Property purchase approved

Cub Scout Tyler Howard receives some advice from East Liverpool President of Council John Torma after the council meeting Monday night. (Photo by Jo Ann Bobby-Gilbert)

EAST LIVERPOOL — An agreement to purchase property on Norton Street was approved Monday night by city council, paving the way toward removing a crumbling retaining wall on Garfield Street.

Council voted unanimously in favor of paying owner Linda Ziegler $30,000 for the property, which includes two lots and a house she had used as rental property.

The agreement includes a provision for Ziegler to demolish the house within 30 days and be reimbursed $9,000. The city will also pay closing costs on the sale.

Service-Safety Director Brian Allen said he expects to meet later this week with contractors to develop a timeline for the project, which entails removing a crumbling concrete retaining wall along Garfield, above this parcel of property, which will then be backfilled to repair the problem.

Also approved was a resolution requested by utilities Director Tim Clark authorizing the mayor to apply for a Water Supply Revolving Loan Account to be used for formulation and implementation of an asset management plan.

Clark said the Environmental Protection Agency is mandating such plans as a result of the water crisis which occurred in Flint, Michigan, and said the cost is $20,000 to hire a firm to formulate the plan. He said, however, $10,000 will be “forgiven,” meaning the city’s cost will actually be $10,000.

During her report, Auditor Marilyn Bosco referred to a recent request made to the finance committee by police Chief John Lane that money be appropriated for two new cruisers. She said there was enough in the budget for one, which Lane has indicated has been ordered, and said it is possible a second one will be affordable once she completes “cleaning up” finances for the year.

Finance Chairman Bill Hogue reported that, thus far this year, the city has realized $421,570 from the traffic cam program.

Allen took a few minutes during his comments to commend the ELCPR, Beacon Association and city employees for their efforts in sponsoring and preparing for the Christmas festival and parade over the weekend, saying, “They made the city really shine.”

Other members of council also added their praise for the event, which drew thousands into the downtown.

Saying he will be absent from council’s last meeting of the year, outgoing 3rd Ward Councilman Tom Cunningham — who lost his bid for re-election to Jeff Kreefer — reflected on his 16 years serving on council.

“I thought it would last two to four years and it’s actually been 16. It’s been a great experience,” Cunningham said.

President of Council John Torma announced that resumes are being accepted for the position of city council clerk until 4 p.m. Dec. 17 in the office of the mayor’s secretary.

Those interested will be interviewed beginning at 5:30 p.m. Dec. 18, the day of the next regular meeting, with a clerk to be named during the first meeting in January.

Torma encouraged newly elected council members to be present for the interviews.

Council members will be administered the oath of office at 3 p.m. Dec. 22 in East Liverpool Municipal Court by Judge Melissa Byers Emmerling, Torma announced.