Area National Guard recruiting strong
Despite war, numbers are up
An on-going war in Iraq hasn't hurt Ohio National Guard
In fact, according to figures provided by the 585th
Company, based in Delaware, numbers are up this year and are
exceed recruitment goals.
"We are coming off a record year,"
said Staff Sgt. Toby Norman, of
Dublin, who serves at the Delaware Armory.
"Ohio is number one in the
nation when it comes to recruiting."
fiscal year, the National Guard Bureau set a goal for the Ohio Army
Guard to reach a strength of 10,525 soldiers, but members
expectations and ended the year with 10,850 soldiers,
"We are pleased with the recruits here in Union County," he said.
have three from Fairbanks, three from Marysville, and one from
Fairbanks recruits include Pfc. Jeff Lucas; Pfc. Brian Legg;
Samuel Stapp. From Marysville recruits are: Pfc. Jolie Anderson;
Chris Bringle; and Pfc. Kyle Ware. North Union's recruit is Pfc.
"They're ready to get going, very high speed individuals,
ready to take
on anything that comes at them," said Spc. John Prenger, 585th
Police Company. "They're just the type of people we're looking
The new soldiers will start with basic training and move on to
individual training. Once those are completed, they will serve
weekend per month at the Delaware Armory.
As part of the military
police duties, soldiers learn patrolling,
convoy security, arresting, riot
control, take downs, house invasions,
and handling prisoner of war
situations. According to Norman and
Prenger, soldiers are notified well in
advance if they will be deployed.
Norman said he hasn't heard of any
deployment plans for the 585th Guard.
The National Guard offers a $20,000
enlisting bonus, a full scholarship
to any accredited university in Ohio, and
$300 per month for living
expenses. Soldiers are also paid for all training
"Despite the benefits, which are great, we do stress why we're
Prenger said. "We are soldiers first and we don't beat around the
about that when recruiting."
Prenger said a typical commitment for
the National Guard is six years,
followed by two years of inactive
"Once a month, you get to see your friends, your best friends," he
"They bring their civilian skills to the guard and the
opportunities are endless."
Norman said the 585th guard still
meets at the Delaware Armory but plans
are to eventually move to the
Marysville Armory, which will be located
behind the Union County YMCA.
Groundbreaking is scheduled for April.
Additional information about the
National Guard may be obtained by
calling (614) 440-5323 or visiting www.1800goguard.com.
sets 2007 funding levels
Record giving equals high allocations
The United Way of Union County allocated more than $543,000
agencies at January's board meeting, with an additional
earmarked for out-of-county United Way's and other programs.
2007 allocations follow a record-setting campaign in which United
projecting to surpass its $750,000 campaign goal by about
invested $716,628 in the community via United Way of
Union County last
The American Red Cross Union County Chapter will receive the most
Way funds, $100,000 for providing emergency services, blood mobiles,
safety trainings. The Salvation Army will receive the greatest
from $19,253 to $32,000, as it starts a new direct housing program
assist homeless families, complementing a homeless prevention program
already operates in the county.
Seventeen of United Way's 24 agencies
will receive increased funding
over last year. Fourteen will receive what
they requested in support.
"There is no rubber stamping of agency requests,"
said Brian O'Kane,
volunteer President of the United Way of Union County.
"Every agency is
evaluated on an individual basis and there is discussion on
An all-volunteer, 16-member budget &
admissions committee spent more
than five months on the process. Volunteers
weighed the impact made by
each member agency against the requests made by
those organizations, the
pool of available funds, and overall community
research, lively debate, and much consideration is given
recommendations become final.
"How effective are the
programs?" O'Kane said of the questions asked by
committee members. "Where
are the dollars being spent in the programs?
"How are the programs being
evaluated?" "How many people are being served?"
"Some agencies rarely ask
for additional funds and I regret it in the
years we can't meet their
requests," said Kathy Klug, a seven-year
veteran of the committee. "Other
agencies seem to add 10 percent each
year and hope for extra money, just on
the chance they might get it.
Other agencies develop new programming and show
a need for money to
'activate' those programs. Those issues seem to be what
members evaluate each year."
Even though United Way is
projecting to surpass its $750,000 campaign
goal, agency requests exceeded
the dollars available for allocation by
more than $63,000. United Way raises
funds for its own programming and
operating budget in addition to member
agencies' requests. United Way
must also honor designations that donors make
to United Ways in other
communities, and account 5 percent of campaign totals
for pledge loss.
"There will always be more need in our community than United
Way and its
agencies can address," said Barb Nicol, a 10-year committee
"That is true of every community. I think United Way donors expect
we will make the difficult decisions as they arise. All of this
that we prioritize the requests to the United Way. We want to
efficient, effective programs that address critical community needs.
United Way Board of Trustees gives careful thought to setting
campaign goal every year and the current circumstances will
vigorous debate on what the goal should be next year."
say that deciding how to split more than half a million
dollars among the
member agencies requires both a literal and proverbial
Committee members are asked to be as objective as
possible and those with
connections to particular agencies abstain from
voting on funding for those
"The committee was larger than in the recent past and members
broader range of perspectives on community needs and agency
said Nicol. "Examining issues and programs from different
helped me rethink financial responsibilities and service
"I am happy with the results," Klug said. "They are all not quite what
would have picked. But the reasons for support or non-support by
B&A committee members made sense. We compromised."
Way donor is eligible to participate on the B&A Committee and
can sign up
by contacting United Way.
"If you want to understand what happens in Union
County, this is a great
committee to be on," O'Kane said. "I was just shocked
by the amount of
need that is not visible to the average person. I had a lack
understanding about the lives of other people in our community.
are my neighbors. And I was much more naïve than I thought I
School officials excited over low bids
By KARLYN BYERS
Bid openings for
Marysville School District's new intermediate/middle
school turned out to be
a happy affair.
"We were very excited about how this turned out and the
numbers came in
wonderful," said Emily Wieringa of Thomas &
All bids came in under estimate, said Andrew Maletz of Steed
Paul Inc. There was a good number of bids submitted and a
amount of interest expressed by contractors who did not submit
who attended the bid opening.
"It's good to have a two-hour bid
opening," said Superintendent Larry
Zimmerman. "That is a good
Board members awarded contracts to three successful bidders during
special school board meeting Monday night at the district
Awarded the general trades and masonry contracts
Construction Company of Wapakoneta, in the amount of $10.5
bid was $1.1 million under estimate, according to
Another Wapakoneta company, Nagel Electric Inc., was awarded
electrical contract. That company's winning bid was $2,265,500,
was $454,000 under estimate.
The successful bidder for fire
suppression, plumbing and HVAC was Vaughn
Industries LLC of Carey at
$4,190,000. That bid also came under estimate
to the tune of $372,000.
am excited to get started and have something to talk about except
work," Wieringa told the board members.
Maletz briefed board members on the
100,000-square-foot high school addition.
"Overall, we're getting very
close to nailing down final designs on the building," he said.
media center will be "a pretty significant departure from the
library," Maletz said.
It will be situated off a wide hallway that will
details from the demolished Seventh Street School, he
added. The hallway
will grant access to the school's administrative
The new field house, which will be the size equivalent of
gymnasiums, will feature sound absorption boards because a
drywall interior will not be as soundproof as other surfaces,
But board president Roy Fraker and vice president Jeff Mabee
the use of drywall. They said "dings" could easily be made in the
by baseball pitchers practicing indoors.
Maletz said plans included
abuse resistant drywall, but perhaps that
could be upgraded to impact
resistant. He thanked the board members for
expressing their concerns.
other business, board members:
.Approved an out-of-state field trip to San
Diego, for Marysville High
School students enrolled in the Ohio Hi-Point's
Satellite Program. They will be attending a conference from
.Approved show choir parent volunteers Suzie Clarridge, Becky
Melissa Cunningham, Cheryl Groehl, Shawnee Vetanovetz, Heather
Karen Rogers, Kim Pettit, Tim Preston, Mike and Pam Hoying,
Rausch, Molly Decker, Brenda Zimmerman and Larry Zimmerman.
into executive session to discuss personnel. No action was
scheduled to be
Proposed minimum wage hike divides businesses
New pastor in place at St. John's
By KARLYN BYERS
Stepping into the Rev.
John Fair's office at St. John's Lutheran Church,
everything seems fairly
ordinary. Well, except for the deer's head
mounted on the wall or maybe the
guitar resting in a corner near the desk.
It's a serious business saving
souls, and it can be stressful. So Pastor
Fair likes to remind his
congregants to lighten up.
People should encourage one another, he said, make
one another look good
and have fun.
An acoustical guitarist who professes
a preference for the Beatles and
Led-Zeppelin, Fair has adapted the popular
children's song "Jesus Loves
Me" to be sung to the tune of "Mr.
He has been playing guitar since his early high school days in
1960s, and grew up with music in the house. His father played
kinds" of instruments by ear, Fair said, a musical ability he
But Mr. Fair the elder preferred country music, something
initially eschewed, although Pastor Fair now admits to a liking
vintage Garth Brooks.
He was born in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada,
and came to the United
States to attend Concordia College in Ann Arbor, Mich.
He transferred to
Concordia Teacher's College in River Forest, Ill., in 1975
from Concordia Theological Seminary in Fort Wayne, Ind.
first church assignment was Concordia Lutheran Church in Frohna,
he served for seven years. Other assignments have included
Lutheran Church in Aurora, Ill., and Holy Cross Lutheran
Church in Fort
On June 13, Pastor Fair, 52, will celebrate 25 years in the
Marysville will be a change of pace for Pastor Fair and his family.
Wayne, at about 125,000 people, is about five times larger
Marysville, Pastor Fair said. It is the second largest city in
"The big city is so busy," Pastor Fair said
with emphasis on the last
word. "People think that they are the ones in
control. God gets lost in
But Fort Wayne also is known as
the "City of Churches," Pastor Fair
said, housing 35 Lutheran churches alone.
As of May 2006, according to a
Fort Wayne, Ind., Web site, three national
Christian congregations were
headquartered in Fort Wayne - the Fundamental
Association, Missionary Church Inc. and the Fellowship of
Churches (formerly the Evangelical Mennonite Church).
Fair and his wife, Chris, have been married since 1978. They met
serving on a traveling music team and are the parents of Elizabeth
Ternet and Rachel of Fort Wayne, and Michael, a sophomore at
School. The Fairs recently settled into a home in the
Mrs. Fair, a pianist and organist, is a certified elementary
director of parish music. She becomes one of five organists who
St. John's, a blessing that is almost unparalleled in most
Fair said the organist abundance will help the church
"vulnerability" should an organist experience illness or a
emergency. It also could offer relief to other churches that
themselves temporarily without an organist.
This past summer Mrs.
Fair had the opportunity to play the pipe organ at
The Crystal Cathedral in
Garden Grove, Calif., while she and Pastor Fair
were attending a Missouri
Synod Pastoral Leadership Seminar.
"She really enjoyed that and they enjoyed
listening to her play," said
her proud husband.
Pastor Fair encourages his
congregation to be caring and supportive of
one another. It's a concept that
he fine-tuned as an associate pastor in
Aurora, when he developed a "care
ministry" and when he became pastor of
care at Holy Cross.
congregation doesn't care how much you know until they know how
care," he said.
The care ministry addresses gaps that occur within the church
complements what the pastor is doing. The pastor can become
at times, Fair said, with hospital visits, the dying, funerals,
situations and church business. But through a care ministry, the
can step forth, extend a loving hand, and make observations
recommendations to those in charge.
It can be as simple as delivering
homemade chicken soup to someone ill,
making a phone call to someone who has
been absent from church or
visiting a shut-in and taking mental notes of the
person's condition and
the condition of their dwelling.
"We are our
brother's keeper," Pastor Fair said. "Cain might not have
liked it but he was
his brother's keeper."
Not only does he make reference to the tragic story of
brothers Cain and
Abel found in the Old Testament book of Genesis, but Pastor
speaks of a literal devil.
"The devil hates a happy family,
whether it's nuclear or the church
family and he wants to destroy the head
(of the family)," he said. "He
is a real presence and he's to be cast out in
the name of Jesus."
Pastor Fair added that the devil, although subtle, is
not a declawed pussy cat that should be welcomed into the
home, but "a
roaring lion seeking someone to devour."
This and other life
lessons he hopes to impart to his congregation and
the young souls attending
St. John's School. He can be seen eating
lunch with the school's pupils in
the cafeteria, wandering around in the
classrooms and attending chapel.
Occasionally, he even plays the roaming
minstrel, walking the hallways and
"I want to be accessible," he said, adding that he doesn't
want to be
referred to as aloof, distant or unapproachable.
"With my care
ministry background, that is not me."
Milford Center man takes his talent from the dirt track to the
By CORINNE BIX
Jon Henry likes to drive fast and that might be his
ticket to an exciting future.
Henry, 20, is one of 16 chosen to
participate in Spike TV's reality show
"Reality Racing ? The Rookie
The reality show will begin filming in February and air this
Henry was one of 15,000 applicants.
If he wins, he could go home
with as much as $750,000 and a
professional racing contract.
racing go-carts since I was 11," Henry, of Milford Center said.
He grew up
around the sport since both his father and grandfather raced
open wheel dirt
"All of my experience comes from a dirt track," he said.
worked his way up the go-cart ladder and currently drives what's
United Midwestern Promoters (UMP) dirt modified open wheel.
He has raced at
the Eldora track in Rossburg and Limaland in Lima.
His race schedule runs
from March to September and he participates in at
least one if not two races
The average open wheel race takes approximately 20 minutes
of up to 110 miles per hour.
During the off season, Henry
works and attends ITT Tech in Hilliard
where he is working on an associate's
degree in drafting and graphic design.
Henry applied for the show in
spring of 2006. He was called back to
audition in December.
encouraged those auditioning to "show their talents." Henry
said a lot of
people took the audition to be a basic job interview,
whereas he wanted to
grab the judges attention.
"I dressed up like a cowboy," Henry said.
the help of his step-dad, the two came up with an audition that
the judges entertained.
Henry said he included a makeshift puppet show and
tried to play the
guitar before revealing to the judges that the reason he
mediocre at puppetry and music was because he was truly "meant to be
race car driver."
Henry said his entire family is very supportive of his
goal to become a
professional driver. In fact it was his grandmother living
who saw a commercial for the reality show and made her grandson
"My dream is to get all the way to the top," Henry said.
reality show will focus on stock car racing, familiar to many as
Henry said he doesn't have a lot of information as to what the
format of the
show will be or what he will be expected to do.
"If I had to guess I would
anticipate a possible 100 lap race," he said.
This will be a switch from
the shorter tracks and races that he has
become accustomed to.
has participants ranging in age from 18 to 49 years old.
Henry hopes to gain
national exposure from the show and prove to the
racing world that he has
what it takes to race in the big leagues.
