CONTINENTAL— During the last regular meeting of 2018, the Continental Village Council gave the go-ahead for two needed repairs and approved a first-of-its-kind (for the village) building permit.

Last fall, council learned a leak had been discovered in the roof of the EMS building. Bob Britsch provided an estimate of $3,925 for repairs. Mayor Matt Miller told council, “I could have signed off, but I wanted council to be aware of what the repairs entailed.” Council approved funding for the job, which will begin in the spring.

Miller also presented information regarding the village’s aerator, which was an item on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Improvement Plan. An inspection last spring and a subsequent quote revealed a price tag of $12,500- $13,000 for maintenance and replacement parts. Miller explained the village’s operator on record, Mike Leis, is working on getting some of the parts locally to save money. Council approved the project, which will also take place in the spring.

Residents at 103 South First Street requested a building permit for a solar panel installation on the southwest corner of their property, a first for the village. After reviewing the application for the panel, Miller noted, “It appears to be a bank of panels that is separate from the house.”

“Since it is not attached to the house, the only thing council has to be concerned with are the offsets,” Councilman Todd Bartley added. Council unanimously approved the permit.

Fiscal Officer Susan Darby, Village Administrator Kathy Prowant and Mayor Miller recently met with representatives from Clemans-Nelson and Associates regarding updating the village’s personnel policies. Miller explained that while a few tweaks are needed, the policies are nearing completion. Police Chief Arnie Hardy has a few issues that needed to be discussed with the mayor. All council members will get the final draft of the policies, via electronic means.

Miller reported Continental did not get funded for round 33 of the Ohio Public Works Commission, which would have paid for a new water tower. “We were funded two of the last three times,” the mayor explained, so the village’s chance of securing funding this round was decreased. He is exploring another avenue, the Community Development Block Grant Residential Public Infrastructure Grant Program. Miller did obtain feedback as to how to write the grant in order to improve the village’s chances secure this grant. A formal application will be submitted this spring.

The Putnam County Commissioners are considering a permissive tax increase, according to Miller. “This would help gain revenue. The Engineer’s Office has run on the same budget since the early 2000’s. They used to be able to pave 20 miles (of roads), and now it is down to six,” he related. The additional revenue would provide Continental with approximately $3,500 per year to help with street repairs. Miller said he is in support of the tax increase, and encouraged council to tell others to support it, as well.

Mayor Miller concluded the meeting by expressing his gratitude to the council and the village employees. “Thank you for another great year, a successful year. I could not do it without the people sitting around this table. ‘19 will be just as strong,” he declared.

The next regular meeting of the Continental Village Council is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019, at 7 p.m. at the town hall.