?
"Now we will await the prosecutor's opinion on these two questions,"
Tremmel said after the meeting had adjourned.
He said the board would like to meet with city and county officials to
talk about their concerns regarding the implications of their signing
off on more development plats.
"I am very optimistic we can come to a satisfactory resolve," Tremmel said.
Sewage backing up into basements and creating health risks for
homeowners is an issue that the health board hopes to address. There is
currently litigation against the city filed by Hickory Drive residents
Keith and Sue Nason who have experienced raw sewage backups before
spending thousands to fix the problem by installing a Floodgate device
underneath their lawn.
In heavy rains, sewers throughout the city back up into some homes,
causing damage and potential health problems if the backups aren't
cleaned properly. It is these kind of situations that concern the public health board.
If the board of health decides to stop signing  development plats, what
happens next? Would the significance affect current plats going into
Coleman's Crossing? "That's a good question," Tremmel said.
He said it is an answer he hopes to learn in the coming weeks. The next
Union County Board of Health meeting is scheduled for Feb. 16 at 7:30

Informational meeting on plant held
Millcreek Township residents finally got their chance to ask questions
regarding the future Marysville wastewater treatment plant planned on
Beecher-Gamble Road.
The night was one of mixed emotions for many Millcreek Township
residents. Several in attendance said they were glad that the
informational session took place but none were happy about the fact that
they are powerless to keep it away. Others felt the meeting was nothing
more than a way to pacify them.
Millcreek Township Trustee Keith Conroy said the meeting was a good
first gesture for the city to share information with the trustees and
the residents about the proposed plant.
"There are still a number of items that are yet to be answered and that
uncertainty has a number of residents still very concerned," Conroy
said. "As a trustee I would like to see more communication and dialogue
between the city and the township; this was a good first step but many
Millcreek residents remain concerned. They are concerned with
annexation, odor and noise associated with such a facility, increased
truck traffic and the devaluation of the homes closest to the proposed site."
Conroy said that during the trustee's tour of the Delaware plant on
Monday, plant operators admitted they have had odor complaints from
residents downwind of the plant. The Delaware plant is built on a hill
with a lot of landscaping. The Marysville plant could be worse because
it is going onto a large flat area with neighborhoods nearby.
Ohio EPA representative Mike Sapp said he found the informational
meeting to be helpful. When told about residents' concerns about odors
still being a problem, he said it was up to construction.
"I mean, you can build a wastewater plant that has virtually no odor,"
Sapp said. "It just depends on how much money you want to put into it."
According to Marysville Mayor Tom Kruse, the Beecher Gamble Road
location was chosen because it would impact the least amount of people.
He was in attendance, answering questions throughout the more than
two-hour meeting. Information tables were set up with maps of the future
wastewater treatment plant designs, pictures of similarly-designed
plants in other cities, timelines of construction work and scenes from
inside a treatment plant. Aerial photographs of the site show a large
open spot of land but what the photographs don't show is a small
community right across the road from the site.
Rodney Jacobs said he has lived on Jacobs Road for the past 17 years.
His home is among many others that surround a five-acre pond. He said
the homes in his community are just outside the photographs taken of the site.
"We are very concerned about the possible environmental effect," Jacobs
said. "We do exist."
Up until Tuesday night's information session, he said no one from
Marysville has made an effort to tell them about anything. He said other
sites the city has mentioned, such as Industrial Parkway, would have affected less people.
"If you follow the money, it will lead you to the answer," Jacobs said.
"At least we could have been notified," fellow Jacobs Road resident
Peggy Arima said. "It was as if we didn't exist."
Both said they are concerned about how the plant will affect the pond in
their neighborhood where their children swim. It is fed by underground
springs they fear will be harmed by sewage. Other neighbors said they
wondered how the plant would affect their well water or the water table.
Millcreek Township Trustee Jim Shrader said his main concern has to do
with Marysville's plans for annexation. He knows only that the city does
not plan to take an aggressive annexation stance on Millcreek Township.
"This meeting is a very good thing. It's very helpful," Conroy said.
"But it does not alleviate all the concerns. There are still a lot of
questions. The concerns will not end with this meeting."
Conroy said one more consequence pertains to 15 to 20 semi trucks coming
and going to and from the plant on a daily basis.
Toward the end of the meeting, Kruse said he had been discussing these
issues with many people in the room.
"I would say, by and large, that people seemed very pleased they got
this opportunity to ask questions. Hopefully, they got the answers that
they needed, maybe not necessarily what they wanted all the time," he
said. "All in all I found it a very successful evening because the
dialogue has been great."
Kruse said one of the recurring questions he heard was about
Marysville's plan for annexation. He said most of the people there did
not want to be annexed to the city. He assured them that Marysville does
not have the intention to pursue annexations.
But as Jacobs said, in a view that was shared by many Millcreek Township
residents, it is hard for him to take the word of a "politician."
"You know, we're committed to this site," Kruse said. "Our assessment is
that it affects as few people as you can possibly affect. And we've got
a willing seller. So it makes it very attractive. And we're committed to
it and this is where we're going to put it."
Kruse said that although the information session will be the only one,
if at any time Millcreek residents have any questions they want answered
they should feel free to contact the city.

