ARCANUM — Several items were discussed during the village council meeting under the helm of Bonnie Millard on Tuesday, Nov. 26.
First, a date was set for the swearing-in of new council member, Jacob Banks, and the re-swearing in for current council member Rick Genovesi.
Banks and Genovesi ran uncontested during last month’s elections for two seats on the village council. The ceremony will be held during the regular village council meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 10.
During village administrator reports, Bill Kessler advised the council on minor damage in four area homes due to a transformer conversion. A failure of a switch to engage resulted in damage to items such as microwaves, ovens, and coffeemakers.
Kessler estimates $3,000 in damages with three receipts currently in possession.
A motion was made to reimburse, at this time, two homeowners on South Main St. at $106.18 and $355.
The council will continue to evaluate and reimburse as needed on any continued reports from those four homes affected.
Kessler also provided an update on the new village administration building stating occupancy could be pushed back by as much as two to three months. At issue is the delivery of a generator necessary to run emergency exit lights and related items.
According to Kessler, the generator is being built.
For the safety committee, Chief Marcus Ballinger is working on a body camera policy. He cited this is the first time he has been without a camera in 15 years and wants to offer village police officers, “A little bit more protection on the road.”
Chief Ballinger sees the policy as short-lived until a better camera system is made available in the cruisers.
Millard advised the council on continued village budget work, in particular, employee healthcare plans, stating she was “disheartened” on the information thus far.
As reported in September, the village council welcomed Pat Custenborder with Phelan Insurance Agency to speak as a potential agent to provide the village with a strategy to proactively manage health care costs, options, and to structure their insurance program.
After a recent meeting with the insurance agency, Millard stated choosing to stay with their current health insurance provider the village could absorb what will be a 20 percent increase. They would change to a 30/70 cost-share split from a current 35/65 for an overall cost increase of $11,240.
According to Millard, the village has provided almost $50,000 to village employee wage increases (not including benefits).
“I feel that the village has really supported the employees for next year,” said Millard with a decision to be made by Dec. 10.
As noted by council member Tim Philpot, a tremendous increase in health insurance has struck many businesses and municipalities. While not offering names, he noted increases from 52 to as much as 73 percent.
Council also discussed, gave a motion, and/or approval to the following:
• An ordinance providing for wages for the Village of Arcanum employees calendar year 2020
• To reapply for the Community Development Block Grant (CBDG) for the North West drainage project
• An ordinance providing for an amendment to the 2019 appropriations for current expenses and other expenditures (fire fund and general fund)
• Adoption of a new job description for the village utility foreman
• Confirming the appointment of a village fiscal officer
• Confirming the appointment of a village administrator
Council meetings are held at 7 p.m. every second and last Tuesday of the month at the All American Clothing Company, 1 Pop Rite Drive. The public is encouraged to attend.
Reach reporter Bethany J. Royer-DeLong at 937/548-3330 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Read more news, features, and sports at DarkeCountyMedia.com.