Monday, June 20, 2011

VC tonight: AMP, Water Deduct, Gambling, Library Evaluation, Affordable Housing, Tree Trimming, Solid Waste

Dear People--I went to a wedding this weekend where for once I wasn't the cynical one in the corner, but was instead totally swept up by the whole ritual, romance, generosity, and intimacy of the event, and periodically made misty-eyed. It's quite possible I'm losing my edge.

Anyway, love is in the air and I hope that all the men out there who have loved and raised children, by playing an active and generous role in their lives, regardless of whether you were a biological father or not, had a great fathers' day. (Special shout out to adoptive and foster fathers.) So I'm ending with a poem for fathers (with a reference to John and Yoko...)

Here's the whole packet if you want to follow along at home!


The Clerk will receive and file:
Mayor’s Monthly Report
Christine Roberts re: Natural Gas Prices (concern that newly allowed exports of natural gas will cause the prices to skyrocket)
Christine Roberts re: Renewable Energy (against locking ourselves into natural gas, ideas about how renewables may become storeable)
Pat Murphy re: CO2 Estimates (gas lower than coal)
Pat Murphy re: Greenhouse Gas (excellent analysis from the National Energy Technology Lab--a federal agency. While there does need to be better reporting of fugitive gas emissions, etc., gas is better than coal on basically every measure)
Pat Murphy re: Fracking and Methane Contamination

Pat Murphy re: Policy Recommendations (scientific paper from Duke center on Global Change/Environmental policy noting that gas has more energy per pound than coal and producing almost none of the mercury, sulfur dioxide and particulates of burning coal; "bridge to a carbon constrained future"; urging study, regulation and caution, but not rejecting fracking outright.)
Fritz Leighty re: Support for Affordable Housing Project (Cemetery St. project for which Home, Inc., has turned in their Qualifications--sees it as a no-brainer and necessary)
OML re: Legislative Updates (The current budget is really a disaster for local jobs and budgets--please contact your state reps: Hackett--Ohio House of Reps; Widener--Ohio Senate)
Sharon Potter re: Investment Summaries (banks are providing little interest on our money but our investment possibilities are limited by statute. Treasurer and Finance director are working to do what they can.)
Greene Co. Public Library re: July Programming
Lori Askeland re: Thanking Marc Gerken (AMP CEO, for coming to speak to us last meeting)
Jerry Papania [for the ENERGY BOARD] re: Membership in Fremont Facility (the EB recommends that we participate at the .5 MW level)
Bob Moore re: Tree Trimming Practices (recommends that we develop good policies around tree planting and trimming, and use certified arborists.)


Emergency Reading and Public Hearing of Ordinance 2011-15 Approving a Contract with AMP for the Fremont Natural Gas Facility
: Having looked long and hard at this, and being assured that we can sell if we find a better, greener option, I support the lowered amount of investment in this facility at .5 MW. I hear loud and clearly the concerns about fracking and also about the future costs of gas which are not knowable; I still believe this small amount is our best bet, for now, giving us some control over the way power is being delivered into the grid. I believe it is now up to us to cut our usage if we really want to make selling this small amount back to AMP a realistic possibility, and to get ourselves as close to green and sustainable energy sourcing as possible.

Second Reading and Public Hearing of Ordinance 2011-16 Approving a Change in Sewer Fees
to Permit Residential Installation of Deduct Meters I will vote no, because I believe in conservation above all else. However, of all the ways to allow people who garden to reduce their sewer costs, this is the best mechanism. Please don't water your grass, people. And use covers with pools, etc., to avoid water loss.

First Reading of Ordinance 2011-18 Amending Section 1242.09 General Provisions & Definitions, and Section 1258.02 Principally Permitted Uses, of Title Four – Zoning of Part Twelve – Planning and Zoning Code of the Codified Ordinances of the Village of Yellow Springs, Ohio
This is to allow "sweepstakes" internet gambling in the "general business district"--i.e., NOT downtown but out here on south 68, basically, where places like KFC, etc., are. We apparently have little ability to regulate these businesses other than limiting where they may be located.

Resolution 2011-27 Awarding Library Building Evaluation Contract After going through a public bidding process, only one firm applied for the library building evaluation. Ted Donnell's firm has submitted a bid of $12,725 for this project; we originally budgeted $30,000 for it. This is part of what we promised we would spend the levy money on five years ago. Karen Wintrow will recuse herself from this discussion.


Affordable Housing RFQ Process Update: Home Inc has submitted their qualifications for this Cemetery street development--four affordable houses. We will be discussing the process and voting as to whether they should submit a proposal for the next step. I support this project.
Tree Trimming Discussion The most recent power outages that were not DP&L's fault, are not due to problems with our machinery, they are due to trees. Many branches were lost during the last big ice storm, but many were merely weakened, only to fall later. I believe we need to be much more aggressive than we have been in most places, generally cutting 10' from both sides from the ground all the way up, except when the trees are very mature or even historic. (This is the policy that Piqua uses and they had no outage during the last storm.) I also want to thank Bob Moore (a citizen and certified arborist) for his helpful input and will ask that the information he sent in be sent to the tree committee who can perhaps help us look at our current policies and develop better long-term goals.


Chamber Marketing Program: We have been paying $2,400 to the Chamber as a cost effective way to market the village's events to the region. This comes from Economic Development money, from the levy. I support it. (Karen Wintrow will recuse herself.)
Solid Waste Contract Discussion We have two bids, from Rumpke and Waste Management. They are very close. Waste Management's is the lower, on many counts, and overall, but there are slight differences in the many areas we need to consider. WM would not charge for any trash and recycling pick up in the downtown, but does basically charge more for the large containers you use when you're doing work on your house, and a little more for "spring clean up" service. Would love to hear your thoughts!
Sutton Farm Leases:
Manager Cundiff proposes extending the lease to Flatter Herefords, same price, for 5 more years.
CR Update of Activities

Executive Session: For pending litigation, discussion of personnel issues, and the Manager's annual evaluation.


My Father Holds the Door for Yoko Ono

In New York City for a conference
on weed control, leaving the hotel
in a cluster of horticulturalists,
he alone stops, midwestern, crewcut,
narrow blue tie, cufflinks, wingtips,
holds the door for the Asian woman
in a miniskirt and thigh high
white leather boots. She nods
slightly, a sad and beautiful gesture.
Neither smile, as if performing
a timeless ritual, as if anticipating
the loss of a son or a lover.

Years later, Christmas, inexplicably
he dons my mother’s auburn wig,
my brother’s wire-rimmed glasses,
and strikes a pose clowning
with my second hand acoustic guitar.
He is transformed, a working class hero
and a door whispers shut,
like cherry blossoms falling.

American Life in Poetry is made possible by The Poetry Foundation (
), publisher of Poetry magazine. It is also supported by the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Reprinted from “Folio,” Winter, 2004, by permission of the author. Copyright © 2004 by Christopher Chambers, who teaches creative writing at Loyola University New Orleans. Introduction copyright © 2009 by The Poetry Foundation. The introduction's author, Ted Kooser, served as United States Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 2004-2006. We do not accept unsolicited manuscripts.


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