CW to monitor peddlers

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Canal Winchester will be keeping an eye on door-to-door sales people in the village as Canal Winchester Village Council approved changes in the village code regarding peddlers and solicitors at its March 3 meeting.

Finance Director Nanisa Osborn noted, "Peddlers and solicitors seem to arrive in groups when spring arrives in the village. The last time the village updated the conditions for soliciting in the village was in 1995 and at that time, all they did was update the hours and fees. However, in the past 13 years, much has changed and I would like for council to consider updating the peddlers and solicitors regulations to allow us to do more to control the volume of solicitors and the companies they come from."

Osborn said the idea of updating the code is to offer the village more discretion in determining the type of individuals and businesses soliciting in Canal Winchester and while it has not been a problem in the past, by tightening up the code, future problems can be avoided.

According to the ordinance, everyone acting for or hired by another as a peddler or solicitor must obtain a license. However, uncompensated individuals acting on behalf of recognized religious or charitable non-profit organizations are not required to obtain a license, but they must register with the mayor’s office.

License and registration certificates must be obvious and attached to the peddler or solicitor’s outer garments, are not transferable. Activity is restricted to 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday-Saturday, and never on Sunday or holidays. Residents or businesses have the right to refuse uninvited peddlers or solicitors by placing a sign near their main entrance.

Main Street CW

Main Street Canal Winchester (MSCW) Executive Director John Garrett said the MSCW was re-accredited for the fifth consecutive year as one of 1,800 Main Street organizations across the nation.

"It was not an ordinary feat," remarked Garrett, "and none of it could be done without our volunteers."

Garrett said, since 2003, 25 rehabilitations have taken place with a private investment of more than $2.2 million and a public investment of over $3.2 million. The net number of new businesses added over five years was four, with a net 35 new jobs added to the local economy. Five businesses expanded and volunteers donated 13,299 hours to the Main Street effort.

Other CW news

•Council approved a resolution officially recognizing March 15 as Scouting for Food Day when Brownies, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, and Boy Scouts will fan out across the village in support of a local food pantry. Scouts will be asking for donations of non-perishable items. They hope to exceed the nearly 3,000 items collected last year.

•Engineer Steve Farst said the 2008 street program includes miscellaneous street repair for the Washington Knoll area (Old Coach Place, John Anne Circle, Walnut View Court, Flintlock Way, Powder Horn Place, and John Anne Circle West) and pavement maintenance as needed in Winchester Trace, Ashbrook Village, and Villages at Westchester.

•Mayor Mike Ebert said his office is still taking applications for individuals interested in participating in a Community Watch volunteer program.

•State legislative action could impact Canal Winchester’s mayor’s court operation and sick leave for employees, reported Osborn, who said proposed changes to mayor’s court would make the operation a court of record and more formalized.

"They say they don’t want mayors presiding over mayor’s court," said Osborn, "but we haven’t had that in four years. We have a magistrate. There are lots of reasons mayor’s court works. I am concerned we are literally creating a cumbersome system for something that actually works very well right now."

•Osborn commented on a proposed Ohio Healthy Families Act, which would mandate that all businesses with 25 or more employees provide seven days of paid sick leave per year in addition to any sick leave policy already in place. She calculated the change could force the village to budget more than $42,000 in additional costs.

"This is a very expensive venture," Osborn admitted. "I also feel for people who do not have the benefit of paid sick leave."

•Council approved a $15,695 contract to repair a leaky roof covering town hall; to abolish "No Right Turn On Red" during designated times at Columbus and Washington streets  and no parking restrictions on Columbus Street west of Washington Street.

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