Subscribe Now

Local Archived News November 2006

 

11/30/06

     Marysville, Jerome officials  prepare for future growth

     Scotts smoking ban to get first test

11/29/06

     Grand jury returns murder indictment

     Area Christmas festivities planned for this weekend

11/28/06

     Move would cover all district owned property

     Sounds of the season

11/27/06

     Pryce re-elected but recount required

11/25/06

     Bond set at $1 million for suspect in shooting death

11/24/06

     Man killed in holiday shooting

     U-CO Industries to purchase new facility

11/22/06

     Pryce widens lead

     Who's to blame for South Park flooding?

     Area officials crack down on counterfeit purses

     Case of  meningitis reported

11/21/06

     Triad athletes will face higher requirements to stay eligible

     NU changes focus of middle school program

     Fairbanks board learns of education system in the U.K.

     Jerome Trustees address concerns from the public

     Community Thanksgiving meal ready to serve 1,200

11/17/06

     Two fires, two lives lost

     Water rate hike tabled

     Ohio State pride growing at Scotts offices

11/16/06

     Smoked out

     Survey gauges community opinions on smoking

11/15/06

     N. Lewisburg to sell municipal building

     Fatal fire in Chillicothe has local connection

11/14/06

     Village moves ahead with rate increase

     Unionville Center mayor acknowledges levy support

11/13/06

     Honoring area veterans

11/10/06

     Motorcycle accident claims man's life

     Local ODOT outposts prepared for winter weather

11/9/06

     Army Corps. of Engineers signs off on sewer plant project

11/8/06

     Jonathan Alder levy passes

     Sheriff disappointed in failure of 911, public safety officer issues

11/7/06

     Local polling places report no problems

     Jerome Township plans to hire consultan

     Community Care Train gears up for 20th year

11/6/06

     Trip to India shaped pastor's life

     Man found dead after crash

11/4/06

     JA will make fourth try at passing levy

     Two townships seeking money for public safety officers

     Honda and Nationwide report record gifts on same day

11/3/06

     City called one of Ohio's best

     Voters to decide fate of 9-1-1 levy

     Schools agree to amend TIF structure

 11/2/06

      Many local issues will face voters Nov. 7

 11/1/06

      Remembrance program offered


Marysville, Jerome officials  prepare for future growth
By CINDY BRAKE
Members of the Jerome Township Trustees and Marysville City Council met
in a special session Wednesday to discuss future development along
Industrial Parkway from the city limits to Route 42.
"This is the first brass tacks issue ... it will need some hammering
out," said Marysville councilman Dave Burke.
A land use subcommittee with members from both jurisdictions has met
previously. This week's meeting of the full council and board was to
consider the committee's recommendation.
The recommendation was to hire a consultant to work with the newly hired
city planner and township zoning officer, as well as the subcommittee.
Subcommittee members include Jerome Township trustee Andrew Thomas, city
council members Dan Fogt and Dave Burke and mayor Tom Kruse.
The subcommittee is working to create a "defensible" draft document by
the first of the year.
"I'm ready to see a plan," said council president John Gore.
In forming their own accord, the two governmental bodies acknowledged
that eventually more people should be included in the discussion, such
as the county engineer for advice on traffic patterns and Millcreek
Township which is sandwiched between Marysville and Jerome Township.
"Less is more," said trustee Ron Rhodes, adding that there will be a
time for others to join the discussion.
Several times during the hour-long meeting the discussion wandered
toward more specific details, however Gore kept the group on the agenda
topics which were to discuss the subcommittee's recommendation and
implementation plans.
Township officer Kathleen Crowley opened the meeting by explaining that
a proposed agreement would specify what jurisdiction would provide
water, fire and emergency services, as well as when or if zoning would
occur. The agreement could also include a zoning pattern. She suggested
that the plan could mirror what the city of Columbus did with the
Richenbacher area.
"There has be to harmonious growth," said township officer Kathleen Crowley.
Kruse said he would like to see zoning as a part of the agreement.
Noting that a lot of the land in the area is owned by a few individuals,
Jerome Township trustee Robert Merkle said he wants to create a plan
for the highest and best use of the land.
On hand for Wednesday's meeting were Kruse, Merkle, Rhodes, Fogt, Burke,
Gore, Crowley, John Marshall, Thomas, Ed Pleasant and Leah Sellers.

Scotts smoking ban to get first test
From staff and wire reports:
BOSTON (AP) - A man has sued his former employer, saying it violated his
privacy and civil rights when it fired him because he smokes cigarettes.
Scott Rodrigues, 30, says he was fired from a lawn-care job he had for
several weeks at The Scotts Co., headquartered in Marysville, after a
drug test came up positive for nicotine. He said he wasn't told he would
be tested for the substance and was told the company would help him
quit. According to Scotts officials Rodrigues worked for one of the
approximately 70 company operated lawn services across the United States.
Rodrigues' lawsuit, filed in Suffolk Superior Court, claims the company
violated his rights under a state privacy law barring unreasonable,
substantial or serious interference of privacy, and under other state
law. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages and lawyer's fees.
"In more general terms, this case challenges the right of an employer to
control employees' personal lives and activities by prohibiting legal
private conduct the employer finds to be dangerous, distasteful or
disagreeable," the lawsuit said.
The Scotts Co., a subsidiary of Scotts-Miracle Gro Co. of Marysville,
Ohio, instituted a policy early this year forbidding smoking to promote
healthful lifestyles and hold down insurance costs. In the 20 states
that allow such policies - including Massachusetts - the company refuses
to hire smokers and tests all new employees for nicotine, said Jim King,
Scotts' vice president for corporate communications and investor relations.
King refused to comment specifically on Rodrigues' case because he said
the company's lawyers hadn't reviewed it, but said all new employees are
told they must be tobacco-free and are told they will be tested for nicotine.
"It's on our Web site. It's on our terms of employment when they are
hired," King said. "We make it very clear to people what the expectation
is related to tobacco use."
But Rodrigues said that he never knew he would be tested for nicotine
and that he chewed Nicorette gum on his way to the drug test. His
Massachusetts employers also knew he smoked because he had worked for
the company previously, he said.
Rodrigues said he never smoked during work or while on break.
"I didn't think you couldn't smoke at home," he said.
Rodrigues' lawyer, Harvey Schwartz, said companies can require drug
tests if they believe their employees are using the substances at work
or if drug use would seriously interfere with the job. Neither is true
in this case to justify a test for nicotine, he said.

Grand jury returns murder indictment

From J-T staff reports:
The Marysville man who allegedly shot and killed his neighbor on
Thanksgiving night has been officially indicted.
This morning the Union County Common Pleas Court released the indictment
against Robert Timothy Conley, 46, who is being held at the Tri-County
Regional Jail in Mechanicsburg on $1 million bond. No court date has
been set at this time.
At 10:59 p.m. on Thursday, police responded to 220 Greenwood Blvd.,
building No. 1, for a reported shooting. Victim Charles E. Frazell, 53,
of 220 Greenwood Blvd. Apt. 1A was found with a gunshot wound to his
chest. He was pronounced dead soon after he was found.
The indictment states that Conley faces one felony count of aggravated
murder, alleging that he "purposely, and with prior calculation and
design, caused the death of another." A specification to the charge
states that Conley used a firearm to commit the crime.
Conley also faces a second charge of felony murder for purposely causing
the death of another, also with a gun specification. The dual indictment
allows a jury to decide which charge, if either, fits the crime.
According to court files, a conviction for aggravated murder carries up
to a sentence of life in prison. He would be eligible for parole after
serving 20 years and paying $25,000 in fines. The murder charge could
result in an indefinite term of 15 years to life in prison, with a fine of $15,000.
Files also show that the gun specifications could add three more years
to the sentences, to be served before or after Conley's overall jail time.
Because the crimes allegedly committed are considered "special
felonies," court files state that the offenses are not subject to
post-release control. If he is released from prison after serving time,
he will also be placed on parole.
Details on why Conley allegedly shot and killed Frazell have been vague,
according to police reports.
At his arraignment at the Marysville Municipal Court Friday morning,
Conley said he had an ongoing dispute with Frazell. He told Marysville
Municipal Judge Michael Grigsby that Frazell had made fun of his beard
and that his family feared for their lives.

Area Christmas festivities planned for this weekend
By CINDY BRAKE
The Christmas season kicks off officially throughout Union County this
weekend with several festive events.
In Marysville, the 2006 Elks Christmas Parade is Sunday.
Parade coordinator Dean Cook said the parade has a rich tradition which
benefits the community and has been held without fail - whatever the
weather - since its inception 39 years ago.
Year after year, Cook said he is amazed by the community support.
"Everybody's involved," Cook said.
Last year's parade included more than 200 entries and Cook said he has
no reason to expect less this year. He adds that is very important for
participants to call his office prior to Sunday. The number is 644-5015.
Bands from Marysville and Fairbanks schools are scheduled this year, as
well as fire trucks, dancers and several cub scout packs. Santa will
bring up the end of the parade along with mail carriers who will be
collecting letters to Santa from children along the parade route.
Parade participants should meet at the stadium parking lot behind the
Marysville Middle School at 1 p.m. The parade begins at 2 p.m.
The route will travel along Route 31 to Elwood Avenue, Main Street,
Seventh Street, Court Street and end at the county annex parking lot.
In Richwood, the Christmas parade begins at 4 p.m. Saturday. Line up is
at the high school beginning at 3:30 p.m. The route is south on Franklin
Street from the high school to the police station, then right on Bomford
and right on Fulton and ending at the park. The lighting of the park
Christmas lights follows the parade.
Santa's House will be open Saturdays, Dec. 2, 9, 16 and 23 from 11 a.m.
to 1 p.m. and Thursday, Dec. 7 from 4 to 8 p.m.
In Plain City, Christmas Under the Clock begins at 5:30 p.m. with a tree
lighting ceremony, caroling by the Lighthouse Mennonite Fellowship and
Girl Scouts, a blessing and speech, as well as music by members of the
Jonathan Alder High School Band.
Local guitarist Rod Brown will provide music and Santa will be at
Yoder's Tru-Value Hardware. Pictures will be available.
Horse-drawn carriage rides, as well as rides on an antique tractor and
wagon will be available from Lovejoy Plaza to the hardware store.
Eighteen businesses along Main and Chillicothe streets will host open
houses. Guests will be able to enter a contest to win a television, gift
cards and gift baskets.
 The festivities continue through 8:30 p.m. and are being planned by the
Uptown Plain City Organization and village officials.

Move would cover all district owned property

By KARLYN BYERS
Marysville Schools administrators will look into implementing a
district-wide tobacco ban after receiving encouragement from board
members during the regularly scheduled board meeting Monday.
A discussion occurred toward the end of the meeting at Marysville Middle
School when board members asked superintendent Larry Zimmerman about
enforcement of a statewide smoking ban authorized in the Nov. 7 general election.
The law goes into effect Dec. 7. Zimmerman said his biggest concern was
at points of egress to district buildings and facilities, including
concession stands and the press box at football games.
According to the Ohio Department of Health Web site www.odh.ohio.gov,
the new law prohibits smoking "immediately adjacent to locations of
ingress or egress to the public place or place of employment." It
further states, "A proprietor of a public place or place of employment
shall ensure that tobacco smoke does not enter any area in which smoking
is prohibited under this chapter through entrances, windows, ventilation
systems or other means."
Smokers cannot congregate near public entrances and near locations where
air intake may suck tobacco smoke into the system and distribute it
throughout an area or building.
"Those will be areas that will be a challenge for us, but we're up to
the challenge," Zimmerman told the board.
Board vice president Bill Hayes and president Roy Fraker, both Honda of
America employees, said Honda has decided to implement a smoke-free campus.
"Honda is going to go totally tobacco free," Hayes said, adding
enforcement would begin "once you cross the property line" onto Honda land.
"I like the idea of a tobacco ban," said board member Tom Brower.
"I don't know why we (haven't gone) smoke free," board member Jeff Mabee said.
The board also heard a report on site work at the new middle
school/intermediate school on Route 4.
Construction manager Emily Wieringa of Thomas & Marker said a few odds
and ends need to be completed. And, she added, the site work has cost
less than anticipated.
Following a suggestion from county officials, the retention pond was
modified to more effectively collect silt deposits. Although the process
has changed the original shape somewhat, Wieringa said, "You won't be
able to tell much difference in the size of the pond."
In other business, the board:
.Recognized Terri Sproull as its October Employee of the Month. Sproull
is a special education aide at Marysville Middle School and has created
an electronic data collection system for the classroom that is being
used in multiple buildings around the district. She works on projects in
the evenings and on weekends to help prepare students' curriculums and
is a compassionate and caring person, according to the resolution
announcing her selection.
.Heard members of the MMS Mini Swingers perform two tunes. Under the
direction of Michael Robertson, the four male and seven female youths
performed a compilation of James Taylor songs and selections from the
musical "Pippin." The entire group will perform four concerts this
school year, including one Dec. 18. The Mini Swingers also will complete
four trips to destinations in Ohio and Indiana.
.Awarded supplemental contracts to Hollie Moots, Mill Valley Destination
Imagination; Krista Berry-Fairchild, Edgewood D.I.; Brenda Reedy, East
D.I.; Lori Clark, high school head girls track; James Cooper, high
school head boys track; Paul Palivoda (two-thirds) and Jason Heard
(one-third), middle school wrestling; Kevin Franke, middle school
wrestling; and John Tierney, high school assistant wrestling (paid by boosters).
.Granted unpaid leaves of absence to Laurie Levy, anticipated effective
dates of May 17 through June 1, and Cindy Teske, anticipated effective
dates of May 15 through June 1.
.Employed Jonathan Gibson as custodian.
.Employed Shaun Arthur, Tia Benning, Katie Esthus, David Wilson, John
Patton, Daniel Hoover and Shelley Williams as certified staff; and John
Howard, Frank Miller, James Moore, Cherie Pugh, Loretta Pullins, Kerry
Seyffer-Sprague and Linda Thompson as classified class.
.Accepted, with appreciation, a donation from the wrestling boosters to
be used to cover the cost of an additional high school assistant
wrestling coach; the donation of $3,000 from National City Bank to be
used for the Northwood Elementary School book room; and $400 from
Ruscilli Construction Co., Inc., $500 from Peck, Shaffer & Williams LLP,
$250 from Thomas & Marker Constructon Co., and $400 from
Steed/Hammond/Paul Co. to the high school show choir. Also accepted the
donation of $200 from the United Methodist Women and the donation of
tennis shoes from High Point Teachers Academy and Judy Fletcher for
pupils at East Elementary; a $200 donation from the United Methodist
Women at First United Methodist Church and donation of audio cords for
the sound system from Raymond PTO at Raymond Elementary; and the
donation of $100 to the high school English department for use in
purchasing instructional materials.
.Appointed Lisa Wellman to a seven-year term on the Marysville Public
Library Board of Trustees. All library board members are appointed by a
public school board of education as prescribed by the Ohio Revised Code.
.Recognized Ed Starling, in his 40th year of coaching high school
baseball and 26 as a head coach, for being inducted into the Central
District Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame and Marc Kirsch, high
school boys soccer coach, for receiving the National Intercollegiate
Soccer Officials Association Coach Merit Award.
.Entered into an "Agreement for Use of School Facilities" with the
International Basketball League for use of the high school and adjacent
parking area and certain facilities for athletic contests.
.Recognized J.R. Rausch and Gloyd Ayers, high school boys basketball,
and Shannon Daniels, high school girls basketball, as volunteers.
.Approved James Arms, Sheri Arms, Nicole Baxter, Candy Brake, Melissa
Brown, Christy Butler, Sandra DeJarnette, Marci Earnest, Carrie Ellis,
Mary Fisher, Theresa Fluharty, Lynnette Focht, Linda Forry, Jaimie
Geyer, Linda Harvey, Shelly Heuser, Kimberly Hiser, Teresa Johnson,
Bethany Keever, Tim Keever, Chris Knisley, Heather Litz, Tiffany
Marshall, Danetia Mayes, Kim Morse, Peggy Mullet, Elizabeth Mullins,
Jennifer Bartlett, Tamara Brummett, Jona Nace, Angela Nelson, Jeannie
Payne, Melissa Pitzer, Tamara Plue, Nadine Poulin, Valerie Ramey, Garnet
Rausch, Jennifer Read, Theresa Roshon, Audrey Rossi, Julie Russell,
Stacy Schalip, Carolyn Schultz, Michelle Scobee, Shanda Seiltz, Brian
Sgambellone, Tammy Snodgrass, Christina Snouffer, Amy Stage, Mani Syar,
Cindi Urban, Nancy Walters, Carrie Weigand, Bradly White, Mary Williams,
Sandra Cruise, Rudy Dowdy, Penny Elliott, Gary Fuller, Valerie Fuller,
Julie Fulwider, Arthur Porter and Carol Jean Porter as Navin volunteers.
.Approved Cheri Bell, Lorie Mathys, Loretta Williams, Susan Ezell, Jo Jo
Sommers, Roger Elliott, Kelly Miller, Valerie Klingman, Bridgett Rhodes,
Becky Blankenship, Debbie Thomas, Drudy Yoakam, Lisa Maybery, Erich and
Kim Hees, Tom and Kristi Young, Robin and Brien Dickson, LuAnn Meaker,
Jolene Headings, Lisa Brown, Teri Stinson, Pam Hitchkock, Libby Rausch,
Mani Syar, Judi Luginbill, Terri Fravel, Kimber Saunders, Carol Reed,
Marty and Debby Logsdon, Wendy Groh, Kaye Howard, Julie Rumler, Lori
Butler and Teri Jostes as Marysville Middle School volunteers.
.Agreed to pay Brianne Boyd and Kim Nelson as non-paid co-advisors of
the MMS Ski Club.
.Adopted "Computer Aided Drawing/Design (CAD)," "Wood Working" and
"Discovering Your Career" as textbooks.
.Approved the purchase of new controls from Trane and installed them on
the high school HVAC system at a cost of $236,000.
.Approved two overnight trips for the high school wrestling team - the
first to Brecksville-Broadview Heights High School on Dec. 27, and a
second trip to Lakota West High School on Jan. 12.
.Approved the sale of Avon products to raise money for the eighth-grade field trip.
.Approved the Little Tony's 20 percent Kickback program on Dec. 11, 12 and 13.
.Approved district bus stops for the 2006-2007 school year as determined
by the transportation department.
.Approved Creekview Intermediate School as a "beta-school" for
children's author Alan St. Jean's third book "Aidan of Oren-Valley of the Dragons."
.Approved Ohio State University-Marion student teachers at Creekview.
.Approved the creation and sale of the holiday choir and band concert DVDs.