He looks to racing idols Greg
Biffle and J.J. Yeley for motivation.
Henry likes Biffle's patient yet when
necessary aggressive approach to
driving. He looks to Yeley as a fellow
driver who raced at Eldora and
now drives on the Nextel circuit.
said he very rarely thinks about the dangers of racing.
"I'm more concerned
with where I will place in the end as opposed to the
possible risks," he
said. "Sometimes you just have to race hard and lay
it all out
Committee set to explore water rates
A meeting date has been set for a committee to discuss the future
Marysville water rates.
At the Thursday night city council meeting,
member David Burke announced
the ad hoc committee would meet Feb. 7 at 7:30
p.m. in council chambers
in City Hall, 125 E. Sixth St.
Burke said he
hopes to have the presence of Malcolm Pirnie engineers as
well as city bond
underwriters at the meeting in order to help create a
"meeting of the minds"
and resolve the issue.
In December, council voted down the legislation which
would have raised
city water rates over the next two years. The funding
generated from the
hike would have constructed a new reservoir to be located
Barker Road in Paris Township. In 2004 the engineering group
Pirnie created a Water Master Plan at the cost of $260,000 to the
Out of all the options that plan presented, city leaders agreed
increasing water rates 5 percent the first year, then another 8
the two remaining years was the best route.
Council President Ed
Pleasant explained that no council members were
ever opposed to the future
reservoir plans. What they were opposed to
were issues such as the hike
amount and its potential effect on residents.
Pleasant said the ad hoc
committee plans to work fast on the future of
water rates. He has set a
60-day time limit on resolving the issue.
"We'd like to make sure that we
have as much resident participation and
involvement," he said, "and so this
will be the start of that."
Pleasant said the committee will look at
alternative amounts for the
rate increase, where the money will come from and
how long a possible
increase should last. The overall focus is to keep costs
minimal for citizens.
"I'm sure our committee will do everything we can to
water issues," councilman Dan Fogt said.
To go along with
council's action against water rate hikes for current
ordinances passed Thursday night.
An ordinance permitting the annual indexing
of the sewer tap connection
fees and another to permit the indexing of the
water system capacity
charges were both approved after three readings. The
that both fees charged to new developments will keep up
to date with
inflation on an automatic annual basis.
that both ordinances relate to council's focus of
making "growth pay for
growth" and offset what the city contributes into
Councilman Mark Reams reported that 85 participants took
Saturday's fifth annual "Frozen Nose 4-Miler" race held on the
Simmons Trail and surrounding areas.
Reams, who has run the race since
its inception, said he was unable to
take part this year due to a sprained
ankle that happened in the week
before the race.
He said that the Frozen
Nose 4-Miler has seen an annual increase in
runners since it started, but
last week's numbers were significantly
higher, showing the race is gaining in
Attention over park re-naming caught some off
Council hears first reading on changing South Park to Greenwood
By RYAN HORNS
The city of Marysville received national attention and
calls from TV
stations last week over plans to re-name the local park that
name with a controversial cartoon show.
At Thursday night's
city council meeting the first reading was passed on
a resolution to
officially give a name to the local park that has become
known as South Park
over the years due to its location on the south side of town.
and Recreation Commission met Jan. 16 to discuss the naming
parkland located along London Avenue within the Greenwood
subdivision," the legislation states. "The city desires to
develop the park
with more amenities and it is the recommendation of the
Parks and Recreation
Commission to name this property Greenwood Park."
"I would say that's a good
name for the park," councilman Dan Fogt said.
"I agree with their decision,
since it's located right there near Greenwood Colony."
Edward Pleasant said this morning that he was unaware
of the national stink
raised by the issue.
"We hadn't heard about that," he said. "We are reacting
Parks and Recreation Commission's) recommendation to name
Articles run across the country included a link to the
Journal-Tribune Web-site, which then saw a 30 percent increase
This morning councilman Mark Reams admitted some members had
the national attention over South Park.
"I heard that there was a
lot of interest in the story. I thought it was
kind of funny, because none of
these people really knew what was going
on," Reams said. "Actually most
people in Marysville probably don't
understand the history either.
not re-naming the park. It never had a name to begin with and we
are just now
giving it a name. It has only been an undeveloped piece of
planned for a park, until now. We had a master plan
developed for this
property, to show how it would be used as a park.
Until it had a name, it was
only referenced by its location. It was
planned to be a park on the south
side of Marysville, so it was
referenced as South Park until it had a
Reams also referenced a little known Marysville park that shares a
with another famous location. Located in the central part of
is Central Park, which he said is adjacent to the Public Service
"There was a long-term plan developed to turn that into a park as
and even though it has no name, it has been referenced as Central
ever since, just because of its location," Reams said. "Perhaps
get a bunch of letters from people in New York when we 're-name'
park as well."
Council member Leah Sellers shared in the amusement
over the South Park debate.
"Prior to the Parks and Rec meeting, I didn't
associate South Park with
the cartoon. I simply thought it was a geographic
reference, albeit now
somewhat inaccurate," Seller said, then joked, "I don't
have a problem
with re-naming the park to Greenwood Park, assuming members of
Lee Greenwood fan club are okay with it."
with heritage is focus of meeting
By EMILY MASTERS
A growing county with
strong agricultural roots can exist and continue
to develop. That was a
leading discussion topic at Thursday night's Land
Heritage Trust of Union
County meeting held at the Agricultural Services Center.
to presentations by Jenny Snapp, Regional Planning
Commission director and
Joe Clase, Business and Economic Development
director, Union County Chamber
Snapp explained the importance of agriculture in the county and
some statistics. According to her presentation, there are 1,000 farms
the county, and the average farm is 241 acres.
She also mentioned the
wide range of agricultural business categories in
the county including, grain
marketing, fertilizer and chemical sales,
livestock feed sales, nurseries,
orchards and wineries, equipment sales,
and large production operations like
Day Lay egg farm and HAPI-O,
Honda's soybean processing plant.
discussed the current programs supporting agricultural development
county. Part of that, he said, is agricultural recruitment
through cold calls
"Between 1,000 and 2,000 cards have been mailed out to
may want to expand," he said. "We're hopeful, they'll choose
County as a place to do it."
Clase also mentioned the importance of
retention for existing
agricultural businesses, and for those looking to
start a business, he
said there is support.
"We always have empty store
fronts uptown, and there are programs to
support incubators, in this case for
agricultural development," he said.
Clase suggested that those interested
in starting an agricultural
business should contact the small business
development center through
the chamber of commerce.
Both Clase and Snapp
said support of local farm markets is key.
"The Uptown Revitalization Team is
looking at ways to compliment the
existing farmers market, uptown," Clase
After the presentations, members briefly discussed the
Security Area program. Chairman Peggy Hall explained the tax
associated with the program if capital improvements are made on
property. Members agreed they should start considering farms that
The Land Heritage Trust of Union County, consisting of 18
incorporated as a nonprofit land trust in 2004 and got its start
grant by the Union County Farm Bureau.
Matches made in heaven
Local Big Brothers Big Sisters group celebrates
National Mentoring Month
By EMILY MASTERS
If you haven't said thank
you recently to a mentor, today is the day to
do it. Big Brothers Big Sisters
(BBBS) has designated Jan. 25 as "Thank
Your Mentor Day."
Marian Jacques, local program manager, nearly 50 mentors
are matched with
children and teens each year, in the community-based
program of BBBS of Union
"A great match that comes to mind is Shawnda and Tina, they were
one of those matches meant to be," Jacques said.
Shawnda Vega, 25, of
Hilliard, graduated from Fairbanks High School in
1999 and Ohio University in
2003. It was shortly after college she
decided to get involved with
"I had a girlfriend in college who was involved, and I always thought
would be neat to mentor a young person who needed a big sister in
life," she said.
Vega met her "little" Tina Pyles, 16, of Milford
Center for the first
time three years ago at Bob Evans.
"The first meeting
was a little awkward. Tina didn't talk much, and she
didn't eat, at all. I
must have asked her a hundred questions at our
first meeting," laughed
Pyles says she remembers that first meeting, as well.
"I was so
nervous," she said. "I didn't think she liked me and I didn't
know what her
standards were. Mainly, I just didn't know if she'd come back."
to both Pyles and Vega, their relationship has come a long way.
"We have a
blast together now, we're so close, and I can tell her
The two meet frequently to shop, see movies, or go out to
"Eating seems to be what we do most," said Vega. "We usually meet
for Chinese food and then talk awhile."
Vega says she tries to focus
on talking with Pyles about the future.
"I try to let her know that the
problems she faces now won't be
meaningful to her after high school," she
said. "I also try to stress
the importance of good grades."
"She helps me
set goals for myself, and she cares about my future," said
Pyles. "She does
so much more than the program asks her to and if I
could put her picture up
on a billboard to say thank you, I'd do it in a
heartbeat, because she
According to Jacques, children and teens are referred to BBBS
parents, schools and various social service agencies. She
currently, there are 35 kids on the waiting list to receive a
"I really don't like having a waiting list, at all," she said. "Each
that passes these kids are missing out on the opportunity to have
positive influence in their life through Big Brothers Big
Jacques said the process of becoming a volunteer is easy. An
is arranged and all of the volunteer opportunities are explained at
"We do criminal background checks, and we also obtain
references," she said.
Jacques recommends that "bigs" and "littles" meet
twice per month, and
she emphasizes low cost activities. BBBS offers group
throughout the year, as well.
"We like to do an activity at the
library, a swim party at the YMCA, a
fall party, holiday party and a picnic,"
Unionville Center flood mystery may be solved
A pipe clogged with tree roots is the likely source of recent
in Unionville Center. That was the focus of discussion at
night's special village council meeting.
credited John Eger, of Eger & Son Excavating for finding
the clogged pipe
that was backing up water and flooding Fourth Street
and the alley between
Cross and Railroad streets. Eger unclogged the
pipe, and the tile was
re-routed, according to Mayor Denver Thompson.
Council members apologized to
Charles Walk, a 70-year resident of
Railroad Street, for his name being
listed in an article published in
the Marysville Journal-Tribune. Walk owns a
pond that is less than a
quarter of a mile away from the flood area.
stated at the meeting that his pond "is not the problem." He
elevation of his property to council and said that his
field sits higher than
his lawn, and his lawn sits higher than his pond;
therefore, "it's the field
that floods the pond," he said.
After an evaluation of the pond by Eger and
Bob Scheiderer, Union County
Soil and Water Conservation District, council
members stated that they
were satisfied that Walk's pond was not the cause of
Union County Engineer, Steve Stolte and Assistant County
Stauch suggested a grant, that if approved, would supply
alleviate all future flooding in the village. The Community
Block Grant is available to villages or towns where half of
households have low to moderate incomes. The village would have
determine what its average income is in order to be eligible for
dollars. In order to do that, he suggested council members attend
April public hearing with the Union County Commissioners.
"Not a lot of
areas in the county are eligible for the CDBG," he said.
commissioners who decide what projects they will pursue."
The village is
still utilizing100-year-old clay tile, according to Scheiderer.
members said the village has received grants in the past;
however, the last
time they applied for storm-sewer funding, they were denied.
they would plan to attend the April meeting with the commissioners.
County plans for scenic byway
By EMILY MASTERS
Union County's road map
could get an addition if a designed byway is
approved by the Ohio Department
of Transportation (ODOT).
The Big Darby Plains Scenic Byway was submitted to
ODOT late last year
by the Union County Convention and Visitors Bureau and is
approval this year, according to Steve Stolte, Union County
Stolte came up with the idea for a byway in 1998 as a way to
travel and tourism in the county, but the plan was put on hold,
said, due to the Big Darby Refuge issue.
"We don't have an Old
Man's Cave or a Hocking Hills, but we do have the
Big Darby Creek which is
recognized as one of the last great places on
earth by The Nature
Conservancy," Stolte said.
According to Stolte, the byway would allow
travelers an opportunity to
get out of their vehicles and view the Big Darby
Creek, which runs
parallel to the byway.
"The byway is intended for
passive tourism, it's meant for people who
aren't in such a hurry to get from
point A to point B," Stolte said.
The byway through Union County is an
alternative to U.S. 33 on existing
roads. Drivers traveling from Franklin
County to Logan County could pick
up the byway at U.S. 33 and Route 161. The
byway route includes: Route
161, Middleburg-Plain City Road, Inskeep Cratty
Road, West Darby Road,
Stokes Road, and Route 739.
According to Christy
Clark, Union County Public Relations and Tourism
Director, there are several
byway spurs along the route that include
"A byway is neat,
because it tells a story, and in this case, it's the
story of Union County,"
Four of the historic stops are covered bridges in the county.
according to Clark, include the first Union County Courthouse,
nature preserves, the Plain City Hardware Store, some churches,
century farms, and cemeteries.
Stolte says there are no other
byways in the county. One of the closest,
he says, is along State Route 315,
in Columbus, which follows the
Olentangy River where old Indian trails
remain. There are a total of 23
scenic byways in the state, according to
Clark says that if the byway is approved, there will likely be
opportunity for the county to receive some federal dollars which
be used to purchase signs along the byway. According to Stolte, no
improvements are necessary for the byway to become a reality.
may be places we'll want to create pull-offs, for better viewing,
about it," he said.
A committee made up of residents living near or along the
byway has met
several times, said Stolte, and they have been supportive of
project. Three public meetings were also held in Allen Township,
Center, and Plain City to inform community members of plans.
Union County Convention and Visitors Bureau hopes to get approval
in March. Clark said, "If we get the approval, we plan to hold
celebration and ribbon cutting, likely at one of the
The ceremony is tentatively scheduled for June
Pianist captivates area crowd
Editor's note: Kay Liggett
of the Union County Community Concerts
Association offered the following
review of Tuesday night's piano
performance by Alpin
Tuesday's piano concert was an extraordinarily memorable event
amazingly talented, handsome and articulate young musician. The
was in awe of Alpin Hong's poised stage presence, his
talent, virtuosity, dynamic style and interpretations of music -
which was well known - and all from memory.
What a wide range of
skill and expertise Hong exhibited! He left us
gasping with his superb
energy, and he and the piano were one.
Rachmaninov, Straus, Bach, Liszt,
Stravinsky, Mendelssohn, Debussy and
Brahms, all the music we have in piano
benches that we and our piano
teachers struggled with. He made it all come to
life with intensity,
vigor and tremendous rhythmic energy.
marvelously creative and innovative with fascinating style. The
Intermezzo was played poignantly and eloquently. He tackled Bach,
fingering masterpiece of music, with unbelievable skill.
Hong's rendition of
Liszt's "Benediction of God" was spiritual and
magnificent. (Liszt was one of
the earliest musicians who performed all
of his concerts from total
Hong's encore was Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue," which Hong contends
"the greatest piece every written for piano." It was exquisite
He took center stage and thrilled the audience with his
dynamic style. We were mesmerized by his exceptional talent,
of music and passion for it - from classic stuff to
Certainly we are enriched to have had him in concert here in
The concert ended with a standing ovation - of course!
