Local Archived News March 2005
The faces of foster care
Union County in need of foster families
Meeting will outline potential tax change
Man sentenced for role in beating
Overtime hours scrutinized - Richwood employees burning up budge
City council clarifies meeting rules
Hospital mulls name change
MFD lays out guidelines for open burns
Groups set up plan for safety through cell phones
Alcohol a factor in fatal crash on U.S. 33
Darby Township's shotgun rezoning
A shock to the system
Individuals having trouble with Web site
Council allows annexation to move forward
Agenda protocol discussed at Jerome
Williams resigns as - NUHS principal - Will be effective at end of school year
Schools oppose tax change - Marysville sends notice to officials that move would hurt district
A good weekend for Scotts
Memorial database online
Easter services listed for area churches
Law Enforcement Memorial a reality
Could Atlanta incident be repeated here?
Three J-T staffers up for state awards
YMCA plans Healthy Family Night
State auditor will be keynote speaker
Putting a shine on Marysville
Fireman to honor St. Baldrick's Day
Annexation discussed by council
Marysville Library now has eBooks
Presbyterians plan event for building's 100th anniversary
Egg issue boils over at Jerome Twp
Armed robbery reported at drive thru
Alleged attempted abduction reported downtown
Former sheriff discusses homeland security
Millcreek, city officials meet
Local library goes wireless
Sheriff's cruisers will have new video cameras
Police maintain comp time
Superintendent's load lightened
MHUC physical therapy founder retires
N.L. council honors deceased employee
Richwood to generate stormwater master plan
Tax change will hammer schools - Marysville could lose $11 million per year by 2011
The faces of foster care
Editor's note: The Marysville Journal-Tribune takes a look at foster
care in Union County through the eyes of those involved - two children,
a mother and two foster parents. They share the personal reasons for
what brought them into the system and how it has changed their lives.
The three- day series also looks at the growing need for more homes.
By CINDY BRAKE
Two different paths of turmoil led two children to foster care and futures of hope.
Officials maintain that the system will work if the children make the right choices.
Heather Matson is 18 and a senior at Marysville High School. She is also
the mother of 21/2 year-old Brandon William Christopher. Ryan Jones is
19 and four credits short of completing his high school diploma. He is a
gang member and former addict who has tried to commit suicide multiple times.
"Without foster care I couldn't have made it much longer," Heather said.
Ryan admits he has made his share of mistakes before, during and after
his life in foster care, but is still close to his foster parents and a
foster brother. He spent Easter Sunday with them.
"They've been there when I could have died," Ryan said about his foster parents.
Pregnant and 15
Until she was 15, Heather was a typical teen living with her mom and
dad. She was a cheerleader, ran cross country and argued with her mother
a lot. Then she got pregnant. Her mom discovered the pregnancy by
accident and the next day took her to an appointment in Columbus. It was
an abortion clinic. Heather refused to have an abortion.
"She had other plans for me," Heather said about her mother, who had
also been a teenage mother just as her mother had been.
As they left the abortion clinic, Heather said her mother told her in
the car that she couldn't come home. She dropped Heather off at her
grandmother's house. As her pregnancy progressed, Heather bounced back
and forth between her mother's and grandmother's homes. When Brandon was
born, Heather was living at her mother's house.
Heather said she and her mother were fighting even more, especially
about her going to school. Heather wanted to return to day school and
her mother wanted Heather to use the digital program so she could stay
home and take care of the baby. Eventually, Heather said, her mother
told her to find some other place to live.
Then began a year of bouncing from house to house.
At 16 and with a 6-month-old baby, Heather called her father and asked
him if she could move in with him and his wife. He said she could come,
but not the baby. Her son lived with her on weekends and with his dad during the week.
When the baby's father moved away, Heather needed to find a place where
she could keep the baby all the time. She moved into the home of "an
angel" whom she calls her "mom." They shared child care. Heather got a
job and began going to school during the day. Then the baby's father
returned and made threats. The police showed up and her "mom" got
scared. It was time to move - again.
She and Brandon moved in with friends and she made the best of her situation.
"I didn't really have a lot of money ... and slept about four hours a
night," she said. "No one knew what was really going on."
Someone at school noticed though that she was getting thinner and
thinner. She said the only meal she had each day was at the fast-food
restaurant where she worked.
Someone from Job and Family Services showed up at school one day in
November 2003 and said they were taking custody of her and 15-month-old
Brandon because they were dependents with no stable place to live.
"I was scared at first," Heather said.
She soon learned she had nothing to be frightened about.
The only reason the agency took custody of Brandon was so they could
place him in the same home with her.
She recalls that first day her foster parents asked her what she wanted
to eat for supper. She grins as she remembers telling them she wanted
food from the fast food restaurant where she worked. As they were
picking up the food, she automatically pulled out her wallet to pay and
her foster father said he would pay for the meal.
That was the beginning of a new life where Heather was no longer on her own.
Her parents officially turned over her custody to the state and
Brandon's custody was returned to Heather.
Since then she has not only gotten her driver's license, but saved
enough money to buy her first car; found a better paying job; is looking
forward to graduating on time from high school this year; is a member of
a teen parents support group; and was selected a youth ambassador to
Washington, D.C., for the JOG (Jobs for Ohio's Graduates) program. Her
foster parents took her on her first vacation to Myrtle Beach and she
was part of a youth mission trip to Mexico where she helped with a vacation Bible school.
Heather is already making plans to leave her foster home after she
graduates. She will be moving in with her older sister and is enrolled at Clark
State University where she can continue her education and Brandon can go
to daycare. "God has a plan for every one of us," Heather said.
Drugs and death
"I've been clean for 71 days today," said 19-year-old Ryan Jones last
week. "I've never been clean that long." Ryan has a hard time remembering.
The drugs and alcohol have taken a toll on his young body.
What he does remember is living in an alcoholic home as a child and his
grandparents taking him to Nashville because he loved country music.
When he was 13 his grandmother died and his life began spinning out of control.
He tried marijuana and decided to run away from home. The six hours he
was gone he drank something and passed out. His friends brought him back
home and the next day the police showed up. He was charged with
unruliness for being a runaway. The police took him to the Central Ohio
Youth Center for a night. The next day he was fined by the court. He
didn't like being incarcerated, so he stayed out of trouble - for a while.
When he was 15 years old he began meeting "a lot of people," people
involved in drugs. He began partying and smoking dope regularly. He
skipped school a lot and was charged with unruliness. Probation and
incarceration followed. He stole money from his parents. He took his
mother's wedding band and sold it. He stole from his friends. He stole from strangers.
He snorted downers. He smoked uppers. He didn't own a thing. He didn't
care about life. He tried to commit suicide. He was in counseling
"forever," but didn't see a point in sitting around with someone telling
him to not do drugs. He took a lot of acid and pills. By 17 he had
gotten into everything and started LSD. He joined a gang and saw his
best friend get shot and killed.
He wandered home occasionally and was arrested for a probation violation
because he had left the county. That time the court put him into a
rehabilitation program and ordered foster care.
He remembers his mother telling him that she loved him and cared a lot,
but didn't know why he was doing what he was doing. She said his stepdad
tried awful hard to help him. He was "like my father." His mother gave
the state custody of her son and he went into foster care.
Ryan admits that he didn't want to be in the foster home and never
treated his foster parents fairly. He still got into trouble and smoked
marijuana. He left foster care when he turned 18 and began using drugs
even more heavily. He hit bottom.
"I lost my family, friends, everything," Ryan said. "I'm sick and tired
of being sick and tired."
He dreams of someday going into the Army, but for now he is fighting to
defeat his own demons.
Union County in need of
By CINDY BRAKE
The need has never been greater for foster homes in Union County.
Danette Nicol, Union County Foster Care Coordinator with the Department
of Job and Family Services, said 39 children are currently under the
guardianship of the county. Of the 39, 23 are in 19 foster homes. Nine
of the foster homes are inactive or used only for emergency or respite
care, while three have requested only children under the age of two.
"We're maxed out," she said.
She explains that Union County has come close to placing children with
no behavioral problems in residential facilities outside the county just
because there was no place for them in Union County. Residential
facilities are designed for children with special needs such as severe
behavior issues, sexual disorders and drug and alcohol addictions.
Besides costing taxpayers more than double what local care costs,
residential homes also remove children from their school district and
families, she said.
Currently nine Union County children are in residential foster care
because of their special needs. Seven children are living with relatives.
Persons interested in knowing more about becoming foster parents can
attend a three-week training class that begins April 26.
"We need committed people," Nicol said.
The classes cover a variety of topics including discipline,
teambuilding, abuse and neglect, attachment and separation and working
with primary families.
Nicol offers answers to some frequently asked questions about foster care:
. Who are the children in foster care?
They are children who are temporarily separated from their families due
to abuse, neglect and dependency. They may have emotional problems or
. How long is temporary?
A child's stay in foster care may be as short as an overnight or as long
as it takes to achieve a permanent plan for the child. The first goal
considered is to reunite the family if possible.
. What support is available to foster families?
A caseworker is available, plus respite services. The agency pays a
daily rate for each foster child in the home and for clothing, medical
and dental needs. Mileage reimbursement is also provided when
transporting children to appointments.
. Can I choose the age and sex of the child that I would like?
Yes. Currently, the majority of the children in foster care in Union
County are over the age of 12.
. Is there really a need for foster parents?
Yes. The agency always tries to place foster children in their home
school district and in homes which are best suited to meet their
particular needs. This cannot be achieved unless a sufficient number of
foster parents is available.
. What are the requirements for becoming a foster parent?
Prospective foster parents must be 21 years of age; possess a valid
driver's license; demonstrate financial and emotional stability; have
passed a criminal record check; and must attend a training course
followed by home study. For more information about becoming a foster parent, contact Nicol at
644-1010, ext. 2245.
Meeting will outline
potential tax change
From J-T staff reports:
Anyone who pays taxes might be interested in a special public meeting
Monday from 8 to 10 a.m. at the Union County Services Building, 940 London Ave.
Statewide experts will discuss how local governments and schools could
face significant budget losses by proposed legislation before the Ohio General Assembly.
"Almost all local units of government will be impacted by sweeping tax
reform proposed by Gov. Taft in his latest budget, but given our strong
manufacturing base, our ability to provide vital public services will be
impacted more than most Ohio counties," said Gary Lee, president of the
Union County Board of Commissioners.
"The city of Marysville and Union County, along with local schools, fire
departments, townships, libraries and countywide levies stand to lose up
to one-third of their revenue base if the state of Ohio passes out the
personal property taxes paid by business and industry over the next five
years," said commissioner Charles Hall.
Commissioner Tom McCarthy said the board hopes to have good input from
local citizens, business and local officials in order to work with state
government for a favorable outcome. For more information or to reserve a spot call the county commissioner's
office by noon Friday at 645-3012. Presentations will be made by Larry Long of the County Commissioners
Association of Ohio and representatives of the Ohio School Board Association.
Man sentenced for
role in beating
By RYAN HORNS
The man who assaulted a local restaurant owner in an alley way will
spend the next several years in prison for the crime.
Monday afternoon Spencer Furrow, 28, was found guilty and sentenced to
three years in prison for one second-degree felonious assault against
Old Town Inn owner Dan Adelsberger, 56.
Union County Prosecutor Dave Phillips requested that common pleas court
judge Richard Parrott sentence Furrow to five years in prison for the
crime. He said the incident stemmed from the night of Oct. 22 when
Adelsberger was walking down Fifth Street near the alley between Casa
Fiesta and his own restaurant. As he passed the alley he allegedly saw
Furrow arguing loudly and holding his 17-year-old girlfriend up against a brick wall.
When Adelsberger approached to attempt to stop the argument, Furrow
struck him numerous times until he fell down, then continued to beat him.
Phillips said Adelsberger suffered a broken nose and a fractured eye
socket while he was standing and a fractured arm from blows dealt when
he was on the ground. After the assault, Phillips said, Adelsberger wandered around
disoriented,. Then he called his wife on his cell phone, telling her he
was injured and didn't know where he was.
Adelsberger, who has owned the downtown restaurant for 13 years, was
found by a Marysville police officer at Seventh and Court streets and
given medical care at Memorial Hospital of Union County.
Ultimately, he had to have surgery to place metal pins and plates in bone wounds.
Defense attorney Dorothy Liggett Pelanda said her client was defending
himself. Furrow alleges he was arguing with his girlfriend when
Adelsberger approached them and pushed him on the back.
Parrott learned from testimonies that Furrow's story conflicted with his
girlfriend's story. She claims Furrow was pushed from the front.
Adelsberger denies pushing him at all.
Parrott rejected the notion that Furrow was defending himself. By law, a
victim can defend himself only if there is reasonable belief he is in
imminent danger, can respond with a reasonable use of force to equal
that danger and can do so only if there is no reasonable way of leaving
the scene of danger. Parrot said Furrow's girlfriend testified that immediately after
Adelsberger allegedly interrupted the argument, she left the scene.
"If she could leave, then he could, too," Parrott said. "He had a duty to retreat."
He added that there was no imminent danger to Furrow, especially any
danger that equaled beating Adelsberger to the ground and continuing to
beat him after he was injured. The "pushing" incident was never
adequately proven, according to Parrott.
"The use of force was way more that should have been used," Parrott said.
Parrott ordered that Furrow pay $11,660.90 in restitution for court
fees, hospital bills, medical prescriptions and loss of wages.
Adelsberger spoke about the assault in court.
"I hope Spencer finds the help he needs," he said. "I hold no grudge
against him . I hope somebody can help him."
Furrow has a prior criminal record, Parrott said, consisting of a
disorderly conduct charge. When mixed with the use of alcohol, Parrott
said, the violent behavior is "escalating." He will receive anger
management and alcohol abuse therapy while in prison.
"The public cannot have people running around hauling off and hitting
other people, especially when they don't know whether they deserve to be
hit," Parrott said. He noted that Furrow does seem remorseful for the crime. In police
interviews Furrow showed concerned about Adelsberger's injuries from the
beginning. He said he allowed himself to "lose his cool" and let anger take over.
Marysville police also reported that Furrow came to the police station
on his own accord after he heard rumors that Adelsberger may have died.
"I'd just like to apologize to Mr. Adelsberger while I'm here and in
person," Furrow said in court. "I'm sorry." "It's a little late," Parrott said. "That's the problem."
Overtime hours scrutinized
- Richwood employees burning up budget
By CHAD WILLIAMSON
Overtime is becoming an issue for the village of Richwood's employees.
Richwood financial officer Don Jolliff said during Monday's meeting that
the village employees are chewing up the overtime budget.
According to Jolliff the 2005 budget contains an additional 10 percent
in the labor coffers to cover overtime hours for the village water,
sewer and police department employees. Through the first quarter of the
year the sewer department employees are collecting overtime at a rate of
17 percent of the labor costs while water employees are at 13 percent.
Jolliff added that the police department isn't far behind.
"We need to be careful," Jolliff said. "We're going to run out of labor money."
Village administrator Jim Thompson, who oversees the water and sewer
employees, said some overtime hours are built into the weekly schedule
while others occur when problems crop up.
Thompson said there is some village work to be done seven days a week.