Sounds of the season
Courthouse clock tower silent no more

By CINDY BRAKE
Once again music is in the air over Marysville.
More than 21 different Christmas songs rang out from the long-silent
Union County Courthouse tower when a new sound system was unveiled
Monday from 5 to 10 p.m.
"Carol of the Bells," "Frosty the Snowman," "Jingle Bells," "The Little
Drummer Boy" and "White Christmas" were played on a $10,000 sound and
clock system that was recently installed.
Union County Facilities Manager Randy Riffle said one song is scheduled
to be played on the quarter hour during the holiday season from 9 a.m.
to 9 p.m., as well as the Westminster Chimes every 15 minutes.
Riffle said the new Ipod-size control unit in a box the size of a DVD
player replaces a broken and out-dated music unit that was similar in
size to a three-drawer lateral file. Amplifiers were also replaced.
Besides providing music for all seasons, the new unit will keep the
courthouse clock synchronized, Riffle said.
"It's amazing," Riffle said about the new system purchased from Verdin
Chamber Carillon of Cincinnati. Verdin supplied the bicentennial bell
setting in the Union County Office Building on Sixth Street.
Riffle said the new system replaces a tape system that broke more than
four or five years ago.
The tape system was purchased in 1976 by the Union County Bicentennial
Committee as a lasting commemoration locally of the country's 200th
birthday celebration, according to an article in the Marysville
Journal-Tribune. It, like the current system, was installed in the
courthouse attic.
That system cost $5,200 plus shipping charges and included a standard
module of patriotic songs. Riffle said the county has three or four
dozen other songs that had been given in memory of citizens.
The courthouse was originally equipped with a bell that still hangs in the tower.
The 125-year-old bell was cast especially for the courthouse in 1881 by
Henry McShane & Co. of Baltimore, Md., states a 1994 article. The bell
weighted 2,500 pounds and had a 1,000-pound frame. "It was rung at the
sitting of the court to proclaim justice towards all sections of the
county," states a 1994 article. In addition to calling the court into
session, the bell was rung to celebrate the end of wars, ranging from
the Spanish American War to World War II. It was also used to mourn the
loss of the country's presidents and other national or local heroes.
The ringing of the courthouse bell before trial cases and grand jury
convening ended in the 1930s when the rope broke and a gong was
installed in the court room instead.
A new rope reportedly was installed in 1964 and the tradition was once
again renewed by then Common Pleas Judge Gwynn Sanders.
The old bell was last rung in 1994 during the courthouse rededication.
Riffle said the bell is still functional but not very loud.

Pryce re-elected but recount required

From AP and staff reports:
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Republican Rep. Deborah Pryce won re-election
Monday to the U.S. House by a margin so slim that a recount will be required.
Pryce led Democratic challenger Mary Jo Kilroy by 1,055 votes in
unofficial results after counties in central Ohio's 15th District
counted absentee and provisional ballots weeks after Election Day.
Pryce won Union County by a final count of 10,966 to 5,620.
Pryce actually lost Franklin County, the district's most populous that
announced its totals Monday. But votes she picked up in two other
counties that announced results last week, Madison and Union, helped her
keep her lead.
Kilroy, a Franklin County commissioner, had thought the outstanding
ballots in the county, including many from Ohio State University
students in Columbus, could sway the election in her favor.
The race was one of a few that had remained unresolved across the
country since Election Day, when the Democrats took control of Congress.
Pryce joined fellow GOP incumbent Rep. Jean Schmidt in winning a
post-election victory in Ohio, delivering good news to a troubled state
party that lost control of the governorship, long-held congressional
seats in the state and three other key statewide offices.
Pryce ended up with 50.2 percent of the votes, compared with 49.8
percent for Kilroy in the unofficial totals.
An automatic recount is triggered if the difference between the two
candidates is less than one-half of one percent.
Pryce spokesman George Rasley was confident of the ultimate election
result despite the recount.
"We don't have any concerns at all that this is going to change
significantly," he said.
Don McTigue, lawyer for Kilroy, said the final numbers confirmed his own
estimates of the margin of votes. "I was predicting that it would be
just around 1,000 votes," McTigue said. "I was hoping for just
psychological reasons to be just under 1,000, but this is still under
the free recount category so I'm very happy about that."
The Secretary of State's Office is awaiting the official numbers from
the counties before taking the next step, spokesman James Lee said.
Pryce's narrow margin of victory was a change from past elections when
she easily won her seat. She had 60 percent of the vote in 2004 when she
beat challenger Mark Brown for the second time in two elections.
The Franklin County elections board, the last board to finish its
counting of absentee and provisional ballots in the 15th District race,
reviewed just under 21,000 provisional ballots, throwing out about 2,600
of them. Most of the uncounted provisionals were cast by people who
weren't registered to vote or voted in the wrong precinct, elections
director Matt Damschroder said.
Pryce, until recently the No. 4 Republican in Congress, previous
accepted victory in the race - one of the season's nastiest - but Kilroy
insisted that uncounted provisional and absentee ballots would lean Democratic.
A seven-term incumbent, Pryce had seen her lead in the campaign turn
sharply amid the scandal over U.S. Rep. Mark Foley and GOP leaders'
handling of lurid messages he had been sending for years to male
congressional pages.
Pryce had publicly named Foley as one of her best friends in Washington,
and served on the leadership team under fire over the matter in the
weeks leading up to the election.
Kilroy, active for decades in local politics, campaigned on the
Democrats' winning strategy around the country: the need for change. She
sought to link Pryce to the Bush administration's unpopular war in Iraq,
the president's failed social-security privatization plan, and the
mounting national debt.
Pryce countered by labeling Kilroy an extremist and a liberal, and
emphasized important but unglamourous accomplishments for the district
in her TV ads, like flood walls and airports. She suggested that
Kilroy's attacks were less than truthful with her "Truth Matters" ad slogan.

Bond set at $1 million for suspect in shooting death

By RYAN HORNS
A $1 million bond was set against a Marysville man who allegedly shot
and killed his neighbor on Thanksgiving.
Just after 11 a.m. Friday suspect Robert T. Conley, 46, of 220 Greenwood
Blvd. Apt. 1D stood before Marysville Municipal Court Judge Michael
Grigsby to be arraigned on one count of  murder. He wore prison issued
orange pants and shirt, with leg and hand chains.
Grigsby said Conley could face anywhere from 15 years to life in prison
for the Thursday night murder at an apartment complex off of Greenwood
Boulevard. He remains incarcerated at the Tri-County Regional Jail in
Mechanicsburg. Conley's preliminary court hearing is scheduled for Nov.
30 at 8 a.m. at the Marysville Municipal Court.
According to reports, Conley shot and killed victim Charles E. Frazell,
53, of 220 Greenwood Blvd. Apt. 1A with one bullet from a small caliber
handgun, after an argument in front of their apartment building. The
exact reason for the argument is still under investigation.
As part of the arraignment, Grigsby asked Conley if he had anything to
say to him, in regards to the murder.
"Only that I felt me and my family's lives were in danger from this
man," Conley said about Frazell.
Conley said that he had previously filed police reports against Frazell,
indicating that they had problems getting along in the past.
"He called me Bin Laden because of my beard," Conley said.
Conley then went on to speak about the FBI and vague incidents that
occurred in the late 1960s, which possibly involved Frazell.
Grigsby then stopped Conley, reminding that anything he said could be
used against him. At that point Conley ended his statement. He currently
does not have a defense attorney.
During the bond hearing, Marysville prosecuting attorney Rick Roger said
he feared Conley might flee the area if he could afford to post bond.
"I don't have any money to bail out with anyway," Conley said.
Marysville Police Detective Doug Ropp was in the courtroom this morning,
also having been on the scene of the murder Thursday night.
He reported that Conley had not been convicted of criminal charges
before the murder. He noted that Conley once called police to report
someone had damaged his flower pots.
Ropp added that he would have to check through Conley's previous reports
to see which ones may have involved arguments with Frazell. Information
from those reports were not available before press time.

Man killed in holiday shooting
Suspect in custody facing murder charge
By RYAN HORNS
A Thanksgiving Day shooting left one man dead and another in custody.
According to Marysville police reports, suspect Robert T. Conley, 46, of
220 Greenwood Blvd. Apt. 1D is presently being held at the Tri-County
Regional Jail in Mechanicsburg, pending arraignment in Marysville
Municipal Court for one count of murder. The court room was to be closed
today for the holiday, but a special session was set for the arraignment at 11 a.m.
Police reports state that at approximately 10:59 p.m. on Thursday,
police officers were called to 220 Greenwood Blvd., building No. 1, for
a reported shooting. Victim Charles E. Frazell, 53, of 220 Greenwood
Blvd. Apt. 1A was found with a gunshot wound in his chest.
"Upon arrival officers located a male victim outside of the building, as
well as the suspect," reports state. "The suspect was immediately
apprehended by the officers on the scene. It was determined that the
suspect shot the victim in the chest with a small caliber handgun after
an argument over presently unknown issues."
Marysville Assistant Police Chief Glenn Nicol reported that Frazell was
transported to Memorial Hospital of Union County by Marysville Fire
Department medics where he was pronounced dead at 11:22 p.m. Marysville
Police continue to investigate the murder, along with the Union County
Coroner and Prosecuting Attorney staff.
Nicol reported that the two men were neighbors and were acquainted,
living across the hall from each other.
At the apartment building this morning, building maintenance manager Dan
Kelly was busy locking up the victim's apartment.
"Marysville doesn't have many of these, do they?" Kelly said,
referring to the murder.
He said he didn't know why Conley would shoot Frazell.
"I have no idea," Kelly said. "I just got a call earlier this morning to
secure the building."
The two men lived alone, he said. Kelly said he understood that Frazell
was possibly unemployed and Conley is retired.
Union County Coroner Dr. David Applegate said Frazell's preliminary
autopsy should be ready by this afternoon. He explained that the bullet
just missed Frazell's heart, going into his body just above it.
"Because it is a small caliber bullet, it bounces around a lot,"
Applegate said. "(The bullet) got lots of things."
The autopsy results will show just where the bullet ricocheted and what
vital organs were damaged once it entered the body, he said.
Applegate said alcohol did not appear to be a factor.
"There is no smell of alcohol," Applegate said, regarding the victim's
body. He said he won't know for sure until toxicology results come back
in a month or so.
He said there were also no signs of a fight before Conley fired at Frazell.
"There was no trauma on the body and there was no evidence of a
struggle," he said.
Because there was no residue from the gunshot on the body, it was
apparent Conley fired his gun about six feet away, according to Applegate.

U-CO Industries to purchase new facility
From J-T staff reports:
U-CO Industries Inc. is purchasing a new building to provide programs
for mentally retarded and developmentally disabled individuals.
U-CO Industries located at 835 E. Fifth St. is the adult program of the
Union County Board of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities,
offering a number of services to eligible adults, including sheltered
employment and an adult day program.
U-CO has occupied the 12,000 square-foot building at 835 E. Fifth Street
since 1974.
The 72,000 square-foot building at 16900 Square Drive is in the
commercial park section of east Marysville.
"The board of directors is anxious that U-CO continue to grow," said
board president, the Rev. Jack Groat. "We have outgrown our present
facility and have opted to ask the Union County Board of MR/DD to allow
us to purchase the larger building. We are proud of the program and
staff that MR/DD provides and want to support them in every way possible
without additional tax to the Union County residents," he said.
Plans call for approximately 32,000 square feet in the new facility to
be utilized for U-CO and other MRDD county programs. The remaining
40,000 feet will be utilized for warehouse rental space and/or other
opportunities as they occur in the future.
Planning started in 2001 for a new facility.
One long-time U-CO employee is looking forward to the new location.
Mamie Murphy, a U-CO employee at the present location for 28 years,
said, "I can't wait to have a real big new place to work. I have been
here a long, long time and it's too crowded here. I'm going to keep
coming to work everyday because I get bored sitting at home all day."
A ribbon cutting is planned for the summer after renovation is
completed, said U-CO Adult Services Director Jesse Roberts.
A joint committee will plan and prepare for the future opportunities
that will be provided to those with disabilities in Union County.
The new facility will include a business incubator for people with
disabilities who wish to start their own business as well as more space
for rehabilitation and skill development to help people with
disabilities live independently and to be successful in employment.  At
present U-CO offers these programs on a limited basis in three separate
facilities with a waiting list. With the new facility, all divisions
will be housed in one building and the waiting list will be eliminated.

Pryce widens lead
Union County provisional votes extend incumbent advantage by 124

By CINDY BRAKE
The congressional race between Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy and Republican
Deborah Pryce widened Tuesday after the Union County Board of Elections
conducted their official count for the Nov. 7 general election.
Kilroy gained 102 additional provisional and absentee votes for
Congressional District 15. Incumbent Pryce gained an additional 226
votes. One write-in vote was cast.
Other counties in District 15 have yet to release their official counts.
Franklin and Madison counties, reportedly, will release their official
count on Monday. The law requires the official count to be certified
within 21 days that the ballots were cast. Tuesday is the final day.
Pryce now leads Kilroy by 3,358 - 101,814 to 98,456.
Franklin County, reportedly, has as many as 19,500 uncounted absentee
and provisional ballots. Madison County reportedly has 275 provisional
votes and 207 absentee ballots that have yet to be counted. The
unofficial count in Franklin County is 87,661 for Kilroy and 82,771 for
Pryce; and in Madison County, 4,921 for Kilroy and 8,077 for Pryce.
Union County's official count is 5,620 for Kilroy and 10,966 for Pryce
and 71 write-ins.
Vote by vote, the four-member Union County Board of Elections reviewed
the law as they considered whether to qualify a few provisional votes.
Some of the situations appeared clear-cut, while others were less
obvious. The majority of the provisional and absentee ballots were
counted without question.
Board members Dave Moots, Jack Foust, Bob Parrott and Max Robinson voted
that three provisional votes be disqualified because the individuals had
not returned within 10 days with identification. Also disqualified were
ballots with signatures that do not match.
Poll worker error played a part in 12 provisional ballots cast in the
wrong precinct. While accepting the votes, Moots said he did not want to
set a precedent, but allow an exception at this time because of the new
voting equipment used countywide during this election.
Parrott did not vote with the majority voted to accept provisional votes
cast by individuals who had also received absentee ballots. The board
referred to the Ohio Revised Code on the matter. Parrott said the
ballots did not meet the exception and that the board was setting a
precedent in accepting one of the ballots.
In other business, the board:
. Learned that special elections are being considered by Jerome Township
in February and Marysville Schools in May.
. Discussed the need to find permanent storage space for voting
equipment.
The board's next meeting is Dec. 12.