Mayor to schools: Change may be ahead
By KARLYN BYERS
Mayor Tom Kruse
spoke to the Marysville School Board Monday night,
saying he wanted board
members to be aware of the ramifications of the
recently defeated city
ordinance to raise water rates.
"I'm not here tonight to ask you to do
anything," Kruse said. "What I'm
here to do is explain what has happened and
how it affects the city
finances and how it affects the school system if it
is not resolved."
The defeated water rate increase would have raised city
water rates over
the next two years. Revenue would have funded a new water
north of the city off of Raymond Road.
Kruse said the Dec. 21
defeat of the proposed rate increase by a 4-3
vote could affect the schools
in two ways. First, it could stunt
development within the city, and secondly,
Kruse said, it could affect
TIF school compensation agreements the school
district has with the city.
Kruse said it has been suggested that needed
revenue could instead be
generated through an increase in the income tax, but
that is "a bad
decision in my opinion. If we start subsidizing out of the
revenue fund, what's going to happen when we need to pave
Water consumers not in the city limits do not pay income tax, so
not pay into the general fund, Kruse said. The city supplies water
consumers clear to Route 161 south of the city.
"If it's based on water
rates, they would pay for water they use," he said.
School board member
Scott Johnson asked about the city's water rates.
"It's going to put us in
the upper end of what communities in Central
Ohio pay, but it's very
difficult to compare apples to apples, namely
because other cities have owned
their water facilities for many years," Kruse said.
The city of Marysville
purchased its water treatment system from the
Ohio Water Service in 1991,
according to Journal-Tribune archives.
"Columbus is low because of Budweiser
which is a huge consumer of (its)
water system," Kruse said.
He added that
if the community could add a consumer such as an ethanol
plant which would
use "a million gallons a day," Marysville's rates could benefit.
members John Gore, Dan Fogt, Edward Pleasant and Leah Sellers
the increase in December, while members David Burke and
Mark Reams voted for
the ordinance. Kruse said he did not know what
motivated those who defeated
the ordinance. But, he added, two are up
for re-election this year.
other action, the board also accepted the retirement resignations of
school principal Gregory Hanson and teacher and varsity football
Hanson's resignation is effective July 31. Weiskircher's
is effective at
the completion of the 2006-2007 contract year.
(them) are very important (members) of the house," said
Zimmerman. "We owe them the best and they have done
a very good job for us
through the years."
The board also honored Ed Burdett as December Employee of
Burdett, Mill Valley Elementary custodian, has been a
employee for many years and one of the most friendly people I've
met in my life," Zimmerman said. "He really is what we are
Burdett "always goes beyond what is expected" and is "so patient
kind to students and staff alike," according to the Employee of
Richwood Council discusses park
By CHAD WILLIAMSON
A surveillance camera is useless without
someone to check the video.
That was the opinion of at least one Richwood
Council member when it
came to discussion of cameras at the village
The park is a constant target of vandalism. Benches have been
into the lake, trees have been damaged and, it was noted at the
meeting, the women's restroom had to be repainted three times last
due to vandals.
To combat the problem the village installed
surveillance cameras in the
park several years ago. The new tool did little
to deter or help
apprehend criminals, before it was destroyed by a storm this
With insurance money sitting in village coffers, the council must
decide if it wants to replace the cameras.
The quality of images
appears to be one shortfall of the old system. At
previous council meetings
it has been said that it recognizing
individuals on the tapes is
Council member George Showalter said that he has met with a
to discuss upgrading the system. He said there are cameras
that would provide a better quality of image and the number of
could be increased from two to four to provide better
But councilman Scott Jerew felt purchasing new cameras is useless
village police department won't review the tapes. At previous
he has noted that a particular incident of vandalism occurred while
cameras were still in operation but the police department never
Officers reported to council members that they did
not have time to
review several hours of footage in hopes of catching a
glimpse of a
suspect. When Jerew said that he had found a private citizens
offered to watch all of the footage, an issue was raised regarding
legality of such a move.
When asked for a legal opinion on the matter,
village solicitor Victoria
Stone Moledor said the vandalism at the park is an
ongoing problem that
needs attention, noting that some of the incidents would
felonies. She also noted that the quality of the images recorded
need to be clear enough to allow investigators to identify
She also noted that there may be a way to set up a system whereby
private citizen reviews the tapes and provides information to the
Council failed to act on the issue of purchasing new
cameras and will
address the issue at a later council meeting.
.Passed a resolution of support for the Woda Group to
funding for an acquisition and rehabilitation of the
Apartments. The group sought similar dollars last year but was
successful in the lottery-style system of funding. The $3-3.5
project would rehab the facility and increase the size of some of
.Heard a complaint from a Franklin Street business owner
apartment resident parking in the spaces in front of his business
during working hours.
.Chose to deny a request of a property owner over a
disputed water bill.
.Discussed a $477,000 project that would improve
water lines in the area
of Beatty Avenue and Blagrove and Ottawa streets.
Roughly half of the
project could be covered by grants, leaving the village
to fund the
rest. Council was informed that a lingering engineering loan of
must be paid down, siphoning some money that would be available for
project. Council decided to pursue the grants for the project, but
final determination on whether or not to move forward.
Couple in it for the long run
Marathon training means long hours on the
By CORINNE BIX
Jen and Chris Martin celebrated their 10th wedding
anniversary in a very unique way.
The Marysville residents traveled to
Germany and together completed the
Berlin Marathon last September.
37, has been running competitively for the past two years and the
Marathon was his second of three that he has completed.
Jen, 36, has spent
most of her life running. She competed in track and
in junior high and began running competitively
as an adult in 2005.
hometown has a 5K every year in July and we have managed to do that
the past six years," Jen explained.
For the Martins the change from casual
running to competitive running
came after Chris traded in a tobacco habit for
a serious running habit in 2002.
Chris explained that after smoking for 14
years the act of running
helped him learn how to really breathe again.
said she runs for exercise. Her mom, step-dad and sister have all
marathons so after Chris joined the club, she thought it was time to
The couple feels when they are training for a race it shows
children the value of setting a goal and preparing to make that goal
The children, Grant, 8, and Olivia, 6, enjoy making signs and
their parents on during a race.
"They are very supportive," Chris
Oftentimes during training the kids will ride bikes alongside mom
dad so that the family can spend the time exercising together.
preparing for a marathon the couple uses a four-month training
However, they both agree the key to training is preparing the mind.
mentally prepares by telling himself that if he can run 22 miles
they can do 26 miles in the race," Jen explained, "I
mentally prepare in
small steps throughout training, each increase in
mileage gives me confidence
and that becomes my motivation on race day."
Chris's best marathon time
to date was the Columbus Marathon October
2005. He completed it in 3:33:45
and Jen completed the Berlin marathon in 4:05.
Chris's company, Henkel,
located in Delaware, paid for the couple to
travel overseas and participate
in the event.
Henkel, a chemical company based in Germany, promotes fitness
employees. There were approximately 250 worldwide Henkel
who participated in the Berlin marathon.
Jen and Chris
still have more they hope to accomplish. They would both
like to participate
in the Columbus Marathon this fall. Jen hopes to
break the four-hour mark and
ultimately qualify for the Boston Marathon.
The couple encourages anyone
thinking about starting a running program
or making the jump from casual to
competitive running to focus on
preparing their minds before grabbing their
"After Chris ran his first marathon, the seed was planted for
said, "Once I had the desire, I was ready to make the commitment and
knew it was time."
The couple recommends slow but steady increases in
mileage. Jen said
this helped her mentally and her body just seemed to come
along for the ride.
"It was not easy, it was not painless, and many days
it was not fun, but
when I finished the feeling of accomplishment was worth
all the pain and
hard work that I put into it," Jen said.
to be featured at Community Concert
From J-T staff reports:
performer Alpin Hong will perform Tuesday at Marysville High
appearance is sponsored by the Union County Community
The 7:30 p.m. concert will be held in the high school
will perform from among his favorite pieces, including
Fantasia and Fugue in D minor by J.S. Bach, Piano Sonata No. 11 in
major by W.A. Mozart, Felix Mendelssohn's Rondo Capriccioso in E
and George Gershwin's "Three Preludes for Piano."
A native of Los
Angeles, Hong made his orchestral debut with the
Kalamazoo Symphony at age
10. Teen appearances included the 1989
Stravinsky Piano Competition, 1993
SYMF Competition and the 1994 Los
Angeles Spotlight Awards Competition. He
has since developed an
international career, recently performing with the
Symphony (KBS), as well as at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion
Angeles, and at New York's Alice Tully and Avery Fisher Halls.
October 2004, Hong released his solo debut CD (MSR Classics),
of Brahms, Debussy, Scarlatti and Stravinsky, all
standards of his recital
The Atlanta Audio Society Journal hailed the debut recording
"stunning," and went on to say, "While young keyboard artists are apt
make a name for themselves with a killer technical prowess, Alpin
Brahms shows us that, at the highest level, technique and the
understanding of the emotion in a work of music, what we are pleased
call 'feeling,' are really inseparable."
Hong was first prize winner at
the 2001 Concert Artists Guild
International Competition, and the first
pianist in eight years to win
CAG's highest honor. His subsequent New York
recital debut on the CAG
series in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall
garnered praise from the
"New York Times," which cited his performance for
energy," "clear and persuasive ideas" and "remarkable
breadth and coloration."
Hong's 2004-05 concert itinerary spanned the
continental United States,
with recital and orchestral engagements in more
than 100 cities in more
than 35 states, as well as performances in Asia.
highlights include a recital at New York's Weill Recital
Carnegie Hall, Rockhotel Pianofest and Merkin Concert Hall
Anniversary Celebration, Los Angeles, Wilshire Ebell Theatre and
Hall at UCLA, Seoul's Hoam Arts Center, Purdue University
in Lafayette, Ind., the Frick Arts Centre in Pittsburgh, Kansas
Friends of Chamber Music, the Chamber Music Society of Little
Market Square Concerts and the Asociacion Nacional de Conciertos
Panama, as well as concerto performances with Orchestra X, the
Philharmonic and the Indian River Symphony.
appearances include the Music Academy of the West, Aspen
and Bowdoin Summer
He is a graduate of the Juilliard School, where he studied
Lowenthal. He was invited to participate in the inaugural
Soviet-American Piano Institute in Moscow, and he has also performed
master classes with André Watts, Emanuel Ax and Daniel Pollack.
currently resides in New York City, and his non-musical interests
martial arts, snowboarding and skateboarding.
The next performance in the
2006-2007 Union County Concert Series will
be harpists Bronn and Katherine
Journey. They are scheduled to appear
Feb. 21 the high school
Farm Bureau has new official
By EMILY MASTERS
Farmers in Union County will
see a new face at the Union County
Agricultural Services Center.
Street, 28, of the Richwood area, has been named the Union,
Delaware County Organization Director (OD).
"I'm looking forward to this
opportunity to get to know a new set of
Farm Bureau members," Street
Street started with the organization almost six years ago, serving as
in Pickaway, Ross, Fairfield and Hocking counties. He was then
the OD job in Franklin and Delaware counties, and most recently,
County was added to his responsibilities. He replaces former
County OD, Alex Beard.
"The opportunity to work with a new board,
implementing new programming
and continuing to build on existing programs is
really exciting," Street said.
Street, originally from Prospect, is still
involved with his uncle's
grain farming operation. Street also owns a straw
business. He graduated
from River Valley High School in 1996 and the Ohio
State University in
2001, where he majored in agronomy. He and his wife,
Street, attend Salem Evangelical Church in Marion and are
their first child in June.
Street says he's looking forward to
two upcoming Farm Bureau events.
"Our membership kick-off is coming up next
month and our farmer's share
breakfast is the following month," he
The membership kick-off is tentatively scheduled for Feb. 8 at the
County Agricultural Services Center, and the farmer's share breakfast
set for March 31 at Marysville High School.
According to Street, Union
County presently has more than 1,500 members,
and more than 800 of those are
farmers or are involved in some type of
the grassroots aspect of the Farm Bureau, and being an OD
allows me to
provide the voice of agriculture for Union County, it's a
Hugs to be
prescribed at MHUC
From J-T staff reports:
Heartland of Marysville will
celebrate National Hug Day Sunday by
visiting Memorial Hospital of Union
County to give patients a good dose
With "Care Bear," the
Circle of Care mascot, everyone from medical
personnel to patients will
receive a hug.
"The 'Care Bear' breaks the ice. Most people would be a bit
to give a stranger a hug, but with the bear, we can reach out
patients and caregivers," said Cathy Oetker, director of admissions
marketing for Heartland. "This is something that we try to bring to
everyday at Heartland."
Heartland and its parent company HCR
ManorCare have a close relationship
with Greg Risberg, the self-proclaimed
"King of Hugs" and frequent guest
lecturer at HCR corporate wide. Risberg
prescribes that everyone should
get at least four hugs a day.
part of the natural bonding process between parents and
children, but as we
grow up we become afraid that our touch may be
misinterpreted," Risberg said.
"There is appropriate touch, and as
adults we need to break down our barriers
and develop more nurturing,
comforting and healing
Heartland is a 100-bed nursing and rehabilitation center
located next to
Memorial Hospital. Additional information may be obtained by
Sex offender found guilty on
retrial for alleged offense
By RYAN HORNS
The Union County Common Pleas
Court jury handed out a two-year prison
sentence in the second trial for a
man charged with failing to register
as a sexual offender.
deliberated for more than five hours before reaching its decision.
Sommerfield, 45, was convicted for living at the home of his
Linda Allen, in the 700 block of Quail Hollow Drive
between June 2004 and
January 2005. The timeline in question coincided
with when Sommerfield was
reportedly recuperating at Allen's home, after
breaking his back in four
places. The injury occurred in June 2004 when
he fell from a ladder while
renovating a home in Dayton in his line of employment.
Failing to register
as a sexual offender is a third-degree felony.
Sommerfield faced up to five
years in prison, which would have added to
the 18 years he had previously
spent in jail for committing a series of
rapes and robberies in Columbus when
he was 17-years old. He was
ultimately tried as an adult at the
During sentencing Thursday, Union County Common Pleas Court
Richard Parrott said Sommerfield knew he wasn't allowed to stay for
than five consecutive days in another county and he knew he
live within 1,000 feet of a school - as Allen's home is. He
both of those terms.
"I want you to know that in my mind you were
playing games with the
system," Parrott told Sommerfield during sentencing.
"You knew you were
playing games with fire - and you got
Sommerfield took the verdict calmly, as did his wife and family in
During the trial Quail Hollow Drive neighbors and a
Sommerfield's main home in Delaware County on Dublin Road all
he had been at Allen's home, or was gone from his Delaware
throughout the summer of 2004 through January 2005.