Some of the built-in overtime hours involve taking readings at the water
and sewer plants and lift stations on weekends.
Councilman Wade McCalf felt that some of the increased overtime in the
first quarter could have been attributed to heavy snowfall in January.
Village employees worked to remove snow from the village streets after
heavy snowfalls. Jolliff also noted that the village will recover some
of the overtime money spent because of state aid to offset the cost of snow removal.
Councilmember Arlene Blue questioned if the village is getting value out
of using inmate labor from the West Central Community Correctional
Facility. On weekends two inmates work on village projects but they must
be supervised by a village employee.
Thompson said the village can get the inmates only on the weekend
because the program is in such high demand. A village employee is paid
overtime while supervising the inmates.
Thompson also noted that when village employees are called in for
perceived emergencies they receive a minimum of two hours overtime pay.
He said the overtime hour policies are guided by the village employee handbook.
Councilman Jim Ford asked why employees are not sent home early through
the week when they have to work hours on the weekend. He said this would
allow employees to work on Saturday and Sunday but still come in with a
40 hour work week.
Thompson said he did not believe the practice was provided for in the
village handbook. Blue said it may be time to review the village policies on overtime.
In other business, council:
. Learned that the village needs to submit financial statements as the
terms of a rural development grant for 2003 and 2004.
. Heard an update on village projects from Ed Bischoff of Bischoff, Miller and Associates.
. Heard a complaint about water drainage from a pair of residents in
the area of Wood Street.
. Discussed the removal of a burned mobile home on Fulton Street.
. Heard a request for a curb cut to install a driveway at a residence on West Ottawa Street.
. Learned from Thompson that he will be bidding on a used truck with a
jet vac attachment at a state auction. Council authorized him to bid no
more than $6,500 on the vehicle.
. Heard first reading on the village subdivision regulations.
City council clarifies
By RYAN HORNS
The issue of when the general public is allowed to weigh in during
Marysville City Council meetings has sometimes been a bone of
contention, especially when it is dealing with a hot button issue.
During Thursday night's meeting the rules and procedure for when
citizens can speak on issues was amended and clarified. The hope is to
avoid confusion in the future.
For clarification, on the first reading of a piece of legislation the
issue is introduced to the public. Council and administration comments
are permitted only at that time. Sometimes the issue is discussed briefly.
On second reading, the legislation details are read in full and comments
from the public are permitted. Each person is allowed to have five
minutes to speak. If it is a particularly important issue to the public,
the meetings can be held to a packed house with many people looking to
voice their concerns.
Regarding the third reading procedure, council votes on the legislation
and the issue either passes or fails.
Council president John Gore said that in the past there had been
exceptions to the third reading rules. Citizens have been allowed to
speak on third reading if they had contacted the city clerk and
officially made a request to speak. It worked well for people who were
unable to attend the public hearing, Gore said, but it turned into an
opportunity for people to repeat the same arguments.
The issue came up during past council meetings late last year when
residents of Mill Creek Township spoke out against annexation and the
development of a wastewater treatment plant in their town. This has now
led to a resolution amending the council rules of procedure.
City law director Tim Aslaner suggested that the rules officially allow
for a third reading public comment as long as the person is required to
submit his request to speak.
Aslaner said the person should be allowed to speak only on the consent
of the presiding officer, which is the council president. This would
allow council to avoid repeating arguments.
In other discussions, council also held the public hearing on a
resolution allowing the city to apply for state grant funds through the
Ohio Department of Transportation to complete the Gateway Marysville
Project at U.S. 33/Delaware Avenue west of Charles Lane.
Economic development director Eric Phillips said that he, city
administrator Kathy House and city service director Tracie Davies met
two weeks ago with a landscape architect. The hope is to use trees and
ground covering to beautify that area.
One concern raised by council pertained to the narrow strip of buffering
between Frontage Road and Delaware Avenue.
Councilman Dan Fogt said that, out of the $100,000 grant, the city would
have to pay $20,000 and 100 percent of any engineering and design fees.
Phillips said there will be no engineering fees, only design. The cost
for that has been estimated at $1,600 and they are prepared to take that
plan to the Shade Tree Committee next month for review.
Phillips explained that the project would remain cost effective. The
landscaping around Memorial Hospital of Union County is a good example of their plans.
"I'm all for sprucing up that entrance to the city," Fogt said. "It's
just that there are so many places we can spend $20,000."
Councilman Mark Reams, however, felt the project was a nice use of federal tax money.
In another discussion, Marysville Planning Commission director Alan
Seymour brought to council and issue concerning the rezoning of property
owned by John M. MacIvor, successor trustee of the Malcolm G. MacIvor
Trust. The request is to re-zone a 41.376-acre tract of land located at 1475 W. Fifth St.
Seymour said the city planning commission has already determined that
the land should be rezoned to Traffic Oriented Commercial from its
current Agricultural Residential Zoning. The purpose of the rezoning is
to prepare the land to be developed by Hartsook Real Estate Corporation
for mixed commercial development with some planned residential development.
In the zoning agreement application, it states there would be no homes
affected by the rezoning because the woods, the freeway and other
commercial property buffer them.
In other discussions:
. Alan Seymour and Pete Griffin were re-appointed to the Marysville
Planning Commission for another four-year term.
. The city held the public hearing on two ordinances to apply for state
grant money to help low to moderate-income homes in the city.
Hospital mulls name change
Officials say time may not be right for such a move
By JUDY BOEHLER
Memorial Hospital of Union County is working on its image.
One part of the organization's new strategic plan is marketing and part
of the marketing strategy might be a name change.
The board of trustees heard a presentation at Thursday's meeting from
Theckla Sterrett of Sterrett/Dymond/Stewart, a firm that works with
hospitals on image presentation. The representative pointed out that the
hospital's name is cumbersome and the use of the words "Union County"
indicates a limited field of service. She added that the word "County"
is outdated because, in fact, the hospital pulls in patients from all
the surrounding counties. As for the word "Memorial," she said there are
5,000 hospitals in the country whose names begin with the word Memorial.
Sterrett said the logo is not effective because the tagline, "Your Link
to Quality Healthcare," is too small to be read easily. She suggested
using a motto such as "Exceptional Care, Exceptional Caring."
In her research for the presentation, she said, she found that the
perception of the hospital by the public is that it is a countywide
primary care hospital without a lot of technological capabilities. That
perception can be changed by the use of a strong symbol and a name
change, Sterrett said.
Her firm developed a list of possible names, including Union Memorial
Hospital, Union Memorial Health, Memorial Medical Center, Memorial
Health and Central Ohio Medical Center.
Sterrett/Dymond/Stewart would oversee the change to a new name and logo
at a cost of $17,000 and hospital development director Nancy Conklin
estimated a cost of $83,000 to change signage and apply a new logo to
paperwork, badges and other sites.
After discussion among board members, CEO Chip Hubbs said he was getting
the impression that the board does not think this is the right time to
take on a name change because of the time and money involved. He
suggested reworking the logo and forming a focus group to consider a name change.
The Union County Commissioners, Charles Hall, Gary Lee and Tom McCarthy
attended the meeting and spoke to board members about keeping
communication open between the two boards. McCarthy said that, although
Hubbs is in frequent contact with the commissioners, board members
seldom are and they need to be in touch from time to time.
The commissioners and Hubbs also discussed the placing of a hospital
facility on county land in the Coleman's Crossing area. Hubbs said the
hospital is very interested in the project which would probably include
space for doctors' offices and diagnostics, however, he said decisions
must be made on size and services. The commissioners assured Hubbs that
they will not transfer that land and it will be available to the hospital.
In other business, the board named member Dennis Stone as executive
committee member at large; passed a HIPPA Security Board of Trustees
resolution; and approved a board of trustees conflict of interest policy.
Medical staff appointments included Lisa Smithers, C.N.M., allied
health, and Ayad Agha, D.O., radiology; Steven Hirsch, M.D.,
otolaryngology, concluded his provisional privileges; and Matthew
Hazelbaker, M.D., OB/GYN, was given temporary privileges for ESSURE
birth control. Resignations were accepted from William Cole, M.D., Alan
Kover, M.D., Jack Mathews, D.O., Kathleen Schomer, M.D., Ann Siefert,
C.R.N.A., and Jean Starr, M.D.
MFD lays out guidelines for open burns
By RYAN HORNS
Winter is officially over but the harsh weather caused dozens of tree
limbs to fall and lie scattered across yards in the city. The first idea
many people normally have is to burn the branches in their back yard.
There is one problem: It is against the law.
Marysville Fire Prevention Bureau Lt. Keith Watson said firefighters
enforce the Ohio EPA Open Burning Regulations. Brochures of the rules
are available at the department.
He said that within the boundaries of any municipal corporation it is
illegal to start controlled fires. This includes a 1,000-feet zone
outside any corporation of any city with a population of 1,000 to 10,000
people. Cities with more than 10,000 people require a one-mile zone.
Marysville fire department crews have already reported several incidents
of local residents burning materials in fire pits on their property in
the past month. They may not know that the state of Ohio has laws
against it. Violations can result in substantial penalties or fines.
According to the Ohio EPA, open fires can release many kinds of toxic
fumes. Leaves and plant materials send out millions of spores when they
catch fire, causing many people with allergies to have difficulty
breathing. The pollutants released by open burning make it more
difficult to maintain air quality standards. The gases can also harm
neighboring buildings by corroding metal siding and damaging paint.
The EPA forbids burning rubber, grease, tires, auto parts, plastics,
plastic-coated wire, food waste and dead animals.
That said, the Marysville Fire Department can be lenient. A few types of
open burning situations are permitted within cities. These include
campfires, fires used to heat tar and other occupational needs, welding
tools and heating for outdoor workers and strikers. Ceremonial fires can
be set for limited periods of time.
They must be limited to 5 feet by 5 feet and may not burn for more than
three hours. These are allowed if they are first cleared by the Ohio
EPA. Watson said there are certain allowances for ceremonial fires.
Every year there is a Homecoming bonfire at one of the schools. In order
to arrange that, the school must get permission by the EPA, which then
sends the fire department a copy to let them know the time and date.
Watson said that at least 10 times a year there are people who decide to
burn some brush on their land and it ends up out of control.
"They may do a lot of planning but then the wind changes and the fire
goes into a fence row or a bean field and next thing you know there are
25 acres cleared and 10 departments trying to put it out," he said.
Even test fires Marysville firefighters set on abandoned structures for
training have to be requested and approved by EPA. It can take up to
three weeks to obtain a permit. To obtain permission for an open burn or to obtain information, the
local OHIO EPA chapter for Union County is the Central District Office (CDO) at (614) 728-3778.
Groups set up plan for safety through cell
Community Action Organization of Delaware, Madison & Union Counties
(CAODMU) is partnering with eWaves to address safety concerns in our rural communities.
The program will insure that eligible clients are able to contact 911 in
times of emergency. The FCC's E911 regulation requires all wireless
carriers to transmit all 911 calls without engaging in billing or
validation procedures. Calls from subscribers and non-subscribers alike
must be forwarded to the appropriate public safety operator pursuant to the FCC regulation.
With this regulation in mind, eWaves began distributing used cell phones
to victims of domestic violence. Together, eWaves and CAODMU are
expanding that program to include any low-income member of Union,
Delaware and Madison Counties who are without means to establish phone
services. To obtain an emergency service cell phone those interested may contact
CAODMU at (937) 642-4986. Anyone with a used cell phone to donate may contact Karin Weinlein at
(937) 644-1990 or drop it off at eWaves, 830 Delaware Ave
Alcohol a factor in fatal
crash on U.S. 33
From J-T staff reports:
A late evening alcohol-related crash in Marysville claimed the life of a
Lakeview area man Wednesday.
Marysville Police are investigating the crash that occurred on U.S. 33
westbound, between U.S. 36 East and Route 4.
As a result of the crash, Michael A. Harbour, 36, of Lakeview was
pronounced dead at the scene by Union County Coroner Dr. David Applegate.
According to police reports, Wednesday at 8:42 p.m. driver Kyle A.
Burton, 22, of Russells Point was driving a 1992 Honda Accord westbound
on U.S. 33, when he struck the rear end of a tractor-trailer that was
also headed westbound. Harbour was reportedly a passenger in Burton's
vehicle when the cars collided.
Marysville assistant police chief Glenn Nicol reported that the
immediate cause of Harbour's death was due to a wound in the head and
neck area caused by the windshield when the car struck the rear end of the trailer.
"Apparently, seatbelts were not utilized by either the driver or the passenger," Nicol said.
The trailer driver, Oliver E. Braun, 48, of Albrightsville, Penn., was not injured in the crash.
Burton was injured and transported by Marysville Fire Department medics
to Memorial Hospital of Union County for care. Nicol said he was later
transferred to Ohio State University Hospital for care and was listed in
stable condition this morning.
The crash is being investigated for possible charges against Burton.
Nicol said drunk driving may have played a role in the cause of the
crash. Nicol said the blood alcohol tests on Burton have not come back
yet from the lab. "We are expecting charges," he said. Troopers from the Ohio State
Highway Patrol, Marysville Post, assisted at the crash scene.
Darby Township's shotgun
Proposal factored in wishes of area farmers
By CINDY BRAKE
Darby Township's new zoning map may look like a shotgun splatter of agricultural properties.
The five-member zoning board asked farm owners if they prefer the newly
created and more restrictive agricultural zoning (A1) or farm
residential zoning (FR) which mirrors the current undeveloped (U1)
zoning classification that farm land falls under. The board has decided
to eliminate the existing U1 classification.
During a working meeting Wednesday evening, the board unanimously voted
to amend the zoning resolution language and map with additional A1
properties to be added as requested by property owners. A public hearing
will be held April 14 beginning at 7 p.m. with a board meeting to follow
at 8 p.m. when a vote is expected. If approved, the matter would then
move on to the township's trustees.
Members of the Darby Township Zoning Board are chairman David Gruenbaum,
David Boerger, Don Bailey, Merrill Nicol and Ronald Scheiderer.
The proposed map has a smattering of dark green of A1 located along
every road in the township. The largest block of A1 land stretches from
the township's northern border east of Route 736 and south to Adams
Road. The largest block of FR or light green land is in the township's southern third.
"We heard the majority of the people want to be FR," Boerger said.
In response to a citizen's question, Gruenbaum said there are no
advantages or disadvantages between the FR and A1 zoning. Both allow for
agricultural uses as defined by the Ohio Revised Code, plus farm
markets, stables, projects designed for conservation, watershed
protection or flood control, ponds and accessory structures. The
conditional uses are also very similar and include agribusiness, bed and
breakfasts, kennels, veterinary hospitals or clinics, cemeteries,
recreation and supply yards.
The key difference between the two sections is in the development standards.
A1 allows one residence for every 20 acres in a parcel. Lots can range
from two to five acres. FR allows one house per five acres which is what
the current U1 zoning allows.
The trustees also unanimously agreed to change the FR zoning. They are
suggesting that the trustees eliminate the ability to build one dwelling
on three acres with a common access drive or one dwelling on two acres
if part of a subdivision. By eliminating these two standards the board
believes the township will have more control over the creation of subdivisions.
