PANDORA — In a show of village politics in action during its most recent meeting last Tuesday, the Pandora Village Council first declined to work with the Pandora Gilboa Community Recreation Committee on obtaining the old lights at the school football field and then penned agreement - conditionally.

The Pandora-Gilboa School Board approved a measure last spring to replace the lights at the football field. The recreation committee were given the old lights they plan to use for the village park, so some games can be held during evening hours. The old lights have been taken down and the new lights are being installed in time for the new football season. So, the committee is ready to proceed with their project.

Members of the recreation committee have attended numerous council meetings since last February to discuss working with the village on the project. Council expressed interest but also requested more information. Councilman Paul Burkholder led the discussion by making a motion to respectfully decline participating in the project at this time.

“We can’t back out,” Councilwoman Diana Braidic said. “We already said we’d do it.”

But, Councilman Tim Gray pointed out they still do not know who will pay the electric bill and maintain the lights.

“Bulbs are expensive. The lights are 30 years old - maintenance is going to be an issue,” Gray said.

Liechty said he had not heard from the committee members in a while and it would have been nice if they were at the meeting. Gray said it was mentioned at an earlier meeting that the village administrator could oversee turning the lights on and off which he called “ridiculous.”

“The whole town is paying for it - it’s the town’s money. The whole town should benefit from it,” Gray said.

“We need some numbers - we really do,” Braidic said.

“We never did say yes, we’ll do it,” Liechty said. “We said we were interested, but we need more information.”

Council approved Burkholder’s motion declining to participate in the project by a vote of 5-1 with Councilman Steve Tadena voting against.

However, council continued the discussion. Gray said the committee members can come back to council with numbers. Liechty said it appeared that the consensus of council is that more information is needed.

“We’re not saying an indefinite no, we are requesting more information,” Liechty said.

“I don’t want to see the village pay thousands and thousands for 30-year-old lights,” Gray said.

Burkholder constructed a perpetual operating agreement between the village and the committee that he presented to council. The agreement includes the following.

An officer of the committee will attend a minimum of two council meetings yearly and present plans and address current issues; regular communication will occur between the officers and the village administrator involving the use of village facilities which will require council approval.

The committee will clean up the trash produced at their ball games, practices and other events. Trash will be placed into garbage bags and deposited in the dumpster at the community center.

An officer will attend a council meeting no later than the last meeting of April to request village funds for projects. Council must approve the purchase of all items for any improvements on village property. The committee members will not be permitted to charge anything on any village account.

Any electric meter charges for the lighting will be in the name of the recreation committee which will be responsible to pay from their funds all electric bills and monthly base meter charges associated with the ballfield lighting.

The committee members will be responsible for turning the lights on and off as well as having the capacitors repairs/replaced and bulbs replaced and any other needed electrical repairs by qualified repair personnel. The committee will pay for these items from their account. Larger repairs may be presented to council for possible sharing of expanses per council approval.

Liechty made a motion to proceed with the project if the committee approves this agreement and the village costs with installation is capped at $1,500. The motion was unanimously approved.