Trustees iron out concerns over budget

By Noell Wolfgram Evans
Staff Writer

The Jackson Township trustees met on June 13 to discuss budgetary concerns and fire department vacancies among other township issues.

The trustees approved a resolution which provided for a supplemental transfer of budgetary funds, but not without some discussion.

Trustee Steve Bowshier had questions regarding the current overages in the budget for fire equipment repairs. The fire department is currently without a full-time mechanic to provide preventative maintenance and repairs on equipment. This was a known factor when the budget was drawn up so the funds that had been previously earmarked for that mechanic position had been held for ongoing maintenance needs during the year.

Those needs grew quickly with some unanticipated repairs including the cost of replacing a blown engine on one of the fire trucks. Additionally, an outside company completed a “bumper to bumper review of all fire apparatus” based on American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standards. The results of this prompted several unexpected repairs.

The trustees also discussed an offer from SBA Communications to buy out the current contract for the telecommunications tower atop the fire station. A decision on this was tabled.

Trustees did approve several promotions within the fire department to help level out staffing needs. Fire Tech Joe Grace will be promoted to full-time, firefighters Mark Flowers and Josh Hammond have been named lieutenant, Lieutenant Dan Tilley is being promoted to captain, and Jim Parmenter will become battalion chief.

The official promotions will take place as part of a hiring ceremony to be held at the next regular trustees meeting on June 27 at 7 p.m. at the Evans Senior Center.

In other news, the trustees debated the addition of a bike path that would connect Hoover and Haughn roads. Grove City was approached initially thanks to citizen interest in this project, but with a proposed $1 million price tag, officials were not interested in pursuing it. The township was approached next. While they also are concerned about the cost, they decided to take an initial step to see if some of the speed limits adjacent to the desired path could be adjusted.

Speed and safety along Route 104 were also discussed, particularly in connection with the park entrance. A traffic signal will be going in place on 104, directly in front of the park entrance before the end of the year.

Trustees also took a moment to recognize June 14 as “Daniel Lauron Day in Jackson Township.” Lauron is the Boy Scout who recently completed and donated a U.S. Flag ceremonial disposal area at Concord Cemetery.

In addition to the regularly scheduled meeting, the board of trustees will hold a special session earlier on June 27 at 5:30 p.m. This will be held at the (newly renovated) Township Hall and will feature Public Health Commissioner Joe Mazzola.

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