Who's to blame for South Park flooding?
Some say city tile needs replaced, others feel cause   is housing
development

By RYAN HORNS
Is increased development at Adena Point causing more flooding at South
Park, or is it just due to heavy October rains?
Residents around South Park, located just off Route 38, have complained
for months that the more Adena Pointe develops, the more water has
filled into their back yards. The land has increasingly become a problem
for flooding because of broken drainage tiles, but the flooding is worse
now then it has ever been. The only change is Adena Pointe.
City Engineer Phil Roush does not agree.
"Adena Pointe is not the problem," he said.
Roush said he had his inspectors walk around South Park and they
determined the clogged drainage tiles lie only in the park, not Adena
Pointe. The city must make the repairs because it lies on its land.
"We're going to replace it all this winter," Roush said. "We're going to
replace the tile all the way through South Park."
Residents Rowland Seymour, Alan Seymour, councilman Dan Fogt and another
unnamed resident disagree that it is the city's problem. They said
flooding wasn't always an issue with South Park because historically it
used to be a cornfield. Drainage tiles broke down at some point, due to
age. Then Adena Pointe came in and began working and it suddenly became
much worse.
"You don't have to be an Einstein to figure it out," Rowland Seymour said.
Roush and councilman Mark Reams said the flooding has more to do with
heavy rains this year. However, the Oct. 26 city council meeting minutes
show that Rowland Seymour said before the Adena Point development began,
South Park was dry about 80 percent of the year. He said at the meeting
that the park had been wet "for about 1 1/2 months and there has been no rain."
The National Weather Service reported this morning that October had the
second highest rainfall on record for the month - based on figures
documented in Columbus. The service also reported that November has had
below normal rainfall.
City Public Service Director Tracie Davies said that within the next few
weeks city crews could begin repairing the tiles.
But for some residents and council members that is not soon enough.
"It's just frustrating," councilman Ed Pleasant said. "I think we need
to put some priority into this."
Tracie said city crews are too busy doing fall leaf cleanup. If they
stopped the residents would certainly complain.
Pleasant said residents around South Park have already been complaining
about flooding.
Davies said they could check with the mayor to see about holding leaf
pickup, but the real problem is having enough workers to do what they
need to do.
In other business, members discussed plans for a traffic study to help
clear up traffic around East Fifth Street.
Roush said he hopes to look into a future second corridor or possibly
adding more lanes to Delaware Avenue. He feels the main issue with
traffic congestion in the east is that neighborhoods such as Greenwood
Colony or London Avenue don't have a direct route to that side of town.
They only have to access Main Street or Delaware Avenue, so they use
those roads and it adds to the congestion. He recommends administration
sit down with council at some point and talk specifics on projects and priorities.
Roush said that last month he proposed bringing in DLZ Engineering to
look into long-term solutions to Marysville's East Side traffic
congestion. He said the situation remains the same because nothing has
moved forward from there.
Fogt brought up the prospect of updating the city's comprehensive plan,
which he said has also been discussed by councilwoman Leah Sellers. He
wondered if the East Side traffic congestion plans could be added to that.
"Any studies we do that impact an area can be included in the
comprehensive plan," Roush said.
Pleasant said they need to look into ideas such as making certain roads
one way that lead to the east side, adding roundabouts and such.
"We have to start looking at some very innovative things," he said.
Pleasant also expressed frustration over studies and the timeliness of
them. They need to find out the cost, look at what is out there and then
go after it.
Roush said TIF revenue is expected to help pay for issues like this, but
it will be a few years before the city can use those funds toward street projects.
Fogt said his concern is to not make the traffic study's scope too small.
Roush said if the scope is too broad the plans may be too expensive to implement.

Area officials crack down on counterfeit purses
By RYAN HORNS
Union County Sheriff's investigators have cracked down on so-called
"purse parties" going on throughout the county.
A Nov. 16 sting in Richwood brought to light how Columbus area suspects
have been organizing parties around the region to sell illegally
copyrighted and counterfeit high-end merchandise resembling the world's
top designs.
Charges ranging from third-degree felony trademark counterfeiting,
first-degree felony racketeering, to third-degree felony money
laundering are now under investigation against a 17-year-old Columbus
female. Her name will not be released because changes have not been
filed at this time.
Union County Prosecutor Dave Phillips said the charges could put the
juvenile in jail for up to 10 years if she is convicted for
racketeering.
He said many women invited to these purse parties have no idea they are
illegal. Most thought the events were akin to Tupperware parties. The
reality is that party organizers can make thousands of dollars a week
from the sales and the money is then split with companies overseas, who
in turn fund further criminal activities.
"Some of them have been misled," Union County Sheriff's Lt. Jamie Patton
said about the women hosting these parties.
Phillips said Patton was in charge of the Union County investigation,
working jointly with Franklin County deputies. The plan was to watch a
home on North Columbia Avenue in Columbus which was suspected of being
the supplier's residence. Another home was being watched on Ottawa
Street in Richwood, where the party was expected to be held.
Around September, Phillips said he began hearing about numerous purse
parties in which counterfeit trademarked items from such high-end
companies like Coach, Louis Vuitton, Gucci and more were sold at private
homes. The purses were falsely represented as slightly damaged goods,
sold at cheaper prices. In fact, the purses were counterfeit replicas,
mostly made in places like China.
Phillips said law enforcement knew that the parties were going on, but
investigators lacked specific evidence until they learned of an event
expected to happen at a home on Ottawa Street in Richwood on Nov. 10. He
said some 40 people were expected to attend. The woman hosting the
party  agreed to cancel the 40-some guests and instead invited a few
sheriff's deputies.
"We have heard of dozens in the past month," Phillips said. "We finally
found a host who cooperated."
That night, sheriff's investigator Jon Kleiber watched a red van load up
with merchandise on North Columbia Avenue in Columbus. Two known female
suspects, including the 17-year-old charges are pending against, were
expected to drive the van into Union County to take merchandise to the
party. The same  van later showed up at the Ottawa Street home and one
of the suspects began unloading 12 bags containing purses, wallets,
sunglasses, watches and jewelry bearing the trademarks of Coach, Gucci,
Dooney and Bourke, Burberry, Louis Vuitton, Kate Spade, Prada, Fendi,
Rollex, Christian Dior, Tiffany, Armani, Chanel and Hugo Boss. A second
female suspect was not in the van as expected. In her place was a
24-year-old man who was driving. No charges are pending against this
man.
At the Richwood home, sheriff's deputies pretended to be customers and
purchased $700 worth of items from the 17-year-old suspect. The suspect
told undercover deputies that she had conducted about 12 purse parties a
month over the last year. The merchandise was provided through a female
events organizer on North Columbia Avenue in Columbus. The woman's
daughter conducted the training for sales.
Phillips said that after deputies confiscated the merchandise at the
Richwood home, a search warrant was conducted at the Columbus home.
Inside the garage and basement were countless amounts of counterfeit
items.
"We discovered the mother load," Phillips said. "They just had hundreds
of purses in their garage and basement."
Nationally, law enforcement are reportedly more concerned about these
purses ending up for sale at discount retailers. Stores such as Wal-Mart
and Sam's Club were forced to remove some items from their shelves in
Columbus after learning some of their merchandise was indeed
counterfeit.
Phillips said he spoke to the distributors of these high-end companies,
who reported that they do not supply slightly damaged goods for sale.
"If there is a flaw, then they just don't sell it," Phillips said.

Case of  meningitis reported
From J-T staff reports:
One case of Aseptic (Viral) Meningitis has been reported to the Union
County Board of Health.
A board spokesman said the local agency received a report Nov. 16 from
Grady Memorial Hospital's lab stating that a 17-year-old female has been
confirmed as having Viral Meningitis. Marysville High School distributed
a letter Nov. 17 to parents from principal Greg Hanson stating that the
female is a student.
"Viral Meningitis is much less severe than Bacterial Meningitis. Most
people sustain no permanent damage from the virus," said Jennifer Thrush
of the Union County Health Department. "It is serious, but rarely
fatal."
To date, Union County has had three unrelated cases of Viral Meningitis
this year. In 2005, there was one confirmed case in Union County and
1,074 in Ohio. In 2004, the county had a mini-outbreak between January
and October with 15 cases reported involving individuals ranging in age
from 7 to 9 years.
Meningitis is an infection of the fluid in the spinal cord and the fluid
that surrounds the brain. Knowing whether meningitis is caused by a
virus or bacterium is important because the severity of illness and
treatment differ," state a fact sheet from the health department.
"Diagnosis is made from a sample of spinal fluid detecting the virus. No
treatment is needed other than bed rest, plenty of fluids and medication
to relieve fever and headache."
Symptoms include fever, head aches, lack of appetite, stomach pain,
nausea, vomiting and stiff neck.
The virus is transferred by respiratory droplets - coughs and sneezing,
Thrush said, and the best defense is hand washing. She also cautioned
individuals against sharing water bottles.
Viral Meningitis is more common among younger children and occurs more
often in early fall.

Triad athletes will face higher requirements to stay eligible

By CORINNE BIX
The Triad school board voted Monday night to accept an athletic policy
change that would gradually raise the required grade point average of
student athletes from 1.67 to 2.0 on a 4.0 scale. The change will be in
place by the 2008-2009 school year.
Currently student athletes must maintain a 1.67 GPA and have five
graduation credits. In March, the board passed a recommendation by the
Triad Athletic Council to raise this year's required GPA from last
year's 1.65. Under the new changes, student athletes will be required to
have a 1.8 GPA for the 2007-2008 school year. The board also passed
additional requirements in regard to lettering in sports and all-state recognition.
Kyle Huffman, high school principal, presented the safe harbor program
policy. The program, reportedly, was implemented to assist students with
study skills, most specifically those students moving from the middle
school to the high school. Up until 2002, all district middle and high
school students were housed in the same school building. Kaffenbarger
said that with the new high school building a need has presented itself
to facilitate students moving from the middle school to the high school curriculum.
In personnel matters, the board approved contracts for two individuals
to fill in for district treasurer Maureen Scott for an unknown period of
time. Superintendent Dan Kaffenbarger said Scott's absences are for
personal and family reasons. Contracts for $35 an hour were extended to
Jill Smith for fiscal services and Stacy Gratz for consulting services.
The contracts are offered on an as-needed basis with a maximum of 10
hours per week plus mileage. Randy Moore, board vice-president, was
approved to serve as secretary-treasurer pro-tem in the event of Scott's
absence at board meetings.
The board voted to allow Carolyn Reid, bus driver, to give five sick
days to Tina Wells, bus driver. Wells has been absent for the purpose of
caring for her husband who has cancer. The district consulted with the
Triad Teachers' Association and the Ohio Association of Public School
Employees in reference to the request. Both unions left the decision up
to the discretion of the school board. Reid is aware that once the days
have been donated to Wells they are no longer available for her use. The
days will also be withdrawn from her employement record.
Kaffenbarger said the district would begin accepting bids for one school
bus beginning later this month. Notices will appear in newspapers
between Nov. 27 and Dec. 4 with bids being opened on Dec. 13.
The board voted to hold the January organizational, budget and regular
meetings on Jan. 11 to comply with state mandates, which require all
boards to hold their first yearly board meeting before Jan. 15. Regular
meetings will resume on the third Monday of each month in February.
In other news, the board:
.Heard a presentation by Dee Dee Smith and Casey Stepp on their high
school project dealing with individual duplicity. Each presentation
included visual representations and written reports
.Approved Tina Wells' family and medical leave without pay to begin once
all sick leave has been exhausted. Leave will continue until further
notice for the purpose of caring for her husband.
.Approved various supplemental grant funded positions.
.Approved various supplemental and classified positions.
.Accepted the resignation of Tara Perry as MS OISM academic team member
effective immediately.
.Approved Charlene Palmer and Patrick Johnson as tutors.
.Approved a transportation agreement with Lorraine and Mark Skinner for
$10 per day retroactive to Aug. 24.
.Approved NEOLA policy updates and revisions
.Approved beverage-marketing agreement between Pepsi-Cola General
Bottlers, Inc. and Triad Local School District.
.Approved contract for services for Tom Diebold for Lexia Phonics and
Assessment training and Marge Haney as curriculum consultant. Services
to be paid from Title IIA grant.
.Approved various uses of facilities requests.
.Approved Pam Marceau as substitute secretary for the 2006-2007 school year.
.Heard report from Annette Rittenhouse, board member, about her
attendance at the three-day Capital Conference sponsored by the Ohio
School Boards Association.
.Learned that the district network server located at the high school
will be replaced within the next six weeks. The new server will allow
for updates and more file storage space.
The board adjourned into executive session to discuss pending legal
action. No action was taken. The next regular board meeting will be on
Dec. 18 at 7 p.m. in the elementary library.

NU changes focus of middle school program
By CHAD WILLIAMSON
At North Union Middle School home economics is being put on the back burner.
In a move that may signal the importance of computers over stoves and
sewing machines, the North Union Board of Education voted 3-1 Monday
night to change the home economics-style family life science class into
a career/business technology course. Board president Jon Hall was absent
from the meeting.
A family life science (FLS)-type class will continue to be offered at
the high school.
"The tools for the 21st century are vastly different," North Union
Superintendent Richard Smith told the board.
The move will not go into effect until the 2009-2010 school year, but
had to be addressed now because the change would be factored into the
design of a new middle school planned for the district.
The move did not go forward without objections.
Middle school FLS teacher Linda Davis stressed the importance of the
course, which teaches such skills as cooking, nutrition, money
management, parenting and career choices.
"This is a rural community where family values are important," Davis said.
She said she felt the taxpayers of the district had been "kept in the
dark" in regard to the planned move and felt residents should have had
an opportunity to provide input.
"In just two short months the program is on the chopping block," Davis said.
She also noted that the course is not costly to the district because
North Union receives a $10,000 supplemental payment from the state for
the program.
Lifelong NU district resident Tammy Fout said she took home economic
courses at North Union and had three children do the same. She said she
uses the skills she learned in the course everyday and would hate to see
the class lost.
Kristen Neal also said she took part in the program and found the
nutritional information especially useful, noting the upward trend in
obesity and heart disease among Americans as proof that such information
is needed in schools.
"It would be a huge mistake," Neal said.
Dennis Hall, the lone board member voting against the move, said he felt
the vote was premature. He noted that more than half of the middle
schools in the state have such programs.
Hall said the role of the district is to provide the best possible
future for all North Union graduates, not just those who go on to college.
Smith said the move is meant to raise expectations and advance course
offerings. The middle school course would teach students keyboarding and
computer skills as well as career choices.
Many of the skills taught in the FLS course will be molded into other subject areas.
The middle school career/business technology course would count as a
high school credit and would free up students to focus on the ever
changing graduation requirements, Smith said. With three years to plan,
it would allow the district to transition Davis into another teaching
position Smith added.
Board member Bryan Bumgarner said the board relies on the administrative
team to make recommendations on curriculum changes that will advance the district.
"Times are changing and that dictates tough decisions," he said.
In other business, the board:
.Learned from district treasurer Scott Maruniak that income tax
collection for the quarter was higher than projected.
.Approved an overnight trip for the middle and high school student
councils to attend the Ohio Association of Student Council State
Conference at Fort Jennings High School on April 27 and 28.
.Approved one-year limited expiring supplemental contracts for Paige
Bayer, head varsity girls track coach, Bruce Hoover, drug free school
coordinator, and Greg White, head varsity boys track coach.
.Approved Eric Shields and Ron Tingley as volunteers working with the
boys basketball program pending BCII clearance.

