By Linda Dillman
It’s mowing season, which means Madison Township Road Department employees will soon spend one day every two weeks mowing private properties that owners refuse to tend to and billing them for the service.
While the township has a years-long backlog of properties assessed on their tax liens, a recent discovery and ruling by the county prosecutor is forcing the township to tweak the process.
“We’ve had to establish new procedures based on the Ohio Revised Code,” said Madison Township Administrator Susan Brobst during the April 10 Madison Township trustee meeting. “Going forward, we’ll have a trash or nuisance resolution for the board.”
Instead of a blanket resolution approving properties from a separate list, all properties, owners, and parcel numbers are now individually listed on the public agenda for single approval under nuisance abatement.
Trustee John Kershner said properties identified in violation of the township policy will be notified and a special hangtag placed on the front door of the dwelling.
The procedures address vegetation, garbage, refuse, or other debris kept in such a manner that causes damage, annoyance, inconvenience, blight/and or affects the health, safety and welfare of adjacent residents or properties.
There are 11 properties owned by individuals, rental businesses, and investment companies declared nuisances because they were littered with refuse, garbage and other debris.
Other Madison Township news
•The trustees approved a contract with Dinsmore and Shohl to represent Madison Township in Bureau of Workers Compensation issues addressing firefighter cancer law cases, with charges not to exceed $6,000.
Trustee John Pritchard said the township is not retaining a law firm to fight or deny a firefighter’s estate.
“This is all new for us,”said Pritchard, who added there is a list of cancers directly related to firefighting. “The state of Ohio is finally recognizing the hazards firefighters face.”
Brobst said the township is not trying to fight firefighters, but because the legislation is so new, the township felt the need for legal advice outside of its normal channel.
•A new fire prevention inspector, William Carroll, and four part-time firefighters, Grant Ellis, Justin Murphy, Owen Rodeniser and Thomas Tremains, were sworn in by Interim Fire Chief Jeff Fasone during the meeting and policies addressing cell phones and recording devices were approved.