Hashing out requirements for building contractors

(Posted June 22, 2020)

By Andrew Garrett, Staff Writer

A piece of legislation remains in committee after much discussion by London city council members.

On June 18, council members discussed proposed amendments to an ordinance that addresses requirements for building contractors operating within the city.

As it stands, the legislation defines contractors as “any person, firm or corporation which builds, constructs, repairs, replaces, remodels, alters or otherwise improves any land or building, or any portion thereof, as a business for profit in the city.”

Council members could not agree on what constitutes a contractor, prompting council member Brenda Russell to ask if the ordinance would pertain to a handyman performing a single task, such as hanging a door.

“Technically, a kid mowing your lawn is going to put the homeowner in violation,” said council member Anthony Smith.

Additionally, concern was raised over a $25 fee for registering as a contractor and a $25 fee for renewing the registration. Some council members questioned whether that would be good for business in the city.

“I don’t see how a $25 fee could make or break you if you are a licensed business,” said council member Bryan Robinson. “It should be your responsibility as a homeowner to do things right.”

The measure remains in committee until those details and others can be clarified in the legislation text.

Council also discussed two pieces of legislation that require public hearings before proceeding.

The first calls for vacating the alley between the fire station and 70 E. Fourth St. Council had initially set the hearing for July 2 but will not have a meeting that week ahead of the July 4 holiday. Also, the original date would not satisfy the 30-day public notice required by code. Instead, the hearing is on the books for July 16.

The second piece of legislation calls for annexation of land at State Route 665 and Center Street. That public hearing is also set for July 16.

In other meeting action, council:

  • passed an ordinance that would require licenses for vendors to operate at public events. The fee is $10 per operator for the first four employees employed during any public event festival, fair or carnival. The fee increases by $1 for each employee in excess of four. The maximum fee is $50.
  • held the first reading of a resolution that would transfer money reimbursed by the Ohio Public Works Commission to the city of London. Council plans to transfer the $207,301 to the Municipal Improvement Street Fund.
  • held the first reading of an ordinance that would rezone property on Cherry Street from residential (R-3) to business (B-2). The measure will go up for a public hearing on Aug. 6.
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