Farmer and land owner Gary Greenbaum, however, challenged the board's
thinking by pointing out that making FR lots a minimum of five acres is
actually going against the comprehensive plan's main goals to preserve farm land.
"I don't see that we're preserving anything," Greenbaum said about the board's decision.
Farm owner and retiree Leroy Holt said he found it troubling that the
board would change the standards after asking property owners what they preferred.
Rob Beck, a lawyer whose family owns farm land in the township,
suggested that the board consider offering a one-time exception where a
land owner could transfer three acres to a biological or adopted child
whose primary residence would be built there. Besides preserving green
space, he said, the option would discourage absentee landlords and
encourage people to stay in the community and near their families.
Board chairman David Gruenbaum also suggested that the board further
define the FR districts as transit areas where low density development
may occur between A1 and residential districts. The board did not vote on the recommendation.
A shock to the system
Area lawmen now have Tasers to use in apprehending criminals
By RYAN HORNS
In November deputies added a new device to their artillery against
criminals - the Taser. It is the newest non-lethal tool being used by
law enforcement and it works by conducting electricity through a small hand-held unit.
"The way it felt when I got hit was like getting the worse charley horse
you've ever had but it happens to your whole body," Union County
Sheriff's Office Corporal and firearms instructor Matt Warden said.
The Union County Sheriff's Office now has 20 of these X-26 Tasers in use
and the result has been positive.
Warden said that before law enforcement officers can carry the weapon
they are trained to use it the right way and learn what pressure points
to aim for in suspects' bodies.
The training also included subjecting themselves to the weapon, Warden
said. All deputies have had the training and the reserves are in the process.
One of the deputies Warden trained had been in the Marines and compared
being hit by the Taser to boot camp. He said he was proud he did it, but
he doesn't want to do it again.
Across the country law enforcement divisions are adding the Taser to
their artillery because it has proven to be a safe, effective and easy
weapon to use when subduing criminals.
Warden said if the suspect runs, the Taser can fire two darts up to 21
feet that can pierce through two inches of clothing. The darts have
small metal barbed leads at the end that are similar to a straightened
fishhook. When shot, they stab into the skin and attach to the suspect.
Then deputies press the trigger to administer a five-second dose of
electrical pulses that cause total electro-muscular disruption in the suspect's body.
Warden explained that if one barb strikes a person in the neck and the
other strikes in the leg, every muscle in between the barbs will be
subject to the surge of electricity. Depending on what muscle groups
fall within that area, a victim can go down fast.
In addition to the probes, he said, the Taser can be applied to a
resistant suspect by hand. This is referred to as the "drive stun."
Warden said no matter how the Taser is used, it still puts out the same
dose of electricity which does not interrupt the heartbeat or have any
lasting effects on the suspect after the shock ends.
To describe the electric surge of a Taser, Warden said that a
defibrillator used to help heart attack victims uses 200 jewels of energy. Tasers issue .036 jewels.
"It is very minute," he said. Union County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Tom Morgan said the sheriff's
office has used its Tasers four times since November. All four times
suspects were resisting arrest. Warden said another reason the Taser is so useful is that it provides
deputies another option in the line of weapons available. Between the
baton and mace, The taser is safer and more effective.
In some areas of the country, however, the use of Tasers has come into
question. Police officers in Toledo reportedly killed a person after
officers discharged the Taser on a man nine times in a row.
Morgan said he heard of an incident where the Taser was used on a
juvenile. He said any time a Taser is used on a person in emergency
medical personnel immediately check them out.
Warden said their protocol is to not use the Taser on anyone under the age of 12.
He said some of the backlash on Tasers is similar to how people
described mace in the past. Mace was considered inhumane at first,
because the effects of the weapon were unknown. As the Taser becomes
more understood, it will become more accepted.
Warden said he has been in law enforcement since 1988 and can remember a
time when Mace was the main mode of getting suspects under control. The
problem was that when he used the spray, it affected him too.
He said another problem with mace is that people react to it in
different ways. Some people have a higher pain threshold and can become
more angry and dangerous when sprayed.
The baton also has its problems because some people can ignore the pain.
It can cause bruising, cuts or broken bones.
With the Taser, Warden said, the biggest concern is making sure
criminals fall safely to the ground.
Within the county, Plain City police officers and OSP troopers have also
been trained and are now using Tasers on their patrols. The Marysville
Police Department is in the process of receiving training and getting
equipped to begin using them on the streets.
Individuals having trouble
with Web site
A story about the Union County Veterans Database in Friday's newspaper
listed a Web site to be used for enrollment of veterans' names. Because
some people have had difficulty contacting that Web site, the committee
has suggested that the Union County Web site be used.
That address is www.co.union.oh.us. Users can click on Veterans
Memorial, then on Veterans Database and log in as a guest.
Council allows annexation to move
By RYAN HORNS
Marysville City Council voted last night to keep the process moving on a proposed annexation.
Council held a special meeting Monday night specifically to address two
resolutions and one ordinance regarding approximately 3.8 acres up for
annexation from Paris Township to Marysville.
The legislation came about after a petition signed by 100 percent of the
area property owners about land located on the south side of County Home
Road next to Navin Elementary School on the west. They are seeking to
annex the property by the expedited process provided by the Ohio Revised Code.
At the March 10 city council meeting, members protested the process of
having to vote on expedited legislation. In order to hold all three
readings on the three pieces of legislation, they were forced to waive
the third reading that night and set up the special council meeting.
Council president John Gore made clear again that passing the
legislation does not mean the city is accepting the proposal. He
explained it would only be stating that if there were an annexation the
city would agree to provide any of 11 different city services (water,
sewer, trash, etc.) and the land would become subject to city zoning.
To councilman Dan Fogt, the issue is part of a larger picture that he
does not agree with. He voted against the two resolutions based on what
he feels are resident safety and city services issues.
"This is related to 200 more homes going into the Scott Farms subdivision," he said.
At the March 10 council meeting Fogt said that allowing the annexation
of the 3.8 acres would open up that land for a roadway he learned would
be used to develop 200 more homes.
He said that with Marysville operating on a sewage system already at
capacity and with another 2,500 homes set for construction listed in the
city books, he is against the annexation.
Fogt said problems with dangerous traffic patterns in the proposed
annexation area are also a concern. He thinks there should be a traffic
light at Route 4 and County Home Road and another light where the Scott
Farms subdivision meets Route 4, however, he said the Ohio Department of
Transportation has stated no traffic lights are allowed in those areas yet.
With another 200 homes proposed, Fogt said, there could be a problem
with severe accidents. "I just don't think that it's a good thing to do," he said.
Councilman Mark Reams suggested that whether the city annexes the land
or not, the homes and road might be constructed anyway. If that is the
case, the whole discussion is a moot point.
"It's good enough for me," Fogt said, regarding his opposition to the legislation.
The next step for the proposed annexation is to file it with the Union
County Board of County Commissioners. The issue will come up later as
legislation asking council for their approval on the final annexation.
"At a later date we will have a full debate," Gore said.
Agenda protocol discussed at Jerome
By CINDY BRAKE
Everyone in the Jerome Township Hall seemed to be on their best
behavior, most of the time, during Monday's regular township meeting
although the chairman seemed to be making her own rules about notifying the public.
During the March 7 meeting emotions ran high about the township
"sanctioning" an Easter egg hunt, with chairman trustee Sharon Sue Wolfe
calling deputies to arrest a citizen, slamming a gavel repeatedly and
calling people out of order countless times.
At Monday's meeting, a calmer Wolfe was questioned about following the
township's rules of conduct adopted in 2002. In particular, trustee Ron
Rhodes said it was not fair to the other trustees or public present to
not know what is going on prior to the meeting.
Wolfe had presented several resolutions without prior notice and called
for votes on the matters with little discussion. She said only the
chairman needs to be notified 72 hours prior to a meeting of proposed
resolutions in order to prepare an agenda.
"It's the call of the chair," Wolfe said. She then cut off further
discussion by Rhodes.
The code of conduct, however, states on page four that "no member of the
board will bring any matter or issue before the board at any regular
meeting ... unless each trustee has been given notice of the business in
writing at least 72 hours before the date and time of the meeting at
which the issue or matter is to be considered." Exceptions are allowed
for matters that are already before the board or for adoption of a
The code also mandates that the chairman post the agenda for each
meeting at the township hall no later than 48 hours before the regular
meeting. Wolfe's agenda for Monday's meeting was available just prior to
the beginning of the meeting and had no mention of her resolutions.
Wolfe's resolutions were to rescind previous resolutions concerning
audio and video taping of meetings.
A previous resolution stipulated that audio taping is the only official
minutes. Wolfe said the building's public address system is not designed
to record. Rhodes suggested the township purchase a new PA system and
let the fire department use the older system.
"If we're going to do it, let's do it right," Rhodes said.
Wolfe and May voted to rescind the resolution. Wolfe said she would look
into the cost of a new system.
Another resolution Wolfe wanted to rescind had mandated that video
taping is open to any person and needs to be done in the open view of
the public. Most meetings are videotaped by two residents. One camera,
operated by Rhodes' wife, is located at the back of the room and is
always focused on the trustees. Another camera, operated by resident
Jesse Dickinson, had been located in the darkened kitchen area and pans
the audience. Several complaints have been voiced over the years by
numerous individuals about Dickinson's behavior of panning the audience.
Wolfe, however, said Dickinson didn't feel safe. During the March 7
meeting when Dickinson began panning the audience a member of the public
walked up to the camera and blocked the view.
Wolfe's motion to permit video taping from the kitchen area passed with Rhodes dissenting.
Consulting engineer Mark Cameron was present to answer a citizen's
concerns about the Ketch Road project. He acknowledged that problems
still exist with the project that was completed last year. A meeting is
tentatively scheduled for Wednesday with the contractor. Cameron said he
has not contacted the Army Corp of Engineers about a violation of the wetland.
The Easter Egg Hunt topic was revived by May's wife, Dickinson and
another resident who said they thought a private citizen's group could
use the township's name to raise funds for social events.
Rhodes reminded the group of a letter from Union County Prosecutor David
W. Phillips to the trustees which stated that, "... the township cannot
extend its name or credit to a private entity for purposes of assisting
it obtaining an advantage... The solicitation of funds for this activity
by a private group would be one thing but it should not be in any way,
shape or form be associated with the Jerome Township Trustees or the
Jerome Township Fire Department."
In other business:
. Clerk Robert Caldwell reported that to date the township has received
6.9 percent of the 2005 general fund budgeted receipts or $128,217 and
expended 17.8 percent or $429,538.
. Trustees Freeman May and Wolfe voted to raise the pay to zoning board
members by $5 a meeting to $60. Rhodes abstained.
. Trustees changed the title of three-year maintenance employee Jim
Medvec to supervisor. Rhodes voted against the measure, asking if this
was a way to slide in a pay increase. May, who is road maintenance
superintendent, said he didn't want to be bothered to train future
employees and was turning the responsibility over to Medvec.
. May suggested improvements to the township hall parking lot, streets
in Arnold and Weldon, Wells, Hill and Sugar Mill roads.
. Rhodes said he is seeking a grant for handicap accessibility.
. The trustees and sheriff discussed a citizen's complaint about engine
braking. All agreed that it would be difficult to enforce.
. A request by Boy Scout Troop 111 to work in the cemetery was tabled
until the clerk investigated the township's insurance coverage.
. The clerk said the township's web site should be online after April 15.
Williams resigns as
NUHS principal - Will be effective at end of school year
By CHAD WILLIAMSON
The North Union School District will be losing 42 years of education
experience when high school principal Vaughn Williams retires at the end of the school year.
Williams' resignation was accepted by the board of education at Monday's meeting.
Williams came to North Union in 1999 as an interim principal. He had
previously served as principal of Marion Harding High School for 27
years and had served as an educator at Harding and Ravenna High School prior to that.
In 2000 Williams was hired into the principal's position at North Union.
"Something about North Union really intrigued Vaughn Williams,"
superintendent Carol Young said. "He planned to stay six months and
ended up staying six years."
Under his leadership the technical preparatory programs were expanded
and a computer-based engineering technologies program was initiated. He
also guided the school as it began to align its curriculum with the Ohio Graduation Test.
He worked to improve facilities and equipment including the additions of
modular classrooms and upgrading the computer system. Recently, Williams
was involved in planning and designing the renovation of the high school
under the Ohio School Facilities Program. A new classroom wing,
including science labs, a library and six classrooms, is currently under
construction. "Our district has truly benefited from the contributions of such a fine
educator," Young said.
According to NU treasurer Scott Maruniak, the position will be posted
internally within the district immediately. If enough qualified
candidates are found, the board will move on selecting a replacement,
possibly as soon as the April board meeting.
If additional candidates are needed, the district will solicit resumes
externally, a process that could extend the timeline into May or June.
In other business, the board:
. Heard information on childhood obesity from representatives of the
Ohio and Union County health departments.
. Heard an update on the high school renovation project from Neil Kirkpatrick of MKC Associates.
. Heard first reading on several revisions to board policy.
. Approved the school calendar for the coming school year.
. Approved N. Carol Insurance as vendors for student accident insurance
for the coming school year.
. Approved the pay rates for summer workers.
. Approved payment in lieu of transportation for Jeffrey Garey and
Codie Banfield. Both are students attending Trinity Lutheran School in Marysville.
. Voted to approve an overnight field trip for members of the seventh
grade class to attend The Wilds in Cambridge in May.
. Approved an overnight field trip for next school year for the sixth
grade class at Camp Templed Hills in Belville.
. Approved the Family Medical Leave Act request of teacher Teri
Grunenwald beginning April 28 through the end of the school year.
. Voted to re-employ Bruce Hoover, curriculum director, Pam
Wenning-Earp, technology coordinator, and Lisa Wolfe, elementary
principal, on three-year contracts.
. Voted to employ Brian Nauman, facilities manager, and Claude Tidd,
transportation supervisor, on two-year contracts.
. Approved Mike Adams on a one-year supplemental contract as summer
weight room coordinator.
. Approved Terry Setser as an assistant softball coach.
. Held an executive session to hold a grievance hearing. The board came
out of the executive session and denied the grievance.
Schools oppose tax change
- Marysville sends notice to officials that move would hurt district
By JUDY BOEHLER
The governor of Ohio and every member of the Senate and General Assembly
will be receiving a resolution from Marysville Board of Education in the next few days.
The board approved the resolution regarding the elimination of the
personal tangible property tax at Monday's regular board meeting after
hearing information from district treasurer Dee Cramer and
superintendent Larry Zimmerman.
The governor's proposed tax reform plan includes eliminating over the
next five years taxes imposed on industry on machinery, equipment and
inventory tangible personal property. This is a tax which is, in part,
the cause of Ohio's loss of industry because neighboring states do not impose such a tax.
The funds derived from those taxes have been given to the schools. In
the case of the Marysville schools, they provide almost one-third of
local tax revenues. Although a reimbursement plan is in place, it will
not fully replace the funds and there is no guarantee that the plan will
not be changed, Zimmerman said.
According to Zimmerman, the loss of the tax has further, more serious
repercussions. The total tax base of the Marysville Exempted Village
School District is $800 million, and $250 million of that is based on
personal tangible property tax. If that tax goes away, the district tax
base will shrink and any taxing entities in the district will have to go
for larger millage in future levies.
