Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Delayed Post! Sorry, folks, this should have been posted yesterday morning

Online readers: My apologies for the delay in posting this; it wasn't intentional. I'll do better next time.

Dear People: Well, the holiday means that our Village Council meets tonight, rather than last night. We have a heavy agenda, as usual.

In the many petitions and communications we received, were a few that are of especial interest, I think:
1) Karen Wintrow reports that Yellow Springs has been selected one of 5 regional "best home towns" by Ohio magazine, and will be the feature cover story of their November edition.
2) Pat Murphy will be speaking on "Super Insulated Passive Homes" on Wed evening, the 9th, at 8pm; Green Energy Ohio is having a Miami Valley Solar Tour, Oct 3-4 (
3) The Greene County Health District will be having a women's "Fashion Swap & Shop" on Oct. 24th, 11 am, Greene Country Club, Fairborn. Proceeds will benefit the "Clinic Cupboard" which provides basic drug store items for needy families using the clinics--e.g. diapers, tylenol, diaper rash cream, other over-the-counter meds.
4) Letters from citizens/area groups: one letter opposing the Fairfield sidewalk petition, one letter concerned about noise levels from the Springfield airport and potential for increased traffic at that airport. NAMI urges us to be concerned about cuts to housing for mentally disabled in Ohio.
5) Annual Report from the Miami Township Fire & Rescue.

Three things related to environmental concerns--esp. water/water treatment:

1) A citizen emailed a link to a story in the New York Times about atrazine in the drinking water: He's requesting that the village test more frequently, particularly during times of heaviest agricultural and lawn use.
2) The Ohio EPA tested our sewage sludge and found that we lacked complete documentation for certain tests and certifications, making us out of compliance with their rules. I'll ask Mark about this.
3) Vickie Hennessy of the Environmental Commission requests $270 to help pay for a public forum on water fluoridation. The forum would present Mark McDonnell, of the Greene County Health Commission, who advocates for water fluoridation as a protection for children's teeth, and Dr. Paul Connett, who co-founded the Fluoride Action Network seeking to broaden public awareness of the health risks of ingesting fluoride. The $270 would pay for transporting Dr. Connett here; both speakers are willing to speak at no cost. I have asked that we be able to discuss this issue during "new business."


1) Ordinance (2nd reading): Entering the Eco-Choice Program ("Green Pricing")--voluntary support for green energy sources
2) Ordinance (2nd reading): No animals at street fair
3) Ordinance (1st reading): Amending Chapter 632 re: Human Relations in the Village: Revising our intimidation ('hate crimes') and our public accommodations statutes to include sexual orientation/gender identity; setting up a domestic partnership registry in the village
4) Resolution: Awarding the bid for electrical line tree clearing
5) Resolution: Accepting a renewal quote for property casualty insurance

Ed Amrhein will give us a status report and explain what the current plans are.

Economic Sustainability Committee (& related issues):
Judith proposes that we create a committee that would bring together people from a variety of areas of our economic life to help develop new businesses in town.

At the same time, our lawyer advises that since Community Resources (CR) is not a designated CIC, Kathryn Van Der Heiden cannot serve as a full member. Village Council has asked CR if they would agree to become a designated CIC of Council, allowing Council (and Miami Township) to appoint 40% of the board and increasing their transparency (more of their meetings would be open). As I see it, it would make it easier for us to be partners for finishing the work of the Center for Business and Education, which we have to be anyway, since the grant funding must go through the Village. CR has not decided whether it would like to do this. They have, however, indicated this week that they would like to appoint our Village Manager, who is a paid employee under Council, to their board. I, however, believe the best way forward is through official designation of CR as a CIC of Council.

Public Art: The sculpture "A flock of hands," one of three winners of the recent public art competition is proposed to be moved from the original suggested site in front of the Bryan Center to near the Train Station.

(Possible discussion of Fluoridation Forum, see above)

Electric / Water Staffing: Village Manager Mark has discovered that we are short staffed in our utilities department in a way that impairs safety, and his analysis of the information suggests that one of these vacancies was never intended to occur. He recommends hiring an additional utility staff worker.


Well, it could be a late night for me, folks! See you around town, and let me know if you have any thoughts about these issues....

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