Bellville Village Council members urged to be more aware of equipment usage in parks

BELLVILLE – Village council members have been urged to pay more attention to use of expensive village equipment.

And to more closely monitor use of playing fields used by the Clear Fork Youth League.

Council member Stephen Edwards told council members a vac truck has been used to do some “water blasting” at the request of a village resident. He said trips like that should be kept track of, with something as simple as a clipboard, where workers could note times in and out for equipment.

He also told council and members of a utilities committee about problems at the playing fields along Hines Avenue, that are used by the youth league. He said over a recent weekend it was discovered that raw sewage was running across the area, and that a pump area had problems. There were numerous kids in the area at the time.

It was discovered that an item — probably a diaper — had become entangled in equipment. Edwards said a village worker had to reach into water in the pit, remove the item, and then make repairs.

He said the electrical wires were under water, and it was fortunate that the breaker box did not shut things off.

Edwards said the “motor was hot” and the “pump was hot.”

He also said the area should be covered. But instead a “homemade wood skid” had been placed over the opening.

The fields are located on village property, which the youth league leases, according to mayor Teri Brenkus.

Village administrator Larry Weirich said the youth league is responsible for maintenance of the site. In addition, “55 people have done electrical work” there, and “none of them are qualified,” he said.

Weirich said the situation will be looked at.

Monitoring the use of village equipment in some cases would be difficult, according to Weirick.

On a daily basis, trucks and workers make numerous trips, he said. It was agreed the guidelines should apply to more significant pieces of equipment, not routine trips.

At the village council meeting, members also went over the change that will be coming in water and sewer rates because of construction of a new regional waste water treatment plant.

A notice will be sent to residents to tell them rates will go up, and to pay in advance costs of cooperating in the construction project of Butler. The change in the rates will be noted on a separate line on the water bills.

Council member Deborah Dickson told council about changes in the village website, where people will be able to look and see commercial properties. They should look under the zoning heading.

The page will include a map with listings.

Edwards and Dickson spoke about an RV they had seen on a village street. They said it was a box truck, registered to the Ohio Department of Transportation. It sounded like there was a dog and maybe a person in the truck, they said.

Village ordinances say an owner can be cited for leaving such a vehicle on the streets beyond a set number of hours.

Dickson said neighbors said an electrical cord was running right over the sidewalk to the truck.

By Louise Swartzwalder

Galion Inquirer