(Posted Jan. 26, 2023)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
While London city leaders are considering increases to water and sewer rates to fund major improvements to those services, they also are looking at increasing the rates for trash pickup.
Currently, residents pay $17.80 per month for trash service. The city’s Board of Public Utilities (BPU) is proposing an increase of $2.35 per month which would bring the monthly rate to $20.15.
BPU member Steve Lelonek pointed to high diesel fuel costs as one of the reasons for the proposed hike. The sanitation department’s new trucks came at a significant cost and are on a regimented maintenance schedule, he added.
Even with the increase, the new monthly rate would be cheaper than going with an outside company like Rumpke, Lelonek said.
City council held a first reading on the proposed rate increase at their Jan. 19 meeting. The legislation will be up for a second reading at council’s Feb. 2 meeting.
In other action, council held the final readings on legislation to place a 0.25 percent income tax increase on the May 2 ballot for additional funding for the fire and EMS department.
Council approved appropriations for vehicles for the police and street departments: $62,000 for a new police cruiser; $13,750 to upfit a police cruiser purchased last year; and $230,000 for a new plow truck for the street department.
Council gave Rex Castle, the city’s safety service director, the greenlight to apply for several grants for the following:
• up to $15,000 from the Ohio Department of Commerce for MARCS radio communication systems for the fire department;
• up to $135,000 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for a firefighters assistance grant that requires a 10 percent match from the city:
• an unspecified amount at this time for fire and emergency response staffing from FEMA; and
• up to $2,500 from the Ohio Department of Public Safety Division of EMS for the fire and EMS department.
Council also authorized the BPU to apply for up to $10,000 from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.
The city plans to enter into a contract to tear down the residence at 5 Stewart Ave. due to unsafe and dangerous conditions. The cost is not exceed $49,000. The city has tried without success to contact the landowner. London’s law director, Jennifer Hitt, is in the process of going to court to secure rights for the city to go onto the property to do the demolition, Castle said.
A public hearing is scheduled for March 2 on preliminary plans for Keny Stations Apartments, a 55-unit apartment complex planned on Keny Boulevard.