One point of the resolution reads: (The Board of Education of the
Marysville Schools) "Requests that the Ohio General Assembly and Ohio
Senate postpone the elimination of the Personal Tangible Property tax
until local communities can be guaranteed by the State of Ohio permanent
revenue sources to replace the revenue which will be lost by school
districts and other local governments due to the elimination of the
tangible personal property tax."
In other business, the board:
. Saw a Power Point presentation on ad campaigns by Marysville Middle School students.
. Recognized the Marysville High School wrestling team and two high
school Mock Trail teams for outstanding seasons.
. Accepted a donation from the Diamond Club to be used to hire an
additional freshman baseball coach.
. Approved an overnight trip to the Columbus Zoo for Navin Elementary third graders.
. Approved the 2005-06 Marysville Middle School student handbook.
. Approved a trip to Irvine, Calif., from April 20 to 24 for six MHS
Model United Nations team members and three advisors.
. Recognized Michelle Gonzales, administrative support at East
Elementary, as Employee of the Month.
In personnel matters, the board:
. Accepted staff resignations from teachers Jeffrey Cody and Patricia
Biehl and coordinator of student services John Merriman.
. Renewed three-year limited administrator contracts for principals
Melissa Hackett, Colene Tracy and Timothy Kannally.
. Renewed three-year limited administrator contracts to assistant
principals Stephen Knox and Matthew Chrispin.
. Renewed three-year limited administrator contracts to Shawn Williams,
dean of students; Calvin Adams, athletic director; Yvonne Boyd, director
of curriculum and assessment; Michael White, business services
coordinator; Ellen Traucht, director of student services; Christine
Gruenbaum, director of Marysville Digital Academy; Kara Socha, Tabitha
Walls and Candace Sweeney, school psychologists; and James Moots,
computer services director.
. Employed Mary Anne Dimitry as low incidence coordinator.
. Employed Andrea Bradley, Joanna Chapman and Carol Houser as
. Approved supplemental contracts to Brock Walden, freshman baseball;
Kyle Grossman, high school light and sound technician; and Anthony
Blumenschein, middle school baseball.
A good weekend for
Company's NASCAR driver wins; name change is completed
From staff and wire reports:
A NASCAR star is born and The Scotts Co. of Marysville had a part in his birth.
Driving the No. 99 Scotts Ford and suited in Scotts logo attire, rookie
driver Carl Edwards won his first Nextel Cup race at the Atlanta Motor Speedway Sunday.
"It's really a great weekend for us," said Scotts spokesman Jim King
today, listing several points of celebration for the Marysville-based company.
King is in New York with other Scotts executive to ring the New York
Stock Exchange bell in celebration of the company's official name change
today. The Scotts Co.'s name is changing to The Scotts Miracle-Gro Co.
Scotts is also celebrating the official start of Spring and kicking off
the planting of a number of community gardens with the first in Orlando, Fla.
King said the company would like to bring the No. 99 Scotts Ford to
Marysville sometime and is enjoying their second year of Nascar
sponsorship with a great driver, brands and fans.
The new name for Scotts was selected to show off one of its best-known
brands and help make investors and others more familiar with its full
range of lawn care and gardening products.
"We are more clearly defining ourselves as a branded consumer products
company to investors and others who may not be as familiar with our
industry," said Jim Hagedorn, chairman and chief executive.
The new name comes with a new holding company structure that the company
said gives it more flexibility to grow and provides more legal
protection for its businesses and brands. Publicly owned Scotts
Miracle-Gro will be the parent company of The Scotts Co. LLC.
Shareholders, who approved both changes in January, will get a
share-for-share switch to the new company.
Scotts has more than $2 billion in annual sales with brands including
Miracle-Gro plant food, Ortho pesticide and Turf Builder fertilizer. It
also sells seeds and gardening tools, and markets Roundup herbicide for maker Monsanto.
Scotts also owns Smith & Hawken, which makes garden pottery, tools and outdoor furniture.
The company also said it would build community gardens in cities
including Orlando, Fla.; Atlanta; Norfolk, Va.; Long Island, N.Y.; and Columbus.
Edwards pulled off a daring move on Jimmie Johnson coming off the final
turn and won his first Nextel Cup race at Atlanta Motor Speedway,
beating Johnson by about a half-car length Sunday.
Johnson, trying to win for the second week in a row, grabbed the lead
from Edwards with 25 laps to go and appeared to be strong enough to take
it all the way to the finish of the Golden Corral 500.
But, on the final lap, Edwards got a great run coming out of turn two
and pulled up on Johnson's back bumper. Johnson went high coming through
turns three and four, trying to block his challenger, but Edwards went even higher.
The 25-year-old driver hardly resembled someone in his first full year
on the circuit, hugging the wall and actually tapping Johnson's car as
they roared through the trioval. Johnson's car bobbled slightly just a few feet from the finish, and
Edwards slipped by on the outside to win by a minuscule 0.028 seconds.
When it was over, Edwards pulled to a stop in front of the main
grandstand, climbed out of his Roush Racing Ford and pulled off a move
that's sure to become a standard on the Cup circuit - a backflip onto the asphalt.
"Let me tell you, Jimmie Johnson is an amazing competitor," Edwards
said. "That's the hardest I've ever driven in my life. I'm pretty proud of that."
Edwards completed a weekend sweep in Atlanta. On Saturday, he held off
Johnson and Tony Stewart to win the Busch race his first victory in that series, as well.
Edwards, who moved from trucks to Nextel Cup for the final 13 races last
season, is running a full schedule in both series, trying to gain as
much experience as possible. Clearly, he's a quick learner.
"You can see his intensity, his car control," Johnson said. "This guy is our next superstar."
Greg Biffle held on for third, followed by Mark Martin and Kasey Kahne.
Johnson led a race-high 156 laps, followed by Biffle with 151. Edwards
led only nine laps, but he was near the front all day.
"I was pretty confident I could beat (Johnson), but I couldn't beat
Carl," Biffle said. "I didn't plan on him being there."
Johnson shook off the embarrassment of being docked 25 points and losing
his series lead because his Chevrolet failed inspection after winning last week's race at Las Vegas.
"We were thinking about Victory Lane and being able to smile over our
critics and everyone who thought we were doing something goofy last
weekend," Johnson said. "We're going to prove what this team is capable
of and change the impression some people may have of the team."
Johnson's team wasn't the only one to face NASCAR's wrath after Las
Vegas. Three crew chiefs were suspended for rules violations - though
two of them were in Atlanta pending appeals - and Johnson was docked 25 points.
At the driver's meeting before the race, NASCAR president Mike Helton
issued a stern warning to the drivers and crew chiefs. He raised the
possibility of stiffer penalties - such as driver suspensions - if teams continued to flout the rulebook.
Todd Berrier, the crew chief for Kevin Harvick, began serving a
four-race suspension even though he's appealing the severity of his
penalty. Johnson crew chief Chad Knaus and Alan Gustafson, who works
with Kyle Busch, were at the race while they appeal two-race suspensions for failing inspections.
The race wasn't even a lap old when 10 cars got caught up in a huge
wreck coming down the backstretch.
Casey Mears spun as he swept off turn two, setting off a wild melee that
took out four-time Cup champion Jeff Gordon and six-time Atlanta winner
Bobby Labonte. The race was halted for nearly 10 minutes while workers cleaned up the mess.
"I thought I was going to get through there," said Gordon, who rammed
the inside wall. "I saw smoke, but they all turned down in front of me."
Gordon and Labonte eventually got back in the race with rebuilt cars,
but it was merely to turn laps on the high-banked oval and hope for as
many points as possible. Labonte finished 37th, Gordon 39th.
Series points leader Kurt Busch also was involved in the big wreck, but
he had only minor damage. The defending Nextel Cup champion managed to
climb back into contention, getting as high as second before a shredded
tire ruined his day. He wound up 32nd and surrendered the top spot in
the standings back to Johnson.
Johnson has an 82-point lead over Biffle, while Edwards is 87 points
back. Busch slipped to fourth.
Ryan Newman, who won his fifth straight Cup pole at Atlanta, surrendered
the lead to Johnson after the big wreck, quickly fell off the pace and
finished 14th. In seven races at this track, Newman has yet to place higher than fifth.
Bobby Hamilton Jr., the biggest surprise of qualifying, started from the
outside of the front row but got off to a dismal start. He was passed by
three cars before he got to the first turn, then got clipped by Brian
Vickers on the backstretch, cutting a tire.
Later, Hamilton was trying to get back on the lead lap when he slammed
the wall, forcing him to limp behind the wall. He settled for 38th.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. showed no signs of breaking out of his slump. The
race's defending champion was slow all weekend, starting 35th and finishing 24th.
Junior has struggled since a second-place finish in the season-opening
Daytona 500. He had three flat tires at California and finished 32nd. At
Las Vegas, he caused a five-car wreck early in the race and wound up 42nd.
Memorial database online
From J-T staff reports:
The Union County Veterans Remembrance Committee can see the results of
their labors. Although there is much more to do, the database is now
online. Names and photos of veterans who have submitted information can
be seen at www.3.co.union.oh.us/veterans .Enrollment forms are available on the site. Any veteran with Union
County ties from the Revolutionary War to the present day is eligible
for the free enrollment. The committee is actively seeking information
from descendants of veterans.
The committee is accepting donations and pledges for the monument.
Information to purchase bricks and pavers to honor a veteran is on the Web site.
A picture of the proposed monument to be built on the southeast corner
of the Union County Courthouse lawn is on display in the main branch of
the Marysville Public Library.
Easter services listed for area churches
From J-T staff reports:
The Community Good Friday services will be held at noon at Trinity
Lutheran Church, 311 E. Sixth St.
Richwood Community Holy Week services will include a Festival of Praise
at 7 p.m. Sunday at the Fulton Creek Friends Church and Monday night
services at 7 p.m. at Community Calvary Church. The Richwood First
United Methodist Church will host the 7 p.m. services Tuesday, followed
by Wednesday worship at Calvary Baptist Church. "The Shadow of the
Cross" will be performed at Richwood First Baptist Church at 7 p.m.
Thursday and communion will be offered. The Good Friday service will
begin at noon at Richwood First Baptist Church, followed by lunch at12:40 p.m.
Easter weekend services at The Vineyard Church of Marysville will be 6
p.m. Saturday and Sunday at 9 and 11 a.m. The church is located at 913 W. Fifth St.
Springdale Baptist Church, 18881 Springdale Road, will hold Maundy
Thursday Services at 7:30 p.m. and Easter sunrise service at 6:30 a.m.
with Sunday school at 9:30 a.m. followed by worship at 10:30 a.m.
Trinity Chapel, 77 W. Center St., Milford Center, is hosting an Easter
egg hunt for children through the fourth grade Saturday at noon. Boxed
lunches will be served to the children. Those planning to attend are
asked to call the church office if a child will be attending. Palm
Sunday services are Sunday at 10:30 a.m. with a celebration of
Communion. Easter Sunday services start at 10:30 a.m. Childcare is
provided and Kidz Church is available for children from ages pre-K through fourth grade.
For more information or to register a child for the egg hunt call
349-3281 during the weekdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Holy week services at the Ostrander Presbyterian Church begin March 20,
Palm Sunday, at 10:30 a.m. with the combined choirs of the Ostrander
Methodist and Presbyterian churches presenting a cantata at the
Presbyterian Church. Maundy Thursday services will be at the Methodist
Church at 7:30 p.m. and Good Friday services at the Presbyterian Church
at 7:30 p.m. Easter sunrise services begin at 7:30 a.m. at the Methodist
Church and will be followed by breakfast. Easter worship will be
celebrated at the Presbyterian Church at 10:30 a.m.
Christian Assembly Church, 1003 N. Maple St. will celebrate communion
during a 7 p.m. Good Friday service. The sunrise Easter service will
begin at 6:30 a.m. followed by breakfast and morning worship at 10:30 a.m.
The Marysville First United Methodist Church, 207 S. Court St., will
celebrate Palm Sunday with a sermon entitled "The Great Invitation" and
based on Matthew 21:1-11. Maundy Thursday services will be a Table of
the Cross and will include Holy Communion in the Burnside Family Life
Center beginning at 7 p.m. Good Friday services are in the Sanctuary at
7 p.m. Easter celebrations begin at 7 a.m. with a Son-Rise with the
youth, followed by traditional service at 8:20 a.m., contemporary at
9:30 a.m. and praise and worship at 10:45 a.m. The sermon is entitled
"Turning our Fear Factor to Faith" and it is based on Mark 16:1-8. The
choir will present the Messiah on April 3 in the Sanctuary during the 8:20 and 10:45 a.m. services.
First English Lutheran Church Palm Sunday services will be Sunday School
at 9 a.m. and worship with communion at 10:30 a.m. Holy Communion will
be celebrated at 7:30 p.m. Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services will
begin at 7:30 a.m. An Easter vigil service with communion will be held
at 7:30 p.m. March 26 and Easter Sunday services will be Sunday School
at 9 a.m. and worship with communion at 10:30 a.m. The church is located at 687 London Ave.
The choir cantata, "The Shadow of the Cross," will be presented at 7
p.m. at the Maundy Thursday Tenebrae service at First Baptist Church in
Richwood, 101 E. Ottawa St. The Good Friday Community Service will be
held at the church at noon. Easter celebrations begin with a 7 a.m.
sunrise service, followed by Sunday School at 9:30 a.m. and Easter worship at 10:40 a.m.
Resurrection Mt. Foursquare Gospel Church, 654 Raymond Road, will show
"The Passion of the Christ" at 7 p.m. Good Friday. Childcare will be
provided and light refreshments will be offered. The public is invited
to attend. Easter Sunday services will begin with a continental
breakfast from 9:15 to 9:45 p.m., followed by a celebration service at 10 a.m.
Grace Brethren Church, meeting at Navin Elementary School, will hold
Easter Rising services at 10 a.m. Easter Sunday. "Get Your Life Back"
will be the theme of the services.
Jerome United Methodist Church, 10531 Jerome Road, will begin Holy Week
services with a Palm Processional and music of the Festival Choir,
Higher Ground Praise Band and KidZone Children's Choir at the 8:45 and
10 a.m. 10:30 a.m. services Sunday in the Fellowship Hall. The annual
children's Easter egg hunt will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday
afternoon. Maundy Thursday services will include Communion at the Cross
at 7:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall and the Good Friday Tenebrae service
will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the hall with special music. An Easter Sunday
sunrise service will begin at 7 a.m., followed by the Easter breakfast
from 7:45 to 8:30 a.m. Easter worship services will be held at 8:45 and 10 a.m.
Palm Sunday services will be held at 8 a.m., 9:15 and 10:30 a.m. at
Trinity Lutheran Church, with Sunday School at 9:15 and 10:30 a.m.
Maundy Thursday services will include a traditional worship at noon and
a contemporary service at 7 p.m. Trinity will host the community Good
Friday service at noon with a contemporary service at 7 p.m. Easter
Sunday worship will be held at 8., 9:30 and 11 a.m., with a pancake
breakfast in Cana Hall from 8 to 10:30 a.m. The church is located at 311 E. Sixth St.
