City Council defers capital expense discussion

By Dave Lindeman - For the Courier

HUBER HEIGHTS — The Huber Heights City Council was to consider a resolution of a five-year capital improvements plan at Monday night’s meeting, but instead decided to hold off on a decision.

Mayor Jeff Gore suggested council hold more detailed discussion about the plan. He said he likely would call a special meeting to discuss the plan, which would cover 2019-2023.

“It’s my personal feeling we haven’t really had the proper time to go over this plan you’ve prevented to us,” Gore said to City Manager Rob Schommer. “I want to recommend that we move this particular item to another work session agenda and I’m actually considering a special work session sometime this month so this council can discuss this.”

Schommer and council members agreed and Gore said he would announce soon whether the discussion would take place at a special meeting or at a regular work session.

As the plan stands, water issues get the most attention over the next five years with $17.6 million in improvements planned. The largest part of that total — $13 million – will be spent on the city’s softening project in 2019.

Second on the list are street and traffic improvements, with $14.7 million over five years. The biggest portion of that money goes to the ongoing street improvement program. Phase 3 of the Chambersburg Road project will cost $1.2 million in 2019 and phase 4 is scheduled for 2023 with a cost of $1.6 million.

Public works is third on the list at $3.8 million, with $2 million of that slated for a new public works facility in 2019.

Other categories and their projected capital improvement expenses for the next five years are: sewer, $1,630,000; police department, $1,490,700; storm water, $1,250,000; parks and recreation $1,096,500; information technology $848,000; fire department, $590,000; engineering graphic information systems, $265,000; finance, $22,500.

In other action, council:

    • Moved $250,000 out of the parks and recreation fund to the general fund to finish repaying the general fund for seed money for the Rose Music Center. Council then moved $300,000 from the general fund back to the parks and recreation fund to begin to implement the parks and recreation master plan. The park and recreation board will meet Thursday to set priorities for the spending.
    • Councilman Richard Shaw said he thought “this was a great way to move things forward and really see the vision and ideas prosper here in the city when it comes to parks and recreation.” Council voted 7-1 to approve the ordinance which also included transfers of $21,000 from the general fund to the pavement preservation and repair program and $25,000 for claims and deductibles for the city’s liability insurance. Janell Smith voted no.
    • Heard a complaint from Scott and Cindy Davidson about the effects housing development has had on their property on River Downs Court. The Davidsons said the development has altered the natural flow of water on their property and adversely affected a pond located there. City Manager Rob Schommer said he would get with the Davidsons to inspect their property and look for solutions.
    • Approved a contract with Fryman Kuck for $2,515,922 for the water system pressure upgrade north of Interstate 70.
    • Approved an ordinance seeking bids for the design of phase 4 of the Chambersburg Road improvement project.
    • Appointed Yolanda Stephens to the personnel appeals board to a term expiring March 31, 2020 and appointed Toni Webb to the parks and recreation board to a term expiring March 31, 2012.
    • Approved the transfer of a liquor permit from R&R Takhar Inc. to Anika Group Inc. for the Marathon station at 8001 Brandt Pike.
    • Approved a new liquor permit for Casey’s General Store at 6007 Old Troy Pike.
    • Heard Schommer announce that Huber Heights has received the Groundwater Guardian Award for the 24th straight year.
    • Passed onto second reading ordinances that would amend sections of the city’s fire code to match changes in the state fire code and provisions for small cellular and wireless structures in the city’s right of way.

Council’s next meeting is Monday, June 11, 7 p.m. at city hall. Council will hold a work session at 6 p.m. May 22 at city hall.

By Dave Lindeman

For the Courier

Reach Darrell Wacker at (937) 684-8983 or on Twitter @HH_Courier.

Reach Darrell Wacker at (937) 684-8983 or on Twitter @HH_Courier.