N.L. Council votes for 4-percent wage hike
Village of North Lewisburg employees will receive a 4 percent wage
increase to be effective immediately.
Steve Wilson, council president, reported the recommendation from the
finance committee. The wage increase will affect nine employees and cost
a total of $9,000. The increase was supported unanimously among council members.
Councilman Dave Scott reported to the board on increasing street
lighting in the city limits. Scott identified 34 areas around the
village that are insufficiently lit. It was decided that council members
would meet with Dayton Power and Light to discuss options.
Plans for the village's new wastewater treatment plant are moving
forward. Gary Silcott, village engineer, said the EPA will hold a public
hearing within the next 60 days to discuss plans.
Construction on the plant could begin as early as this fall. The council
did agree to begin moving forward on construction of the water main and
water meters as soon as possible.
Administrator Barry First shared a draft letter to the community of
Woodstock from the village of North Lewisburg to change the terms of the
contract for treatment and maintenance of Woodstock's wastewater. North
Lewisburg is planning to discontinue long-term maintenance with
Woodstock within the next several months.
Funds for the enhancement of the city's parks project will be released
by ODOT in July 2006. Mayor Willis and Barry First along with Steve
Stolte, Union County engineer, and representatives from ODOT will meet
Thursday to discuss what can be done in regard to the distribution of
funds leading up to the 2006 release date.
The council approved the suspension of rules to pass a new ordinance
which will allow local law enforcement to cite citizens who place
matter, tracking debris and the dumping of items in the streets. Most
specifically, there have been issues with mud being dumped in the village roadways.
Officer Glenn Kemp gave the Champaign County Sheriff's office report for
the village. In January there were 13 traffic citations issued, nine
warnings issued for traffic violations, 15 incident reports, 22 cases of
assistance given to citizens, 10 arrests made, two civil and criminal
papers served, 36 follow-up investigations completed, one open door,
three instances of juvenile contacts and one auto accident report taken.
The next council meeting will be March 1.

Enforcement to be stepped up on Super Bowl Sunday
The Union County Sheriff's Office advises county residents to plan ahead
and not take the risk of drinking and driving on Super Bowl Sunday.
The sheriff's office will be putting extra deputies on patrol before and
after the Super Bowl to ensure that Union County roads are as safe as
they can be. Deputies will be focusing their efforts on aggressive
driving and taking a zero tolerance approach to driving under the
influence, speeding and not wearing a safety belt.
"We in the law enforcement community are very concerned about the
aggressive way people are driving in Union County," said Sheriff Rocky
Nelson. "I urge everyone to slow down, buckle up and stay sober."