The Marysville Church of the Nazarene, 1126 N. Maple St., will hold Palm
Sunday worship at 10:30 a.m. and Sunday School at 6 p.m. The midweek
service Wednesday and Maundy Thursday services will start at 7 p.m.
Easter morning services will be held at 8:30 and 10:30 a.m. Sunday
School classes will not be held.
Maundy Thursday services at St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church,
12809 Route 736, will be held at 4 and 7:30 p.m. and Good Friday will be
observed at 1:30 and 7:30 p.m. Easter Sunday services will begin at 8
a.m. with a traditional service followed by a 10:30 a.m. traditional
service with confirmation in the sanctuary and a contemporary service
with communion in the gymnasium.
The Marysville First Presbyterian Church will hold Palm Sunday services
at 10 a.m. with Sunday School at 9 a.m. Maundy Thursday services with
communion will begin at 7:30 p.m. and Easter Sunday worship will begin
at 10 a.m. Sunday School classes will start at 9 a.m.
The Allen Center Baptist Church will host an Easter breakfast at 7:30
a.m., followed by a sunrise service and an Easter egg hunt. Sunday
School classes will begin at 9:30 a.m. and Easter worship will be held at 10:30 a.m.
Law Enforcement Memorial a reality
Is currently being cast; will be dedicated on May 19
By RYAN HORNS
"It is a reality now," Union County Sheriff's Office deputy Kim Zacharias said.
After more than three years of planning, the Union County Law
Enforcement Memorial will soon stand on the courthouse lawn.
At 6:30 p.m. on May 19 the monument will be unveiled at its permanent
spot on the north lawn of the sheriff's office. The life-size bronze
figure is being cast in Minnesota.
Zacharias said the project has been a joy for many law enforcement
officials to see come to fruition.
"We have been raising money for many years," she said. "It is in honor
of all law enforcement in the county."
Zacharias said the hope of the law enforcement community is to have an
unveiling ceremony that people in the entire county can enjoy and
attend. Details of the event will be revealed closer to the unveiling date.
Zacharias said all five law enforcement agencies in the county have been
involved in the planning and fundraising process. They are the Union
County Sheriff's Office, the Marysville Police Department, The Richwood
Police Department, the Plain City Police Department and the Marysville
Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol.
She said federal, state and local officials will be invited to attend the unveiling event.
"We hope to have as many people as possible show up," Zacharias said.
The memorial will have a logo from each department and the name of
fallen officers who dedicated their lives to public safely in Union County.
The first names placed on the memorial will be those of former Union
County Sheriff Harry Wolfe and sheriff's deputy Roger Beekman. Both were
killed in the line of duty. Wolfe was shot and killed while
investigating a burglary in 1982. Beekman was killed in a car crash in
New California in 1979. Zacharias said their names will be placed under the Union County
Sheriff's logo on the memorial.
While planning for the project is now complete, the county is hoping to
continue raising funds to help toward construction and future maintenance costs.
People may still donate paver stones in many different sizes and prices
by paying anywhere from $25 for an 8-inch by 4-inch brick paver, to
$10,000 and up for a 24-inch by 24-inch granite paver. Those stones will
form the foundation and a walkway.
The memorial committee reported that it cannot guarantee that the
donated paver will be placed on the first foundations because of time
constraints. However, they will continue to take orders and add the
pavers to the monument walkway as time goes on.
Checks may be made payable to the Union County Foundation in order to
qualify for a tax deduction. Questions may be directed to 645-4102, ext. 4448.
Zacharias said most all of the hope is that the public will take time to
think of the sacrifices that peace officers make every day, whether it
is missing out on holidays or putting themselves in danger.
Could Atlanta incident be
By RYAN HORNS
After the courthouse shootings in Atlanta, Ga., last week the issue of
security at county courthouses has made the rounds in communities around
the nation. On Friday a man in court for a rape trial in Atlanta stole a deputy's
gun, killed the judge, a court reporter and two other people, then
car-jacked a vehicle and escaped. The event set off a massive manhunt
before he turned himself in.
At the Union County Courthouse, it appears efforts to prevent such
violence has already been in place for years.
According to security supervisor Betsy Spain, local safety measures were
initially set above par. A system is in place that limits access to both
the courthouse and sheriff's offices to one main entrance. All other
doors are locked and equipped with security cameras and alarms.
Spain said that in the event a door is unlocked by a key holder, there
is a 15-second delay, providing even more security.
As visitors enter one of two doors between the courthouse and the
sheriff's office, a security guard directs them through a metal
detector. A scanner inspects their bags.
"A lot of people will say, 'We don't have to do this at other places',"
Spain said. "We've done a lot to stay up on security."
She said even police and deputies place their weapons in lock boxes
before entering, although, if they are just stopping in for a moment, they may not.
The main aspect of Union County security is something she said would
prevent another Atlanta courthouse incident from happening.
"There are no guns allowed in the courtroom," Spain said.
She said judges Richard Parrot in the common pleas courtroom and
Charlotte Eufinger in the probate and juvenile court decided weapons
would be restricted. Courtroom security guards are allowed to carry only
a baton and a taser. "From what I understand there were no cuffs on that person," Spain said
about the Atlanta suspect.
In Union County the prisoners are handcuffed and shackled before, after
and during their time in the courtroom. "The only time they take the cuffs off is when it is specifically
requested by their attorney," Spain said.
She said there have been a few incidents of local security threats and
close calls in the past. Years ago a man committed suicide in the
parking lot before he was set to attend his juvenile sexual abuse
hearing. Another incident involved a juvenile causing disruption in an elevator.
Although it was determined to be an accident, she said, a woman was
charged last year for attempting to bring a gun into the courthouse.
Spain said there was an incident when security guards thought they had a
man trying to bring a weapon inside. It ended up being a coffee mug with
a fake gun as a handle.
Three J-T staffers up for state awards
From staff and AP reports:
Three Marysville Journal-Tribune news staff members have been singled
out as finalists in the Associated Press Society of Ohio's 2004 newspaper competition.
County reporter Cindy Brake is a double finalist for best investigative
reporting and city reporter Ryan Horns is a finalist in best business
reporting. Photographer Patrick Dundr has been selected in three
categories. They include best general news photo, best feature photo and best sports photo.
The Journal-Tribune competes in Division I for newspapers under 8,000 circulation.
One of Brake's investigative articles focused on townships stockpiling
money and the other series of articles took a close look at the finances
of the Union County Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities
program. Horns' article reported on concerns of bringing the first "big
box" business to the community. Dundr's photographs were entitled
"Pioneer D," "Leaf Me Alone," and " "Fog Delays School."
The awards in actual order of finish - first, second and third places
and honorable mentions - will be announced at the annual APSO meeting
May 15 in Columbus. The General Excellence, First Amendment and Special
Recognition winners also will be announced at the meeting.
Seventy daily newspapers submitted 3,464 entries in the contest, which
featured news stories, editorials, columns, graphics and photos from 2004.
Entries were judged by editors from the Fort Lauderdale, Fla.,
Sun-Sentinel (General Excellence); Chattanooga (Tenn.) Times Free Press,
Division V; Wilmington, N.C., Morning Star, Division IV; Medford (Ore.)
Mail Tribune and Albany (Ga.) Herald, Division III; The Courier,
Lincoln, Ill., Division II; and the Potomac News, Woodbridge, Va., Division I.
YMCA plans Healthy Family
From J-T staff reports:
The Union County Family YMCA will hold a Healthy Family Night from 5 to
8 p.m. April 12 in conjunction with Memorial Hospital of Union County.
Blood pressure screenings and body composition assessments will be
offered by the YMCA, along with complimentary aerobics classes beginning
at 5:30 p.m. A drawing for a six-month family membership will be held
and those attending can sign up for membership with no joiner fee, a
savings of $40 to $60.
Children's activities will include complimentary swimming in the lap-
pool with the Lobster, goody bags and yoga and cheerleading
demonstrations from 5:30 to 6:3o p.m. Crafts, walleyball and basketball
will be available. Memorial Hospital will offer lipid profiles and glucose results to those
who have blood drawn on March 22 or 24 at a cost of $15 for members and
$20 for potential members. These services must be reserved by Friday.
Other offerings are nutrition counseling, derma scan testing and
scoliosis, chiropractic and dental screenings. Information will be
available on orthopedic and sports medicine, early childhood education,
women's' health, sleep disorders, diabetes and prescriptions. A physical
therapy tour will be given. More information may be obtained by calling the YMCA at 578-4250 or
going to www.unioncountyfamilyymca.org.
State auditor will be keynote speaker
From J-T staff reports:
Ohio State Auditor Betty Montgomery is the keynote speaker at the annual
Lincoln Day dinner Saturday at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Community Center.
A social hour starts at 6 p.m. with dinner at 6:30 p.m. For more
information, those interested may contact Mary Lou Ryan at 349-5722.
Montgomery's entire career has focused on public service. As a former
county prosecutor and Ohio Attorney General, she has prosecuted
criminals, advocated on behalf of victims, protected taxpayers and
reshaped Ohio law and she continues to provide professional services to
local government agencies as Ohio's 30th Auditor of State.
She was the state's top vote-getter in both 1998 and 2002, the state's
first elected woman county prosecutor, first woman attorney general and
first woman auditor of state.
As a state senator, Montgomery earned the Watchdog of the Treasury
award. As attorney general, she put that same fiscal conservatism to
work by streamlining frivolous inmate lawsuits and removing unnecessary
layers of appeals. In 2000, Montgomery received national recognition as
America's most outstanding consumer protection agency.
She is the only attorney general in Ohio history to collect over a
billion dollars owed to the state. In her first 18 months as auditor of
state, Montgomery's office identified more than $180 million in misspent
or stolen tax dollars, leading to nearly 30 convictions of those who
would abuse the public trust.
As attorney general, Montgomery successfully defended the Cleveland
school voucher program before the United States Supreme Court and fought
the ACLU's assault on Ohio's state motto, "With God All Things Are
Possible." Montgomery also helped write and successfully defend Ohio's
partial birth abortion ban. As auditor of state, she supported a
constitutional amendment stating that marriage should be between one man
and one woman, a bedrock principle of our society.
Prior to serving as auditor, Montgomery was Ohio's first woman attorney
general from 1995 through 2002. She fulfilled commitments to provide
increased state support for local law enforcement and to upgrade the
state's crime labs, joining only 4 percent of the nation's law
enforcement agencies by earning accreditation for both the Ohio Peace
Officer Training Academy and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation.
Among other top priorities, Montgomery emphasized the protection of
Ohio's most vulnerable citizens - senior citizens, youth and crime
victims. She received national recognition for her office's work in
many areas, including legal work before the U.S. Supreme Court, criminal
justice, consumer protection and her office's pro bono efforts.
Montgomery served as State Senator for the 2nd Senate District
(northwest Ohio) from 1989 through 1994, where she served as chair of
the Criminal Justice Subcommittee and vice chair of both the Senate
Judiciary Committee and the Ohio Criminal Sentencing Commission. Her
work in the Senate included drafting Ohio's first living will law, the
state's first brownfields legislation and the Victim's Rights Law.
In 1981, Montgomery became Ohio's first elected woman county prosecutor
(Wood County), a position she held until being elected to the State
Senate in 1988. During her eight years as county prosecutor, Montgomery
increased her office's felony conviction rate by 250 percent.
A native of northwest Ohio, Montgomery is a 1970 graduate of Bowling
Green State University and a 1976 graduate of the University of Toledo
College of Law. She began her career in public service as a criminal
clerk for the Lucas County Common Pleas Court and as an assistant Wood
County prosecuting attorney from1977-78 and Perrysburg City Prosecutor
Mock trial team wins state
From J-T staff reports:
One of two mock trial teams from Marysville High School won the state championship Saturday.
Members of the winning team are Kathy Connolly, Amanda Cramer, Aaron
Fancey, Larsa Ramsini and Jan Shanklin. Coaches were Richard Smith,
Laurel LaFrance, Connie Strebe and Laura Terlesky. John Eufiner served as legal advisor.
The team will represent Ohio at the national competition May 5-7 in Charlotte, N.C.
The weekend tournament began Thursday in Columbus with 50 teams that
were district winners. Marysville entered two teams into the state
tournament. By noon Saturday one Marysville team and a team from Sidney
High School were tapped to compete in the final round. That trial was
argued in the Senate Finance Hearing Room in the Ohio State House before
an elite panel of judges that included representatives of the Ohio Bar
Association, The ACLU and Chief Justice of the Ohio Supreme Court Thomas Moyer.
Tony Eufinger, assistant director of the Marysville Digital Academy,
wrote in an E-mail today that it was a "huge win."
"This is also a real story of 'if at first you don't succeed, try, try
again.' Our team has come close to winning - even reaching the
semi-finals or final round - several times over the past 10 years only
to fall just short. Saturday's win caps the remarkable success of this
MTV coming to MHS
By RYAN HORNS
Next week Marysville High School students will get a chance to see if
they have what it takes to overcome the odds.
Producers from MTV's popular show "MADE" will arrive on Wednesday to
interview prospective students for it's sixth season.
The television show matches one boy or girl with professional trainers
and mentors who can help them achieve ambitious or unusual goals. Past
seasons have turned shy girls into drama queens and skinny boys into
wrestlers. Some Marysville students are hoping to become models,
singers, wrestlers or even boxers.
According to MTV, students featured on the program receive at least one
month of intensive skills development and confidence building aimed
toward realizing a seemingly impossible personal goal. They hope to help
ordinary kids accomplish extraordinary tasks, instead of just trying to
turn them into new celebrities.
School choir director, Katie Paulson, said that there is no shortage of
Marysville students willing to put themselves up to the challenge.
"The sign up sheet filled up within the first 10 minutes," she said.
Casting interviews will take place throughout the day in the school
auditorium during lunch and study hall periods, Paulson said. Many of
her students have already signed up.
She said while some students seemed interested in the thrill of being on
the show, others seemed to be in it for a much deeper desire to
challenge and change themselves.
MTV plans to hold interviews at schools around Columbus and its suburbs,
in their scope of scouring the Midwest for the next star of its show.
"MADE is all about making dreams come true," an MTV news release stated.
"Whether they succeed at their goal or not, we strive to give these kids
a chance at a dream. Ideally, they learn valuable lessons about
themselves and others along the way. They ultimately realize it takes
hard work, persistence and commitment to make one's dreams come true."
Marysville High School Principal Greg Hanson said the show's concept
fits in well with the lessons his staff tries to teach students,
concerning the importance of setting goals.
"MADE is a unique program with an entirely different angle than what
most people picture when they think of MTV," Hanson said. "Sure, it's
mostly entertainment television, but there's also an important lesson
here about what hard work, planning and dedication can accomplish. We
know students pay attention to the world of pop culture, so we thought
why not take an opportunity to highlight positive examples of students
working to make their dreams come true?"
"We encourage all of our students to think creatively," Paulson said. "I
constantly try to convince football players to try out for choir, or shy
girls to try out for cheerleading. MADE is all about taking kids out of
their comfort zone and encouraging them to aim for something they never
thought possible." MTV producers plan to visit other Central Ohio high schools.
"I figure our school has just as much of a chance as any other," Hanson said.
