“We used to do this all the time,” said Law Director Gary Ebert, who organized the session during his tenure as interim Mayor. “It is a good way for all parties in the city to interact.”
The comprehensive agenda was attended by all city council members and department heads. Newly sworn in Mayor Paul Koomar also sat in and reported that he has spent his first days in office meeting with department heads and setting priorities as the city moves forward in 2017.
“There are many things on the agenda. 2017 could be a very exciting year,” said Koomar.
– An hour-long presentation by CarrieAnn Rosemark, Supt. Rocky River Wastewater Treatment Plant helped the audience understand why Bay sewer bills have escalated and how future flow meter readings may assist the city in understanding ways the critical issue of water treatment and expense may be addressed.
– Finance Director Renee Mahoney reported that Bay reserves are now at $1.9 million – “where we want them to be” – thanks to a increase in Bay municipal income tax collections combined with the streamlining of city services.
– Reports from Commission Heads (Planning, Architectural Board of Review, Board of Zoning Appeals) indicated that the city’s agreement with SafeBuilt – a third party Building Department management resource – could be improved with the addition of a city liaison to help SafeBuilt better understand Bay Code and civic history.
– The City is working more closely with CEI to solve power outage problems.
– Police Chief Mark Spaetzel said the city is moving forward “as quickly as possible” in naming a part-time Animal Control Officer.
– Recreation Director Dan Entovich announced that the city is in receipt of a $60,000 grant ($10,000 per year for 6 years) from the Coulton family dedicated to Bay’s tennis courts. Wi-fi at the swimming pool will also be improved.
– Clete Miller and Scott Pohlkamp announced plans for Community House fundraisers to take place this year. Originally a Cahoon Family barn, the Community House is a building of historic significance to the community. Cathy Flament of Rose Hill Museum also reported on needs for the original Cahoon House. “It is an awesome museum. We are part of the Ohio Inter-Museum Council and other museums don’t even compare to ours,” she said.
– Leo Mahoney of the Tree Commission documented Bay’s commitment as a Tree City and affirmed the city’s goal of placing a tree on every tree lawn. Bay will also present a tree canopy ordinance this year requiring even residential owners to replace trees of 8 inch diameter or more when one is removed. “We are trying to preserve the character of Bay Village,” he said. “The tree canopy is a community asset….the removal of any protected tree will be mitigated by replacement.” “This is the first time I have ever seen a commission develop an ordinance,” complimented Councilman Dave Tadych. “These folks spent many 6 and 7 hour nights doing this.”
– City Council Vice President Dwight Clark summed the meeting appropriately. “This is going to be a transformational year in 2017,” he said. With $1.9 million in reserve funds, a high AA1 Moody’s Bond rating, an 18 per cent yearly paydown of debt and a general feeling of positivity surrounding both City Council and the new Koomar administration, Bay will move forward on many fronts in 2017 including road improvements and other large capital projects.
“We should be very proud of what we have here in Bay Village,” said Clark. “It is something very special.”
The entire five-hour meeting can he heard on the city website, www.CityofBayVillage.com under the City Council link. Council Clerk Joan Kemper will also issue print versions.