Bedford Township Trustee John Dean and Fiscal Officer Barbara Grueser were officially on the agenda to speak about the substation which the Pomeroy Fire Department received an $811,000 federal grant to build.
Grueser presented Mayor John Musser with a list of questions on behalf of the township about the grant proposal and project. Musser said he didn’t have the answer to many of the questions and suggested a committee be formed comprised of members from the township, village council and fire department to answer them.
“I agree we need to get things in writing before things go forward,” Musser told township residents.
Musser also said the Village of Pomeroy was not trying to put a burden on Bedford Township and that “Pomeroy makes absolutely nothing on this.”
A township resident asked if Pomeroy would control levy money if a fire protection levy is passed with Councilman George Stewart saying it would not, adding that levy money would be distributed by the county to Bedford Township to pay for the levy if passed.
One of the questions brought up by Dean, Grueser and Pomeroy Councilwoman Ruth Spaun during open discussion was confusion over suitable land being available for building the substation. Grueser also told Musser in open discussion the grant application states Pomeroy owned the land in the township to build. Musser said Pomeroy does not own land in Bedford Township but also said he hadn’t seen the grant proposal. No one on council had seen the grant proposal except Councilwoman Ruth Spaun.
Spaun insisted there were too many questions she had about the proposal and project to give her support at this time. However, Musser, and Council Members Stewart, Mary McAngus, Jim Sisson and Dave Deem all voiced their support for the project to Bedford residents. Sisson also spoke in support of Pomeroy Fire Chief Rick Blaettnar.
“I think the fire department’s only goal here is to make services better,” Stewart said. “I don’t think there’s anything here we can’t work out.”
Musser suggested the committee form “right away” to get suitable answers to questions posed by the residents of both Bedford and Pomeroy to clear up the confusion on the project if it is to proceed, particularly as a ballot issue in the May primary. Ronnie Wood, president of the Bedford Township Trustees, also spoke up in favor of the committee.
At the meeting, Musser suggested the committee be comprised of five total members though after more discussion, Musser said seven might be more appropriate and he would make a contact with Bedford Township officials to see if this would work.