Putting a shine on
City moving on sprucing up uptown and "gateway" areas
By RYAN HORNS
Marysville is still working on the process of revitalizing its historic downtown area.
Thursday night city council members held first and second readings on
several resolutions to spice up the city's core and to prepare for what
has been dubbed "Gateway Marysville."
Economic development director Eric Phillips reported that the U.S. 36/
U.S. 33/ Delaware Avenue interchange and the area west of Charles Lane
is considered the main gateway into the city and its historic downtown
district. The city is proposing to provide landscape buffering between
traffic routes in this area.
Phillips said that the United States Congress has set aside funds for
Transportation Enhancement Projects through the Ohio Department of
Transportation. The city can apply and be eligible to receive grants to
pay for most of the project, but would be responsible for at least 20
percent of the construction costs and for all the costs associated with
such details as the architecture, engineering, and environmental studies.
The total construction cost of the Gateway Marysville project is
estimated to be $100,000. If Marysville is awarded the funds, the city
would pay a least 20 percent out of its general fund.
Thursday night council held the first reading on the resolution
authorizing Mayor Tom Kruse to apply for the grant.
In the forefront of the work to improve historic downtown Marysville has
been the Uptown Renewal Team, which has been meeting the fourth
Wednesday of every month since last year.
Phillips reported that the group has been able to accomplish many of its goals:
. Recent Union County Commissioner approval of a resolution recognizing
URT as the committee to revitalize Uptown Marysville.
. Working on having special events on Friday evenings in Uptown - this
is in the planning stages.
. Working on the development of a historic walking tour of the Uptown area.
. Planning an open house on April 27 and will invite property and
business owners to this event to discuss the plans and successes of URT
and what is coming up.
. New signs along U.S. 33 were placed to promote the Historic Uptown Marysville Area.
. In the process of updating some of the city codes and ordinances to
fast track some approvals for redevelopment projects.
Marysville City Council heard the second reading on legislation to allow
for the city administration to seek a qualified consultant to conduct
planning services that may include a market analysis, redevelopment
plan, parking plan, and traffic flow plan. The legislation would also
apply the city for grant money to conduct those services.
Phillips said the grant would provide for $15,000 which would be matched
by another $15,000 by the city.
"Basically what we will get are some nice plans and nice documents that
are going to lead us in the right direction," he said.
One resolution that had first reading on Thursday will submit the city
for the Fiscal Year 2005-2009 Community Housing Improvement Strategy to
the Ohio Department of Development Office of Housing and Community
Partnerships. Another was to submit an application to the Ohio Small
Cities Program for $500,000 of Fiscal Year 2005 Community Housing
Improvement Program Grant Funds.
According to city administrator Kathy House, "the CHIS is a planning
document that assesses what the current housing conditions and needs are
in our city. In addition, plans for how to address those needs are
outlined. After completion of the CHIS the next step is to apply for
funding through the Community Housing Improvement Program (CHIP) which
helps current qualifying homeowners fund rehabilitation and repairs to
their homes and also helps first time qualifying homeowners buy a house.
House explained Thursday night's legislation authorizes the final
submission of the CHIS and a new application for another CHIP. If the
CHIP is granted after the application, funding would be $500,000 to be
disbursed during 2005-2007.
Fireman to honor St.
By RYAN HORNS
A Marysville firefighter plans to stand in the middle of a restaurant
this month and have his head shaved in public. It's all right, things
like this are acceptable when it's for charity.
Firefighter Mike Montgomery joined up to be a part of St. Baldrick's
Day, a national organization in which people offer to have their heads
shaved to raise donations for pediatric cancer research.
St. Baldrick's Day began about five years ago when a few Long Island
business friends decided the act of shaving their heads would not only
visually remind people what it's like to suffer from cancer but also
draw attention to their cause. The group has raised millions of dollars
for cancer research and today people all over the United States, women
and men alike, shave their heads every year for the kids.
All funds raised reportedly go to CureSearch National Childhood Cancer
Foundation. CureSearch NCCF supports the work of CureSearch Children's
Oncology Group, a network of physicians, nurses and scientists who
conduct clinical trials in childhood cancer. It performs cutting edge
research at more than 200 member institutions, representing every
pediatric cancer program in North America and treats more than 90
percent of children with cancer on the continent.
Montgomery said they will be taking donations for sponsoring his
head-shaving between 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. The event
is being sponsored by International Firefighter's Association Union
#3032. It all leads up to the actual head-shaving event to take place
March 17 at 9 p.m. in Fado's Irish Pub located in the Easton mall.
He said donation checks should be made payable to "St. Baldrick's."
Donation sheets are also available at the Marysville Fire Department at 209 S. Main St.
According to the organization's web site, "Forty-six children, or two
classrooms of students, are diagnosed (with cancer) every day. Over the
last 25 years, the incidence of childhood cancer has increased every
year. Forty years ago, childhood cancer was almost always fatal. Today,
through the advancements in diagnosis and treatment, 77 percent of the
children with cancer can now be cured. Despite this remarkable progress
in research and treatment, cancer remains the leading cause of death by disease in children."
Montgomery said doing something for children suffering from cancer was a
factor in his desire to take part in the head-shaving.
As a result of CureSearch COG's collaborative research effort, the
cancer death rate has reportedly dropped more dramatically for children
than for any other age group and has directly led to significant
increases in cure rates for childhood cancer.
The web-site states its goals are to "convey the vital need for more
specialized cancer research to save the lives of infants, children and
teens fighting cancer; to get as many people as possible to participate
in St. Baldrick's either as a shavee, an organizer, barber, volunteer, a
donor or a combination of these; to provide quality support, materials,
and coaching to all who are giving their time, energy and/or hair for
the cause; to raise as much money as possible for cures and advances
that save lives and improve the quality of life for children with
cancer; and to serve as conscientious stewards of all funds, so every
penny possible goes to our cause and not to fundraising or
administration." For more information, visit the organization at www.StBaldricks.org.
Annexation discussed by council
Officials will hold another meeting to decide on services
By RYAN HORNS
When it comes to annexation, a little more than three acres can
sometimes be more significant than it seems.
Marysville City Council met Thursday night and held the first reading on
a resolution which reveals what services would be provided to
approximately 3.8 acres in the area of County Home Road proposed to be
annexed from Paris Township into the city.
Council president John Gore immediately requested that the legislation
be explained further because he said it was unclear.
City law director Tim Aslaner explained that it is an expedited
annexation application request which was filed by the property owners.
It is essentially asking the city what services and buffering it would
provide if the land were to be annexed.
Passage of the registration would not necessarily mean council would
accept the annexation. Their vote, Aslaner said, would simply move it
back to the Union County commissioners, who would review it for 30 to 45 days.
Aslaner said if the annexation persists by property owners it would then
come back before council and go through the process of having three
readings and a referendum period. Council could then approve or reject the annexation.
Aslaner did say council must vote on the services to be provided within
20 days of the filing deadline, or else it will be approved anyway. With
two more readings to go before final hearing, there wasn't time.
Councilman David Burke voted against the legislation, which resulted in the measure's failure.
A total of six votes were needed for passage and only five councilman
approved. Councilman John Marshall was absent from the meeting.
Councilman was absent from the meeting.
Council then decided to hold a special meeting on March 21 at 7 p.m. to
discuss the resolution and three other pieces of legislation associated
with the expedited annexation request.
Councilman Dan Fogt said that from what he understands the annexation
request is only to provide road access to County Home Road from Scott
Farms properties in order for M/I Homes to build another 200 homes.
"As I understand, that's the purpose of those 3.8 acres," Fogt said.
"Which, as you all know, I am not in favor of building 200 more houses.
And those are dangerous intersections, as planning commission proved the
other night. (The Ohio Department of Transportation) does not want to
allow us to put stoplights at either Scotts Farm Boulevard at Route 4 or
at County Home Road at Route 4. So I'm not in favor of any of this
project, basically. You're just putting those people in jeopardy when
they try to come out those intersections."
Councilman Mark Reams pointed out that the annexation might eventually
provide for two ways in and out of the subdivision, which is safer than
one because it makes for a better flow of traffic.
Gore said it wasn't so much being against the annexation request as it
was the issue of council being forced to go through a process that does
not benefit their goals.
"We've taken a position early on that we would be very serious about the
waiving of any readings and emergencies. Obviously we've done a couple
tonight, but we felt again that it was something that really needed to
be done and was within our authority of power to do so," Gore said.
"This is something we're being forced to do whether we want to or not.
And I guess that I don't know much more about it . if Dan's correct and
it is opening up an access way - and I understand that it is a road and
I agree with what Mark was saying too - but if it's opening up so that
they can develop 200 more homes, then I am opposed. That's me speaking for me."
In other discussions, council held the second reading on an ordinance to
rezone 18.240 acres of land on Weaver Road from U-1 Township Zoning to
Fogt reminded members that the half of the area is a flood plain. He
said in the past the city has allowed developers to simply fill in low
areas with dirt and get started, but it would only end up another
Barhaven Addition. He said it may bring flooding in more basements and
more problems for future administrations to deal with.
Councilman Nevin Taylor said he knows of three homeowners in the area
who are against the rezoning. He also added that the land has been
recognized as a flood plain and he has seen the papers that prove it.
Mayor Tom Kruse said that one point to consider is that by working with
developers, proper drainage for the land can be installed to solve the
flooding. It is something that won't be accomplished without development.
He said the development is also a part of the city's overall thoroughfare plan.
In council comments, Fogt said that the mayor has said growth will get
the city out of its financial hole.
However, Fogt also observed that much growth has occurred for the past
12 years and he claims many problems have gotten worse. They should be
careful not to dig themselves in deeper with development issues, he said.
In other business, Kruse reported the new fire medic vehicle came in
more than $20,000 under budget and that the aerial ladder truck should
arrive in town by August or September.
Marysville Library now has
From J-T staff reports:
A new service is now available at the Marysville Public Library - online
audio and text books.
The library can provide eBooks, digital print and audio books for
downloading on computers, portable PDAs and audio devices.
This service derived from a need to create a new identity beyond
traditional library services.
After installing free reader software, library users with library cards
can browse through titles, select books and download. Digital books are
automatically returned when the use period has expired so there are
never any late fees.
The digital book collection includes best sellers and classics, fiction
and non-fiction. These can be used on devices supporting secure WMA
format such as PCs, notebooks, tablet PCs, Palm OS and Pocket PC PDA's.
Media are formatted in Adobe Acrobat (PDF), Palm Reader or Windows Media
Audio. The Mid-Ohio Digital initiative is the result of a grant from the
federal Institute of Museum and Library Services awarded by the State
Library of Ohio to the Grandview Heights Public Library. The grant
enabled nine other libraries, including Marysville, to work together in
a project of bringing online audio and test books to the public.
Presbyterians plan event for
building's 100th anniversary
By JUDY BOEHLER
The First Presbyterian Church of Marysville will celebrate the 100th
anniversary of its building Sunday with special services and a dinner.
The original cost of the building was $30,000 and on the day of
dedication, only $1,000 was owed. That amount was collected during
services and the new church was fully paid for.
The Presbyterian church has long been a presence in Union County. As
early as 1800, a Presbyterian church body existed in the settlements of
Lower Liberty which existed for only a few years, and Upper Liberty, now
Milford Center. In 1829, a meeting was held at a home in Marysville and
11 members were accepted into the congregation with the Rev. Darius C.
Allen as missionary pastor.
A pledge of $435 was collected in 1832 for the purpose of building a
meeting house and plans were drafted for a 40-foot by 50-foot brick
building which was first occupied in 1835. It was located at the corner
of Court and Fifth streets where the present-day church sits.
By 1838 the congregation totaled 48. The first regularly installed
resident pastor was the Rev. James Smith who also established and
conducted an academy of higher learning on West Fifth Street which
operated until the public school system was created.
In the centennial history of the church, John H. Kinkade describes a
typical sermon of Smith's day:
"After the fashion of his day, his sermons were divided into sections
plainly designated by 'firstly,' 'secondly,' and so on for a
considerable number, then 'finally, my brethren,' 'in conclusion,' 'by
way of application' and 'exhortation' ? each of these divisions being
almost as long as one of our present days sermons."
The second church building was built at the same site for a cost of
$12,000 and was dedicated in 1870.
The present structure, dedicated on March 13, 1904, is noted for the
design of its art-glass windows which represent a departure from the
more prevalent stained-glass windows. Art glass places emphasis on the
window's picture, while stained glass relies more for its beauty on
patterns and the resultant mosaic of light. The resurrection window and
the Pilgrim's Progress window in the church were specifically designed
for the church, while the north window was possibly a standard design.
The church consists of the original building and the 1993 addition which
includes Kennedy Hall, an expanded kitchen, new Sunday School rooms, a
choir room and third-floor gathering and youth rooms.
The congregation is served by the Rev. Dr. Thomas J. Mori as interim
pastor as a search for a new permanent minister is conducted.
A rededication worship service will be held at 10 a.m. Sunday using the
format and responses from the dedication 100 years ago. Antique chancel
chairs and a pump organ will be in use. A catered dinner will follow in Kennedy Hall.
A concert will be held at 7:30 p.m. March 18, featuring tenor Thomas
Gregg, a graduate of Fairbanks High School, and harpist Emily Laurence.
The public is invited to the rededication and concert.
Egg issue boils over at Jerome Twp.
By CINDY BRAKE
Talk of an Easter egg hunt ruffled some feathers at the Jerome Township
Board of Trustees' meeting Monday night.
Deputies were called. A gavel was slammed repeatedly. People were told
they were out of order countless times. The meeting was recessed twice
and finally cut short when the chairman refused to allow a citizen to
talk during the public comment section of the meeting.
Trustee Sharon Sue Wolfe attempted to present a resolution stating that
the township would "sanction" a committee to conduct an Easter egg hunt.
Before she could complete reading her prepared resolution, trustee Ron
Rhodes interrupted her to ask who the committee was. Wolfe did not
answer Rhodes' question, cutting him off by saying that he was out of
order and did not have the floor. When he persisted, Wolfe recessed the
meeting. During the short recess, everyone sat at the table and stared
at each other. "It's amazing to be out of order when you want to ask a question,"
Rhodes said during the exchange.
Upon returning to open session, Rhodes immediately asked to have the
floor and was permitted to speak by Wolfe. He again asked more questions
about the committee and received no answers. Rhodes said the township's
legal counsel stated that the township could not "sanction" an Easter egg hunt.
A two-page letter to the trustees by Terry Hord, chief assistant to the
Union County Prosecuting Attorney, pointed out problems with the proposed resolution.
Sometime during the exchange, two citizens were whispering in the back
of the room to each other. Wolfe admonished one man, Bob Long, for being
out of order. Getting out of his chair, he questioned her and she called
him out of order again, then recessed the meeting to call deputies.
Wolfe announced in February that no one could speak without being
recognized by her and she has discretion as to what is disorderly
conduct. She said individuals would be given one warning if she believes
they have been disorderly and then the sheriff would be called. As of
this morning, officers are investigating the complaint of disorderly
conduct and no charges have been filed.
When the meeting returned to open session, Rhodes immediately spoke.
Wolfe slammed her gavel and called him out of order. She then told him
he could speak for 10 minutes.