In April 2005
the trial first came before the Union County Common Pleas
Court. In that
trial the jury deliberated for more than eight hours and
could not reach an
unanimous decision. The trial had to be rescheduled
because of the hung jury
Phillips explained that Sommerfield then filed a motion to have
Sexual Offender Registration Law declared unconstitutional,
"We appealed that decision to the Third District
Court of Appeals,"
Phillips said. "The Third District reversed Judge
Parrott's ruling and
remanded the case. Sommerfield tried to get the case
into the Ohio
Supreme Court. We opposed jurisdiction and the Supreme Court
accept it. The case was then remanded back for a new trial which
Phillips told the court to consider that Sommerfield has a
violent crime, including two counts of rape, three counts of
robbery, parole violations, criminal trespassing, possessing
tools and breaking and entering charges.
Mike Streng explained that those crimes happened
when his client was a
"Mr. Sommerfield had a rough patch when he was younger," Streng
He said the crimes committed in Sommerfield's youth were due to
with the stress of a family member dying.
"If there is any hope
for someone to become rehabilitated," Streng said.
"Mr. Sommerfield is that
He said that his client served his time in prison and has since
his abilities to live within the laws, earned two degrees from
and has started a family.
"I hope his efforts don't go in vain for
unintentionally violating the
laws," Streng said.
"The law itself is very
poorly drafted," Parrott said. "It's very
difficult. This jury doesn't know
what went on before. Another jury had
difficulty with this case. The
legislation needs to be cleaned up and
clearly defined so there is no
question when someone violates the law."
Phillips said that he plans to talk
to state legislators about trying to
get sexual offender registration laws
better defined for jurors.
Promoting Union County
New logo and marketing strategy is released
Union County has a new identity.
A presentation unveiling
the new logo and marketing strategy was given
Wednesday night at the Union
County Services Center by Eric Phillips,
Union County Chamber of Commerce
CEO. The new tools are designed to
attract businesses and tourists to the
"We need a better image and we need to promote ourselves,"
Over the past year, Team Union County, a committee of the
Improvement Corporation, has been working on the project and it is
prepared to implement the strategy in 2007. The team, comprised of
community members, business owners and business leaders, worked
Peebles Creative Group Inc., based in Columbus, to come up with
identity for Union County.
The group found that Union County is driven
by the belief that the best
communities combine a unique identity with
quality amenities and
infrastructure. For Union County that identity arises
agricultural heritage. Team Union County states that it is "committed
encouraging and managing growth in a manner consistent with
Based on input given by long-time residents, new
residents, and small
and large business owners, it was determined that
healthy growth is
important to the community. Despite the desire for growth
one description for the county kept surfacing ? an American
Team Union County determined the highest priority target market,
short term, includes businesses of 150 employees or smaller.
to a packet of information provided at the meeting, the group
that targeting these smaller businesses is "keeping with the need
amenities and diversify."
Phillips said Union County needs to
create its own identity to compete
with a growing urban landscape in central
"We have an identity crisis to Columbus," Phillips said. "Sure we
Honda and Scotts, but we as a community are not on the radar.
logo and tagline "Where pride resides," once approved by the
Chamber of Commerce board, will appear on chamber
brochures, letterhead and
on advertisements aimed at attracting
businesses to the county.
24,500 in our workforce here in Union County, 12,000 of those
manufacturing and 90 percent of those are in automanufacturing,"
said. "We are blessed to have fantastic schools and we have a
"We need to take advantage of all of those
Preparing for the ash borer
With bug present in adjacent
counties, group seeks to inform public
By KARLYN BYERS
Members of Ohio's
Emerald Ash Borer Task Force are making sure Union
County residents are aware
of a little bug with a big appetite.
Task Force members are inviting county
residents to the Union County
Agricultural Center, 18000 Route 4, to one of
workshops about the emerald ash borer (EAB). The first, for
the green and forest industries, will be held Jan. 31 from 2 to 4
Those planning to attend must pre-register at (888) OHIO-EAB to
ensure adequate material and supplies are available.
workshop, also to be held Jan. 31, will be from 7 to 9 p.m.
It is for the
At each, experts will provide information about the invasive
backyard detection methods, quarantines and local wood lot and
management options, including tree varieties suitable for
dying ash species.
The emerald ash borer (EAB) is an exotic,
wood-boring insect that
infests and kills native North American ash trees,
white, black and blue ash, according to an Ohio State
University fact sheet.
Just like the chestnut blight and Dutch elm disease
before it, EAB is
capable of eliminating an entire tree species from forests
the fact sheet states.
EAB has attacked millions of ash trees
in southern Michigan and Northern
Ohio and is rapidly spreading throughout
the state. It has been
identified in 26 counties, according to the Task
neighboring Delaware, Franklin, Hardin, Logan and Marion
far, no detection has been made in Union, Madison or Champaign
said John Hixson, Union County Ohio State University Extension
and George McVey, Master Gardener coordinator and
McVey was tagging ash trees at Memorial Hospital of
County Tuesday, trying to inform the public about the ash borer
information imprinted on bright yellow flags.
"We're trying to be
proactive because (the EAB) is spreading very
quickly," Hixon said.
trees infested with EAB typically die within five years. Adult
borers produce about 50 to 100 eggs, depositing them
individually on the bark
surface or within cracks and crevices of an ash
tree. The eggs hatch and the
larvae tunnel into the tree where they
excavate distinctive "S-shaped"
pathways just under the bark. When they
emerge as adults, they leave behind
"D-shaped" exit holes in the bark
about one-eighth inch wide.
what occurs underneath the bark that causes the tree's slow
said. The hungry larvae chew on the tree's pulp, damaging
its water and
nutrient transporting system.
That would spell trouble for Union County's
forested areas, parks and
landscapes. Kathy Smith, Ohio State University
Program, estimates 15 to 20 percent of Union County's
trees are ash.
Unionville Center officials discuss flooding
Flooding problems south of Fourth Street were the focus of a
meeting of the Unionville Center Village Council Wednesday
Residents have been plagued with water problems during the rainy
of the past few months. Steady rain over the past weekend compounded
problem and the meeting was called to determine if the water
is a village problem.
Affected residents Larry Burchett, Wanda
Daum, Chris Geuy and Dwayne
Walk have been forced to pump water from under
their homes. Daum said
the water level has gone down but Wednesday she still
had nine inches
under her home. All agreed that high water has been a
problem for the
past three to five years.
Two years ago the village
installed a 12-inch tile from Cross Street to
Railroad Street to alleviate
flooding on Cross Street near the corner of
Fourth Street and the Darby
Township parking lot. The new tile was
rerouted along Fourth Street to a
drain near Railroad Street.
Council member Ron Griffith said the tile was
only rerouted and no
additional drainage area was added. This was verified by
John Eger of
Eger & Son Excavating who installed the tile. No one north
Street is reportedly experiencing high water.
The problem area
is said to be south of Fourth Street. Bob Scheiderer,
supervisor with the Union County Soil and Water
explained that the village is experiencing the
effects of failure of
100-year-old clay tile.
The intersection of Fourth and Railroad streets is
also the intersection
of three watersheds and three separate tile systems.
speculated that the pond owned by Charles and Judy Walk at the
Fourth Street and Unionville Road is backing up and putting
the tile. The pond is in Darby Township at the village
corporation limit line.
Scheiderer also explained that there are two
problems, the interruption
of surface water flow mainly caused by the pond
and subsurface water
probably caused by degrading or blocked clay tile. There
are 175 acres
of farmland that drain toward the pond which has an overflow
directs water to a ditch that eventually flows through Select
property to the Big Darby.
There are approximately 200 acres of farm
land on the south side of
Route 161 that drain through Unionville Center
adding pressure to the
old clay tiles.
According to Scheiderer, current
specifications for installing a pond
require an emergency spillway. The
height of adjacent property
determines the height of the spillway.
principle outlet pipe must be a minimum of one foot below the
emergency spillway opens an edge of a pond. The open edge
can either have
grass, stone or rip rap, which is course, angular rock
used to stabilize a
shore, for the drainage area.
Water appears to be spilling over the low end
of the pond toward the
town rather than at the back of the pond where it
would naturally drain
to the tile through Select Sires property. Eger
offered to check the
elevations at the pond on Thursday.
that the village apply for a grant to pay for a spillway.
It is uncertain if
a grant available to a government body could be used
for a pond on private
To alleviate the subsurface water problem, council voted to hire
Son Excavating to excavate the 12-inch tile that he installed two
ago on the north side of Fourth Street. The new tile was
under an old clay tile coming from the south side of Fourth Street
the alley. He will attach the old tile to the new tile and leave
exposed for observation.
Council will begin exploring the possibility
of grant funds to pay for a
meeting was tentatively scheduled for Jan. 23 at 6:30
p.m. to evaluate the
results of the emergency tile work. The confirmed
date will be advertised in
the "Marysville Journal-Tribune."
Jerome Township zoning to evolve
By EMILY MASTERS
A developing Jerome
Township brings with it many on-going zoning considerations.
That was the
focus of Tuesday night's regular trustee meeting. The
meetings are usually
held on Mondays, twice a month; however due to the
Martin Luther King Jr.
holiday, the meeting was moved to Tuesday.
The trustees scheduled two public
hearings that will take care of
business regarding changes in the current
zoning book. The law requires
the trustees to hold public hearings on
rezoning, because it is a
legislative action. The public hearings will take
Feb. 5 at 7 p.m. just before the next regular meeting
which begins at 7:30 p.m.
The first public hearing will be held following
a recommendation from
the Jerome Township Zoning Commission to approve a new
zoning map. The
map has been a work in progress for the past year due to
growth in the
area. The second public hearing deals with voting requirements
trustees and how many votes are needed in certain
Recommendations from the township zoning board regarding actual
will be announced in the next 60 days. Hearings will likely be
for three developing township areas which include Jerome Village,
Run and Halls Corners.
Jerome Village at Brock Road and U.S. 42
consists of 1,350 acres that
will soon be developed to include commercial,
residential units. It is considered a Planned Unit
Sugar Run, at the corner of Taylor Road and Industrial
Parkway, is a
planned residential development of 167 acres, and Halls Corner
at Hyland Croy and Post roads is a 54.4 acre planned development
"We see this area as prime," trustee Ron Rhodes said.
"It will develop.
We just want to see that it's developed in the correct
The trustees re-appointed Tracy Guerin, of 10240 Mitchell-Dewitt
to the zoning comission for another five-year term. The zoning
consists of five members and two alternates who meet twice a
Trustee Andy Thomas made a recommendation that the township trade
three of its lawnmowers and purchase three new ones. The
was made based on negotiating with John Deere Equipment in
cost to the township for the new mowers after the trade-in will
$6,100. The trustees approved the resolution. The mowers are used
for the upkeep of the township's cemetaries, for the three parks,
and the firehouse.
The trustees briefly discussed the Ryan Park Eagle
Scout project. The
local scouts are making improvements to the park such as
fixing up old posts.
"We're trying to put some focus back in
the community," Thomas said. "We
feel that supporting the local scouting
program as trustees is a good
thing to get involved with."
suggests name change for park
By RYAN HORNS
A name change may be coming
for Marysville's South Park.
Parks and Recreation Commission members met
Tuesday night to rename the
controversial city park, which has had problems
with flooding as well as
inadvertently sharing a name with a television
cartoon show. In the end,
members decided to change the name to Greenwood
Park and will recommend
that Marysville City Council make it official.
understanding is that the name South Park just evolved because of
location, then the cartoon became popular, making the adopted
inappropriate," city administrator Kathy House said this
Parks and Recreation Superintendent Steve Conley explained that the
was never officially named South Park, it just took on the title.
wanted to get away from (the name) South Park," Parks and Recreation
Deborah Groat said.
"Far away from South Park," member Cathy Dwertman
The commission has not met since June for lack of agenda items
of the winter weather. During the interim, members decided to think
possible new names for the park and hopefully come up with a new name
the next meeting.
Member Rowland Seymour suggested several new names,
from Greenwood Park,
Collingwood Park, Oak Knoll Park to Prairie Park. He
said all of them
related to roads, which connect to the park.
"Are any of
these names significant in terms of honoring people?" Groat asked.
wondered if the streets were named after actual people in
Seymour said that he didn't know and that developer Lee Simpson
named all the Collingwood area street names. He did add that the city
going to be planting some 60 trees within the park, which makes him
toward one name in particular.
"It's going to be green," he joked,
referring to the name Greenwood Colony.
Groat suggested they put Greenwood
Park up for a vote and members
unanimously decided upon Greenwood
"I'll still call it South Park for awhile," chairman Russ Jones
Before the vote he joked that the commission could name it Water
"Tonight it's a flooded park," Seymour said.
"It was a week ago
too," member John Howard said.
Regarding tile work the city had scheduled to
complete, House explained
that the Stormwater Division did some preliminary
work about a month ago
to improve the drainage.
"They intend to install a
new, larger tile this winter," House said.
"We've been waiting for the ground
to freeze so they can complete the job."
The commission discussion
switched to heavy flooding within Union County
and the city's successful
rescue of a 13-year-old male who was
surrounded by floodwater on Jim Simmons
Groat suggested that for the next meeting they discuss the
of making it a policy to close down city parks if they become
Perhaps if the park had been closed for the recent flood, then
could be no complaints filed with the city if a similar
arises, Groat said. She stressed that no complaints had been filed
the stranded boy's family.
"If we had a policy to close the park,"
she said. "Liability issues
would be better served."
Members agreed to
discuss the matter further at the next meeting.
In other topics
. Howard said he has noticed that two large trees, perhaps
years old, had recently been cut down in Legion Park.
know why they were cut down," he said. "The wood looked fine.
why are we
cutting down old trees?"
Howard said he had received messages from some
neighbors to the park
about the trees being gone.
Conley explained that it
is possible the trees were diseased, but he
will need to check for sure with
Lane Stillings, Superintendent of
Buildings and Grounds.
Marshall reminded everyone that the Frozen Nose 4-Miler is
Saturday at 1 p.m. Registration is at noon and more
information can be found
Teen trapped by high water
Uses one of park's emergency call boxes to summon
By RYAN HORNS
A Marysville woman's quest for placing emergency
call boxes on the Jim
Simmons trail may have directly led to the deliverance
of a teenager in
a high water rescue Monday.
At approximately 12:05 p.m.
Marysville Police received a call for help
from a 13-year-old Marysville male
trapped by high water at an emergency
call box located on the walking trail
within Mill Creek Park. Both
police and Marysville Fire Department crews
responded to the area, where
the male was located a few hundred feet behind
Marysville High School
and soccer fields.
