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Council waives college fees

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At their Sept. 2 regular meeting, Village Council members took two actions in support of the revived Antioch College.

Council unanimously approved an ordinance that offers the college a one-time waiver of water and sewer fees related to the filling of the Antioch Wellness Center pool, at an estimated savings to the college of $1,669.20. The center opens this Saturday, Sept. 6, from noon to 4 p.m., with the ribbon-cutting ceremony at noon.

“We’ve been looking into ways to promote economic development, and we see waiving utilities fees as an economic development tool,” Council President Karen Wintrow said.

Villager Malte Von Matthiessen, one of the Wellness Center’s head fund-raisers, thanked Council for its support.

“I think the Wellness Center project is a fabulous example of the college and the community collaborating together,” he said.

Council also unanimously approved a resolution proclaiming Sept. 6 as Antioch College Wellness Center Day in the village. The resolution states that Council “wishes to congratulate Antioch College on many significant improvements to the grounds and facilities of the Antioch College campus, many completed using LEED principles and with a commitment to global sustainability, thereby restoring campus for the enrichment and enjoyment of students, faculty and visitors as well as the entire community” and that, “because of Antioch College and the Wellness Center, life in the Village promises to be richer and more enjoyable, enabling citizens to access a wide variety of health and wellness services as well as a venue for community events…”

In other Sept. 2 Council business:
• Council unanimously approved a resolution allowing Village Manager Patti Bates to enter into a contract with Durst Brothers Excavating of Tipp City, the company chosen to continue the downtown streetscape project. The Village received two bids for the project, according to Bates, with the Durst bid at $79,310 significantly lower than the second bid of $125,000.

The project aims to continue the streetscape changes begun two years ago downtown, and will proceed on the east side of Xenia Avenue from Dino’s Cappucino’s north to Glen Street. The project includes removing eight pear trees and replanting other, noninvasive trees; replacing current streetlamps with more energy-efficient models; and repairing and replacing sidewalks. The project will continue at a future date with the same changes on the west side of Xenia Avenue downtown.
The work on the streetscape project might begin immediately, according to Bates, and the contractor has agreed to pause over the second weekend of October, the date of the Fall Street Fair.

• Council unanimously approved a resolution allowing Bates to enter into a contract with C&S Concrete Services for sidewalk improvements around Mills Lawn School. The cost will be $16,225. The Village also received two bids on this project, Bates said, with the C&S bid the lowest.

• Council approved a resolution allowing Bates to enter into a contract with the Mercer Group for improvements to the Gaunt Park ballfield.

• Council member Gerry Simms gave an update on anticipated upgrades to Council chambers. Estimates of a new sound system have come in higher than expected, Simms said, and the project may have to proceed in stages rather than take place at a single time.

• Council member Brian Housh and Clerk Judy Kintner presented an update on recent meetings with e-Gov website developers, who are working to update the Village website. The goal is to provide a way to more quickly and efficiently disseminate information that affects daily life for villagers, according to a written statement from Kintner and Administrative Assistant Ruthe Ann Lillich.

• Bates announced that Village Water and Wastewater Superintendent Joe Bates recently received a prestigious national award, the George W. Burke Jr. Award, from the Ohio Water Environment Association for the Village wastewater treatment plant’s safety record. Only one award is given annually in Ohio.

• Wintrow announced that Council will soon begin a review of the Village Charter, which needs to take place every eight to 10 years.

• At Council’s next meeting, on Monday, Sept. 15, topics will include a review of the recent Street Musician agreement and information regarding an upcoming community forum on policing, which is being organized by the Human Relatiions Commission.

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