After giving the floor to Rhodes, Wolfe stepped away to the darkened
kitchen area. She then returned to the trustee table, put her coat on
and left the building. Meanwhile, trustee Freeman May got up and handed
papers to clerk Robert Caldwell and returned to his seat. All the while,
Rhodes was talking about problems with the resolution.
Carol May, wife of trustee May, who was sitting in the audience,
acknowledged that the committee could not solicit funds and that it is
not a township event. Carol May said that she and Wolfe had purchased
holiday items for the event.
Wolfe then returned to the meeting room and told Rhodes his time was up.
She took the floor and questioned various points of the prosecutor's
letter. During her comments, Rhodes attempted to speak numerous times.
Each time, Wolfe cut him off by saying he was out of order and slamming the gavel.
Rhodes finally proposed that the unnamed committee be allowed to use the
township property on March 19 at 10 a.m. for an Easter Egg hunt at no
charge. The motion passed unanimously.
When Wolfe opened the meeting to public comment, Long, the citizen
singled out earlier in the meeting by Wolfe, attempted to speak and
Wolfe refused to give him the floor.
Rhodes came to Long's defense and then Wolfe said Rhodes' lack of
respect was the reason for the public speaking out of turn. A citizen
from the audience then said that Wolfe was the one setting a bad
example. Wolfe then declared the meeting over and began walking out the
door without a second to her motion or a vote.
In other business:
. Trustee May acknowledged that a citizen had a legitimate complaint
about the Ketch Road project and the contractor has been contacted. A
citizen had been attempting for more than two months to obtain public
records concerning the township project.
. Accepted the resignation of a part-time maintenance worker and agreed
to advertise in local publications. Applications and job descriptions are available at the township building.
. Accepted the purchase of road equipment.
. Approved the township hall as an emergency operation center for the Union County Health Department.
Armed robbery reported at drive thru
From J-T staff reports:
A man possibly carrying a weapon allegedly robbed the Buckeye Drive Thru Monday night.
Marysville police reported that at 10:30 p.m. Monday a man wearing dark
clothing entered the business at 850 Delaware Ave. and demanded the cash from the register.
The only description of the robber is that of a male with stocky build,
who is between 5 feet 8 inches and 5 feet 9 inches tall.
Assistant police chief Glenn Nicol said the man implied that he was
carrying a weapon, although store employees did not see one.
Nicol said the thief then fled out the back of the building with an
undisclosed amount of money. Because he was wearing a dark mask,
employees were not able to see what the man's face looked like. Police
are investigating the robbery.
Nicol reported that the Buckeye Drive Thru was last robbed on Nov. 26, 2002.
He said the two robberies are not believed to be linked.
Alleged attempted abduction reported
From J-T staff reports:
Marysville police are investigating a possible abduction that happened this morning.
Today at 8:41 a.m. police reported that a 20-year-old Marysville female
claimed that a man of Middle Eastern nationality allegedly grabbed her
by the arm outside of Goodies Galore on East Fifth Street.
While doing so, the man reportedly asked her for directions.
According to reports, the female then threw coffee on the man to get free.
Marysville assistant police chief Glenn Nicol reported that the suspect
was found two blocks away from the scene. Upon questioning the man was
discovered to be from Ontario. The suspect has not been arrested and no charges
have been filed at this time. The incident remains under investigation.
Former sheriff discusses
By RYAN HORNS
Executive director of Ohio Homeland Security John Overly was asked to
speak at the Marysville Public Library Thursday night as part of the
monthly Friends of the Library discussions.
The former Union County Sheriff talked about the past, present and
future of Homeland Security. He said that just four years ago no one
knew what Homeland Security was about.
"Today you can't do anything without hearing about terrorism," he said.
"It's become a household name."
Overly said that most people in the room grew up in the years of Nazi
Germany or the Cold War with Soviet Russia. In those days there were clear enemies.
"Now we don't know who are adversaries are, except that they are very
organized and very lethal," he said.
What sets terrorists apart from the average street gang are three
traits: organization, violence and a political agenda.
He said terrorists are trying to get their hands on chemical,
biological, radiological, nuclear, explosives and cyber weapons to use
against their enemies. Cyber terrorism entails terrorists hacking into
computer systems to shut down financial or power grid systems.
A short film Overly played showed the history of terrorism in the United
States from an airline hijacking in 1961 and car bombs in 1975 to the
Oklahoma City bombing and World Trade Center Attack in 1993 and then
9/11. What the timeline showed was a steady increase in attacks after 2000.
In response, the United State began its Homeland Security organization
in 2002. Today there are 180,000 staff members. The department was
created to manage science and technology, information analysis, border
patrol and emergency preparedness. He said since it began they have
completed more than half their work setting up preparedness in states.
Overly said that when he left the Union County Sheriff's Office there
were only two people on his new staff. That number has expanded to 30.
Once a potential threat is reported, which includes anything from a
suspicious van in an area to the threat of a plan to send an airplane
into a nuclear plant, it is sent to an assessment team which determines
the credibility of the threat. From there a team analyzes how vulnerable
the target is and what can be done to prevent an attack. These reports
come in from all over the country and every morning the president and
secretary are briefed on what intelligence was unearthed.
"This happens 24 hours a day, seven days a week," Overly said.
He said he still takes a lot of pride in talking about Union County.
After 9/11 the country realized that communication between emergency
forces was a big problem and Union County was chosen as the pilot
location to start the MARCS program which links all emergency
departments through radio groups. Now an officer in southern Ohio can
speak with clear reception to another officer on Lake Erie.
He said Ohio receives the seventh largest amount of funding out of all
the states. In 2002 the state received $9.9 million; in 2003, $63.8
million; in 2004, $100.7 million; and this year another $78 million is slotted.
While it may seem like a cut, he said, those funds have mostly been
diverted into other needy areas to address national security.
Library director Sue Banks asked what people should be worried about and
what should they forget about. Overly said the agency has been working
with health officials on this issue because some people are worrying so
much it is making them sick.
"You can't go around worrying about everything," he said.
Banks also questioned the aspect of civil liberties being infringed upon
in the name of security. If people are asked to watch out for anything
suspicious, when does it become a problem?
Overly said that homeland security depends a lot upon the neighborhood
watch concept. When that program was launched years ago, it cut home
burglaries in half without costing a lot of money.
He asked that people just use common sense. If a person who barely knows
English is wanting to learn to fly a crop duster but refuses to sign any
identification papers, it should raise suspicion. Those are the times to
call police, he said.
Millcreek, city officials meet
By RYAN HORNS
Millcreek Township and Marysville elected officials met Thursday evening
to begin the process of working together in the face of future growth.
The meeting, unannounced to the public, was held at the Union County
Chamber of Commerce building with Millcreek trustees Keith Conroy, Bill
Lynch and Jim Shrader; Marysville councilmen Dan Fogt, Ed Pleasant and
John Gore; Marysville mayor Tom Kruse, city economic development
director Eric Phillips, landowner Bill Shrader, chamber president Rick
Shortell and Union Rural Electric's Roger Yoder.
Directing the meeting was attorney Price Finley of Bricker and Eckler LLP.
Gore said the next step is to arrange a meeting with fewer people
involved so they can "keep the media out of the room" and discuss the
issues in a more in-depth fashion. No meeting date was set for the next discussion.
Topics of discussion included the explanations of Joint Economic
Development Districts, or JEDDs, and Cooperative Economic Development
Agreements, known as CEDAs.
Finley said JEDDs create a special purpose district through a contract
between a combination of municipal corporations and townships, in this
case, Marysville, Millcreek Township and possibly Union County.
A JEDD allows for the levying of a district-wide income tax and the
provision of municipal services in unincorporated areas to allow
economic development. Finley said the JEDD was created in 1990 by Akron Mayor Donald
Plusquellic and Coventry Township to find an economic development
alternative to annexation.
A JEDD is a negotiated contract which could levy an income tax no
greater than the highest rate of any participating municipality in all
or portions of the designated area. Those income tax proceeds can be
shared among the participants to pay for infrastructure.
Another trait is a minimum three-year moratorium on annexation. In turn,
the area would be provided services such as police, fire and sewer use
and would establish a board of directors to oversee the district.
Phillips said the hope would be to give this board of directors limited powers.
A JEDD area must be located within the territory of one or more of the
participants. The district cannot include electors and cannot contain
anything other than commercial-zoned building. Any existing residential
homes within the area would have to be removed.
"That's called annexation," Kruse noted.
What happens next is that the city and township would write a contract
and come up with a plan for the area, give 30 days public notice and
place the contract on file with the clerk of each entity 30 days prior to a public hearing.
The contract is filed with the county and each partner must formally
approve the contract by ordinance or resolution. The county
commissioners have to adopt the resolution and establish a date for an
official vote by township electors.
The issue can avoid a public vote if the trustees unanimously approve
the JEDD, it is approved by a petition of majority landowners and the
appropriate zoning is in place.
Conroy pointed out that the current area is zoned U-1 agricultural.
In contrast, a CEDA is an agreement that promotes economic development
through shared resources. The development area does not have to consist
of only commercial buildings. Going this route can provide services to
the area but does not require an annexation moratorium, vote for an
income tax levy or a board of directors. Phillips pointed out that JEDDs "bring the cash."
Kruse said he understood that the JEDD funds could be used only within
the JEDD area for improvement.
Finley explained that the money generated from the JEDD tax levy could
be split up by Marysville, Millcreek Township or the county if it is involved.
"It could be used to fix the streets of downtown Marysville," Kruse
said. "That makes more sense."
Phillips said he has seen JEDDs in other areas split two-thirds for the
city, 12.5 percent for the township and 12.5 percent for the county.
It was also pointed out that if Dublin annexed the JEDD, that city would
end up with all the income taxes and the other entities all lose out.
Finley said Dublin would first have to prove it could provide better services.
Kruse said the next step is to outline individual goals for future growth.
"It seems to me that we need to look at what tool - or tools for that
matter - we can use that will serve both of our needs," Kruse said. "We
have some internal discussions we are struggling with, such as the issue
of really how big do we want to go with the city."
"I realize I have been viewed as a robber baron," Kruse said.
"Annexation for annexation's sake is dumb. I can assure you the city has no desire to do that."
He added that future discussions would need to include the school districts.
"They are big players in this," Kruse said. "What we do impacts them
unbelievably." Conroy said he would like to check out examples of JEDD and CEDA
contracts from other cities.
Local library goes wireless
From J-T staff reports:
Free wireless access has arrived at the Main Library in Marysville, 231
S. Plum St. This is an exciting time for patrons of the Marysville
Public Library as computer use in the library is on the rise.
From Jan. 1 to March 1, Marysville Public Library computers have been
accessed nearly 9,000 times with usage totaling more than 4,000 hours.
Before wireless, the library was limited to available computers always
in high demand as students and adults use computers to access e-mail,
informational databases and eBooks.
Giving the public access to free high-speed Internet expands the services that the library is able to offer.
Wireless Internet access is fantastic for working library users who
travel, teens who are never without their computers and other library
users who simply want to have the freedom to move about the library
without wired Internet restrictions. Patrons will be able to sit at tables, on relaxing chairs and near
windows. In order to use the Marysville Public Library's wireless
service, patrons will need a Wi-Fi compliant 802.11b or 802.11g wireless
Ethernet card installed in your computer, or have one built-in with Wi-Fi compatibility.
A member of the MPL staff can help with log-in procedures and wireless
acceptable use policy.
Sheriff's cruisers will have new video
State grant allows purchase
From J-T staff reports:
A new grant will allow Union County Sheriff's deputies more help in
testifying in court and for training.
The sheriff's office was awarded a Mobile Video System Wednesday
afternoon for their participation in the 2004 Law Enforcement Overtime
Program. The system was presented to the office by Mike Brining, the law
enforcement liaison with the Governor's Highway Safety Office. The
sheriff's office has participated in this grant program for the past
several years in an effort to reduce the number of crashes and drunk
drivers on Union County roads.
According to Lt. Jeff Frisch, the in-car video system will allow
deputies to video tape traffic stops, drunk drivers and pursuits. The
system will also be helpful for deputies testifying in court and for training.
The sheriff's office will continue to conduct frequent overtime
enforcement of area roads that have higher crash rates and a high volume
of traffic complaint areas and during peak periods when people are more
likely to be driving while intoxicated. These overtime enforcement
operations are possible due to grants that are received from the Ohio
Department of Public safety and the Governor's Highway Safety Office.
Police maintain comp time
Only city employees who do not have overtime
By RYAN HORNS
The city of Marysville and the Fraternal Order of Police agreed on a
contract renewal last week and the results showed a few significant changes.
As a result of union negotiations, the Marysville Police Department will
be the only city department to keep compensatory time for its employees.
Marysville assistant police chief Glenn Nicol said the issue was
regarded as "the biggest dispute" during negotiations.
City human resources director Brian Dostanko explained that the city
comp time policy could change in the future.
"There is a possibility that fire and the rest of the city will get
compensatory time back as an option," he said. "We are working out the details."
Dostanko said city management wanted to do away with compensatory time
as an option for non-exempted employees.
"We did not win this decision in fact finding with the police union," he
said. "As a matter of fairness and in trying to be consistent with all
employees (when we can), we may be working compensatory time back throughout the city."
The city did not look to single out police, he said. The issue began
with fire negotiations, then it went to non-union employees and ended working with police.
Over the past year the topic of comp time had been a contested topic
between city management and employees. Dostanko said that many public
employers use comp time as a way to reduce overtime costs but, he said,
the issue is not always divided.
"I don't see comp time going to fact finding in many other collective
bargaining agreement processes across the state," Dostanko said.
"Marysville city management and council has shown a great deal of
insight and wisdom in totally understanding the issue of compensatory time."
He said that although comp time looks good at first glance, there are
ultimately hidden costs and downfalls. Many hours can be earned at
today's pay rate, yet be bought out years later at the future rate. If
all workers save or bank hours, an unfunded tab is run up which the city
can't fiscally plan for. There is also an issue of employers having to
pull in employee "B" to fill employee "A"s shoes.
According to city administrator Kathy House the city and union
negotiators worked on some 30 points of contention over the process of
finalizing the agreement. That list was whittled down to three points.
Other union contract changes for city police workers is that base raises
were issued for the next three years. This coming year department
employees will receive a 1.75 percent raise. In 2006 there will be a 2
percent raise and in 2007 there will be a 3 percent raise.
The city and the local union agreed to make some adjustments in lower
ranking officers' wages to fix a problem created when the previous city
administration froze lower employee ranks in the 2001-2003 contract,
while at the same time giving higher-ranking levels generous raises.
"This made our overall range out of whack with comparable cities'
starting wages and also created a potential recruitment problem,"
Dostanko said. "We also adjusted the high step for sergeants due to
prevailing external comparables as well."
He said the city also agreed to increase pension pick-up levels to those
employees set by the previous administration with both the fire
department and the rest of the city's non-union members.
Nicol said the union contract also gives police employees the ability to
earn time and a half if they work on a holiday, which was not granted
before. There will continue to be no mandatory physical fitness rule in
affect, which is consistent with the state policy.
Dostanko added that contract negotiations were a positive experience.