Police reported that officers
were able to move within 100 feet of the
victim and keep him under
surveillance while the fire department
responded with a rescue boat at 12:31
p.m. Obscured from view from the
roadway, police reported it was unknown how
long the male had been
stranded or what shape he was in.
By 12:50 p.m., a
Marysville fireman emerged from the Jim Simmons trail
with the teenager
draped across his shoulder, walking him through the
flood water to the medic
truck located nearby. The victim sat shivering
in the back of the truck,
drenched in water and only wearing shorts and
a shirt with no coat. He was
transported to Memorial Hospital of Union
County for care.
In 2005 a
Marysville woman spearheaded an effort to get the call boxes
installed on Jim
Simmons Trail after she was out jogging one day and
felt unsafe. She went
before Marysville City Council and said that
anything could happen out there.
The trail opens up miles of space where
a woman out jogging alone could be in
potential danger from anyone
looking to cause trouble.
Department official Lane Stillings said that in the
spring of 2005 the
emergency call boxes finally became a reality after
donations made it
possible to install them on the Jim Simmons Trail. He
said the devises run on
On the scene of the rescue Monday, rain was still falling in
as it had all weekend long. Flood watches and warnings were
reported across the state. At Swartzkopf Park, Mill Creek had swollen
high levels, spilling into the playground and horseshoe
Emergency crews said they were glad they were able to keep the
victim safe. A dispatcher spoke to the male on the call box phone
the inflatable boat was used to pick him up and take him to
"The caller stated that he was surrounded by high water," police
state. "He was on dry ground at the phone box, but was fearful of
Marysville Police Chief Floyd Golden said the call
boxes have been used
before and he hopes they can expand the service. Last
year when a man's
body was found after committing suicide on the trail, the
call box was
used to report the location.
"We've had some occasional
people playing around with it," Golden said,
in regards to false alarms. "But
(the call boxes) are another great
safeguard to get people help right
"I think the big message here is that when you have flooding and
water, be aware of your surroundings," Marysville Fire Chief
He said that his department has had several water
rescues over the years
and they can be dangerous because a person's body
temperature drops 20
times faster in water than it does in the air. It can
hypothermia and can be life threatening, perhaps leading to drowning.
said flood waters may appear to be moving fast, but the water is
faster than it seems.
Johnson said the call box came in handy for
the safe rescue of the teenager.
"I'd like to see more of them,
personally," he said. "But they can be expensive."
district snuffs tobacco
By KARLYN BYERS
Effective Feb. 1, the Fairbanks
School District will become tobacco free.
Board members unanimously voted
Monday night during the regular board
meeting to approve changes in its
tobacco use policy to prohibit the use
of any tobacco product, including
smokeless tobacco, in school stadiums,
outdoor areas on school property, and
in school buildings and vehicles
owned, leased or contracted by the school
Violators will be directed to stop tobacco use while on school
directed to leave the school property immediately and/or be subject
possible fines and/or arrest as per the Ohio Revised Code.
becomes the second public school district in Union County to
tobacco use. Marysville School Board members unanimously
passed a policy
amendment during their Dec. 18 meeting that prohibited
the use of all tobacco
products on school premises. It went into affect Jan. 1.
In a five-minute
organization meeting which preceded Monday's regular
board meeting, members
selected Kevin Green as board president and Star
Simpson as vice
Green has headed the Fairbanks School Board since 2000. This will
Simpson's second year as board vice president.
Board meetings will
continue to be held the third Monday of each month
at 7:30 p.m., board
members decided. They also set board compensation at
$125 per meeting and
authorized superintendent Jim Craycraft to employ
temporary personnel as
needed for emergency situations and to serve as
purchasing agent for the
In other business, the board:
.Voted to notify Pat Lucas,
middle school principal, of her upcoming
contract expiration as required by
the Ohio Revised Code. Craycraft said
he had spoken to Lucas who is
completing a Fulbright Administrator
Exchange Program in Newton Abbot,
.Accepted the retirement of Jane Reed, elementary
.Approved athletic contracts for Mark Mehl, eighth grade softball
Bret Rothfuss, seventh grade softball coach; John
volunteer middle school baseball coach; Matt Humphrey, middle
boys track coach; and Kevin Kilfian, volunteer assistant
girls basketball coach.
.Approved girls soccer as a varsity sport
beginning with the 2007-2008
school year. More than 15 soccer players and
parents crowded into the
small board room, eagerly waiting for board
.Voted to pay the Union County Sheriff's Office $12,000 to assist
financial support of the Student Resource Officer
.Approved the December financial reports and amendments
appropriations. Earlier, the board also authorized the treasurer
secure advances from the county auditor when funds were available,
invest interim, active and non-active funds at the most productive
and to pay all bills.
.Heard a presentation from Lyndy Agner,
building aide at Fairbanks
Elementary School, and Darla Hall-Barrett,
counselor, about choosing healthy foods and bully
.Accepted the resignation of Brenda Ward as sixth
grade team leader.
.Approved a trip to Clyde, so the wrestling team could
compete in a tournament.
.Referred the purchase of a new scoreboard on the
baseball field and
weight room equipment to the district finance committee
.Entered into executive session for the evaluation of
treasurer Aaron Johnson. No action was taken.
Marysville woman killed in crash
From J-T staff reports:
A Marysville woman
was killed in a two-car crash in Paris Township Saturday.
Amanda R. Sacco,
26, was reported pronounced dead at the scene by Union
County Coroner Dr.
David Applegate at 4:15 a.m.
The Ohio State High Patrol Marysville Post is
the crash, which occurred on Route 4 north of Wolford
According to reports, just after 4 a.m. Sacco was driving
Route 4 in a 1994 Honda Civic hatchback when she went left of
unknown reasons and struck another vehicle head on.
Feller, 39, of Cortland, was driving northbound on Route 4 in a
F-350 pickup truck when he was struck.
After the collision, both vehicles
reportedly went off the west side of the roadway.
Feller was reportedly
injured in the crash and transported to Memorial
Hospital of Union County by
Liberty Township medics.
OSP reported that the Union County Sheriff's Office
Police Department assisted at the scene.
OSP reported that
this is the second fatal crash in Union County this year.
system saves business
Fire at Franke's Wood Products is controlled
From J-T staff reports:
A sprinkler system saved a local wood
products business after a fire
erupted in its warehouse early
Marysville Fire Department responded to a 2:50 a.m. fire alarm
Franke's Wood Products at 825 Collins Ave. A sprinkler system
activated inside and the business is back in operation today.
injuries were reported from the incident.
This morning fire officials
reported that when crews arrived there was
heavy smoke inside the warehouse
because the sprinkler system had doused
the majority of the flames. Damage to
the business was not expected to be serious.
"There was minimal loss. We
lost a couple pieces of equipment," Chris
Franke, owner of the family run
business, said. "The sprinkler system did its job."
He said the fire
originated from a saw in the warehouse, which ignited
sawdust. The Franke
family spent the majority of Saturday and Sunday
cleaning up the water and
"It's been a long weekend," Franke said.
He said the
Marysville Fire Department responded quickly and helped
prevent any further
damage. Crews were called back again at 8:52 a.m.
when flames shot out of an
area during cleanup. Allen Township crews
also responded with
"We're back up in operation today," Franke said. "The outpouring
within the community has been great."
Franke's Wood Products has
been in operation since 1968, he said. When
running a wood products business
"a fire is always in the back of your mind."
He said if a fire erupts it
teaches everyone about how to change
operations to correct the problem and
prevent it from happening in the future.
Library renovating to serve
By EMILY MASTERS
Construction at the Marysville Public
Library will begin mid-January to
finish the lower level that has sat empty
and underutilized since the
library was built at the South Plum Street
location in 1988. Nine
thousand of the 13,000 square-foot space will finally
be operational to
accommodate growing patrons.
"The goal is to better
serve a growing community. We're one of the
fastest growing counties in the
state. Five years ago, we had around
7,000 borrowers, that number now is up
to more than 20,000 borrowers,"
said Ryan McDonnell, director.
1,000 people visit the library everyday, and about 1,000 items
The project with a budget of $462,069 is being funded with state
The library receives almost half of its funding from the state of
Library and Local Government Support Fund (LLGSF) and half from
property taxes. The remaining funds come from fines and fees,
and local and federal grants.
"The state money arrives on a
monthly basis. We have been saving for
this project for awhile now," said
McDonnell. Planning for the
renovations has been in the works for the past
Improvements to the lower level and first floor will be completed
phases. Library patrons can expect the lower level to include: a
audio visual department, a second public meeting room,
offices, and additional public computer work areas.
current 16 public work stations are always being utilized and
there's a wait to get on a computer; soon we'll have 30 work
better accommodate people. It's a popular area in the
Renovations to the first floor will include: a new early learning
storytime room, an updated circulation desk, youth and adult
desks, an updated local history and genealogy area, more room for
and materials, a small cafe and vending area, and updated paint
carpeting throughout the library. There also will be updated signage
on both floors.
For the exterior of the library, six additional parking
spaces will be
added, as well as some drive-up book drops.
renovation, the library will remain open. The only areas
that will be closed
are the meeting room and book sale room.
"We do realize there will be some
increased noise, but in the long term,
the project will reduce the noise,"
The completion date is set for mid-June.
Marysville School District names 'Good Apples'
The Marysville School
District presented its annual "Good Apple" awards
Friday night between the
high school boys junior varsity and varsity basketball games.
the district recognizes citizens who have been particularly
their time or resources. The recipients are selected from
nominated by each school's staff members.
The following people received
awards Friday night.
The 2006-2007 Good Apple Award Winner Recipient
for East Elementary is
Porschet is married to
Michael and is mother of two students at East,
Brian and Brandon. She is a
senior project analyst for OCLC and has
donated her time and efforts at East
for the past three years.
Porschet is currently the PTO President.
Initiatives and activities
include the PTO Web site, Buckeye Bash, Winter
Carnival, Watch Dogs,
conference meals for staff and many other
Karla Ezerins has been a dedicated volunteer at Edgewood
for the past
five years, since her son Gregory Laurenson entered
has worked for the annual PTO candy fundraisers which has
hours of organization and communication among the Edgewood
She consistently supports Edgewood students and staff.
Mill Valley's three Good Apple recipients, Sherry King, Ann Langlois
Wendy Loos, have a total of more than 20 years of volunteer service
King, her husband, Jim, and children, Ashlyn and
Marshal, have lived in
the Marysville area for nine years. Ashlyn is a sixth
grade student at
Creekview and Marshal is in the fourth grade at Mill Valley.
been a faithful volunteer for the past seven years. She has helped
each child's classroom every week since they started kindergarten
has fond memories of many classroom activities, including cookie
pumpkin carving, feast days, Camp Skeeter, candy bar voting, trade
and field days, field trips and classroom parties.
She helps teachers
in a variety of ways, even making copies as needed
and popping popcorn. She
also helps students with math facts, counting
money, telling time and
learning sight words.
Langlois has been a familiar face in the school the
past six years. She
and her husband, Curt, have lived in the Marysville area
seven years and
have four children, Bryan, 13, Danielle, 11, and Kristin and
10. They currently attend Marysville Middle School,
Intermediate and Mill Valley Elementary.
She is the creator and
coordinator of Family Science Nights which have
become a yearly tradition at
Mill Valley. She also has presented a
"Taste of Science" at lunch, served as
PTO co-president, Scarecrow Night
volunteer and coordinator and a classroom
volunteer and room parent. She
is a Destination Imagination parent volunteer
and team manager, the Box
Top and Labels for Education coordinator, and has
served as the Staff
Appreciation Week coordinator. Langlois has helped with
many other Mill
Valley activities, including the art fundraiser, book fair,
author's lunch, Safety Town and field trips.
Loos and her
family have lived in the Marysville area for seven years
and she has
volunteered her time and talents at Mill Valley for the same
length of time.
Her family includes her husband, Jeff, and daughters,
Rachel and Megan.
Rachel is in the sixth grade at Creekview and Megan is
a fourth grade student
at Mill Valley.
For six years Loos has been a weekly classroom volunteer.
For the past
three years she also has served as PTO fundraiser chairperson,
thousands of dollars to provide equipment and books for the staff
students. She also has worked with students as an Ohio Reads
reading mentor and tutor for three years.
Other PTO and school
activities the past seven years include book fairs,
scarecrow nights, holiday
Christmas shops and Teacher Appreciation
Weeks. She has consistently given
her time to help as a field trip
chaperone and room
Navin's Good Apple recipient is Robynn Jasper. She has
served in several
PTO leadership capacities and been involved in all aspects
school, including leading fund-raising activities, supporting
appreciation, and giving her time for SuperGames and book fairs.
also organized The Buckeye Bash.
recognizes Loni Gordon and Karen Ogan as its "Good
Apple" award recipients.
Both can be found helping out at all special
events, from Breakfast with a
Friend and Fall Festival to the Fun Fest
and Field Day activities in the
Both ladies have served the PTO; Gordon in the past as treasurer
Ogan as president for the past two years.
is the nominee from Creekview Intermediate School. She is
the mother of five
children, Nathan (sixth Grade), Danielle (fourth
grade), Amy (second grade),
Stephanie (kindergarten), and Megan (3 years old).
This Perry's second
year as the CIS-PTO president along with assisting
and coordinating many
different activities and school initiatives,
including the Muffins with Mom
and Doughnuts with Dad Mornings, the
author visits, coordinating the
teachers' conference meals, Technology
Initiatives: Smart Boards and the CPS
Systems (Student Response Boards)
and the new Creekview sign for
Marysville Middle School
Gary Murdock is the recipient of
the Marysville Middle School Good Apple award.
Murdock initiated (in
2005-2006) the formation of the Fellowship Of
Christian Athletes. He also
served as a judge for the middle school
science fair for the past three years
and has assisted with the
donations of a Savings Bond for science fair
He also volunteered his time as a mentor in the CCS class job
experience and has welcomed several eighth grade students to follow
at his business for the classroom requirement.
Since 2001, he has
served as an assistant football coach at the middle
school and teaches not
only football skills but also life skills.
Anytime he has been asked to
assist with middle school activities, he
does not hesitate to help and
remained with middle school programs long
after his children have moved
His wife Linda is a special education teacher at Navin Elementary.
daughter Jessica attends Wilmington College; son Kyle is a senior and
three-sport athlete at the high school and a daughter, Rachael is
fourth grade. Murdock is president of the Ohio Valley
Association Authority located in Hilliard.
Tom and Amy McCarthy have contributed to the FCCLA Christmas party
needy children, often buying stuffed animals each year for the
children attending. Tom McCarthy also has also been on the Family
Consumer Science District Advisory Board for a number of years and
been a guest speaker in accounting classes the past several years.
McCarthys also worked at Diamond Club, the baseball parents group,
to raise money for baseball. They also helped with prom in
2001, and Amy
McCarthy chaired the decorating committee.
