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Riverlea NewsAugust 2010

Reflections on Riverlea

Mary Jo Cusack photo.
Mary Jo Cusack, Mayor

Tax levy. The tax levy on the November ballot is to continue the operating expense of the Village for the next five years. Taxes do not increase with the increase in property values. Instead, the Village continues to receive the same amount of money and the Auditor reduces the amount of the millage. Our last vote was for a 4.5 mill levy which we are presently collecting at 3.59. Council voted to place a 5.0 mill levy on the ballot. This is a replacement levy of 4.5 mills and an additional .5 mills. This is to cover the shortage in what we take in and what we spend. In the past, we have had funds from the local government fund, interest on our investments, estate taxes and real estate taxes. The income from these sources has diminished as follows:

  1. The local government fund used to go entirely to the local governments. It is now divided among the schools, libraries, and other entities.
  2. Interest on our investments used to be substantial. Now, little interest is coming in to the Village. This has caused a reduction in our fund that we also kept on hand.
  3. Eighty per cent (80%) of estate taxes come to the Village. This is uncertain as the estate tax is only levied on estates over $338,000.00. There are presently two bills in the legislature: one would completely abolish the estate tax; the other would increase the exemption so that municipalities would receive much less than we do now.
  4. Only 7% of the real estate taxes each of us pays goes to the Village.
Anticipated increases in expenditures include: SWACO is seeking an increase to eighteen per cent (18%) for tipping fees which will cause an increase in our trash hauling expense; costs for police protection. Council has already allotted funds for redoing the streets. Two bids were received. This allotment will be for a temporary fix until we can do major resurfacing in the future.

Eminent domain. Council voted to find other methods for helping children get to school and to take eminent domain off the table. Mike Blanchard and his investors are taking any pathway proposal out of discussion. We are still working with Lt. Mosic, Worthington City Manager Matt Greeson and others on safety issues. We are grateful to City Manager Greeson for the "Watch for Children" signs he had placed on South Street.

Safe routes to schools. Council and the Mayor continue to work with Lt. Mosic to help find the best ways to school. We would love to have all parents participate in this. Please call Briggs Hamor and/or Dan Noonan.

Council also approved a Proclamation for Maribah Mansfield on her retirement from the Worthington Library which your Mayor presented.

Highlights from the July 19, 2010 Council meeting

After the June minutes and payment of bills were approved, the Mayor reported the planes using the OSU Airport are as noisy as ever. Carolee Noonan has agreed to serve as organizer for volunteers to help with recreational activities.

Street Commissioner. Two bids were received for 2010 Street Maintenance: Strawser Construction ($224,281.60), and American Pavements ($197,447.00), which was within 10% of Burgess & Niple’s estimate of $183,000. Burgess & Niple engineers recommended that the Village award the contract to American Pavements and recommended that we appropriate 5% more than the bid amount to cover any unforeseen changes.

Planning Commissioner. Certificates of Appropriateness were approved for 5800 Olentangy Blvd., 5782 Crescent Ct., and 5901 Olentangy Blvd. Planning Commission violations will be reported on at the August meeting

Cut-through. MacGilvray reported on the possible cut-through on the 142 E. Riverglen Drive property on the east and north side. His calculations for costs are land purchase, approx. $10,000; concrete sidewalk, approx.$5,200; fencing, approx. $5,300. The total estimate is $21,000, not including the additional cost that MIG Properties would demand. MIG suggested that $50,000 be the starting point for the cost of the land; however, MIG is no longer interested in having a cut-through on their property. Options: Make an offer to MIG Properties; use eminent domain; find a friendly buyer for the house who would allow the cut-through; give up on the cut-through and consider dealing with safety issues on High Street and South Street.

Resolution to express the intent of Village Council regarding a certain appropriation proposal (eminent domain); (third reading) tabled

Resolution to confirm the appointment of Donald McCarthy as a member of the Planning Commission (second reading); resolution to confirm appointment of Karen McElmurray as Village Marshal (second reading)

Payment of bills authorized: Sharon Township snow and ice removal $12,404.80; Mayors Association dues $40; Fire Department donation $250.