"I can tell you overall," he said, "the process worked very well. Both
sides listened to each other, the (Collective Bargaining Agreement) is
as good as it can be for both sides, and the entire management/labor
relationship is as good as I've seen it in my three years here."
Superintendent's load lightened
Kaffenbarger will no longer have to serve double duty at Triad
By CORINNE BIX
Dan Kaffenbarger can breathe a little easier knowing he won't be doing
another year of double duty as Triad district superintendent and high school principal.
On Monday evening, the school board approved a two-year contract for
Kyle Huffman as high school principal beginning this fall.
Given two failed levies in 2004 and the need for severe budget cuts, the
district did not hire a high school principal to take over for
Kaffenbarger, who took over as superintendent this past summer and also
serves as high school principal.
Kaffenbarger welcomes having only one job.
The district interviewed two internal candidates for the principal
position. Kaffenbarger presented the board with several options on how
to go about filling the position - opening up the hiring to the best
candidate available or hiring from within to find the best candidate
that the district could afford.
"It's not going to cost the district a lot more because we aren't adding
a position," Kaffenbarger said. In large part, Huffman's salary will be
made up of his current teaching salary plus two district stipends that
will not be paid out next year.
Kaffenbarger is currently receiving a stipend for his role as high
school principal and the full-time district technology coordinator is
receiving a part-time teaching stipend. Huffman's teaching position will
not be filled and other teachers will absorb his classes.
"This will increase class sizes but given the budget restraints we can't
justify adding another position," Kaffenbarger explained
Huffman, 34, has been a social studies teacher at the high school for
the past seven years. He substituted in the district for two years prior
to being hired full time.
He holds his bachelor's and master's degrees in education from Wright
State University and is a 1989 graduate of Triad. Huffman lives in the
Triad school district.
"Mr. Huffman will be a good high school leader," Kaffenbarger said. "He
knows what effective instruction looks like and he can model that for his staff."
Huffman is excited about his new position.
"I've got pretty big shoes to fill," Huffman said, "I feel Dr.
Kaffenbarger is one of the best things that has happened to this
district since it's been created."
Huffman served a summer internship with Kaffenbarger, helping interview
teachers for foreign language and special education. He also researched
board policy and applied for a grant that would allow a drug-sniffing
dog to be used in the district.
"I know the district and I know the community," Huffman explained, "I
can be a positive go-between the administration and the community."
Huffman said his initiatives as high school principal for next school
year include continuing improvement on the state report cards along with
helping to improve district funding.
In other news, the board approved an accumulated pay plan for district
retirees. Treasurer Jill Smith explained that the severance plan will
allow those 55 and older the option to invest their severance pay
through an annuity plan. The plan is only an option and is not required.
The board recognized four students for various achievements including
Leslie Coleman and Amy Hoover for superior ratings at the OMEA district
solo and ensemble contest, Aaron Rice as the county and district DAR
essay winner and Morgan Ryan as the runner-up in the Champaign County spelling bee.
The board adjourned into executive session to discuss employment and
compensation. No action was taken. The next board meeting will be March 14 at 7 p.m.
In other business, the board:
. Accepted the resignations for retirement of Karen VanHoose and Sharon
Carroll effective May 31.
. Approved the donation of books valued at $155 from Kyle Huffman to
be used in the high school library.
. Approved Terra Byrd-Grupe as substitute teacher for the 2004-2005 school year.
. Approved use of building on certain dates in March, April and May
dates for the Northwest Champaign County fire department EMT classes.
. Approved a petition to the Ohio Department of Education for three
waiver days during the 2005-2006 school year for the purpose of
. Approved a $64,540.80 fund transfer from the general (001) to debit
(002) fund for the OASBO school pool.
. Accepted tax rates and amounts as determined by the budget commission
and authorizing tax authority.
. Approved a certificate of estimated resources for FY06 for the
7/01/05 general fund unencumbered balance of $91,149.
. Accepted a donation of 30 boxes of copy paper from Fox River Paper.
. Accepted a $200 donation from the Child Culture Club of Champaign
County for Triad Elementary.
MHUC physical therapy founder retires
By CINDY BRAKE
Bill Morris brought more than physical therapy to Union County 35 years
ago. He brought genuine concern and devotion to people dealing with all
kinds of physical challenges.
Fresh out of college in 1969, Morris began as a department of one when
the Dana Morey Center introduced physical therapy services to the
community. The Center, which is connected to Memorial Hospital of Union
County, was intended to be an extended care facility for individuals
with chronic disabling diseases and physical therapy was an important
part of the recovery. Morris said his primary objective has always been to help people have a
more functional lifestyle which might mean relearning how to do things.
He also works with families. A lot has changed since Morris came to Union County.
In the early years, Morris said, there was no such thing as the rehab
centers we see today. Instead, patients would stay in the hospital for a
longer time. Total joint replacements were just being researched and
sports medicine was unheard of. Now, Morris said, the department will
occasionally see three to four total joint replacements a week and
specialty areas in physical therapy expanded to include geriatrics,
pediatrics and orthopedics are becoming more and more available.
The number of staff has also grown, from one to 18, Morris said.
Services have also expanded to a second location at the Union County
YMCA building. Even the department's name and services have evolved to
now include occupational therapy and speech and hearing.
And while the profession and department have changed over the years,
Morris' tender touch has remained a constant for patients coming to the
Memorial's department of rehabilitative services.
Morris remembers that his first patient was an older man who had
suffered a stroke. On his last day of work, even though he is now an
administrator, Morris took time out to work with a younger amputee and
an out patient who had suffered a head trauma from an auto accident.
"He never asked anyone to do anything he wouldn't do," said physical
therapist Jim Stoshak, who worked with Morris for 15 years. "He's one in
a million ... always willing to go the extra mile ... he led by example."
Stoshak jokes that Morris is like George Washington because he is the
founder of the physical therapy department at Memorial Hospital.
Another co-worker, physical therapist Mary Halas, described Morris as
caring, devoted and quiet, as well as a great person to have for a boss.
She was the second therapist to join the fledging department in 1971 and
was assistant manager until 2000.
Morris said his interest in medicine "got into his blood" when he was a
youth going on house calls with an uncle who was an allergist.
"I spent a lot of time with him," Morris said.
In spite of his interest in medicine, Morris said he entered The Ohio
State University with plans to study education with a special interest
in science. Comments from a high school classmate about the physical
therapy field changed his plans.
After getting the physical therapy department on its feet, Morris began
studying hospital administration. He was assistant hospital
administrator from 1981 to 1985, while still treating physical therapy
patients. From September 1985 to April 1986 he served as acting
administrator before returning to the assistant administrator position.
He eventually returned to full-time physical therapy work, saying that
it was real gratifying to help someone who has suffered a disabling
injury to be able to sit up straight, improve balance, move from a bed
to a chair or walk independently.
Even after retiring late last year, Morris said, he hopes to return to
some part-time clinical treatment. "I will miss not doing it," he said.
Meanwhile, Morris said he is also looking forward to having more time to
spend with his family and working at his church.
N.L. council honors deceased
By CORINNE BIX
North Lewisburg City Council began its regular March meeting Tuesday
with a moment of silence in memory of Paul Rutan, street superintendent for the village.
Rutan, 43, suffered a fatal heart attack on Feb. 14. A 12-year employee
of North Lewisburg, he will be greatly missed, said Barry First, village
administrator. Mayor Dick Willis read a proclamation in Rutan's honor.
"We . give our thanks and appreciation to Paul E. Rutan and his family
for his unselfish dedication to our communities' well being, quality of
life, safety and protection," Willis read, "He shall tower in our hearts
and minds as a monument to the spirit of a public servant."
Rick Carfagna of Time Warner Cable presented a new cable agreement. The
village's current agreement expires in May. Carfagna also answered
questions. Council members want more time to review the proposal before moving forward.
Gary Silcott, village engineer, reported that the wastewater treatment
plan and the multi-use path projects are both moving forward according
to plan. He also reported that the Jackson's Landing Development had
some details to be resolved in regard to storm water drains.
Council discussed at length the proposed fire station and passed a
motion encouraging the Northeast Champaign County Fire District to
secure a site and construct a new fire station. The fire district
includes North Lewisburg, Rush Township, Wayne Township and Woodstock.
First said it was further agreed that the majority of council was
strongly committed to the space they need within the Municipal Building
currently occupied by the fire district.
Council also discussed honoring a request to sponsor the Champaign
County family/children's safety day. They chose to keep the funds in the
village to be used in the local jurisdiction.
Officer Glenn Kemp gave the Champaign County Sheriff's Office report.
Monthly activity in the village of North Lewisburg for February included
22 traffic citations, nine warnings issued for traffic violations, eight
incident reports, 14 cases of assistance given to citizens, five arrests
made, three civil and criminal papers served, 21 follow-up
investigations completed, one instance of juvenile contacts, one civil
activity, one open door and one auto accident.
In other news, council:
. Passed an ordinance to allow pavement of Audas St./St. Rt. 559.
. Adopted the final appropriations for 2005.
. Set a meeting for next week to discuss the employment of a street superintendent.
The next council meeting will be April 5 at 7:30 p.m. and the city
street committee will meet later this month to discuss upcoming street
Richwood to generate stormwater master
By CHAD WILLIAMSON
A recent flooding problem at the Richwood Cardinal brought together
village and county officials in an effort to determine a cause.
Ed Bischoff of Bischoff and Associates, the engineering firm which
handles village needs, updated council Monday on a recent meeting he had
with Union County Engineer Steve Stolte and other officials.
Apparently much discussion centered on the number and size of storm
water tiles that service the east side of the village. That discussion
led to the final realization that nobody actually knows what type of
lines service the village.
That led Stolte to suggest the village prepare a storm drainage master
plan. The first step of developing such a plan would involve finding out
exactly what is under the ground in the village. Bischoff said no
records can be found detailing the stormwater system in Richwood.
"Everything we know right now we want to commit to paper instead of
memory," village administrator Jim Thompson said.
Bischoff said the process of mapping the village lines is not an easy
one. He said village crews will need to set up a plan to work in the
mapping while still completing other routine duties. Bischoff said the
mapping phase, which will also include marking known breakdowns or
"blowouts" in the system, will be a time consuming job.
"We've go to find out what we've got and how best to use it," Bischoff said.
Once lines are mapped the village can come up with a plan to make
improvements that will move rain water away from the village in a more
Council also spent a great deal of time Monday discussing the hourly
wage of the village police dispatcher. Currently the dispatcher is
receiving $8.07 per hour.
A problem was brought to village council earlier this month regarding
the fact that the village pay ordinance does not have a line that
denotes the pay for a part-time dispatcher. Because of budget
constraints village police chief Rick Asher cut the hours of the
full-time dispatcher position back to 32 hours per week, making it a part-time position.
Problems surfaced when it was found that the dispatcher was making more
than $8 per hour while the salary ordinance reads that a full-time
dispatcher would make just $7.55 an hour. With that in mind, council had
trouble deciding where to set the part-time wage.
Some felt the salary ordinance should be followed. Some felt the wage
should stay the same. Asher suggested raising the hourly rate to $8.60.
It was agreed that a part-time dispatcher would not receive insurance or
a uniform allowance but the hourly rate continued to draw debate, as one
proposal was voted down.
Council member Arlene Blue moved to set the salary at $7.55 an hour, the
same as a full-time dispatcher would make. That proposal was voted down
4-2 with Peg Wiley, Wade McCalf, Jim Ford and George Showalter voting no.
Eventually, a motion was made to set the pay rate at $8 per hour. The
issue passed 4-2 with Wiley and McCalf voting no.
In other business, the council:
. Witnessed a presentation from John Hoskins, commander of VFW Post 670,
to village patrolman Ryan Flowers naming him police officer of the year.
. Heard a complaint about dirt, trash and garbage trucks disturbing a
resident in the area of an alley running between Ottawa and Blagrove streets.
. Learned that Thompson is dealing with several nuisance properties in the village.
. Learned that Thompson is looking into purchasing a new mowing unit for
a village tractor. The three-deck mower would cost $10,500.
. Held an executive session to discuss personnel.
Tax change will hammer schools
- Marysville could lose $11 million per year by 2011
By JUDY BOEHLER
The Marysville Board of Education heard from superintendent Larry
Zimmerman at Monday's regular meeting that he held a lengthy discussion
with State Rep. Tony Core about decreases in school funding from the state level.
Of special concern, said Zimmerman, is the phasing out of the tangible
personal property tax, which has in the past been levied on industrial
and commercial equipment, machinery and other property. That money has
historically gone to the schools.
"This is devastating," Zimmerman said, explaining that beginning in
2007, the tax will begin decreasing and by the year 2011, will be
non-existent. He said the school district receives $11 million per year
from that tax, about one-third of its income. He said it would take a
14-mill levy to replace the tax revenues.
Another loss will come when the cost of doing business factor, which is
part of the formula for figuring the amount of money the state gives a
district for each student, is taken away from wealthier districts like
Marysville. That money, amounting to $1.2 million in the Marysville
district, will be shifted to poorer districts as of July 1. That loss is
equivalent to 2 mills, Zimmerman said.
Zimmerman said he also talked with Ohio Hi-Point Career Center
administrators about the effect the Tax Incentive Financing (TIF)
arrangement will have on the money which was voted to the JVS by voters
in the Marysville school district. The TIF allows the district and the
city of Marysville to receive all real estate taxes from new
construction, including that which would have gone to the JVS, library,
health department and other entities.
Zimmerman said taxes from the Marysville Exempted Village School
District to Hi-Point amount to 2 mills or $1.5 million and the district
sends 31 students there. When he became superintendent in 1996, the levy
brought in $700,000 and Marysville sent 36 students to Hi-Point.
"Marysville subsidizes the JVS," he said, adding that he thinks Hi-Point
administrators now understand why the TIF agreement is necessary to the
Marysville school district.
In other matters, the board:
. Presented the Employee of the Month Award to Lori Koontz, middle school special education aide.
. Heard a presentation from J.O.G. students Matt Newhart and Heather
Matson on their trip to the annual J.O.G. conference in Washington, D.C.
. Approved an overnight trip to Columbus for the Mock Trial team March 11-12.
In personnel matters, the board:
. Approved the resignations of teachers Barbara Rea and Kelly
Gallmeyer; and the retirement resignations of teachers Janet Stackhouse and Roger Wade.
. Approved the employment of Paul McCartney, 48 days, Patricia Biehl,
18 days, and Jeffrey Cody, 30 days, as certified staff support on curriculum work.
. Approved the employment of Meredith Mundell as school psychologist
effective Aug. 1.
. Approved as substitute teachers Jessica Anderson, Eric Rausch, Jackie
Underwood, Elizabeth Jutte, Luke Streng, John Koke and Mary Ellen
Waitkus; and as home instructors Christian Barnett and Hollie DeWitt.
. Accepted the resignations of Ken Parrish and Craig Haese as middle
school baseball coaches.
. Approved supplemental contracts for Joe Spaulding, Adam McCampbell
and Sonny Green as middle school baseball coaches for the 2004-05 school
year; and Leslie Boey, high school head volleyball coach for the 2005-06
school year. The next meeting will be held March 21 instead of March 28.