Fairbanks board learns of education system in the U.K.
By KARLYN BYERS
Garett Davies, a vice-principal in the United Kingdom, addressed the
Fairbanks Board of Education Monday night, talking about the
similarities and differences in school children in America and England.
Pupils in the U.K. have a higher level of cynicism, he said. And
although the educational "diets" of children in the two countries are
similar, the way they are instructed by their teachers is different.
The school where Davies is administrator houses 1,150 pupils, ranging in
age from 11 to 18. It is located near Plymouth, England, in the
southwestern part of the country.
Davies will remain in Ohio until Dec. 4. He is residing with Pat Lucas,
Fairbanks Middle School principal, and her husband. In January, Lucas
will travel to England for a six-week stay with Davies and his wife and
son. Their exchange trips are part of a Fulbright Administrator Exchange Program.
"The kids are just enjoying him to death," Lucas said.
She added that Davies has proven to be a good sport. Fairbanks Middle
School pupils are studying the Revolutionary War and Davies has taken a
lot of ribbing with good grace.
Lynn Taylor, Fairbanks High School French teacher who stayed in France
during the 2005-2006 school year as part of a Fulbright exchange
program, also addressed board members. She was seeking approval of a
proposed exchange trip to France for nine FHS students. It would take
place during spring break and would be followed by a fall 2007 trip to
Fairbanks by about 12 French students, she said, as part of a Fulbright
program. Board members expressed concern about school liability and
requested Fairbanks Treasurer Aaron Johnson to check into the school's
insurance coverage. Board members then unanimously approved the trip,
provided insurance concerns can be satisfactorily answered.
In other business, the board:
. Extended its thoughts and prayers to Superintendent Jim Craycraft and
his family upon the death of his mother-in-law. Craycraft was absent
from Monday night's meeting.
. Changed the 2007 graduation date from Sunday, May 27 at 3 p.m. to
Saturday, May 26 at 11 a.m.
. Approved the termination of Eric "Gordie" Spradlin, full-time
custodian, beginning Nov. 25.
. Approved a supplemental contract for Mark Lotycz, Intervention
Assistance Team member.
. Accepted resignations from Jeff Powell, head track coach, and Andy
Pinkerton, head soccer coach.
. Tabled athletic contracts for Larry Albanese, volunteer assistant
wrestling coach, and Chris Luke, middle school wrestling coach.
. Approved Lori Purcell, substitute cook and substitute educational
aide, and Kimberly Jones, full-time custodian, as classified personnel
for the 2006-2007 school year.
. Rescinded a resolution approved on Oct. 16 and accepted the
resignation of Adelaide Vanderpool, elementary media aide, effective Jan. 1.
. Approved a 12-week Family Medical Leave of Absence for Brenda Ward.
. Entered into executive session to discuss personnel. No action was taken

Jerome Trustees address concerns from the public
By CINDY BRAKE
Jerome Township's three trustees listened to a lot of complaints during
Monday's regular meeting.
Concerns ranged from road kill to a township employee.
Trustee Bob Merkle said he received calls about three dead deer recently
along the roadways. He said there was some question about whether one
along Jerome Road was the responsibility of the township or Dublin which
has annexed township land. Trustees Ron Rhodes and Andrew Thomas
concurred that the governmental entity in charge of the roads should be
responsible for the deer removal. In other words, if a deer dies on a
county road, then the county should be responsible. Merkle said the
township personnel removed and buried two of the dead deer.
Two citizens then complained about zoning coordinator Kathleen Crowley.
Crowley was not present at the meeting.
Jeanette Harrington, chairman of zoning appeals, asked the trustees to
have Crowley monitor or enforce conditional use permits. The trustees
asked Harrington for more specific information. She said her group has
not received any written complaints about violations and this was just an inquiry.
Former trustee Freeman May then complained that Crowley offers no
reports or zoning enforcement. When asked for a more specific concern,
the topic of signs in the public right of way was raised.
Harrington, later speaking on behalf of various unnamed residents, asked
what was going on with a car lot in the township that is operating
outside of proper zoning. Thomas said Crowley has been working "very
diligently" the last 60 days on the matter.
In answering another citizen's concerns about the township considering
an annexation agreement with Marysville, trustee Rhodes said the move
was an attempt to put the township back together.
"Referendums have done a lot of damage," Rhodes said. The citizen
retorted that it was Rhodes' opinion.
Thomas added that he doesn't want the township to be overrun. He said
the progressive move would control annexation.
In other business:
. Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson attended the meeting and spoke
briefly about the next steps to take after the failure of a township
police protection levy. The trustees suggested scheduling a meeting to
discuss options with other townships, including Dover.
. The trustees discussed a request from the zoning board chairman for
zoning board members to attend a Dec. 7 planning meeting about community
authorities. The meeting is from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Union County
Services Center in Marysville. Merkle said the zoning board has no
authority over community authorities. All three trustees agreed that
they did not want to expend $60 for each zoning board member to attend
the meeting, although they were welcome to attend the public meeting on
their own. Merkle added that he thought after the first of the year the
trustees should revisit board member compensation, noting that Jerome is
one of few townships paying such a high rate per meeting and also paying
for board members to attend outside meetings.
. The trustees agreed to cap the township hall well, although they did
not have an actual cost for the project.
. The trustees voted to increase insurance on the township hall to
$450,000 from $284,776 and increase the deductible from $500 to $1,000.
The annual rate will increase by $86. The building's replacement value
was determined to be $430,000.
. The trustees then recessed into executive session to discuss potential
litigation and employee compensation.

Community Thanksgiving meal ready to serve 1,200
By KARLYN BYERS
Eighty-seven turkeys, 65 pounds of sweet potatoes, 80 pounds of green
beans, 80 pounds of potatoes, 21 pounds of cranberry sauce, 200 pies and
40 pounds of stuffing. That's how much food it takes to feed about 1,200
community members who have no one else to share Thanksgiving with and/or
who find themselves in financial need this year.
That's also how much food volunteers and the faithful from a variety of
churches prepare each year, as Marysville answers a very real need in
the community.
"As usual, our beautiful town of Marysville is stepping up to the call,"
said Julie Whipple, one of the community Thanksgiving meal's organizers.
This year's traditional meal will be served at First United Methodist's
Burnside Center. This is a departure from the Catholic Community Center,
where roughly 8,000 meals have been served the past 13 years.
Last year about 1,200 meals were served, a number that has remained
fairly consistent the past several years, Whipple said. Preparing that
many meals involves a lot of volunteers, and sometimes they get in each
other's way.
"Last year we were just bursting at the seams," Whipple said. So this
year, Beth Marshall, treasurer of the Thanksgiving dinner committee,
approached Pastor Ken Daft of First UMC.
"He's a very community minded person," Whipple said of the pastor who
arrived this summer to shepherd the flock at the South Court Street
church. She added he even convinced the church to install some extra
outlets to accommodate all the roasters and electrical appliances needed
to prepare the food.
Whipple said the committee appreciates all the support and hard work
extended by Our Lady of Lourdes which spearheaded the Thanksgiving
project and which has housed the meal preparations until now.
"In the future, we hope to develop a rotation schedule so that no one
church is overburdened with hosting the event every year," Whipple said
in a written communication to the Journal-Tribune.
"When the dinner first started, the idea was to pass around the
ownership in order to allow all denominations a chance to give back to
the community."
Preparations began Sunday, when donations were accepted at First UMC. As
of Monday night, Whipple said things were actually ahead of schedule.
Food donations are no longer needed, but Whipple said monetary gifts may
be dropped off at the church this week between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.
Youths at First Presbyterian Church will make about 50 apple, cherry and
peach pies and 50 pumpkin pies Wednesday. This is a five-year tradition
that supplements the pies that are purchased and given by others to the committee.
"A lot of the people call up and ask what they can bring and we say
'pies!'" Whipple said. That's because each family that is delivered a
Thanksgiving meal gets a whole pie, she added.
Volunteers also are needed, especially Thursday between noon and 3 p.m.
to help in the kitchen and from 10:30 to 11 a.m. to deliver. But Whipple
said the greatest need is Friday between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. to help
finish cleaning.
"Just show up," she said.

Two fires, two lives lost
Father discusses losing two children in blazes seven year apart

By RYAN HORNS
"I can't let myself get down. You just got to keep moving forward,"
Steven Crider said. "Thomas would have wanted that."
For the second time in seven years Steven has lost his only child to a house fire.
His two-year-old son Thomas Adam Crider was pronounced dead at the scene
after a Monday house fire at 232 S. Paint St. in Chillicothe. Ross
County Coroner John Gabis said the preliminary autopsy shows the boy
died from smoke inhalation and thermal burns.
The loss was made even worse by the fact that Steven has never gotten
over the death of his 2-year-old daughter, Tammy Crider, after a 1999
house fire in Marysville. It is the coincidence of losing two children
to eerily similar circumstances that has led Steven to feel ostracized
by his community.
"It's going to be much more difficult," Steven said. "I was trying to
move forward after the first time and then seven or eight years later and 'wham.'"
He feels like he is being followed by a black cloud.
"I'm disappointed in why it keeps happening," Steven said. "It seems
every time I walk down the street everybody's looking at me again."
He said many people believe he was in the Chillicothe home when the fire
started, but he was in Marysville and had not seen his son for weeks. He
also expressed anger at having his past exposed again to the public for
charges associated with the 1999 Marysville house fire that killed his
daughter. Steven was sentenced to 12 years in prison for two
third-degree felony involuntary manslaughter counts and one third-degree
felony endangering children charge associated with the fire. He was
later given a judicial release after only a few months, while the
childrens' mother, Teresa Brannon, remains in prison for violating her parole.
Steven acknowledges that he shared the blame for the loss of his
daughter in that 1999 fire because the messy conditions inside the home
increased the likelihood of a blaze.
Steven said he was not at either home when the fires started.
"Monday at 3:30 p.m.," he said, "they called to say there was a fire and
(Thomas) didn't make it."
Steven currently lives on Milford Avenue, in a house owned by Leona
Ellinger and her husband, Scott. They have all been best friends for
years and each had grown close to the children who ultimately died in the fires.
During a Thursday morning interview, Steven spoke about his son's death,
often letting Leona speak for him, as he placed his head in his hands to listen.
Leona said Steven still sleeps with a photograph of his daughter above
his bed. That photo may now be joined by his son's.
"You do not really get over it," Leona said. "I feel like we didn't even
get to say good-bye . The second time is very hard."
Steven said the circumstances that led to his son being in Chillicothe
had to do with a custody battle with his ex-wife and mother
of Thomas, Megan Carter.
Leona explained that six months ago Steven and Carter got divorced.
Carter then moved to Richwood with their son and they shared custody.
Carter ended up meeting a man, got engaged, and moved into his home in
Chillicothe with Thomas.
Steven said it is upsetting that some people think he had something to
do with the Chillicothe fire. Because of custody disputes with Carter,
he said he has been unable to have as much contact with his son as he hoped.
The last time he saw his son alive was on Oct. 30, the day before
Halloween. Steven said Thomas was supposed to come back the next day to
go trick-or-treating with him in Marysville. He said Carter did not
allow this to happen.
According to reports, Carter was inside the house in Chillicothe on
Monday when the fire started. When firefighters arrived at the scene she
was reportedly outside shouting for people to help get her son out. She
had suffered burns to her hand and was reportedly released from the Ohio
State University Medical Center Wednesday.
"They still don't know the cause of the fire," Leona said.
She said there was some speculation that it was due to space heaters,
but the cause remains under investigation.
"He is really going to be missed by a lot of people," Steven said about his son.
Leona and Steven describe Thomas as a fun loving boy who enjoyed being
outdoors fishing and spending time playing with his German shepherd mix dog "Holly."
She said they nicknamed Thomas 'Squeaky" because he had the appetite of a mouse.
"I swear his favorite food was cheese," Leona said.
In the weeks leading up to the Richwood Fair, Steven said that he set
out to build a car to race in the Demolition Derby. The irony was that
the car wasn't meant for destroying, it was meant to bring people
together. He said he built the car to help take his son's mind off the
fact that his parents were getting divorced.
"That car is still sitting in the driveway," Steven said. "That car was
built, nothing but for him."

Water rate hike tabled
Informal study shows city  residents pay more than those in other area
municipalities

By RYAN HORNS
Mayor Tom Kruse promised no new taxes before he took office, instead
ending up opting for utility rate increases. Now some residents think
those increases may have gone too far.
At Thursday night's Marysville City Council meeting two residents
questioned the need for an increase to city water rates. Because of
their concerns, the ordinance was tabled until the Dec. 7 council
meeting. The city finance committee will now meet to discuss the issue
in detail and come back with their results.
Resident Ester Carmany cited seven reasons council should turn down the
water rate increase. Among those, she pointed out that council meetings
were rescheduled due to the Thanksgiving holiday - perhaps rushing
through an important piece of legislation. The ordinance to increase
water rates was set to be enacted in three weeks, instead of the normal
five-week time period.
"The general public were denied the normal meeting time to jump into
this discussion," Carmany said.
Carmany also suggested the city compare its rates with those of other
cities and look at other ways of raising money to offset the cost so
that residents are not paying for new development.
"Existing citizens have some rights too." she said. "If this option were
placed on the ballot, how many of you really think that this would pass?"
Carmany said that the new rate increase would mean an extra $25 a month
for her. If a grocery store asked her to pay that much extra a month she
would shop elsewhere.
Resident Lloyd Baker did a considerable amount of homework on the water
rate increase, which led to his further study on all the combined rate
increases enacted since 2000. His efforts focused on the Water and
Wastewater Master Plans.
In those studies, Baker said, city finance director John Morehart was
able to help him find an error in engineering firm Malcolm Pirnie's
Water Master Plan. A chart comparing Marysville rates to other cities in
the region used a wrong figure, less than the city's actual rates.
Ultimately, it was a minor mistake.
Baker said he only brought it up to highlight a "substantial
difference." At $44.13 the chart shows Marysville having the highest
water rates among cities like Urbana, Lancaster, Columbus, Delaware,
Canal Winchester, the Del-Co Water Company and Fairfield County. It was
supposed to be $48.28, meaning Marysville is drastically higher.
He explained that since 2000 there have been rate increases to sewer,
water, refuse and stormwater bills, totaling up to a 103.1 percent
increase for residents over a seven year period. Some of the rate
increases already enacted are set to automatically increase from year to year.
"To clarify my point," Baker said. "I think the total package of rates .
needs to be evaluated."
City councilman Dan Fogt agreed, saying that he conducted a study of how
Marysville rates compare to other cities.
"We are the highest," he said. "I think that is too much to ask our
residents to pay for."
Fogt suggested cutting back the water rate to an overall 5 percent
increase, instead of the first year at 5 percent and then four more
years at 8 percent. The city could make up the extra money by cutting
its operations budget.
Council president John Gore also pointed out that the city is ending
2006 with a $3.5 million surplus in its general fund, much more than expected.
Kruse defended the water rate increase by stating that there are
numerous important projects in the city's plans, from the wastewater
treatment plant, paving streets, the reservoir and the relocation of the
fire department. Because previous administrations created an under
funded local government, steps must now be taken to correct that mistake.
"If we don't raise rates now," he said, "we will have to raise them down
the road in much larger increments."
Kruse added that Marysville has a lower tax rate than the other cities
Baker mentioned which has forced the city to offset that through utility rates.
Councilman David Burke agreed with the mayor, adding that the city only
recently purchased its own water system and is still paying that off.
Older cities in the region did this a long time ago.
Burke stressed that council has made efforts to make new development pay
for itself. They have increased tap-in fee rates for new development and
increased multi-family tap-in rates per units for apartments. Now they
are working on tap-in fee indexing, which will keep rates consistent
with inflation so the city doesn't fall behind again.
"We have a great deal of capital improvements yet to be done," Kruse
said. "I would violently oppose taking general revenue money and
transferring it to water or sewer to keep rates down."
In other discussions:
. Several residents have inquired about the status of South Park and the
increased flooding in that area. The next Public Service meeting will
specifically address South Park and its members have invited
representatives of Adena Pointe to come to the meeting to provide
insight into their plans to control flooding possibly caused by their
development.
. Kruse spoke again of his plans to create a quarterly newsletter to
address city business. The first edition of the newsletter is almost
complete and he expects to have that mailed out to all Marysville
households within the first week of December.

