By Amanda Ensinger
At a recent meeting, the Prairie Township trustees discussed an increase in crime in the area.
Among the items discussed was an increase in vandalism calls in the North Village neighborhood. The calls range from punctured vehicle tires to vehicle windows being broken. Currently, no suspects have been apprehended and no charges have been filed.
Several people have been issued citations for illegally riding dirt bikes on the township roadways. Franklin County deputies also have been recovering stolen vehicles, including recovering seven cars in one month.
The sheriff’s office is also investigating four homicides that recently occurred in the township. Two occurred on the west side and the other two on the east side.
“I would like to ask residents to call the sheriff’s office if they see suspicious activity,” said Deputy Corbin Wood. “It helps with solving local crimes”
Prairie Township resident Cheryl Cornelius asked about homeless camps and the progress that has been made.
“Some businesses are giving permission to help stop the loitering and panhandlers,” Wood said. “Some provide handouts to the homeless to get them some help and we need to educate them as much as possible.”
In other news, the fire department asked the board to approve posting an opening for full-time administrative assistant position for the fire department.
“After nearly five months of splitting the current admin assistant’s time between the fire department and the township administrative office, it has become apparent that both departments need a full-time employee,” said Dave McAninch, road superintendent for the township.
However, trustee Cathy Schmelzer asked that this be tabled until an executive session.
McAninch also asked the board to adopt a resolution allowing the township to spend $50,000 for new ADA ramps, replacements and sidewalk installation and repairs.
“The locations are the sidewalk paths through Lincoln Village North to Prairie Lincoln,” he said. “The new sidewalk and ADA ramps will connect gaps around the Hilton and S. Murray Hill areas to West Broad Street and will connect a gap of sidewalk on the west side Oak Park between Maple Park Way and Cedar Court.”