They were very active with the
French exchange program and volunteered
to host a French student. Amy was
very active with helping to put on
social events for the French students and
their host families and helped
with the tailgate party which introduced the
French to American
football. She helped with the progressive dinner which
students about various American holidays and she helped with the
French farewell party.
They hosted two years sent their kids two years,
always worked on extra
projects, always helped when needed and volunteered
Kimm Godfrey has been a "count on" person for several
with mock interviews in the life management
She rearranges her schedule as Fifth Third bank manager to
the school's schedule to do the interviews. She helps students
what it takes to get a job in today's business world. She has
numerous field trips at the bank for the Smart Food/Smart Money
for more than five years and talked with the students about
preparation for life. Godfrey also is on the Family & Consumer
District Advisory Board.
N. Lewisburg man killed in
The Marysville Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol is investigating
single vehicle fatal crash that occurred on Route 559 outside of
County Friday afternoon.
The crash occurred at 2:19 p.m. two miles
south of North Lewisburg.
According OSP reports, a 1995 Oldsmobile Cutlass
Supreme driven by
Andrew K. Hayes, 23, of North Lewisburg, was southbound on
when it went off the west side of the road, overcorrected and came
across to the east side where the driver lost control of the
The car struck a utility pole before coming to rest.
was not wearing a seat belt, was pronounced dead at the scene.
remains under investigation.
Committee will study water
By RYAN HORNS
Marysville City Council announced Thursday night that
plans are underway
to address the issue of water rates and the future
reservoir for the city.
With the New Year comes the reorganization of city
council leaders and
Edward Pleasant became the new council president,
replacing John Gore.
Councilman David Burke was appointed as vice
Pleasant said that at the next regular council meeting on Jan.
council would create an ad hoc committee to review the water rate
"We're at a standstill right now," Mayor Tom Kruse
He pointed out that representatives from Jerome Township came to
meeting to ask the city to sign documents for a non-annexation
with Marysville. Without a set plan for building the reservoir and
water rate increase in place, he does not know how he can sign
papers. The only thing Marysville brings to the table are water
sewer services. Without that they have nothing to offer.
administrator Kathy House explained this morning that Jerome
Marysville have been involved in discussions on how both
entities can work
together in the development of areas from Marysville's
corporate limit to
U.S. 42 without requiring annexation. Jerome Township
two possible contracts for consulting firms to
the meeting. They need to
signature of Kruse before they can go forward.
"I find it very difficult
to commit to expenditures when I don't know if
we will even have a
relationship," Kruse said, regarding Jerome Township.
House said that
those contracts will have to remain on hold until plans
can be made for the
water rates and the reservoir construction. Until
then the city must focus on
reserving capacity for water and sewer tap
Councilman John Marshall said he was upset that council voted down
water rate increase at the Dec. 21 meting. As reported, he was out
town on business and could not attend. He does not know why council
not stick to the Water Master Plan.
"As you can tell, I'm a little
bent," he said.
He regretted that he is "guilty by association" for the water
vote because he is a member of city council. Until there is an
plan in place for the rates and the reservoir he feels the city
not be collecting money from the residents for a reservoir
currently do not have plans to construct.
"I think maybe we ought to
take pause and see where we are," Kruse said.
"We're in a very serious
predicament at this point."
Pleasant said that at the next council meeting
they would begin
addressing those concerns.
After the meeting, council
member Leah Sellers reported in an e-mail
that she had been asked by a
developer why she voted against the rate
increase. She reiterated that aside
from expecting residents to pay such
high water rates, Marysville needs a
business plan for its water utility.
"Although the Water Plan does raise
water tap fees, ultimately to
allocate the capital improvements to the new
users, it does not provide
a business plan for how and when the utility debt
will be paid down. Nor
does it guarantee that our existing customers will be
relieved of their
high water bills once the new growth is on line. I believe
have such business plan and guarantee in place before we ask our
residents to finance new growth," Sellers wrote.
She said there is
also an issue with land planning that needs to be addressed.
water rates will allow the city to obtain debt that will permit
growth. However, we have no clear cut plan for how that growth
will look and
how Marysville and Union County can support the various
needs of such growth
other than water and sewer services," Sellers wrote.
Marysville needs to
be creative with its financing and resolve this
quickly, she said.
other business discussed:
. The public hearings were held on legislation to
permit the annual
indexing of the water system capacity charges and the sewer
Burke explained that indexing the fees will "keep
taps current so that
growth pays for growth." The prices for new development
will stay with
inflation and change automatically every year.
development director Eric Phillips addressed the first
reading of a
resolution to adopt the Uptown Marysville Revitalization Plan.
some 30 businesses and 200 customers were interviewed for the
includes a market analysis and 130 recommendations to
improving the downtown
"This is our guidebook for the future," Phillips said. "We hope
council approves this plan."
. Phillips presented Kruse with a framed
copy of the Ohio Magazine
article naming Marysville one of Ohio's best
hometowns. He said there
will be an official ceremony with Ohio Magazine to
be held Feb. 2 at
1:30 p.m. at Creekview Elementary School. It is expected to
be an event
and the public is encouraged to attend.
. John Cunningham
reported that the sign variance request for the strip
mall development going
in at the Mill Valley entrance was voted down at
the Monday Board of Zoning
Appeals meeting. The variance would have
allowed a much larger business sign
to go up than what code allows.
He also explained the first reading of an
ordinance to amend Section
1143.18, Signs, within TOC and SD-1 zoning
districts in the Marysville
Planning and Zoning Code. The changes would
specifically address size
limits for shopping centers. The idea was to look
at other communities
and find something that falls within the middle,
allowing a maximum
height of 25 feet.
Councilman Dan Fogt said he would be
in favor of being even stricter
toward sign sizes.
Cunningham said the
Board of Zoning Appeals could be willing to sit down
with council and discuss
their combined goals for signs.
. The first reading was held on the ordinance
approving the final
development plan for The Oaks Planned Unit Development
According to the plan, The Oaks is a 64.83-acre development to
located west of Route 736 and east of Route 38. It will include
section for future condominiums and one for private home lots.
first readings were held on two pieces of legislation to approve
order to purchase and demolish the property at 669 Milford
location of the Country Skillet restaurant). The purpose of
would be for "traffic engineering."
. Councilman Mark Reams reported that
residents wishing to take part in
the Frozen Nose 4-Miler may call 642-0116
or e-mail city parks
superintendent Steve Conley at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show choir to perform at Grand Ol' Opr
Will also kick off concert season
By EMILY MASTERS
The Marysville High School show choir, Swingers
Unlimited, has been
invited to perform at the renowned Showchoir Nationals
the Grand Ol' Opry in Nashville on March 16.
Unlimited will be the only show choir representing Ohio.
"This is a
tremendous opportunity and a huge honor for the students and
Marysville," said Jeremy Alfera, director.
Swingers Unlimited is coming off a
successful 2006 season having
received four Grand Championship titles.
Marysville also earned Best
Vocals, Best Choreography, Best Instrumental
Combo, and Best Show Design.
A new season for Swingers Unlimited and Mini
Swingers, the seventh and
eighth grade show choir, will kick off Saturday at
the high school.
"We are entering a new competition season with such a
from last year. The performers now know what it takes to
perform at the grand champion level and we have tremendous
our school teachers and community members," said Katie
The competition will include performances by 17
schools from Ohio,
Illinois, Indiana, and West Virginia. The public is
invited to attend
the all-day competition which runs from 8:30 a.m. to 5
p.m. The schools
with the top six scores will advance to the evening finals
which begin at 7 p.m.
Mini Swingers will perform at 5:30 p.m., and
Swingers Unlimited will end
the competition with a 10 p.m.
"We are excited to host a competition that begins the season for
show choirs throughout the Midwest," said Michael Robertson,
Middle School vocal music teacher who also conducts Swingers
instrumental combo and Mini Swingers. "Not only can we showcase
talent here in Marysville, but the community also has an opportunity
see many other show choirs," said Robertson.
This season, Swingers
Unlimited will travel to competitions in Piqua,
Fairfield, and Ellettsville, Ind. Mini Swingers
will also compete this
season. They will travel to South Dearborne High
School in Aurora, Ind. and
will also join the Swingers Unlimited at the
Fairfield Crystal Classic in
Saturday's competition will also serve as a fundraiser for the
trip. For more information or to become a show choir sponsor,
interested may contact Katie Paulson at 642-0010 ex.1116
board approached about prom issue
By CORINNE BIX
The Jonathan Alder school
board met with only three of five members
present on Wednesday
Steve Votaw, John Adams and James Phillips voted unanimously to
absent members Tom Bichsel and Linda Beachy as board president
Superintendent Doug Carpenter was also
absent along with the building principals.
The issue of providing bus
transportation for students traveling from
the prom to after-prom festivities
on April 14 was addressed.
Heidi Kellett, parent and Jonathan Alder high
school PTO representative,
appealed to the board Wednesday night in regard to
releasing funds to
provide bus transportation for students from the prom to
the after prom.
"In the process of creating a safe environment we need
help with the
transportation," Kellett said.
Votaw said it was a dilemma
for the board to create a precedent by
allowing the request after field trips
were cut from the school year
budget earlier this year.
The levels one
cuts were approved in September after three-failed levy
attempts the most
recent in August. On a fourth attempt, district voters
passed a 0.75 earned
income tax levy for the schools in November.
The internal cuts eliminated
more than $300,000 from the 2006-2007
budget and included freezing the
operating budget by not purchasing
textbooks, miscellaneous supplies and
eliminating field trips.
Carpenter explained after the earned income tax levy
passed in November
that the cuts would not be reinstated with the exception
programs that are directly beneficial to students.
has reinstated the sixth grade camp field trip and the
senior class field
Kellett explained later by phone, that in the past both the prom
after prom are held off site at two separate locations. Students
would then choose to participate in the after prom would meet at
high school and were bused to the after prom location.
The after prom
committee has raised approximately $3,500 to cover costs
for the event. The
cost of renting a private bus would be approximately
$1,500, which would not
be covered by the original budget. One bus would
only accommodate 57 students
and the committee estimates that 75
students will be in need of
Votaw said that perhaps the after prom should be held at the
The after prom parent committee did consider hiring a group
to come into
the high school and put on a "casino night" however many
objected to any promotion of gambling even in a pretend
"If we look at putting it back at the high school we definitely
need a lot of help," Kellett said.
It was suggested that Young Life
and Camp Mary Orton be contacted as
possible resources for planning after
prom activities at the high school.
"I respect Doug Carpenter's decision
and the school board's decision to
stick with the cuts," Kellett said.
board approved a 5-year contract with the Jonathan Alder
Association to include a 2 percent raise for teachers and
staff and a 1.5 percent raise for administrators as recommended by
The contract with the JAEA officially expired in
explained last fall that both the board and the
had agreed to delay negotiations in light of the
November levy issue.
The board approved to increase the substitute pay of
$10.50 per hour from $9 an hour to be consistent with what is
temporary employment companies for services.
The board received
information on the Ohio Department of Education's
Children and Youth Program, which ensures that
all homeless children and
youth have equal access to the same free and
appropriate public education as
those that are not homeless.
Elizabeth Beach, director of teaching and
learning and district liaison
for homeless students, explained that the
homeless encompasses a larger
scope of people including those living in
temporary housing or with relatives.
Currently, the district doesn't have
any homeless students.
The need for such a program became apparent after many
displaced from their homes during Hurricane Katrina.
approval of the policy will be considered within the next
The next regular board meeting will be Feb. 12 at 7
In other action, the board:
.Approved acceptance of tax rates and
estimated income from the Madison
County Auditor for the 2007 calendar
.Approved the December financial report
.Authorized the treasurer to
pay bills, request for advances in tax
settlements, and invest
.Designated the superintendent to approve purpose statements for
activity accounts and act as purchasing agent for the school
.Approved the second Monday of each month at 7 p.m. for the
school board meeting with the exception of April 16 and Nov.19
.Approved compensation of board members at the previously
rate of $80, not to exceed 13 meetings, including all county
meeting, if attended
.Approved the resignations for five year leaves
of absences for Sue
Burgett, librarian and Louise Johnston, teacher - both
.Approved the employment of the following: Peter
Lotter - bus driver;
Tom Heineman ? substitute bus driver effective Dec. 18;
Christa Keim - substitute teacher
.Notified of the consideration of Marcia
Butler as a retiree per retire/rehire policy
.Asked to review the three
year surveys as completed by district parents
.Approved in-lieu of
transportation requests for Benjamin and Clair Grywalski
From J-T staff reports:
A Dayton Power and Light employee
is expected to live after he was
pinned between two trucks Wednesday
According to Marysville Police reports, DP&L employee Jay
Smith, 27, of
West Liberty was seriously injured after he was pinned between
trucks on Corbell Drive at Professional Parkway.
that at 12:53 p.m. a currently unnamed DP&L truck driver
was backing up
at a work site and did not see Smith nor another DP&L
truck behind the
vehicle. As the driver backed up, Smith was pinned
between the two
Marysville police reported this morning that a MedFlight
transported Smith to a Columbus hospital for care.
As of 4 p.m.
Wednesday Smith's condition was listed with a possible
broken hip and he had
suffered no life-threatening injuries.
A full report on the injury crash was
unavailable this morning, although
it is expected to be completed today or
A call placed to DP&L regarding the crash was not
returned this morning.
From Carney's to the county
Planning begins for uptown building
The new year brings a new look and a new purpose for a
downtown Marysville building.
Once known as Carney's, a variety
store, at the corner of Sixth and Main
streets, the 22,000 square foot
building is now owned by the county. It
was purchased for $444,000 in
December of 2005 after sitting empty a few years.
The Union County
Commissioners have some ideas on how the building will
be utilized this
"We looked at how the county is growing and how the court systems
pressed for space. One idea we have for the building is permanent
storage," Union County Commissioner Gary Lee said. "It really needs
to be addressed."
Lee also said there is a possibilities of space at the
used for the Union County coroner, sheriff's detective bureau
and probate court.
"A small conference room that could be available for
public use is also
a consideration," Lee said.
The commissioners are
currently working with an architect to develop a
plan for utilizing both
floors of the building.
"The building, structurally, is in excellent
condition, however, it will
need some new windows, heating and cooling
improvements and a passenger elevator,"
Lee said. The commissioners' goal
is to have the building in operation
by the end of 2007.
will have a better appearance if it's not sitting empty,"
Lee said. "We'll
make sure the appearance fits Marysville's retail
function for the building will add to the locations long retail
the uptown area.
George Carney moved his family to Marysville in 1940 and
bought out the
former Carter's 5 and 10 on Main Street. In 1963 Carney opened
Variety Store. Upon his retirement in 1969, his son Jim took over
business. Carney's Variety Store sold items ranging from
supplies, curtains, records, and shelf brackets and was well known
its large candy counter.
