Greenfield’s village council meeting this week covered a range of topics including recognizing a citizen and an employee, Arbor Day efforts, a kids’ fishing derby, and clean-up day.
Greenfield police officer Mark Hamilton was recognized as the April Employee of the Month. According to city manager Todd Wilkin, the nomination was made by a personal note from a citizen who Hamilton helped through a situation. Wilkin added that the officer, who has been with the department for a couple years, every day continues to learn and create a positive impact in the community.
Local artist, author, and teacher William “Bill” Roller was recognized with the April Citizen of the Month Award. Roller created the logo — a caricature of the clock tower on the City Building known as “Duncan” that was inspired by Greenfield’s history and the people that have left their mark on the village — for Grow Greater Greenfield’s (G3) Keep Our Countrie Towne Greene campaign.
Wilkin said Roller, through the several children’s books he has written, has brought “significant awareness to and about Greenfield,” adding that the village is grateful for the good things Roller does for the community.
The campaign kicks off this Saturday, April 24 for clean-up efforts in the village beginning at 9 a.m. at the City Building. The group has green trash bags for use during the event. Gloves and water will be provided to those who help.
April 24 is also the villagewide clean-up day and from 9 a.m. to noon dumpsters will be provided on South Washington Street near the railroad tracks. As with previous clean-up events, it is not for household trash, but for larger items. Additionally, the service is for village residents only, not contractor or business trash. Paint is allowed, but must be dry, whether in a can or on cardboard. Batteries, tires or items containing freon will not be allowed. Pick-up is available for the elderly and disabled by calling 937-981-3500 by 4 p.m. on April 23.
The yard waste site will be open Friday, April 23 from noon to 4 p.m. and Saturday, April 24 from 8 a.m. to noon at the wastewater treatment facility at 187 Lost Bridge Road. Only compostable materials are accepted. The service is free to all village residents.
Tree commission member Ron Coffey was presented with a proclamation recognizing Arbor Day, which is April 30. As in previous years, with the exception of last year, the administration has visited Greenfield, Buckskin and Rainsboro elementaries and distributed seedlings to first-graders. Additionally, village officials help plant a tree at each of Greenfield’s two nursing homes.
On Arbor Day this year, tree commission members will be at the City Building beginning at 10 a.m. to distribute free seedlings to those interested. According to Coffey, there is an assortment of different tree types and they will be given out on a first-come, first-served basis.
Council member Brenda Losey said she had a communication from Jimmy Jones, who announced earlier in the year that he and his wife, Elisabeth, were hoping to bring back the Daryle Unger & Peanut Memorial Kids Fishing Derby. Losey said Jones has set the derby date for June 5 with a rain date of June 12. A fundraiser for the kids’ fishing derby, as well as for the Daryle C. Unger Memorial Scholarship Fund, is set for Saturday at the Greenfield Eagles beginning at 6 p.m.
In his report, Wilkin announced that paving bids were received last week for a “significant amount” of paving throughout the village. With the bid the village plans to go with, enough money will remain from the initial budgeted amount to handle prep work for ODOT’s planned paving of North Washington Street next year. Wilkin said in that sort of project, ODOT carries all the cost of the paving, but prep work — things like fixing damaged curbs and potholes prior to paving — are the village’s responsibility.
Legislation having its first reading included resolutions to adopt a council code of conduct and a social media policy for the village. Other legislation, which was unanimously adopted, was for the purchase of a dump truck.
According to Wilkin, the village will keep its aging truck, which is usable, but unreliable.
Law director Hannah Bivens told council about a recent meeting she and Wilkin had with the Highland County Land Bank regarding the land bank, versus the county auditor’s office, being the agent to remove old tax assessments from properties that have been relinquished through quit claim deeds.
Wilkin said he appreciated the discussion and partnership shared in the county. “We are so much better as a county and region when we are working together,” he said.
In other business, beginning May 1 a convenience fee will be applied any time a water bill is paid by credit card. Currently, whenever someone pays their water bill with a credit card, a convenience fee is applied, except when they call the water office and pay over the phone. There will also no longer be any “deals” for water and sewer payments. Wilkin said every month there are several consumers that call in to work out a plan for minimum payment deals, but that can’t happen anymore because it is an issue with the state auditor’s office. Wilkin said there is legislation outlining what percentage of a water bill must be paid each month until it’s paid off.
A finance committee meeting is tentatively scheduled for May 7 at 10 a.m. in the council chambers. The meeting is open to the public.
Angela Shepherd is a correspondent for the village of Greenfield.