Ohio State pride growing at Scotts offices
From J-T staff reports:
The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company, headquartered in Marysville, appears, at
least for this week, to have created a new line of products in support
of The Ohio State University - Michigan football game, and also
undergone some major redecorating.
A lawn spreader filled with bags of product had buckeyes spilling out
the bottom with a sign stating "A new use for a Scott's Spreader. Turn
Michigan Fans into Buckeyes." Some of the new product names include
"Michigan B Gone," "Buckeyes Pure Premium," "Wolverine Preventer" and
"Fanatical Buckeye Fan Control".
One look at the Customer Services Team area Thursday afternoon and it
was obvious that Scotts Miracle-Gro was "out of stock" of "Fanatical
Buckeye Fan Control."
The area was awash in a sea of scarlet and gray with a dab of maize and blue.
OSU music set the theme while helium and arched balloons were
everywhere. Michigan marshmallows were roasting over artificial fire
logs while OSU rugs, banners, quilts, red lights and a blow-up Brutus
also adorned the desks and tables along with homemade buckeye candies,
chips and salsa and an OSU decorated cookie. The uniform of the day was
just as extreme with face stickers, camouflage scarlet and gray slacks
and OSU sweat shirts galore.
Off to one side, a couple Michigan fans hung their favorite teams
banners and a Notre Dame fan also brought out a few school items.
The mania began earlier in the week when Bonnie Hohlbein, vice president
of finance, challenged the four teams to have fun in the work place.
"It's been great," Hohlbein said after distributing prizes that included
more OSU paraphernalia.
Helping with the judging was Jim Hagedorn, Scotts Miracle-Gro chairman
and chief executive officer.
"Everybody's done a crazy job," he declared before announcing that there
were prizes for everyone.

Smoked out
Effect of Issue 5 cloudy

By CINDY BRAKE
Smokers have 21 more days to enjoy a public puff.
On Dec. 8 the rules change when Ohio's new smoking ban, passed Nov. 7
with 58 percent voter approval statewide and 57 percent countywide,
becomes law. The law prohibits smoking almost everywhere people meet to
work or play. The only exceptions are tobacco shops, designated hotel
rooms and enclosed areas of nursing homes.
"I don't think it's going to hurt Benny's Pizza," said restaurant owner
Fred Neumeier this week about the law. "It's just a matter of getting
used to. We'll do what's legal."
Currently the popular Marysville restaurant located at 968 Columbus Ave.
offers seating for both smokers and non-smokers. Neumeier said he has
yet to work out the details on how his restaurant will deal with the ban.
He, like others, is waiting to see how the law will be enforced. Even
employees of the enforcement agency are waiting for answers.
Staff at the Union County Board of Health said they are already fielding
questions that they have no answers for. They like, everyone else, are
waiting for the Ohio Department of Health to establish rules within the
next six months about how the newest chapter in the Ohio Revised Code,
3974, will be enforced, monitored and inspected. At least one public
hearing will be held during the public process, states a ODH spokesman.
While nonsmokers and health officials are celebrating the new law, some
individuals associated with local fraternal organizations are less enthusiastic.
"It's going to hurt us," said Tom Eirich, secretary for the local Eagle organization.
Eirich said on average, 80 members visit daily and 80 percent of them
are smokers. If they can't smoke, they won't stay and buy Bingo tickets.
That will limit the amount of donations the group can forward to charities.
Daryl Clay, administrator of the Marysville Moose Family Center, agrees.
"The local fraternal organizations contribute thousands of dollars to
the registered charities in their communities. The proponents of Issue 5
say that nonsmokers will replace the smokers in these organizations. I
certainly hope they were not blowing smoke because local charities stand
to lose a lot of money if these organizations go out of business," Clay
stated in a faxed statement.
Local restaurant owner, Julia Andrews, is also concerned how the law
will effect her business. Currently the Stockyard Steakhouse and Saloon,
404 S. Oak St., allows smoking in the saloon area. A door separates the
saloon area from the nonsmoking restaurant space.
"It's going to be a problem because people like to drink and smoke," Andrews said.
Holding a separate liquor license for the patio area may prove to be a
plus for the Stockyard, allowing patrons to both smoke and drink in the outdoor area.
Ohio follows several other states which have already enacted laws that
limit smoking. According to information provided by the Union County
Health Department, the other states that have enacted some type of
smoking limitation include California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware,
Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts,
Montanan, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah,
Vermont and Washington.
The ODH will be establishing a Web site as part of a program to educate
the public regarding the provisions of this new law. The ODH Web site is
www.odh.ohio.gov; go to rules and regulations; tab in the left-hand
column; and then click on the draft option.

Survey gauges community opinions on smoking
By CINDY BRAKE
Union County voters mirrored the opinions voiced about smoking in a
survey conducted earlier this year by the Union County Health Department.
State Issue 5 dubbed "Smoke Free" passed in Union County with 9,619
voters or 57.1 percent of the total saying yes and 7,228 voters or 42.9
percent marking a no on the ballot.
A June survey found 56 percent or 167 out of 299 respondents think that
smoking should not be allowed at all in indoor dining areas of restaurants.
The new law, which goes into effect Dec. 8, prohibits smoking in public
buildings and work places including offices, meeting rooms, sales,
production and storage areas, restrooms, stairways, hallways,
warehouses, garages and vehicles under direct or indirect control of an
employer. The only exceptions are private residences except when they
are used for child care; up to 20 percent of a hotel's sleep rooms;
family-owned businesses where all employees are related to the owner and
the public is not allowed, enclosed areas of a nursing home for
residents' use only, retail tobacco stores, non-profit private clubs
with no employees and freestanding outdoor patios.
The Union County Community Health Survey found results for 2004 and 2006
were very similar.
The questions and findings are listed below with 2004 numbers in parenthesis:
. In your entire life, have you ever smoked? 58 percent yes (60 percent  yes)
. In your entire life, have you smoked at least 100 cigarettes? 83
percent yes (83 percent yes)
. Do you currently smoke every day or some days? 63 percent responded
with a no adding that they had quit more than a year ago (60 percent); 4
percent responded with a no that they had quit within the past year (3
percent); 25 percent smoke every day (34 percent); and 8 percent smoke
some days (3 percent)
. On days when you smoked during the past 30 days, about how many
cigarettes did you smoke a day? 22 percent, more than a pack (8
percent); 33 percent, a pack or 20 (41 percent); 0 percent, 11 to 19 (17
percent); 14 percent, half a pack or 10 (23 percent); 31 percent, fewer
than 10 (11 percent)
. During the past 12 months, have you stopped smoking for one day or
longer because you were trying to quit smoking? 40 percent yes (49 percent)
. When you tried to quit smoking did you use any of the following
methods? 69 percent nothing (62 percent); 28 percent nicotine patch or
gum (26 percent); 0 percent hypnosis or acupuncture (5 percent); 0
percent Quest cigarettes (3 percent); 0 percent hospitalization (3
percent); 7 percent counseling or support group (3 percent); 0 percent
television program (3 percent); 7 percent quit line (0 percent)
. Of the services or methods you just indicated, which ones were most
useful? 11 percent none (47 percent); 67 percent medication (27
percent); quit line 22 percent
. Are you seriously considering stopping smoking within the next six
months? 51 percent yes (55 percent), 42 percent no (39 percent), 7
percent don't know (6 percent)
. During the past 12 months, did any doctor, nurse or other health
professional advise you not to smoke? 60 percent yes (50 percent)
. Are you aware of any stop smoking programs currently being offered
within the community? 39 percent yes (30 percent); 62 percent no (66
percent); 2 percent don't know (4 percent)
. What stop smoking programs are you aware of? 35 percent
hospital/medical center (45 percent); 15 percent other (25 percent); 29
percent don't know (12 percent); 14 percent community/public (11
percent); 17 percent work (9 percent); 0 percent school (3 percent)
. Not including yourself, how many of the adults, 18 years and older,
who live in your household smoke cigarettes, cigars or pipes? zero, 79
percent (77 percent); one, 18 percent (18 percent); two to three, 3
percent (5 percent)
. Which statement best describes the rules about smoking inside your
home? not allowed at all 70 percent (67 percent); not allowed in some
places/times 8 percent (8 percent); allowed anywhere 3 percent (3
percent); no rules, 19 percent (21 percent)
. Which statement best describes the rules about smoking inside your
car: not allowed at all, 65 percent; not allowed some times 12 percent;
allowed any time 5 percent; no rules 18 percent (this is a new question in 2006)
. Employment? fulltime outside the home 56 percent  (54 percent);
retired 24 percent (20 percent); homemaker 8 percent (10 percent);
parttime outside home 5 percent (8 percent); unable to work 4 percent (4
percent); out of work seeking employment 2 percent (3 percent); student
1 percent (2 percent)
. Which of the following best describes you place of work's official
smoking policy for indoor public or common areas, such as lobbies, rest
rooms, lunch rooms ....? No in public/common areas 68 percent (56
percent); allowed in some public areas 26 percent (34 percent); no
official policy 6 percent (9 percent); allowed in all public/common
areas 0 percent (1 percent)
. In the past 12 months, has your employer offered any stop smoking
programs or any other help to employees who want to quit smoking?
yes 34 percent (30 percent); no 55 percent (59 percent); don't know 11
percent (11 percent)
. Would you prefer a stronger workplace smoking policy, a weaker
workplace smoking policy or no change in your current policy? stronger
11 percent (10 percent); weaker 3 percent (1 percent); no change 84
percent (83 percent); don't know 2 percent (6 percent)
. Would you be more willing to quit, less willing to quit or would it
make no difference if a stop smoking program were offered at your work
site? more 31 percent (29 percent); less 6 percent (0 percent); no
difference 55 percent (63 percent); don't know 8 percent (8 percent)
. In the indoor dining area of restaurants, do you think that smoking
should be allowed in all areas, some areas or not at all? some 38
percent (53 percent); not at all 56 percent (44 percent); all areas 4
percent (2 percent); don't know 2 percent (2 percent)
. Some cities and towns are considering laws that would make restaurants
smoke-free, that is eliminating all tobacco smoke from restaurants.
Would you support such a law in your community? yes 62 percent (54
percent), no 33 percent (37 percent), maybe/depends 3 percent (4
percent), don't know 2 percent (4 percent)
. If there were a total ban on smoking in restaurants, would you eat out
more, less or would it make no difference? more 16 percent (9 percent),
less 10 percent (8 percent), no difference 74 percent (82 percent),
don't know 0 percent (1 percent)
. Do you believe that breathing smoke from other people's smoking is
harmful to your health? yes 83 percent (87 percent), no 13 percent (9
percent), don't know 4 percent (5 percent)
The telephone survey was conducted in July 2004 and April 2006 using a
random digit sample obtained for Union County resulting in 203 (2004)
and 301 (2006) completed interviews with Union County adult residents
aged 18 and older.

N. Lewisburg to sell municipal building

By CORINNE BIX
North Lewisburg has agreed to sell the village municipal building to the
Northeast Champaign County Fire District for the appraised value of $300,000.
However, the NECCFD feels without taxpayer support,  whether they opt to
buy or continue to rent the facility the outcome is the same, debt.
The NECCFD held a public meeting Tuesday night after the regular monthly
village of North Lewisburg council meeting. The informational meeting
brought the village council and the fire board together to discuss the
future of the fire district.
The NECCFD serves the villages of North Lewisburg and Woodstock and Rush
and Wayne townships. Currently operating out of the North Lewisburg
Municipal building, the fire district pays rent on 5,286 square feet of space.
In September, the village council voted to consider the proposal by the
NECCFD to obtain an appraisal of the municipal building.
Cheryl Hollingsworth presented various financial scenarios on behalf of
the NEECFD at last night's public meeting.
Hollingsworth has worked with the NEECFD over the past several months to
calculate budget projections for the district.
Village council voted in April to raise the annual rent from $6,000 to
$12,500 retroactive to Jan. 1, when the last contract expired.
Council also voted in April to gradually increase the annual rent to
$25,000 by 2008. That averages out to $5 per square foot of space used.
The village found this rate to be in line with standard rental rates of
business properties, and Hollingsworth agreed.
If the building is purchased by the NECCFD for $300,000, it will be
paying about $50 per square foot of space versus the average $140 per
square foot of space on a brand new building designed specifically to be
a fire station and sleeping quarters.
Chief Dave Spain and Mayor Dick Willis said that they are unified on
finding a common solution for all those involved.
"It's all up to the taxpayers as far as what services they want," Spain said.
Ultimately, a levy will be considered within the next year. Currently,
residents pay 5.5 mills for the NECCFD. It is projected that about 9
mills would be needed to maintain the level of service after factoring
in inflation, equipment costs and the need for more full-time employees
to balance a growing population.
Currently, on a $100,000 home at 5.5 mills the average homeowner pays
$173.25 annually. If a 3.5 mill levy were to pass, the same homeowner
would pay $283. per year.
Jason Keeran, council member and NEECFD volunteer, said the average cost
per day at 9 mills would be less than the cost of a soft drink per day.
"It's become a pay-to-play society," Keeran said.
The next regular council meeting will be Dec. 5 at 6 p.m. The annual
village Christmas party will follow at 6:30 p.m.
In other news, council:
.Heard the second reading of Ordinance No. 241 in regard to
water/sewer rate changes.
.Was updated on the Time Warner Cable increase effective Dec. 1 for
basic service from $44.02 to $46.20 per month.
.Heard about a North Central Ohio Solid Waste Grant for $1,500 towards
$2,700 for grinding brush into mulch.
.Heard that the village park has been winterized.
.Received the monthly activity report for the village of North Lewisburg
for the month of October. It reported 25 traffic citations issued; five
warnings issued for traffic violations; 15 incident reports; 16 cases of
assistance given to citizens; seven arrests made; three civil and
criminal papers served; 51 follow-up investigations completed; two
instances of juvenile contact and two civic activities completed.

Fatal fire in Chillicothe has local connection
Father of child who was killed also lost a daughter in a local blaze in 1999
By RYAN HORNS
Seven years after a 1999 blaze in Marysville killed his daughter, an
area father has lost another child to a fire.
According to law enforcement reports, 2 year-old Thomas Adam Crider was
pronounced dead at the scene Monday following an afternoon house fire at
232 S. Paint St. in Chillicothe. Firefighters have said the fire may
have started in the living room of the home, which is where the boy was found.
According to Union County Health Department records, Thomas Crider's
birth certificate confirms that he was born at Memorial Hospital of
Union County. His father is Steven Greg Crider, 32, of 620 Milford Ave.,
Marysville - a man who was convicted locally for a February 1999 fire
that claimed the life of his daughter Tammy Crider, 2, and another
child, Kaitlin Brannon, 4.
Ross County Coroner John Gabis also confirmed this morning that the male
victim's father is Steven Crider.
On July 9, 1999, Steven Crider was sentenced to 12 years in prison by
Union County Common Pleas Judge Richard E. Parrott for two counts of
third-degree felony involuntary manslaughter and one third-degree felony
count of endangering children in connection with the local fire. He was
released from prison in October 1999.
Teresa Brannon, 28, was the mother of the two victims in 1999. She was
indicted on similar charges and remains in prison today due to a parole violation.
The 1999 fire started at Steven Crider's former home at 305 S. Walnut
St. Brannon and her three daughters were in the home when the flames
erupted. Crider was not home at the time.
An investigation determined that the home was littered with debris and
the fire began because of carelessly discarded smoking material.
Chillicothe Fire Department Capt. Dave Russell has reported that the
cause of Monday afternoon's fire had not been determined.
Gabis said that the preliminary results of his autopsy on Thomas Crider
have been completed and list cause of death due to smoke
inhalation and thermal burns.
Thomas Crider's mother, Megan Carter, 24, was reportedly outside the
Chillicothe home when firefighters arrived. She was taken to Ohio State
University Medical Center in Columbus for injuries. She remained a
patient Tuesday, but reports indicate that family members did not want
her condition released.
The victim's mother appears to have links to Union County. According to
birth certificate records she lived at 118 1/2 Ottawa St. in Richwood at
the time of her son's birth.
Calls, regarding who was in the home at the time of the fire, placed to
Chillicothe fire investigators were not returned this morning. The
Chillicothe Police Department also did not wish to comment on the fire investigation.

