With three days under his belt as Greenfield City Manager, Todd Wilkin told council members during his report at Wednesday’s council meeting that it was a “tremendous honor” to have been given the opportunity to help lead the village.
Wilkin, who took the oath of office last Friday, officially started in his new position Monday. He previously served as safety and service director in Hillsboro.
Wilkin said he plans first to meet in person with each Greenfield employee to hear about things from their perspective. “The citizens of Greenfield are counting on us,” he said, adding that continuing efficient and effective public service is important.
He spoke of Greenfield’s attractiveness to businesses, “a strategic approach” to capital projects, and the village only taking on what it can afford and complete “in a timely manner.” Wilkin also touched on the importance of the administration continuing its “budgetary restraint and fiscal responsibility.”
Much has been accomplished in the village, but there is more to be done for Greenfield to be “a success story,” he said.
“We want to build bridges, not walls,” Wilkin said, noting the potential of making a difference and the importance of working together.
“I will pray every day for God to give me the wisdom to make the best decisions for Greenfield,” Wilkin said.
In other business, Grow Greater Greenfield (G3) representatives said they want to bring a circus to town next month, and on Wednesday they were seeking council’s blessing.
Mirlene VanDyke and Tyler Brown said G3 would like the use of Felson Park for two shows by the Kelly Miller Circus on May 31. The exotic, animal free circus would feature aerial acts, Russian Swing, quick change magic, a Rola Bola balancing act, clowns, and much more.
A flyer provided by VanDyke said that whatever profit G3 makes from the circus would be earmarked for Felson Park improvements and a downtown mural.
Greenfield Law Director Brian Zets advised council members to have a “simple use” agreement to protect the village in place before taking a vote on the matter.
Council members approved a motion for Zets to draw up the legislation, which he said he would have ready to go before council at its next meeting on May 1.
Also speaking to council was Pat Friel of Friel and Associates, which offers outpatient mental health and substance abuse counseling. It is located at 1020 Jefferson St. There is also an office in Chillicothe.
Friel said that they “try to treat the whole person” and “partner with multiple local organizations to provide the most holistic care” for clients.
The Greenfield office, located across from Community Market, is open 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
For more information go to frielandassociates.com. Call the Greenfield office at 937-981-1911 and the Chillicothe office at 740-851-4432.
At the end of the meeting when the opportunity to bring up new business arose, council chair Phil Clyburn said that during his couple of weeks serving as acting city manager, he was able to visit the waste water treatment plant and the water department. He said it was “fascinating” and “impressive.”
On that note Wilkin, who stressed the importance of education and sharing it, turned to the few Cub Scouts present in the audience and offered to set up some tours for them of both the plants.
He said most people likely don’t think about the process that allows them to get clean, running water into their homes. Touring the plants would be a great way for the boys to learn about that, he said.
Since new legislation was recently passed changing council’s meeting day to Tuesdays, the next regular session meeting is scheduled for May 1 at 7:30 p.m. in council chambers on the first floor of the City Building. The meetings are open to the public.
Angela Shepherd in a stringer for The Times-Gazette.