Versailles Council talks Fire Dept. funding, sewer project

VERSAILLES — Fire Department funding and the Homer Street Pump Station Replacement Project were among the top agenda items discussed at the Village of Versailles Council meeting Wednesday night.

Attending were Mayor Jeff Subler, Village Administrator Mike Busse, Council Members Jeff Beasley, Kent Paulus, Mike Berger, Cory Griesdorn, Lance Steinbrunner, and Todd Dammeyer. Fiscal Officer Kathy Ording and Village Attorney Matt Pierron, of Hanes Law Group, also attended.

Village Manager Mike Busse presented his report, recommending Durst Brothers Excavating to complete the Homer Street Pump Station Replacement Project at $365,206.35. Council made motion to accept this recommendation. Also, Busse noted that the sewer department is working on repairs to the skimmer system on the final clarifier. He highlighted the achievement of village employee Caleb Christian, who recently obtained his Operational Lab Analyst Certification. This certification allows Christian to run tests in the Village’s water plant lab that are used for plant operations and reported to the Ohio EPA.

“We are really proud of Caleb and his accomplishment in obtaining his certification, and look forward to his continued progress in obtaining his water and wastewater operator licenses,” said Busse.

In addition, Busse also announced that Versailles Police Officer Jason Penny has been selected to become the Versailles Exempted Village School District’s School Resource Officer (SRO) for the upcoming 2021-2022 school year.

Busse noted that Tom’s Construction and Pleiman Landscaping will be spraying for weeds next week on Virginia Street, and that 2021 Maple Street paving project is now complete. Mr. Manhole still has several manholes to adjust to grade following the project, and the Street Department still has a few items to clean up and seed on Maple Street.

In addition, Busse stated that the Electric Department has replaced the broken street light pole on East Main Street due to a car accident. He noted that AES Ohio demonstrated the operation of the 69kV switches, which now seem to be working correctly at this time. The Village was able to verify that we are double fed through the 69kV lines.

“Last week, AES Ohio demonstrated the operation to us,” said Busse. “It was quite a process, taking about two hours. Everything looks good and is working well.”

Busse also addressed the concerns regarding Fire Department funding, stating that he and Chief Pierson met with Wayne Township Trustees to discuss the need to ensure funding for fire protection activities, and recommended to the council that two mill, five year replacement levies be drafted for both the Village of Versailles and Wayne Township for inclusion on the May 2022 ballot. Council authorized the Solicitor to draft legislation to request that the County Auditor certify the amounts for the proposed ballot issue.

Fiscal Officer Kathy Ording asked council to approve Resolution 21-42, to accept the material terms of the OneOhioSubdivision Settlement Pursuant to the OneOhio Memorandum of the July 21, 2021 National Opioid Settlement Agreement, stating that the Village’s portion of the settlement would be used for drug reinforcement and rehabilitation programs.

In addition, Fiscal Officer Ording updated the council that first half of the 2021 ARPA funds, $134,081.36, have been received. The remaining half of the payment is expected in August, 2022. All ARPA funds must be spent by 2024.

“I am setting up a separate fund per the guidelines, and working with the auditor. We want to make sure that we spend these funds within the guidelines provided.” said Ording.

The next Versailles Council meeting will take place Wednesday, Aug. 25, 2021, at 7 p.m., in EMS Building, 320 Baker Road, Versailles.