Village moves ahead with rate increase

By CHAD WILLIAMSON
Utility bills for the 891 customers of Richwood appear headed for an increase.
Village council held first reading Monday on an measure to amend the
village water and sewer rates to add a $7 increase to the base rate for
services. Of that money, $3 will go to water services, $3 will go to
sanitary sewer services and $1 will go toward a storm sewer fund. The
increase will generate nearly $75,000 to assist the village in supplying services.
Council member Wade McCalf, chairman of the village utility committee,
said the operating costs for utilities such as natural gas and
electricity have increased in recent years and water and sewer services
are no different. Village financial officer Don Jolliff said the village
is expending more money to operate the water and sewer plants and that
money must be covered.
Prior to first reading on the increase, laundromat operator James Baker
addressed council about the proposed increase. He said the volume of
water his business uses, 52,000 gallons last month, would force him to
pass on the increase to his customers. Baker said 11 percent of his
operating costs are spent on water and sewer services.
Baker also said that it could prove difficult for the village to lure
new businesses if the utility rates increase. He said that a scaled
rate, reducing the per-gallon price for high volume users, might be an
option to look into.
Later in the meeting Jolliff noted that the proposed increase is a flat
fee assessed to all users regardless of volume. Whether the customer
uses the minimum amount or 52,000 gallons, the user pays an additional $7.
McCalf noted that after 2007 a 3.5 percent increase on the base rate
while be assessed. That increase will be monitored on a year-to-year
basis to see if it is needed.
Council approved the first reading of the increase by a 4-0 vote with
council members Von Beal and Scott Jerew absent.
With the rate increase in motion, council also approved first reading on
the 2007 annual budget. Revenue is projected at $1,532,270 while
expenditures are listed at $1,506,828.
In other business, council:
.Voted 4-0 on first reading for an ordinance establishing a Richwood
Department of Building Regulations. Council also voted 4-0 on
authorizing the Union County Building Department to handle enforcement
of the residential building code.
.Learned that the village is responsible for the cost of indigent
counsel for misdemeanors, outside of minor misdemeanors, when criminals
are cited under village codes rather than state laws.
.Voted 4-0 to renew the enterprise agreement for MAI Manufacturing.
.Learned that the village has completed its brush chipping for the year.
Leaf pickup will continue as weather permits.

Unionville Center mayor acknowledges levy support
By AUDREY HALL
Unionville Center Corrspondent
Unionville Center mayor Denver Thompson opened Monday's regular council
meeting by acknowledging all who supported the property tax levy. The
levy passed by 49 to 45.
Lawn Plus completed leaf pick up and under a separate contract also
cleaned the storm sewer drops. The company also submitted the estimate
that was accepted for snow removal. Lawn Plus will plow when two inches
or more snow accumulates.
Repair of the council building floor was in the 2006 budget. One section
of the floor has deteriorated to the point of being a safety hazard. An
estimate from Lawn Plus for the replacement of the damaged section of
flooring and the removal of the central chimney, a remnant of heating
stove days, was approved. The work is to be completed in December.
Licensing of golf carts was tabled until spring or until the Union
County Sheriff Department issues a decision on the inspection of carts
for safety features
There was discussion on the 2007 budget. Final approval will be in December.
Council members present were Ron Griffith, Mary Lou Morris, Brenda
Terry, Phil Rausch, Jim Weese, Peggy Williamson,  Thompson and clerk
treasurer Tracy Rausch.
The next meeting will be on Dec. 11.

Honoring area veterans
Ground is broken for county monument

By CINDY BRAKE
Ground was broken Saturday for a memorial to honor all Union County
military veterans.
"Today it is a national holiday to honor all veterans, past, present and
future. I want to emphasize all veterans. It is meant to honor and thank
all who served honorably in the military - in wartime or in peacetime,
and that is what this county memorial is meant to do, especially for all
veterans who have ever lived in Union County," said retired Major
General Oscar Decker during the 11 a.m. ceremony on the courthouse lawn
where the memorial will be located. The memorial will be dedicated on
May 19, Armed Forces Day.
Decker said there are several memorials in the county, but each has been
for a specific group of veterans. This will be the first to honor all
county veterans. He said approximately 9,000 Union County citizens have
served since the Revolutionary War.
The idea for recording and memorializing all county veteran information
was started a number of years ago by Max Robinson when he was a county
commissioner, Decker said. The idea lay dormant for several years until
Ross Ingram, a WWII Merchant Marine veteran, was looking for information
about the WWII board that had been up in Milford Center with the thought
of re-incarnating it for Union County. That led him to search for the
WWII board that had been on the courthouse lawn. Neither could be found.
After talking with other veterans, and with the encouragement of a
number of people and the county commissioners, that search suddenly
became a countywide effort to begin back at the Revolutionary War and
honor all who served - past, present and future.
In late 2002, Ingram began to organize an effort to build a county
memorial to all veterans who have ever lived or will live in Union County.
"This is a dream come true," Ingram said after the rainy ceremony.
The $500,000 memorial plaza includes a 60-foot circle surrounding a
pentagon shape in pavers with a partial wall forming the plaza. On the
front will be a stone with an engraving of an eagle, shield, globe,
major wars and service emblems. The eagle will symbolize vigilance to
protect. The shield shows determination to defend and the globe stands
for the fronts on which the country's unity and freedoms are challenged.
Inscribed on the back will be 788 names of those killed in action,
missing in action, prisoners of war or died in service overseas during
wartime. A computer kiosk will allow individuals to access the
approximately 1,800 names and service information of ever veteran who
has provided information.
Saturday's ceremony included music by the quintet from the 555th Air
National Guard Band of the Great Lakes, followed by the ringing of the
church bells. The bells rang for two minutes at the 11th hour on the
11th day of the 11th month - the first Armistice Day was declared on
this date in 1919.

Motorcycle accident claims man's life

From J-T staff reports:
A Mount Gilead man was killed Thursday in a motorcycle crash in
Delaware, just across the Union County line.
According to Delaware State Highway Patrol reports, at 10:40 a.m. Jason
L. Streich, 22, was riding a 1999 Kawasaki ZX7R motorcycle northeast on
Route 4 and was passing several vehicles.
At the same time driver Danielle McKinnon, 46, of 27 George St. in
Richwood was also northeast bound on Route 4 in a 1997 Plymouth Breeze
and was attempting to turn left onto Hoskins Road. Streich reportedly
was unable to stop and struck the car.
Reports show that Streich was thrown from his motorcycle, but he was
wearing a helmet. He was pronounced dead at the scene when medics
arrived and was transported by the Bennett Brown Rodman Funeral Home.
The motorcycle was totaled in the crash.
McKinnon was injured and transported by Delaware medics to Memorial
Hospital of Union County.
The crash remains under investigation by Delaware troopers.

Local ODOT outposts prepared for winter weather
From J-T staff reports:
The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) conducted its final snow
and ice equipment inspections in Union County Tuesday. Preparations
began as early as this summer, stocking salt barns, going over routes
and training drivers.
"We are ready at any moment's notice to keep our roadways cleared," said
Jack Marchbanks, ODOT District 6 deputy director. "These final
inspections serve as an opportunity to not only inspect the equipment,
but to prepare our drivers fro important task they are about to undertake."
He said District 6 has more than 300 drivers who are on call day and
night to keep roads clear on the state highway system.
How motorists drive during snow and ice conditions is critical in
preventing accidents and keeping people safe. The most common causes of
crashes during snow and ice season are failure to control, excessive
speed and following other vehicles too closely. All of these causes are
related to driver error, which means many of the crashes are
preventable. Last winter, there were a total of 8,092 accidents
attributed to snow and ice on ODOT maintained roads and about 32,000
snow and ice related accidents on all Ohio roads.
"There is no question that inclement weather slows down traffic
regardless of our crews treating the roads," said Tony Vogel, ODOT
deputy director for highway management. "That's why, in addition to
clearing the roads, ODOT works to provide as much information as
possible so motorists can plan ahead and allow extra travel time during
snow and ice season."
Motorists may access ODOT's Web site at www.buckeytraffic.org to help
them plan ahead. The site is a one-stop shop for lane closure
information, road conditions and traffic cameras. During snow and ice
events, road conditions are updated as often as necessary, with
information such as current weather, roadway surface temperature,
general roadway conditions, traffic speed and how many ODOT trucks are
working in the area.
The winter weather portion of the site is operational between Nov. 1 and
April 15 each year. ODOT can activate it sooner if weather conditions
warrant it. The information is real time data from every county of the
state. The technology combines solar, wind and conventional power, with
cellular and radio frequency to transmit weather and pavement conditions
every three to five minutes via ODOT's Buckeye Traffic Web site.
Although last winter started with several major storms, overall, it was
a mild winter. The department spent $40.1 million statewide clearing
state-maintained highways and used almost 500,000 tons of salt. ODOT
typically spends about $56 million annually and uses about 650,000 tons of salt.
ODOT has more than 1,500 trucks and 3,200 drivers to cover 38,800 lane
miles of highway across the state. In addition, ODOT's 230 salt barns
are stocked with about 500,000 tons of salt.
ODOT spent $3.7 million clearing state-maintained roads and used 47,000
tons of salt last season in central Ohio. In Union County, the
department spent $414,703 and drove more than 70 thousand miles within
the county. District 6 has more than 170 vehicles and 336 drivers in its
snow and ice-fighting arsenal.

Army Corps. of Engineers signs off on sewer plant project

By RYAN HORNS
After a long road of securing funds and making plans, the City of
Marysville can soon focus on the design and construction of its future
wastewater treatment plant.
Wednesday afternoon Marysville administrators and the US Army Corps of
Engineers held a signing ceremony for the previously announced $992,000
federal funding appropriation at City Hall. The Section 594 project
money was acquired through efforts by the city staff, with the help of
Congresswoman Deborah Pryce.
According to a Marysville press release, the signing of the Project
Cooperation Agreement officially marks the beginning of the partnership
between the city and the Corps of Engineers working toward the
completion of the new facility.
The Corps of Engineers will reportedly administer the funds to be used
for the Marysville Water Reclamation Facility project, which includes
the design of a new wastewater treatment plant with an average daily
flow of 6.0 Million Gallons per Day (MGD). There are also provisions for
future expansion to 16.0 MGD, including all treatment processes and
associated features.
US Army Corps of Engineers Project Manager, Lisa Morgan, said this
morning that there are a few more steps to take place before the federal
funding can be disbursed to the city. Her office must conduct a
compliance review to make sure Marysville has met all the federal
guidelines for the project.
"We expect to have that resolved in three or four months," Morgan said.
Morgan also talked about her involvement, which essentially began when
Marysville was listed to receive funding within the federal Energy and
Water Appropriation Bill.
Marysville Mayor Tom Kruse said that a couple years ago he was reading
about federal budget appropriations for water and sewer projects
throughout the country. He then started the process of finding out how
Marysville could be included.
Kruse said he contacted the offices of Senator George Voinovich,
Congresswoman Pryce, and Senator Mike Dewine, then asked to include the
city in the federal budget.
He also credited his staff for work identifying and obtaining the
appropriation. Help from The Scott's Company and its project engineer,
Malcolm Pirnie, was also noted for work negotiating the way through
Congress in obtaining the funds.
Kruse said nothing has been finalized yet, but it is looking good for
Marysville to receive another million dollars in funding next year.
The City of Marysville Wastewater System serves the residents and
businesses in the city as well as Milford Center, the Honda of America
auto and motorcycle plants, and Union County along Industrial Parkway.
The current facility treats an average daily flow of approximately 4.0
MGD. The Wastewater Treatment Plant is located on the north side of
Marysville at 620 North Main Street.
In 2004, the city completed its Wastewater Master Plan. From the results
of this study, the design of the new Water Reclamation Facility, to
replace and expand the capacity of the existing facility, began in 2005.
The new plant will be located southeast of the city and is planned for
"start-up" in late 2008.

Jonathan Alder levy passes

By CORINNE BIX
In the case of Jonathan Alder, the fourth time is the charm as district
officials learned Tuesday evening that the community passed a .75
percent earned income tax levy on Tuesday.
Superintendent Doug Carpenter said he was feeling euphoric after
learning that voters had passed the levy by 607 votes.
In total from all precincts there were 2,439 votes for the levy and
1,832 against. The levy passed 57 percent to 43 percent.
"We had a lot of people work very hard on this," Carpenter said, "I am
so glad that we can put this behind us and get back to putting the kids
first and focusing on programming."
In Union County, 830 unofficial votes were cast for the tax and 618
against. In Madison County, there were 1,609 for the levy and 1,212 against.
The .75 percent-earned income tax levy comes after three failed levies
in the last year, including two .5 percent income tax levies and one 5.9
mill property tax.
An earned income tax varies from a traditional income tax because
certain types of income are not taxable including tax pensions,
dividends and estates. It also allows both farm and business profit/loss
to be considered when determining one's income.
Carpenter explained last week that if the levy passed the district would
be in good shape for the next five years especially if school funding
were remedied at the state level.
After the 5.9 mill property tax failed in August, the school board cut
more than $300,000 from this year's budget.
Carpenter said, for now, recent cuts will not be reinstated with the
exception of some programs that are directly beneficial to the students.
"We projected to cut $300,000 and actually cut $307,000 which gives us a
little bit of room to put some programs back," Carpenter said.
Field trips were eliminated at $25,000. Carpenter said that some field
trips would be revisited with the passage of the levy.
The next regular school board meeting will be Nov. 13.

Sheriff disappointed in failure of 911, public safety officer issues
By RYAN HORNS
Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson said he was disappointed in the 911
and PSO failures out of Tuesday's elections, but he was also optimistic
for the future.
The 911 levy failed in 31 of the 45 Union County precincts  with 8,068
votes for and 8,499 against.
Nelson said the 911 levy was placed on the ballot early in hopes it
would pass, and if it didn't there would still be time to try again.
"The 911 system can continue in 2007 but we must do more research in how
to best fund it," Nelson said.
He said his office will need to gather members of the previous 911
Technical Advisory Board in order to form a new advisory board. They can
then decide when and how they will seek another levy.
"It is difficult to inform and promote the 911 system when you can't use
911 funds," Nelson said. "We have not asked for an increase in funding
for 19 years. We have consolidated Marysville and Union County 911
dispatch answering points to be more efficient and cost effective. We
are Phase 2 compliant, meaning we can pinpoint the location and origin
of a cellular telephone call. Only eight counties in the state can claim
this. All to serve Union County residents the best we can."
Nelson also acknowledged the two sides of this county being one of
Ohio's leaders in progressive law enforcement. If Union County is only
one of eight in the state to be Phase 2 compliant, some residents may
see that as a time to rest on their laurels. It may have been one more
reason why some voted the levy down.
He said what many residents may not know is that to become a leader in
the state it "took a lot of hard work." Growth continues to flow into
Union County, and the more crime that comes with it, the more the 911
and PSO levies are needed.
"I don't think that people see that," he said.
Throughout 2007, he said the fire departments in the county will need to
get involved because the costs will soon be coming out of their pockets
if a future levy does not pass. The 911 funds were also expected to help
pay for MARCS radio systems needed in several townships.
Nelson acknowledged the irony of several expanded liquor sales levies
passing, while law enforcement levies were turned down.
"It keeps a person humble and that is a good thing" he said. "Every
elected official needs that. We'll continue to work the best we can."
This election represented how people are fed up with how the government
is being run, he said, and he wasn't too surprised when the PSO levies
failed. It shows that emergency services just aren't a priority to the
public right now, but people still expect the same service - which isn't possible.
"When you flip on a switch you expect a light to come on," Nelson said.
"When you call 911 you expect a response. We are trying to respond in
the most efficient and cost effect manner."
Millcreek and Jerome Townships were both seeking levies to fund police
protection. Jerome Township Trustee Ron Rhodes said today that the
three-member board now has three directions to go - abandon the PSO
program; scale back; or seek another levy. He said a decision will need
to be made by the January budget.
Rhodes said the township has spent almost $300,000 over the past four
years out of township reserves to carry the program.
"We absolutely cannot afford to do that in 2007," Rhodes said. "This is serious."

Local polling places report no problems

Precinct workers say early turnout is heavy
From J-T staff reports:
Workers at the various polling places on this election day are busy and
satisfied, if Milford Center presiding judge Gayle Earl is any indication.
"The machines are working wonderful and the workers are doing good and
the people are all happy," Earl told the Journal-Tribune  this morning.
"Everybody loves them," is how Beth Marshall, presiding judge for
Marysville Precincts 9, 13 and 14, described the machines. "They are
doing very well."
Marshall was one of several presiding judges reporting lines of people
waiting to cast their ballots. Although that's not necessarily unusual,
Marshall said. Voters generally are eager to cast their ballots before
they go to work, she said, and then again after work, but this year the
turnout has been steady.
"It is like the presidential election," Marshall said.
"We're going to have a great turnout," said Sue Lucas, presiding judge
for Darby B.
Lucas said as early as this morning probably 30 to 35 percent of the
people registered at that precinct had voted.
Marie Faulk of Jerome East A also reported a good number of absentee
ballots cast. But at one point, she said, a line of voters was snaking
along the hall of Jerome United Methodist Church.
Faulk steered clear of predicting a record turnout, however.
"It's been very steady," said Millcreek presiding judge Liz Neds.
Neds also reported a line of voters ready to cast ballots first thing
this morning.
Earl had one more thing to add about today's voters. "They're very
polite, very orderly," she said.
New rules allowing open voting to anyone for no reason resulted in more
requests than previous elections.
A spokesman from the Union County Board of Elections reported that they
received a total of 2,538 requests for absentee ballots and 2,319 have
been returned as of press time today. Ballots will be accepted until
polls close today at 7:30 p.m.
The majority of ballot requests came from the mail - 1,527; followed by
in office requests of 805; and hand carry of 106.
During the most recent presidential election, the board received
approximately 2,000 requests for absentee ballots.