Mosquito spraying. The Mayor reported that in the past Columbus sprayed the Village when they sprayed in Worthington; the Village was not invoiced. She is not certain that will continue. Council wants more information before authorizing the spraying. Prevention may be the better option.

Special Council meeting on July 26, 2010 at 7:00 pm at Thomas Worthington High School, Room 185; regular meeting August 16, 7:00 pm.

Adjournment: 8:00 pm.

Highlights from the July 26, 2010 Council meeting

Resolution No. 2010-23 to award the contract for the 2010 Street Maintenance Program and authorize the Mayor to enter into an agreement therefore; approved

Resolution No. 2010-24 to provide for the removal of ice and snow from the streets of the Village of Riverlea; approved; not to exceed $20,000

Ordinance No. 02-2010 to approve the modification and realignment of Ordinance No. 10-2009, the Annual Appropriation Ordinance (Village); approved

Determining to levy a tax in excess of the ten mill limitation for operating expenses. Council chose two options for consideration for a levy in excess of the 10 mill limitation. This tax must be voted on by the residents. The current 4.5 mill tax is now 3.59 mills since the tax dollars collected stay the same each year for levies outside the 10 mill limitation. When property values go up, the tax rate goes down.

Option 1. Replace the current tax levy with a 4.5 mill levy to start generating revenue at the 4.5 mill level again. Option 2. Replace the existing tax levy with a 4.5 mill levy and an additional levy of .5 mills, 5.0 mills total.

What will the Village need in the future? It is difficult to estimate how much the costs will increase for the police contract, trash disposal and infrastructure repairs. Estate taxes have assisted the Village but cannot be counted on in the future. The 4.5 mill levy would generate around $20,000 more and the 5.0 mill levy would generate around $30,000 more. While the Village has been spending more than it has received in revenues, it has had the reserves to spend in the past.

The aging infrastructure and EPA mandates will need to be addressed. However, major street and curb replacement will be done using other types of funding. In general, multiple revenue sources are down. Based on this and previous discussions of future tax revenues and expenses, Council decided the 5.0 mills levy is the best option. Council does not want to raise taxes for the sake of having more money but needs to make sure the Village has enough to operate even when unexpected costs arise.

Mosquito spraying. Jody Jones had provided Council with information on reasons to not spray for mosquitoes. The Mayor had received complaints about mosquitoes and wanted to know if Council wanted to authorize spraying. Council expressed their concern about the safety of spraying when they were not sure there was a real need to spray. Council decided it was better not to spray. Since in the past the Village has been sprayed along with Worthington, Noonan asked the Mayor to contact the Columbus Board of Health to see if they are planning to spray. Residents need to be warned ahead of time if they are going to spray.

Resolution No. 2010-17 to express the intent of Village Council regarding a certain appropriation proposal; it states that the intention of Council is to not use eminent domain to acquire property for this cut-through. Some residents feel this resolution is against the people who want the pathway. Concerns include: school busing may be lost in the future; children’s safety. Others feel it is possible to be for property rights and safety. We need to look at other ways for safety. The resolution was taken off the table and Gordon moved and Ankrom seconded the motion to adopt Resolution No. 2010-17. Yea, 4; Ankrom, Gordon, McHugh and Noonan: Nay, 2; Hamor and MacGilvray. The motion carried 4-2.

Adjournment: 8:25 pm

This and that

2010 Trash Collection Schedule

Regular Riverlea collection day is Monday. Local Waste Services observes six holidays. If the holiday falls on Monday, collection is the next day of that week. The holiday schedule follows:

2010 Trash Collection Day

New Years Day
Memorial Day
July 4
Labor Day
Thanksgiving Day
Christmas Day
Monday, 1-4-2010
Tuesday, 5-25-2010 (Note Day Change)
Monday, 7-5-2010
Tuesday, 9-7-2010 (Note Day Change)
Monday, 11-29-2010
Monday, 12-27-2010

Mark your 2010 calendar for our Village Council Meetings

All scheduled 2010 Village Council meeting dates and locations are available on the Council Meeting Schedule

See Residents Home page for more calendar items

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