According to Journal-Tribune files, on April
4, 1974 a fire destroyed
the entire interior of the store causing $350,000
damage. Jim Carney
rebuilt his business and operated it until the early '80s.
then became home to two furniture stores, Gilberg's in 1987
Heilig-Meyers in 1999.
City to fix traffic light problem
Drivers traveling Maple and Fifth streets have had a few questions
the unexpected four-way stop that popped up at the
According to Marysville streets superintendent Joe Tracy, city
hope that within two or three weeks the four-way stop will go back
the light system previously in place.
"We've received a few calls from
concerned residents who were worried it
was going to stay that way," Tracy
He explained that four or five weeks ago the traffic controller
within the intersection stop light started to go bad. The
department tried to keep the controller going as long as possible
making repairs, but a few days later it would break again.
controller was worn out and old," Tracy said. "Finally we
just decided to
order a new one."
He said the street department decided to tackle another
the light was out of service. The traffic light stress poles at
intersection have been sagging over time making the lights hang too
Because of this, the lights have already been struck three or four
over the past couple of years by passing semi trucks. The city is
to fix the problem at a cost of $14,000 to $15,000.
Tracy said local
company Applied Electric is scheduled to pour the
concrete for the base of
the poles next week.
Regarding the traffic control devices, he said, the
street department is
still waiting for the parts they ordered to arrive. He
parts for lights on Delaware Avenue have been on order for as
long as two months.
"Hopefully we will have everything up and running
within the next two or
three weeks," Tracy said.
Marysville Police Chief
Floyd Golden said the city thought about
converting the intersection to
flashing lights until the lights are
fixed, but it wasn't going to work. The
problem was that congestion
might become an issue during after work traffic
"We decided a four-way stop would be the most efficient for
involved," Golden said.
Traffic reports at the department
indicate that only one accident has
been documented at the intersection since
the light controller broke and
that occurred on Dec. 22 as a hit skip. It
occurred the same day the
flashing lights were switched to the four-way stop.
Since then no
crashes have been reported.
Funds available for home
From J-T staff reports:
The Community Action Organization of
Delaware, Madison, and Union
Counties (CAODMU) is announcing the continuation
of funding on two home
repair programs. Both of these programs will be funded
for calendar year
2007. Applications are now being accepted at the local
Community Action office.
The Ohio Housing Trust Fund grant offers minor
home repair and
modification services to individuals who meet the eligibility
of the low- and moderate-income guidelines. Necessary services will
provided to individuals and households with an income at or below
percent of the area median income residing in Delaware, Madison
and Union counties.
From funds provided under Title III/SBG of the Central
Ohio Area Agency
on Aging, necessary home modification and maintenance
services will be
provided to senior individuals and households meeting
guidelines. This program is designed to significantly improve the
environments of these families and individuals by insuring the
safety, and accessibility of their homes. Repairs to correct health
safety code violations, heating, electrical systems, roofs,
conditioning, flooring and plumbing are essential to make
homeowner's home habitable, said a recent press release announcing
the fund availability.
For additional information, contact the Union
County office, 169 Grove
St., at 642-4986. In Plain City, come to the library
at 305 W. Main on
the first Thursday of the month between 10 a.m. and noon,
or visit the
Richwood Civic Center, 235 Grove St., on the third Wednesday
a.m. and 1 p.m.
Richwood Council discusses crime in the village
By CHAD WILLIAMSON
will it take to curtail the vandalism and other crimes in the
That was a question posed to council members at Monday's
regularly scheduled meeting.
Council member George Showalter noted during
his report that the
Christmas light display at the Richwood Park was hit with
Showalter said the lights were disconnected on one evening and
following evening the timers for the lights were stolen.
lights have also been vandalized in previous years, a pattern all
at the park where benches, picnic tables and restrooms are
the target of
Village resident Mike Williams noted other infractions that seem to
on the rise as well. He noted an increase in speeding and said
neighbors has had three dogs either stolen or killed.
exactly what value the village is getting from its
"Where is our money going?" Williams said.
member Peg Wiley said the village only staffs one police officer
per shift in
the evening hours. With the proliferation of cell phones,
it is not difficult
for criminals to report to each other the location
of the villages sole
Council member Von Beal said the issue boils down to the fact
people no longer respect authority.
In other business, council:
Voted Wiley as council president. Wiley and Showalter, the 2006
were nominated for the post. Written ballots were collected
and Wiley won
with three votes to Showalter's two. Council member Wade
McCalf was absent
from the meeting.
.Held third reading on ordinances establishing the village
regulations and authorizing the Union County Building Department
enforce the codes.
.Heard a concern from the owner of property on
Forest Lane over a high
water bill. The issue will be addressed at the
utility committee meeting on Jan. 17.
.Learned that the traffic controller
at the corner of Norris and
Blagrove streets will need to be repaired. The
job could cost nearly $4,000.
.Learned that the new police cruiser will be
put into service this
month. Council also learned that the Union County
Union County Sheriff donated a 2001 cruiser to the
.Held an executive session to discuss pending
Marysville board renews contract with treasurer
Marysville Board of Education members renewed the contract of
Delores "Dee" Cramer by a 4-0 vote Monday night during
reorganization meeting. Board member John Brower was absent.
who has 27 years of experience as treasurer, has been at
Marysville for six
years. She received the praises of board member Bill Hayes.
very much for an excellent job," he said. "You have done a
super job for this
"I have enjoyed it," Cramer replied.
Her new contract renewal
extends her employment through 2011. However,
the Marysville resident said
this likely will be her last contract
renewal with the school district.
have my retirement plans. I have been saying that I want to get a
Cramer said Monday night.
Contacted this morning, she said, "I'm not turning
in my resignation but
as of last night that is my intention. I really care
about this district
and I will not go to the last month and say 'oh by the
way I retire.'"
Cramer will be paid a salary of $98,624.
also re-elected Roy Fraker as board president and elected
Jeff Mabee as vice
president by a 4-0 margin.
Fraker is in his second term as board member. This
will be the third
time he has served as board president. Mabee just completed
year as a board member.
In other business, the
.Agreed by a 4-0 margin to continue holding regular board meetings
the fourth Monday of each month at 7 p.m. and to continue
compensation at $125 a meeting for a maximum of 12 meetings.
the board service fund - which pays for board training, travel and
the annual Ohio School Boards Association Capitol Conference,
off-site board meetings, etc. - at $7,500, a figure that
has been consistent
for many years. "We've never gotten close to
(spending all) of it," Cramer
.Appointed board members to the following standing committees and
assignments - Fraker, OSBA Legislative Liaison,
advisory council, athletic/extra-curricular council,
committee and tax abatement committee; Brower, OSBA Legislative
finance/audit committee and tax abatement committee; Scott Johnson,
Hi-Point Career Center Representative and technology committee;
acting secretary in treasurer's absence and negotiations committee;
Mabee, business advisory council, facilities planning committee
district goal review committee.
.Bonded the district treasurer for
$50,000 and authorized her to sign
completed resolutions amending Valic
Retirements Plans for all qualified employees.
"Journal-Tribune" as the official newspaper for
.Adjourned into executive session for the
discussion of personnel. No action was taken.
Details of numerous
Monday crashes released
By RYAN HORNS
Icy roads and wind were to blame for
a two-car accident that caused the
death of a Woodstock man Monday.
Marysville Ohio State Highway Patrol Post reported that James R.
was pronounced dead at the scene by Union County Coroner Dr.
The crash remains under investigation.
Reports state that Monday at 7:20
a.m. Dunn was northbound on Route 31
when his 1999 Toyota Tacoma pick-up
truck spun out of control into the
southbound lane and was struck in the
passenger side by driver Megan E.
Gillespie, 23, of Richwood, in her 2001
Dodge 2500 pickup.
Gillespie's truck reportedly came to rest off the east
side of Route 31
and Dunn's Tacoma stopped off the west side of the road.
transported to Memorial Hospital of Union County by Richwood
The Union County Sheriff's Office reportedly assisted OSP troopers
the crash scene.
OSP reported that the crash is the first fatal crash
in Union County this year.
The Union County Sheriff's Office reported that
its deputies responded
to nine crashes caused by Monday morning icy road
conditions. Several of
those crashes resulted in injuries.
Bradley, 22, of Bellefontaine was injured after he was
headed north on Route
739 Monday at 8:23 a.m. and lost control on the
icy road near Davis Road. He
went off the left side of the roadway and
struck a utility pole. The
electrical lines on the pole reportedly were
knocked down by the collision
and landed on Bradley's car. Emergency
crews were forced to wait until
utility workers were able to shut off
power to the lines so they could remove
Bradley from the vehicle. He was
then transported from the scene by medical
helicopter to an unlisted
hospital for care. Initial reports on his condition
allegedly hinted at
possible life-threatening injuries, but later reports
indicate Bradley is recovering.
Reports also indicated that a car went off
the road into a cemetery
Monday morning. According to reports, Lenore M.
Rockfield, 62, of West
Mansfield was southbound on Raymond Road when she lost
control on the
icy road and went off the left side of the roadway into the
Church of Christ Cemetery. She reportedly did not strike any
Rockfield was injured in the crash and was transported from the
Richwood medics to Memorial Hospital of Union County.
In the same
location shortly after the crash, another driver went off
the road. Erin M.
Engle, 22, of West Mansfield was headed south on
Raymond Road when she lost
control on the ice and went off the right
side of the road. Engle's vehicle
struck a fence and she was injured and
transported by Marysville medics to
Memorial Hospital of Union County.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol reportedly
responded to five crashes
caused by icy conditions. Aside from the fatal
crash, the remaining
accidents did not result in injuries.
Police officers responded to four crashes, which Assistant
Chief Glenn Nicol
said occurred in the overpass bridges on U.S. 33 at
Route 31 and at Route 4.
None of the crashes resulted in injuries.
A crash which allegedly injured a
Fairbanks High School staff member has
not been located. This morning
sheriff's deputies, OSP troopers and
Marysville Police did not have
documentation of such a crash, despite
radio scanner reports that the
Griffith re-elected as Unionville Center council
By AUDREY HALL
With an eye on the clock, the Unionville Center
completed its agenda Monday night in plenty of time for all
return home to watch the Ohio State University football
Ron Griffith was re-elected council president and Phil Rausch
re-elected as representative to the Pleasant Valley Fire
Residents Wanda Daumn and Chris Geuy expressed concerns to
about water problems on their block of Railroad Street. With
heavy rains, there is standing water in the field behind
properties that is affecting their septic systems. Council
possible solutions and will investigate further.
Warden reported that the Union County Sheriff's Department
clarification from the county prosecutor regarding the
requirement of seat
belts in golf carts. Council again tabled the
decision on permitting the use
of golf carts in the village until there
is a definitive guideline from the
Warden also emphasized that the curfew for children under the age of
years is being enforced by the sheriff's department. The curfew is
p.m. on weeknights and midnight on weekends.
Council will accept sealed
estimates for brush pickup and mowing the
green and council lot at its March
12 meeting. All estimates must
include proof of insurance.
In the fire
district report, Rausch said that the purchase of a new
pumper truck is being
considered. The current pumper will become the
backup if a purchase is
Council members present were mayor Denver Thompson,
Tracy Rausch, Griffith, Mary Lou Morris, Rausch, Brenda Terry
and Peggy Williamson.
The next regular meeting will be Monday, Feb. 12 at
Icy roads lead to crashes
At least one fatal accident reported
Winter weather took the life of a driver this morning after
caused numerous traffic accidents across Union County, including
least one fatal accident.
County law enforcement personnel were
investigating a fatal crash on
Route 31 at Sommersville Road, which occurred
just after 7:30 a.m.
Details on the victim and the crash were not available
time. County law enforcement were still on the scene
dealing with traffic.
Just after 10 a.m. this morning
another serious crash was reported on
U.S. 36. Details were unavailable
before press time.
Throughout the county, Marysville Ohio State Highway
Patrol and Union
County Sheriff's deputies were reportedly busy dealing with
other injury accidents, many of which reportedly occurred within
of one another as drivers negotiated icy roads.
"The bulk of our
crashes this morning were on Route 31," Union County
Information Officer Chris Skinner said.
Skinner said one crash was reported
just before 7:30 a.m. on Route 739
at Raymond Road which reportedly caused
several injuries. Another crash
on Route 31 had been reported about 9 a.m.,
According to the radio scanner discussions, a MedFlight
enroute to transport victims of one of those crashes. It was
reported that MedFlight was unable to take off and respond to the
due to weather conditions.
Marysville Police Department reportedly
responded to two crashes on the
overpass at Route 4 at U.S. 33 and another on
Route 31 at the U.S. 33 overpass.
On Route 38 law enforcement crews
responded to a reported crash at the
Union Township line in a crash which
reportedly injured a Fairbanks High
School staff member.
Details on all
the crashes this morning, including the fatal crash at
will be available Tuesday pending finished reports by
Weiskircher to leave MHS
Will step down after 19 years as grid coach
There will soon be a changing of the guard within the Marysville
School football program.
The Journal-Tribune learned late Friday
morning that Rich Weiskircher,
MHS' head coach for the past 19 years, will
retire as a teacher and
coach at the end of the current school
Weiskircher confirmed his plans during a telephone interview with
"I've coached for 34 years and I think it's time to try
he said. "I want to be able to do some other things, like
travel, while I'm still able to."
Weiskircher came to Marysville in 1988
after a successful three-year
stint as the head coach of Buckeye North High
Weiskircher immediately upgraded the Monarch program, guiding them
five state playoff berths. His overall won-loss record is 150-73.
said his best memories as a coach evolve around the period
The Monarchs earned three consecutive post-season berths
and advanced to
the state semifinals in 2000.
His son Kyle was part of
that era as a Monarch quarterback.
"Being able to coach my son was among the
highlights of my career,"
Weiskircher said. "Kyle being involved with me in
the program was very special."
Weiskircher had praise for all the athletes
who wore the Red and Blue of
MHS during his tenure here.
"All of the kids
who played here were fantastic," he said. "They worked
hard and did
everything I ever asked of them. They're blue collar kids
and they responded
to what we tried to do (as a program)."
Weiskircher, a native of Martin's
Ferry, brought a strong football
background to the Monarch position.
to coaching at Buckeye North, he was an assistant coach for 11
He played four years of college football at West Virginia
legendary and current Florida State coach Bobby Bowden.
football has played a major role in his life, Weiskircher said
he wants to do
some traveling in his free time.
"I'd like to go out west ... I've never been
there and maybe up to New
England," he said.
"These are things I've never
been able to do while coaching,"
Weiskircher said. "There is a lot of time
involved in being a head coach
as football is a 12-month a year
While he is stepping away from the Monarch gridiron, Weiskircher
rule out a return to coaching at a later time.