Jerome Township plans to hire consultan
By CINDY BRAKE
Jerome Township officials broke new ground during Monday's regular
trustee board meeting.
Trustees Bob Merkle, Ron Rhodes and Andrew Thomas unanimously voted to
appropriate $50,000 for the purpose of hiring a consultant or
consultants to assist in the process of determining the potential for
and/or the development of an annexation agreement or Joint Economic
Agreement with Marysville in the designated growth area on the sewer
water agreement.
"We have one chance to do it and do it right," Merkle said about the
board's decision.
Prior to the vote, zoning coordinator Kathleen Crowley explained that
this is a collaborative effort between Jerome Township and Marysville.
She speculated that some, not all, funds would begin to be dispersed
within 30 days. Crowley said a consultant would serve as a non-biased,
consensus builder to educate the group.
"This is ground breaking in Union County," Crowley said.
Crowley explained that current discussions with Marysville officials
about an "annexation" agreement are in reality a "non-annexation"
agreement guaranteeing water and sewer services to township residents
without the requirement of annexation. Prior to Monday's action, members
of Marysville City Council and administration have met with Jerome
Township officials to create three subcommittees. The subcommittees
include land use, contractual and economic development.
"Marysville has the water and sewer. We're going to have to work up a
rapport ... with Marysville. This is a new ball game," said Rhodes.
Thomas asked Crowley about the open-meeting process. She ascertained him
that all subcommittee recommendations would be presented to the full
board which are open to the public.
The trustees also voted to vacate a prior resolution that had set aside
$25,000 to complete a comprehensive plan and redirect that money toward
hiring a consultant.
Clerk Robert Caldwell addressed numerous false statements made in a
random newsletter, "The Country Zone Newsletter," that was distributed
in the township by former trustee Susie Wolfe.
Point by point, he clarified several statements made in the four-page
newsletter about the police protection levy on today's ballot.
To the question "why are the trustees rushing to put this on the ballot
right now?", Caldwell said the board has been talking about the need
for  permanent funding for "quite some time on a regular basis." In
fact, he pointed out that it was while Wolfe was on the board that the
township incurred deficit spending from the general fund for police protection.
"I find it interesting that the individual whose name was on the flyer
was in a position to take action at the time the township was in deficit
spending," Caldwell said.
Rhodes said the newsletter included a lot of erroneous information. He
added that Wolfe is no longer a township resident and moved to Dublin
after leaving office. The newsletter lists a post office box address and
states it is put out by a long-time resident and independent citizen.
Wolfe was not present at the meeting.
Rhodes suggested that the newsletter be turned over to the prosecuting
attorney. The board agreed.
Merkle said the newsletter included a gross exaggeration concerning the
amount of time he met with legal council on township business. Another
concern involved a statement about the LUC completing a comprehensive
plan for a specific amount of money. All three trustees said they had
never received written information from LUC.
Concerning the police protection levy, Caldwell said the first officer
was hired in 1998 through a three-year federal grant and cost the
township $2,000. The cost to the township increased to: $10,000 in 1999;
$16,000 in 2000; $17,000 in 2001; $73,000 in 2002; $93,000 in 2003;
$116,000 in 2004; $141,000 in 2005; and $164,000 in 2006. In 2004, the
township experienced an $85,000 deficit in the general fund and $62,000 in 2005.
Merkle and Caldwell both said that using the one-time payment of an
estate tax for an ongoing program is a stop-gap fix.
Caldwell also explained how the levy rate was determined with the help
of the Union County auditor to cover the cost of up to five officers
during the life of the five-year levy.
"If you want to continue the current protection or increase it, then it
needs funding,"  Caldwell said.
In other business:
. Rhodes recognized trustee Thomas for in innovation in building a brine
unit for the township at a cost of approximately $500. A new unit would
cost a minimum of $4,000.
. The board heard an update on insurance rates for township property.
. Fire Chief Scot Skeldon said protective masks for pandemic flu have
been purchased for the department and a recent seminar focused on geriatrics.
. Concerning cemetery matters, Merkle said vases are in and settled
graves have been filled in.
. Several fund transfers were approved within the general fund, zoning
fund, fire division and road and bridge fund.
. Former trustee Freeman May asked for information on numerous expenditures.

Community Care Train gears up for 20th year
From J-T staff reports:
Care Train of Union County is gearing up for the 20th year.
For two decades the Care Train has been working with volunteers to
provide children and their families, food and gifts during the holiday
season. Working in cooperation with the Community Action Agency of Union
County, Care Train's mission is to identify those who are facing
financial difficulties and provide them with toys, food and other
essentials to help bring a sense of joy during the holiday season.
Toys can be brought to the main drop off points at Marysville Honda and
Burger King. Sponsorship information can be obtained by calling
937-642-4986 or stop by many local establishments to pick up a brochure.
The highlight of the Care Train efforts is a live auction on the second
Saturday of December at McAuliffe's Ace Hardware store in Marysville and
broadcast live on the local TimeWarner Cable news channels six and nine.
It can also be heard on WUCO St. Gabriel radio.
Last years fundraising efforts raised $72,000.
For more information, contact Laslow at P.O. Box 68, Marysville, OH
43040; 642-7847; or www.caretrain.org <http://www.caretrain.org>

Trip to India shaped pastor's life

By KARLYN BYERS
A mission trip to India when he was a high school senior had a profound
affect on Paul Schlueter.
The young man from Lansing, Mich., was astonished by the vast number of
people inhabiting the area he visited and moved by the profound poverty
in which the people subsisted.
"Your heart goes out to them," said Schlueter, who little more than a
decade after that trip was installed as pastor at St. Paul Lutheran
Church near Chuckery.
Schlueter, 33, said that infamous sojourn was one of several events
which caused him to reevaluate the direction in which his life was headed.
"It started to become clear to me that the way to help people in need
was to meet their spiritual needs," he said.
He chose to attend Concordia College in Ann Arbor, Mich., and seminary
at Concordia Theological School in St. Louis, en route to becoming a
full-fledged Lutheran pastor.
Along his spiritual journey, he also has traveled to other poverty
stricken areas in Africa and the Philippines, and served seven years as
associate pastor at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Seymour, Ind.,
south of Indianapolis.
But ties with the Marysville community were instrumental in bringing
Schlueter and his young family to St. Paul. His wife Julie, is a
Marysville High School graduate who completed her student
teaching at St. Paul.
And Schlueter's mother-in-law, Judy Morris, is an administrative
secretary in the volunteer services department at Memorial Hospital of
Union County. His father-in-law, Bill Morris, headed Memorial's physical
therapy department before his retirement. Both attend St. John's
Lutheran Church where Schlueter and his wife were married almost 10
years ago by Pastor Thomas Hackett.
The Schlueters are the parents of a 5-year-old daughter, Anna, and a
3-year-old son, William. Julie Schlueter has "temporarily retired" from
teaching, according to her husband, and is taking care of their offspring.
Mrs. Schlueter earns high praise from her husband, both as a helpmate
and a pastor's wife.
"The past 10 years have been an amazing blessing," Schlueter said. "My
wife is a tremendous help and a tremendous support."
He adds, "Being a pastor's wife is not an easy task because there are
always a lot of expectations. You're always kind of on display."
At approximately 525 members, St. Paul's congregation is smaller than
the 950 or so members at Redeemer Lutheran Church. But St. Paul has the
added responsibility of managing the attached school which houses pupils
from pre-kindergarten through seventh grade.
In additional to his regular pastoral duties of visiting the sick,
ministering to the ill, taking care of church business and preaching,
Schlueter teaches a religion class in the morning to junior high pupils
and assists with Wednesday morning chapel.
Schlueter said he enjoys the involvement with St. Paul's youths.
"Kids are 'what you see is what you get.' They are very refreshingly
honest and I enjoy the opportunity to talk to them," he said.
He likes to look upon the congregation and see young faces.
"The worship service is for the entire family of God. God doesn't
segment into age groups and preferences," he said.
He also enjoys a variety of musical instruments during the worship service.
"I don't think that every song needs to be played on the organ,"
Schlueter said. "The organ is a beautiful instrument that has served the
church for a hundred years (but) I think it is worthwhile to
hear other instruments."
One of the advantages of Christian education, Schlueter said, is that
there are more opportunities to teach children "right" and "wrong"
concepts. There also is more freedom to steer pupils in the right
direction; to help them understand the consequences of their actions and
see that obedience to their parents, teachers and others in authority is
what God desires.
He likes to see young people involved in mission trips - not only short
work trips to blighted rural areas to fix and repair houses and public
buildings but to more far-flung places.
"Mission trips are ... a good opportunity for (young people) to use
gifts God has given them," he said. "But I'd also like to see some trips
to places outside the United States. Having done that sort of thing in
the past I know what a profound affect it had on me ...
it would for any Christian."
He recalled a family of four or five in India who lived in a home no
bigger than the average American walk-in closet. It was really just a
shack, Schlueter said, adding "We are so spoiled in this country. Even
people who are poor by our standards are wealthy in countries
like India and Haiti."
Schlueter also remembered hearing a pastor from Haiti talk while
Schlueter was pastoring at Redeemer Lutheran. On his way to baptize a
child, the pastor was stopped by a policeman and dragged out of his
vehicle because the policeman believed the pastor was a supporter of the
man in power.
"I can't imagine having a loaded gun pointed at me and ready to be
fired," Schlueter said. "It's humbling to listen to people who live and
work in those situations."
It also inspires him, Schlueter said, to "do more, to do better."

Man found dead after crash
From J-T staff reports:
The Ohio State Highway Patrol Marysville Post is investigating the death
of a Marysville man after a Saturday evening crash.
After being transported for injuries from the crash, Thomas A. Gale, 53,
was pronounced dead at Memorial Hospital of Union County by Union County
Coroner Dr. David Applegate.
According to OSP reports, at approximately 4:01 p.m. Gale was driving
northbound on U.S. 36 in a 2005 Ford F-150. He lost control and went off
the right side of the road, struck a sign post, then traveled about
one-quarter of a mile before hitting a ditch and stopping against a
guardrail on the eastbound entrance ramp to U.S. 33 at County Road 133.
OSP investigators are looking into the possibility that natural causes
from a health condition may have led to the crash.

JA will make fourth try at passing levy

By CORINNE BIX
Jonathan Alder residents will get chance number four to vote on an
operating levy for the school district on Tuesday.
The .75 percent-earned income tax levy comes after three failed levies
in the last year. In November 2005 and February of this year the
district ran a .5 percent income tax and in August the district went
with a 5.9 mill property tax.
The .75 earned income tax varies from the previous .5 percent income tax
because certain types of income are not taxed hence shrinking the
overall tax pool. An earned income tax does not tax pensions, dividends,
estates and allows for both farm and business profit/loss to be
considered when determining one,s income.
Superintendent Doug Carpenter said the earned income tax is a better way to go.
"Many people who are on fixed incomes, even if they are supportive of
the schools, have a difficult time finding the money to pay more
property tax, " Carpenter explained, "This form of tax is a better
option for those people and for farmers in years when they make no profit."
The levy is to maintain existing programs for five more years.
Carpenter said that if passed the district should be in good shape for
the next five years.
"Hopefully, before then we'll have a remedy/fix at the state level and
we won't have to ask our community for their continued support at that
time if that happens," he said.
Carpenter explained that the district has received no increases in state
funding in the current two-year state budget. He added that the state
continues to ignore four Supreme Court decisions directing them to fix
school funding.
If the earned income tax levy passes, Jonathan Alder will remain one of
the lowest taxed school districts in the state which spend less taxpayer
money per pupil.
Last month the school board approved level one budget cuts. The approved
cuts will eliminate more than $300,000 from this year,s budget.
The 19 cuts range from $2,500 to $45,000 and freeze the operating
budget. Larger ticket items include delaying the purchase of one school
bus at $45,000, saving $30,000 on retirement and fringe benefits paid to
staff by hiring less experience personnel, eliminating field trips at
$25,000, and delaying the purchase of textbooks at $22,000.
Smaller ticket items include the delay of purchase or elimination of
miscellaneous supplies and district resources.
If the levy fails on Tuesday, the board will reconvene to review the
phase two cuts. They are as follows: reducing elementary busing from the
current two mile radius to the state-required one mile radius;
eliminating high school busing; eliminating all extra curricular
activities and reducing staff thus increasing class size and decreasing
supervision of students.
"Everything we do is about kids and costs relate directly to the
programs and opportunities we can provide for them," Carpenter said,
"With a lack of adequate state aid, we need local support until the
state fixes the educational funding problem."

Two townships seeking money for public safety officers
By RYAN HORNS
Two townships in Union County are hoping the Nov. 7 election brings
financial support for their public safety officer programs.
Jerome Township has placed a 2.2 mill, five-year levy on the ballot. The
levy will cost the owner of a $100,000 home approximately $67.38 per
year beginning tax year 2007. Millcreek Township has placed a 3.3 mill,
five-year levy on the ballot. The levy will cost the owner of a $100,00
home $101.06 per year beginning tax year 2007.
The Jerome levy would generate $339,000 annually. The Millcreek levy
would generate $113,000 annually.
A press release from the sheriff's office states that "without the
public safety officers, the Union County Sheriff's Office will have less
manpower to provide dedicated traffic enforcement in township complaint
areas. Response times would increase due to deputies covering larger
areas. More than likely, the sheriff's office would not be able to offer
some of the programs the public safety officers monitor and perform in
the township."
The release also explains that the millage asked for by each township is
different because valuation is lower in Millcreek Township. In order to
raise the revenue needed, the millage needed to be higher for the
Millcreek Township levy.
A PSO is a deputy sheriff who has received additional certification as a
basic level emergency medical technician and is also certified at a
firefighter IA level. The deputies act as a first responder for
supporting existing fire and emergency agencies until their personnel
arrive on the scene.  They also drive SUVs instead of the traditional
cruiser in order to carry the additional medical equipment and supplies
for them to respond to emergency calls. The PSO also perform programs
such as Project Life Saver, school bus safety rides, Senior Watch,
township traffic enforcement blitzes, community orientated policing and
problem solving, more visibility to deter crime and devote time to
resident complaints.
Jerome Township has been involved in the PSO program since 1998 and
Millcreek Township has been involved since 1999. This has led some
residents to ask why they need to start paying now?
The Union County Sheriff's Office reported that the reason is because a
federal grant implemented the PSO program. Townships involved were
responsible for the salary and benefits and county dollars paid for
vehicles, training, supplies and overtime. The grant covered 75 percent
of the cost the first year and the townships picked up the remaining 25
percent. Over a three-year period, the percentage from the federal grant
was to be reduced annually. The townships involved were to be paying the
entire salary and benefits at the end. This has led for the need of a
levy to help fund the additional costs.
Millcreek Township joined Jerome Township to obtain additional federal
funding to add two additional public safety officers. All three grants
have expired with Jerome picking up 75 percent of the salary and
benefits and Millcreek picking up 25 percent for a total of $186,645.43
for 2006. The Union County Commissioners are still providing the funding
for vehicles, equipment, gasoline, maintenance, training and overtime at
a cost of $207,000 for the three officers. The percentage difference
between what the townships pay is based on the larger population, amount
of roads and square miles within Jerome Township, as compared to Millcreek.
Jerome Township has reached a point where it is using reserve funds to
provide dedicated law enforcement and public safety service to its
citizens. In 2005 the township paid approximately $140,000 from those
funds for the PSO program. The cost for 2006 will be approximately $150,000.
Millcreek Township receives 50 percent of the traffic fine money from
the court system on citations written within the township. Although
there is revenue returning to the township, Millcreek Township has spent
$36,477 from township general funds to provide dedicated law enforcement
and public safety service to the township residents. The cost for 2006
will be approximately $43,088 from township funds.

