MIDDLEPORT — Dedication of Middleport’s new waterline and fire hydrant project for the Powell Street, Leading Creek and Hobson area will be held at 11 a.m. Friday in the Shady Grove area.
The $486,305 project was constructed by the village using an EPA-EDFA grant of $192,691. A number of years ago when the Hobson area was incorporated into Middleport Village the residents were promised water and fire protection from the village. Now that promise has been fulfilled. Mayor Michael Gerlach said that representatives of the agencies contributing grant money will be present for the dedication and that plans are being made for the some residents of the area to participate in the ribbon cutting.
At Monday night’s Village Council three part-time employees were hired for the police department on recommendation of Chief of Police Bruce Swift. They were Michael Cupp, as a part-time corrections officer, Pamela Hartenbach and Alicia Daugherty as part-time dispatchers. All three of the new employees are currently enrolled in advanced police work courses.
One of two patrol vehicles recently purchased by the village and now appropriately detailed for identification was displayed for review by Council members. The two used cars, 2004 Ford Crown Victorias which came full equipped, are now in use. At the request of Swift, Council approved the purchase of new tires for one of the other cruisers.
As for the proposed impound lot to be located behind village hall, Mike Hendrickson reported on quotes for fencing around two sides of the 100 x 100 lot and suggested that the price was too high, and that the project “be put on hold temporarily.” His suggestion was that fencing and other required materials be purchased and village workers be used for construction. As a first step he proposed that an ordinance be put in place as to the operation, and a schedule be put together for the proposed work by village employees.
Council Member Rae Reynolds reported on last week’s organizational neighborhood watch meeting attended by numerous residents and announced the next meeting to be held Sept. 13 at village hall. The public is invited to attend to get information about the program.
During the meeting Chief of Police Swift reported that he and Lt. Joel Lynch had gone to Jackson to petition Homeland Security for two lap top computers and five mounts to be placed in the police cruisers. Their request, he said, was approved at no cost to the village. Swift said that the computers will enable the officers to acquire data in seconds on fugitives locally and around the country, and is another way of strengthening the police department.
Reports were given by Hendrickson on a FEMA conference he attended, by Mony Wood on a police/jail operation meeting he went to, and by Mayor Gerlach on opportunities for grant money available to villages for infrastructure. He stressed the importance of follow through and wise use in secured funding as a key to getting more money for new projects.
Wood reported on purchasing one-half of a hog at the Meigs County Fair which was processed and put in a freezer to be used in meals provided to prisoners. Funding for the purchase came from a refund on telephone service provided by an outside source which donates a percentage back to the jail. No taxpayer money was involved.
As for the jail operation, Wood described it as nearly full most of the time in August. Prisoners, he reported, were from the Meigs County’s Sheriff’s Department,and departments in Pomeroy, Syracuse, Gallia, Racine, and Jackson. The amount collected from outside sources since the March 29 opening totals $63,792.98, according to Wood’s report, with 373 inmates booked, 280 from outside agencies.
Councilman Roger Manley requested a report from Susan Baker, clerk treasurer, on village employee overtime work.
Councilman Craig Wehrung asked about the delay in getting guard railing installed on Middleport Hill, and also suggested that lines be painted for safety’s sake.