"I may go back to
coaching somewhere, some day," he said. "We (he and
wife Nancy) have a home
in Bonita Springs, Florida (south of Fort Myers)
and I've often wondered what
it would be like to coach down there."
offered for stranded motorists
By RYAN HORNS
While winter weather has not
brought the extreme conditions Ohio is used
to, the danger of drivers being
stranded out in the cold is still a reality.
Already this winter a
Marysville man lost his life when his car became
disabled and he was struck
by a car while trying to walk down U.S. 33 for help.
Assistant Chief Glenn
Nicol of the Marysville Police Department said
stranded drivers are safest
inside their cars.
"If you have to walk stay as far off the road as possible
against the traffic so they can see you coming," he said.
the affordability of cell phones is something people should look
Calling for help inside a stranded car and then sitting tight
arrives is the best option.
"Cell phones are your biggest safety tool," Nicol
If a driver knows they will be headed into a remote location, he said
make sure someone else knows what the travel itinerary will be
they leave. If the car breaks down anywhere on the trip, that person
be reached to help authorities determine where to start looking in
of an emergency.
Union County Emergency Management Agency Director
Randy Riffle recently
provided a safety release on how residents can prepare
their vehicles in
case they end up stranded on the road.
school and business should have a written plan for any
possible emergency and
know what to do, where to meet and where to go in
the event of power outages,
ice storms, flooding, fires or tornadoes,"
Riffle wrote. "Everyone should
know the difference between storm watches
and warnings; prepare and practice
drills that require sheltering in
place and evacuation."
The EMA suggests
creating winter emergency kits for the home or for the
car, which include
warm clothing, blankets, flashlights, batteries,
coats, hats, gloves, a
battery-operated radio, first aid kit and enough
non-perishable food and
water to sustain each family member for at least
three days. Vehicles should
also have at least a half-tank of fuel.
Riffle also stipulated that it is not
always possible to fit all this
gear into a standard two door car. The idea
is to include another piece
of luggage inside a car, when planning on a
"Vehicle emergency preparedness kits are not intended for
everyday use," he wrote.
The Ohio Committee for Severe Weather Awareness
preparedness kit items in a large plastic tub and a lid that
containing: At least two blankets or a sleeping bag;
(preferably water and shock-proof) and spare batteries; extra
particularly, hats, boots and mittens/gloves; bottled water
nonperishable high-energy foods (granola bars, raisins, nuts,
candies, peanut butter or cheese crackers); emergency flares;
cables; spare tire/tire iron/jack; first-aid kit and
bandages/medications; sand or non-clumping cat litter for tire
if vehicle gets stuck on ice or in snow; a cell phone and extra
phone battery or charger; coin change for pay phone use; tow rope
chain; brightly colored cloth to use as a signal.
But for those local
people just driving to Columbus, there are still
ways of staying safe. The
EMA advises everyone to have their vehicles
winterized before the cold season
kicks in. Get a tune-up to save wear
and tear on the car battery. If driving
with all-season tires, ensure
that they are properly inflated and have the
tires rotated annually.
Other vehicle care tips include: Check the radiator
coolant level and
check the sturdiness of hoses and belts; refer to the
to see if a lighter grade motor oil is recommended for
check and replace all burned out headlights, tail lights and
signals; check tires' tread - minimum tread is 1/16-inch for
traction; ensure the vehicle's brakes are in proper working order;
spare window washer fluid in the trunk and ensure the wiper blades
in good condition; and keep the exhaust pipe clear of snow.
gases filter into your vehicle if the pipe is clogged.
Race is unique city event
By RYAN HORNS
Over the past five years a
Marysville jogging event held in the middle
of winter has become something
unique to the city.
This year marks the fifth anniversary of the Frozen Nose
Marysville foot race scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 20, started
Marysville Parks and Recreation Superintendent Steve Conley
councilman and avid jogger Mark Reams.
"There were numerous races in
central Ohio, but none during January,"
Reams said. "We decided it would be
fun to have a January race and even
have a little fun with the name."
said the original thought was to make it the "Frozen Nose 5-Miler,"
race director they worked with for the first year suggested that
would be inclined to run a shorter race so the Frozen Nose
4-Miler was born.
The idea was to run it mostly on the Jim Simmons
Trail, with the funds
generated from the race being used to make
improvements to the trail
Reams said the race has since become more about embracing the unique
slightly ironic aspect of holding a race in the middle of the
"Most races have things like bagels or bananas (for runners to
after the race. During the first race, we had ordered bagels, but
was a mix-up and we ended up with a bunch of donuts instead. We also
a large amount of pizza that had been donated for the volunteers, but
was much more than the volunteers could eat. The runners helped
off the pizza," Reams said. "We tried to 'fix' the food problem the
year by ensuring we got bagels. However, we eventually decided it
something that set the race apart from others. So we have gone back
our roots. After the race, we now have donuts, pizza and have added
chocolate. It is the Frozen Nose after all."
Reams has run the race
each year it has existed, often promoting the
event during Marysville City
Council meetings. Despite including the Jim
Simmons Trail every year, the
race has yet to have the same route twice.
"We changed the course after
the first year," he said, "but the course
has been re-routed due to sections
that flooded then froze a couple of
times as well. Our plan this year is to
run the same course as last
year, but that could change depending on the
John Sellers and his wife Delores also try to take part in the
race every year.
"We really support the trail," John said. "It's really a
nice thing to
do in the dead of winter."
He said they both enjoy the
Frozen Nose 4-Miler because it gives all the
local runners a chance to see
each other during the winter months when
most races usually are not held. He
said the race is great for the
community and he enjoys how the local police
support it by helping with
traffic along Maple Street.
But the reason most
runners take part, John said, is because of a shared
love for the Jim Simmons
Trail. It is where most runners do their
exercising. He said after the race
they all get together at the nearby
Union County Services building on Maple
Street, to enjoy the food and catch up.
John said temperatures have gotten
down as low as 15 degrees one year,
but it never seems to be a deterrent for
anyone wanting to join in.
"Everyone just bundles up and goes," he said. "It
hasn't been too bad."
"We have averaged about 60 runners each year," Conley
said. "That is a
pretty good number considering the weather during
"Over time, I think the focus has been more on the recreational
of having an event during the winter months," Reams said. "I think
race has done a good job of attracting runners from Central Ohio
like to run year-round, but it also attracts a lot of
Layout of new N.U. school released
Preliminary design works around water well
By CHAD WILLIAMSON
North Union School Board members got their
first glimpse of preliminary
plans for a new middle school Tuesday
But while the new facility is a breath of fresh air for a district
has suffered with an aging middle school, the location appears to
handcuffing school officials and administrators.
The new school will be
built just north of the district's elementary
school and adjacent to the high
school. It is bordered on two sides by
roads and on the other two sides by
schools, but the big hindrance is
based on something under the ground.
Richwood Village owned water wells are located between the high
the middle school site. Those wells are each surrounded by
Nothing permanent can be built inside the easements because the
has the right to perform work on the wells within the easements.
means if a portion of the school was built inside this boundary,
village would have the right to tear into the facility if it needed
work on the well.
The land above the easements can be used as practice
fields or for
outdoor gym classes.
These easements put a bulge into the
usable space in the architect's plans.
Space constraints placed on the
building forced the elimination of a
performance stage in the plans, but it
is believed that the close
proximity to the elementary school would allow
middle schoolers to use
that building's stage.
There was also no available
space for weightlifting equipment but it is
hoped that the students can use
those found in the NUAC multipurpose facility.
But despite the
limitations, the designers of MKC Architects were able
to design a facility
which will house 400 to 415 students. The facility
is slated to open for the
2009-2010 school year.
The preliminary plans include a music room, large
three special education rooms, a gym that may seat up to
500 and a room
for the middle school popular Project Lead the Way engineering
Locally funded upgrades could include an 11th traditional classroom
a larger gymnasium.
The design also allows for expansion to house up
to 100 additional students.
The one issue of debate is over what type of
climate control to use in
the building. While some board members wanted
geothermal energy included
in plans, others have reservations about the
relatively new technology.
Board member Bryan Bumgarner wondered if the
geothermal technology has
proven its reliability. He said the district could
find itself 10 years
from now wishing it had chosen another system.
member Kevin Crosthwaite agreed, also noting that the district
personnel trained to service geothermal technology. He said
would find itself "maintaining two dis-similar systems."
It was also noted
that while geothermal energy is a more cost effective
energy source and
requires less building space to house, it was not
without other drawbacks.
Bumgarner noted that heat pumps used in the
system are said to wear out
relatively quickly and the cost of the
system, $400,000, is a more pricey
Todd Wrobelski of MKC said he could provide a specialist in
energy to discuss the pros and cons of the system with board
The board also got its first look at plans for the renovation of
current high school. While some of the work could begin this
much of the renovation will have to be performed while students
occupying the building, forcing a longer timeline.
To provide enough
room to continue classes while the work is performed,
the board approved the
purchase of two, three- room modular units to be
placed on the high school
grounds. The cost of the units is $169,680.
Dave Zeller of MKC said bids for
the first portion of the work,
including new windows and doors, asbestos
removal and exterior work,
could be sought in March. Bids for the rest of the
work, including, air
conditioning, ceiling work, lighting, piping and
would be sought at a later date.
Some of the
highlights of the renovation include creating a new main
entrance which would
lead all visitors into the main office. The would
allow all visitors to be
met by staff members for better security at the school.
include a dedicated special education classroom, a
600-foot addition to the
music room and a renovation of the courtyard to
make it an outdoor classroom
Vote for N.L. council president ends in tie
An attempt to elect a new council president ended in a tie
night, when North Lewisburg Village Council members cast their
Council members submitted closed ballots after Steve Wilson and
Keeran were each nominated for the post. Wilson and Keeran
three votes each.
Wilson has served as council president since
It was suggested that legal counsel be consulted before
attempting to settle the tie.
Mayor Dick Willis said this was the first
time he remembered a tie vote
in the last 30 years.
Council voted to table
the third reading of an ordinance regarding water
and sewer rate changes
proposed within the next several months.
Council members agreed that section
2 should be removed from the
ordinance which specifies a proposed 3 percent
utility rate increase.
Council passed similar rate increases in 2004 and 2005
as part of a
long-term plan to increase funding for the wastewater treatment
and to retire the debt.
In January 2006 council tabled the motion
given the forthcoming change
from a flat rate for water and sewer to water
Council members agreed Monday night that until the water meter system
fully functional for several months a proposed utility rate
should be put on the back burner.
Barry First, village
administrator, reported that all but a few water
Village residents should start to see preview bills based on their
within the next few months before the actual rates take
Residents will receive approximately two months of preview bills
they will be charged based on usage.
The wastewater treatment plant
project is temporarily stalled as the
contractors wait to receive some
substantial equipment to finish the
job. The equipment should arrive within
the next week.
The multi-use path is 90 percent complete said Mayor
First said that all but the covered bridge portion is finished.
covered bridge needs a final coat of paint and some pavement
The village will also be doing some seeding and mulching along the
First said he is in the process of collecting support letters to
with the village's application for the FEMA hazard mitigation grant
be turned in next month.
In December council passed a resolution which
requests an amendment be
made to the county all hazard mitigation plan. The
that a shelter or emergency operation center be
considered for North
Lewisburg in the case of a weather related or homeland
First explained that the amendment request would be
the first step
towards applying for grant money for a multi-purpose building
would serve as a emergency operation center for residents in
First has collected letters from the
Planning Commission, the Champaign County
Mayor's Association and the
Champaign County Sheriffs. He is awaiting letters
from Rush Township and
the Champaign County Red Cross. Letters have also been
the Union County Chamber of Commerce, Wayne Township, Allen
Mayor Dick Willis gave the state of the
village address. He began by
remembering former fiscal officer, Patty
Woodruff and former councilman,
Dwight Thompson, for their many years of
service to the village. Both
Woodruff and Thompson died in 2006.
ran through the ordinances and resolutions presented before
council in 2006
and highlighted the year's events. He also named issues
that need to be
addressed in 2007, including the overall completion of
treatment plant and all of its many components, continued
and work with the fire board on its purchase of the
The next regular council meeting will be Feb. 6 at 7 p.m.
other action, the council:
.Heard the monthly activity report for the village
of North Lewisburg
for the month of December 2006: Eight traffic citations
warnings issued for traffic violations; nine incident reports; 19
of assistance given to citizens; three arrests made; one civil
criminal paper served; 14 follow-up investigations completed;
instances of juvenile contact; two civic activities completed and
auto accident report taken.
.Approved the final appropriations for
.Approved the removal of two nominal warrants from the outstanding
generated during former fiscal officer, Patty Woodruff's term in
The total amount for both court related warrants was $6.65.
Hospital marks 25th anniversary of meals program
From J-T staff
This week will mark the 25th anniversary of Memorial Hospital of
County's Meals Program.
After a busy 2006 with more than 75,000
meals served and delivered, the
hospital is pausing to honor those served in
its long history as well as
the hundreds of volunteers who have helped to
keep it going.
The Meals Program was started when Kenneth Evans, a member of
Central Ohio Council on Aging, approached Carol Derring, director
Food and Nutrition Services at Memorial Hospital, asking if the
was willing to take over the mobile meals program from Community
After an adjustment to the kitchen routine at the community hospital,
was ready to assume the responsibility and on Jan. 4, 1982,
Hospital began its home delivered meals program for the elderly of
That first day it served 44 clients on three delivery routes,
serviced by 28 volunteers.
Evans returned to Memorial Hospital again in
October of 1984, this time
requesting that the hospital take on the
congregate meal program which
was in place at Richwood and at First United
Methodist Church in
Marysville. The hospital answered the call and Community
Jan. 2, 1985, with two meal site locations and 93 clients.
months later and facing a growing need, Derring hired a director
administer and further develop the program. Lois Blue was tapped to
the effort. After 24 years of dedicated service to the seniors of
County and growing the program to more than four times its
size, Blue retired on Sept. 30.
Now, 25 years later, the Memorial
Meals program delivers hot meals to
216 clients on 11 driver routes through
Mobile Meals. Two more routes
deliver the nutritious Community Meals serving
over 1,000 participants
at four meal sites in Marysville, Plain City and
Richwood. The Memorial
Hospital program is one of the few remaining
program in the state of Ohio.
"Perhaps one of the
most important pieces of the Memorial Meals puzzle
is our team of over 130
volunteer drivers," Beth Reschke, the current
Memorial Meals Coordinator,
said. "They work in teams of two, hand
delivering all of these meals to our
clients with a friendly smile.
Beyond delivering a hot, nutritious meal, the
volunteers are able to
check in with each person we serve and provide
assurance that someone is
watching out for them."
In celebration of its
silver anniversary, the administration of the
Memorial Meals Program and
Memorial Hospital of Union County will host
an open house celebration on
Thursday from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. in the
hospital's Café dining room. The
community is welcome to attend for cake
Marysville Journal Tribune
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