Honda and Nationwide report record gifts on same day
From J-T staff reports:
The Union County United Way campaign got a big boost from two corporate
supporters on Thursday as Honda of America, Mfg. and Nationwide
Insurance reported record results exceeding $365,000 designated to Union
County for the 2006-07 campaign.
The announcements were made during simultaneous ceremonies in Marysville
and Columbus and represent almost half of the local $750,000 goal.
Honda's United Way designation to Union County totals $260,060.70,
including an all-time high in associate giving at $173,373.80. The total
represents a $20,000 increase over 2005. Overall Honda of America, Mfg.
pledges to United Way's across Ohio total more than $1.84 million.
"This is a true expression of our fundamental values here at Honda,"
said Tom Shoupe, senior vice president of company services and 2006-07
campaign chair at the company. "This is truly a team effort and I want
to thank the 'white coats' for all their work on this project."
The HAM United Way campaign with Honda of America Mfg., Inc. benefited a
total of 18 local United Way agencies.
Contributions to county agencies for 2007 are as follows: Allen,
$63,620.40; Auglaize, $88,324.50; Champaign, $109,232.22; Clark,
$87,428.82; Darke, $11,136.00; Delaware, $89,651.40; Franklin,
$378,714.86; Hardin, $51,290.27; Logan, $288,276.59; Madison,
$31,386.00; Marion, $76,348.38; Mercer, $48,378.30; Miami-Covington,
$4,671.90; Miami-Piqua, $16,423.80; Miami-Tipp, $7,143;  Miami-Troy,
$35,836.50; Shelby, $138,427.19; and Union, $260,060.70.
Over the past 26 years, Honda of America United Way campaigns have
contributed more than $24.75 million.
Nationwide's United Way designation to Union County totals $105,044,
marking the first time that a company based outside of the county
exceeded $100,000. The total includes an all-time high in associate
giving at $52,522, mostly from commuters who live within the county
borders. Overall Nationwide pledges to United Way's across the country
total more than $16.4 million.
"Nationwide associates, agents and retirees have a strong commitment to
our communities," said Jackie Sells, manager of community programs at
Nationwide. "We are delighted to continue and enhance our support to
more than 800 local United Way's across the country."
Union County's United Way has more than $543,000 or 72 percent of its
goal with a month remaining in its campaign
Sixteen of the 19 workplace campaigns that have concluded and report
increased giving over 2005.  Nestle R&D finished just shy of $30,000.
Industrial Ceramic Products increased giving by more than $2,700 over
last year while the Union County Board of MR/DD had more than $2,500 in
new pledges.
The Online Community Auction generated more than $9,000 in new money for
the organization.
Union County's United Way programs and services include more than 24
member agencies in Union County.

City called one of Ohio's best
Council report

By RYAN HORNS
Marysville recently won the distinction of being one of "Ohio's Best Hometowns."
Economic Development Director Eric Phillips announced Thursday morning
that Marysville will be on the cover of Ohio Magazine's November first
annual Ohio's best hometowns issue expected to hit stands today. Joining
Marysville are Mariemont, Marietta, Maumee and Wooster. Ohio Magazine
editors nominated cities in six categories: community spirit, education,
entertainment, health ans safety, business environment and culture and heritage.
At Thursday night's regular council meeting, city administrator Kathy
House recognized the Chamber of Commerce and Phillips for the hard work
in putting together the application package. The package is currently on
display at the Chamber of Commerce.
"Marysville is one of the best," House said.
The article focuses on the unique people and features of Marysville,
quoting local business owners Liz Meeder and Rorie Dingey with extra
attention on local cobbler Gene Wright.
In other discussions, House reported more good news - the Main Street
railroad crossing reopened Thursday morning after completion of concrete
repairs. She said the status of the Industrial Parkway crossing remains
unclear, but could be open by the end of today.
"Then we are done with railroad crossing fixes. for the time being," House said.
The second reading and public hearing was held on an ordinance to raise
water rates in the city over a two-year period.
Resident Lloyd Baker said he was concerned over the ordinance. Along
with other rate hikes enacted recently, the increase "seems sort of
high." He also spoke of campaign promises council members made toward
having development pay for itself. New businesses come in and residents
end up paying the costs through rate increases.
"A lot of citizens have been victimized too much for development," Baker said.
City finance director John Morehart explained that the Water Master Plan
and the Wastewater Master Plan, can both be found at the Marysville
Public Library for residents to read. The books detail the city's plan
for the rates "well into the future." He said the 2006 water rate
increase is 5 percent, the 2007 increase is 8 percent and it would end
in 2008 with 8 percent. Based on a 500 cubic feet per month average
usage rate, a water bill would be $40.58 in 2006, $43.81 in 2007 and
then $47.32 in 2008.
Morehart also admitted that Marysville water rates are among the
"highest in the state." The reason is due to the city purchasing its own
water system, which brought on $12 -$13 million in debt. He said that in
2007 the city would be gearing toward building its reservoir and then
the wastewater treatment plant project. While funds coming from tap-in
fees will help pay off the accrued debt from these projects, the banks
that finance the city's projects need to know exactly how the debt will
be paid ? even if development freezes. He said the most dependable way
is through rates paid by citizens. Tap-in fees will still be collected,
which also will go toward paying that debt down. He added that the city
is planning to index tap-in fees early next year so that there will be a
set basis of increasing the fees with inflation.
Councilman Mark Reams said that by adding in those additional funds, for
example, residents may only have to pay a 2 percent rate increase
instead of a 6 percent.
House said this is why the proposed ordinance to increase the water rate
is only for two years. This way the city can see if the increase can be
reduced later on.
"We are taking steps. to plan for the future," Burke said.
In other discussions:
. Councilman Dan Fogt brought up the issue of South Park flooding. He
requested that the Adena Pointe development create adequate stormwater
outlets "as soon as possible." Fogt reiterated that city law states
property owners are responsible for the flow of water on their property.
Flooding has increased in South Park since the development started.
"I know Adena Pointe purchased the property," Fogt said. "But when they
purchased the property they purchased the problem."
He requested the developer do something "before further damage gets done."
Gore said that the city Public Service Committee plans to hold a meeting
on the subject soon.
. In his closing statements Fogt wanted to acknowledge the recent death
of Marysville resident Christopher Beckley. He said Beckley was nearly
blind and was instrumental in bringing blind crossings to the city stoplights.
Fogt said Beckley should be remembered as "a good guy who helped get
improvements made to the city."
. Phillips reported that the first reading was held on a resolution to
approve the continuance of Enterprise Zone tax incentive agreements with
eight companies within the city. He said all have been continued.
Phillips also stated that the companies' contributions to the city have
exceeded hopes with an additional $45 million benefiting the local economy.

Voters to decide fate of 9-1-1 levy
By RYAN HORNS
Voters will be asked to approve a 0.5-mill replacement levy and
0.25-mill increase for operating the county 9-1-1 system. The five-year
levy would generate $866,000 annually.
Union County Sheriff Rocky Nelson said additional funds are needed to
cover increasing operational costs, the loss of state revenue, wireless
costs and projected county growth. He adds that measures have been taken
to cut operational costs by reducing the number of answering points
within the county from two to one.
Union County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Tom Morgan said a fact sheet
on the 9-1-1 levy can be found online at www.co.union.oh.us/Sheriff at
the bottom of the left hand screen.
The online fact sheet explains that the levy will cost the owner of a
$100,000 property approximately $22.98 per year or about 6 cents a day
for tax year 2007. The levy will cover tax years 2007-2011. The
additional 0.25 mills will not be collected until 2008.
The current levy costs $14.18 annually for a $100,000 property valuation
and generates $536,000 annually, according to the Union County Auditor.
The millage has not increased since the levy was first passed in 1988.
The current five-year 0.5-mill levy expires on Jan. 1.
If the 9-1-1 levy does not pass, Morgan said the county commissioners
and the sheriff's office may have to regroup.
"If it fails we will probably do everything we can to keep the 9-1-1
service going," Morgan said. "But I'm not so sure that we can."
He said if the levy fails the county would have to do a lot of research
and analysis to determine what to do next and how the system could
survive on remaining funds.
Morgan said that on Aug. 4, 2005 county commissioners passed a
resolution "to get the ball rolling" on overhauling the county 9-1-1
system. As a result, the 9-1-1 Planning Commission was created which
then created the 9-1-1 Technical Advisory Committee. That committee then
held meetings and discussions which led to the current levy request.
The online fact sheet covers recent changes within the 9-1-1 system. As
of Sept. 6, all emergency calls made in Union County are answered by
Union County Sheriff's dispatchers. If the Union County Sheriff's Office
Communications Center loses service, all 9-1-1 calls are automatically
routed to Logan County Sheriff's Office dispatchers. This is part of the
revised emergency backup plan.
"It was not feasible to have the 9-1-1 backup systems within close
proximity of each other," the fact sheet notes. "With Marysville Police
Department as the backup, a disaster could dismantle both answering
points in a few minutes, leaving the county without service for a long
period of time."
Nelson has reported that the dispatch center at the Marysville Police
Department does not have the equipment to answer cellular wireless 9-1-1
calls, as the Sheriff's Office dispatch center can. Costs for the
Marysville police to acquire the equipment would have been approximately
$22,500 with recurring costs of $16,000 on an annual basis. By directing
all the emergency calls to the Union County Sheriff's Office as one
centralized answering point, the expense of duplicate equipment and
services at a cost of $332,873.44 over the next five years is eliminated.

Schools agree to amend TIF structure
By KARLYN BYERS
A joint meeting between Marysville School Board members and officials of
the Marysville City government resulted in an amended TIF School
Compensation Agreement - sort of.
After lengthy discussion, board member unanimously authorized
superintendent Larry Zimmerman and treasurer Dee Cramer to sign the
amendment - provided changes were made in the verbiage to more tightly
define the city's infrastructure needs.
The amendment concerns $5.5 million in infrastructure needs at the City
Gate project across from Coleman's Crossing. It also involves another $6
million which represents infrastructure improvements to the surrounding
highway serving the Coleman Crossing/Delaware Avenue/City Gate area.
"We feel that we have defined it as clearly as we can define it at this
time," said Kathy House, city administrator.
"I think the school district just wants to know what's being spent and
what it's being spent on," said Stephen Grassbaugh, attorney at Peck
Shaffer who was representing Marysville Schools.
Present at the special board meeting in the district administrative
office were Zimmerman, Cramer and school board members Roy Fraker, Bill
Hayes, Jeff Mabee, Scott Johnson and Tom Brower. Also present were
House, city engineer Phil Roush, finance director John Morehart, Bricker
& Eckler attorney Matt Stout who was representing the city, Grassbaugh
and developer Phil Connolly who is spearheading the City Gate project.
Connolly said if the city and school district couldn't agree on the TIF
amendment, he had a "big problem."
In the end, an agreement was reached after House suggested a "caucus"
and she, Roush, Morehart and Stout left the room. They returned a few
minutes later, only to break into another caucus after Grassbaugh
pointed out a couple other areas which needed fine tuning.
When they returned, all agreed that a phrase addressing "additional
infrastructure improvements including but not limited to" roadways
improvements, water and storm sewer, land acquisition and others could
be added to the agreement.
When the changes are made and after Marysville Mayor Tom Kruse has
approved the document, Zimmerman and Cramer will sign the agreement.
"We are keeping more local money here by doing the TIFs," Zimmerman said
this morning in an e-mail communication. "Last night allowed us to
better define how those dollars would be used and that needed to happen
for the community as a whole.  Making the dollars go toward traffic in
the East Fifth Street area makes perfect sense for increasing business
opportunities in that area. The school district wanted a better
definition of how the city wanted to use those dollars and that happened
last night.  I applaud the city for (its) cooperation."
Morehart said this morning that he could "understand and appreciate the
school board's position."
"In the next couple years the demand in that area will be so great we
will have to do something with the traffic flow," he added.
Morehart said good traffic flow in and out of that area will bring more
businesses which will increase property values.
"As property values go up, TIF dollars will go up and the school
district will benefit," he said.

Many local issues will face voters Nov. 7
From J-T staff reports:
Numerous issues will be before voters in the Nov. 7 election.
All Union County voters will be asked to consider a five-year levy for
operating the 911 system. The .5-mill replacement and .25-mill increase
would generate $866,000 annually and cost $22.98 per $100,000.
Residents in the Northern Union County Joint Fire & EMS District (six
precincts) are being asked to consider a new, continuing 4-mill fire
levy that would generate $256,400 annually and cost $122.50 for every
$100,000 valuation of property. Precincts include part of York,
Claibourne and Jackson townships. The levy would maintain existing
services and expand service to include 16 hours a day, seven days a
week, as well as replace equipment and apparatus.
Other issues will appear in:
. Jerome Township - additional 2.2-mill, five-year tax levy for police
protection. To generate $339,000 annually and cost $67.38 per $100,000
valuation.
. Mill Creek Township - additional 3.3-mill, five-year tax levy for
police protection. To generate $113,000 annually and cost $101.06 per
$100,000 valuation.
. Union Township - replacement of a 1-mill, five-year levy for current
operating expenses. To generate $30,200 annually and cost $30.62 per
$100,000 valuation. The previous levy generated $10,132 and cost $30.58
per $100,000 valuation.
. Unionville Center - replacement of a 2.95-mill, five-year levy for
current operating expenses. To generate $6,100 annually and cost $90.34
per $100,00 valuation. The previous levy generated $4,000 annually and
cost $56.90 per $100,000 valuation.
. Marysville - amendment to the city charter.
. Jerome Precinct 4 local option - Sunday and weekly sales -
Tartan/Corazon Restaurant & Club House
. Marysville Precinct 12 local option - Sunday sales - Applebee's
Neighborhood Grill & Bar
. Marysville Precinct 2 local option - Sunday sales - Henderson House
. York Township local option - Sunday and weekly sales - El Picacho
Mexican-American Restaurant
Overlapping questions and issues include:
. Jonathan Alder Local School District (six precincts) - .75-percent
income tax, five years, for current operating expenses
. Tri-Rivers Joint Vocational School District (13 precincts) - renewal
of 1.3-mill, five-year levy for current operating expenses
. Southeast Hardin Northwest Union Joint Fire District (one precinct) -
additional .7-mill, five year levy for fire protection

Remembrance program offered
From J-T staff reports:
Mannasmith Funeral Homes of Marysville and West Mansfield will again be
hosting their annual Holiday Remembrance Program on Sunday, Nov. 12, in
the sanctuary of the Marysville First United Methodist Church.
The Holiday Remembrance Program in its 12th year continues to serve
those in the community who have suffered the loss of a loved one. The
gathering supports mourners of all ages and embraces those who are
grieving with fellow bereaved individuals and families.
The keynote speaker will again be Todd Little. Little is one of only a
few full-time licensed professionals in the field of Aftercare in the
state of Ohio. He serves as the Director of Bereavement Services with
Toland-Herzig Funeral Homes in the New Philadelphia area and has served
more than 25 years in the social and human service "helping"
professions. He is a graduate of the University of Akron and has
completed additional graduate level work at Kent State University and
Penn State University.
Little is a vital resource to the families of Tuscarawas County and his
work with the bereaved has received statewide, national, and
international acclaim. He is a highly sought after speaker and has been
the featured writer in many national and professional publications.
Little has much professional experience but nothing has prepared him
more than his own personal journey through grief.  His wife, Linn, died
in 1994, just nine days after delivering triplet boys. The compassion
offered by his funeral director and a reflection of his own experiences
encouraged him to consider this important calling to the bereaved.
"Todd provides a compassionate, informative message that really reaches
the people who attend," Roger Mannasmith, owner of Mannasmith Funeral
Homes, said. "We are fortunate he has made himself available to us once
again, and we are quite proud we can offer this program to everyone in
the community, not just the families we have served."
In addition to the speaker, the service will welcome those in attendance
to decorate the Holiday Remembrance Tree with memorial keepsake
ornaments in honor of their loved ones. A candle lighting ceremony will
take place and Steph France will once again be the featured vocalist.
Refreshments and fellowship will follow the program.
  "The Holiday Remembrance Program is such an important service for us
to offer," Derric Brown, funeral director with Mannasmith Funeral Homes,
said. "Those who are grieving must know they are not alone in their
grief.  "We are proud this event can focus on the families who are still
hurting and celebrate the memories of their loved ones."
This is a service for the community. Anyone who has experienced a loss
may attend. Transportation will be made available.
Reservations to attend must be made by Nov. 9 by calling Mannasmith or
Brown at 642-1751 or 355-3341.

 

 

Marysville Journal Tribune
copyrightę2006
All rights reserved