Wauseon Council wrapping up ‘16 business

By David J. Coehrs - [email protected]

Wauseon City Council conducted a brief, brisk session Monday as city business winds down at year’s end.

The council approved a recommendation by the Personnel Committee to grant all non-union city employees a two percent wage increase. At the committee’s meeting Dec. 1, member Heather Kost said the increase is on par with union levels.

Law Director Tom McWatters III said at the meeting that city employee evaluations will become an important component of compensation plans in 2017. He said each employee will be evaluated in September to help determine whether a rate increase beyond what has been approved is warranted.

Finance Committee member Jon Schamp reported on the committee’s meeting held Nov. 22. Requested capital budget items discussed included: additional funds to complete a bath house for the new community pool; several pieces of street equipment for the Public Works Department; necessary funds for the city Water Reclamation Plant to improve sludge removal; and suggested improvement projects for the water treatment plant.

In department reports:

• Fire Chief Rick Sluder reported he is working on fire contracts with associated townships and pursuing government grants for training and fire equipment.

• Police Chief Keith Torbet said the department’s new K-9 Unit will likely be in service by week’s end. He reminded the council the department’s second “Coffee With A Cop” event will be held Dec. 9 from 7:30-8:30 a.m. at Red Rambler Coffees, 1493 N. Shoop Ave.

• Public Service Director Dennis Richardson said the city’s Public Works employees continue to collect leaves, and have not yet returned to picking up brush.

The council also approved the suspension of three readings and emergency passage of: an ordinance to approve, adopt, and enact 2015 replacement pages to the city’s codified ordinances; a resolution amending the classification and compensation plans to include the position of fire department executive assistant. Both pieces of legislation are now in effect.

The fire department’s executive assistant position was proposed by Sluder to provide help with, among other time-consuming duties, the large volume of paperwork experienced by the department’s administrators.

In new business, council members approved motions to authorize Finance Director Jamie Giguere to pay all city bills possible before Dec. 31 and to reappoint Councilors Shane Chamberlin and Rick Frey to the Volunteer Fire Fighters Dependents Board for a term from Jan. 1, 2017, to Dec. 31, 2017.

City Council followed its regular session with a sparsely-attended Safety and Code Committee public forum concerning a proposed ordinance to limit utility, low-speed, and under-speed vehicles and mini-trucks on city streets. The ordinance would limit those vehicles to streets or highways with an established speed limit at or under 35 miles per hour, and require an inspection of the vehicles.

The next City Council meeting will be held Tuesday, Jan. 3, 5 p.m., in second floor chambers at 230 Clinton St.

By David J. Coehrs

[email protected]

David J. Coehrs can be reached at 419-335-2010.

David J. Coehrs can be reached at 419-335-2010.