Minutes: April 28th, 2009

Catawba Island Township Board of Township Trustees

The regular business meeting of the Catawba Island Township Trustees was called to order by William Rofkar at 7:30 p.m. in the conference room.

Present were William Rofkar, Robert Schroeder, Gary Mortus, Pat Cerny, Tony Corona, Diana Webb, William Webb, Emily Davenport, Rachel Rofkar, James Woodard, William McDowell, Renee Batterton, Ashley Batterton, Reggie Langford, Richard Reid, Ron and Maryann Gesci, Brian Snyder, Bob Snyder, Jim Radloff, Roger Smith, Timothy Rink, Ruth and Wayne Frederick, Matt Montowski, Jack DeVore and Jon Smyrl.

The Pledge of Allegiance was recited by all present.

Gary Mortus made a motion to approve the minutes from the April 14 Board of Township Trustees meeting as received. Bob Schroeder seconded the motion.
Gary Mortus, aye; Bob Schroeder, aye; Bill Rofkar, aye.

Pat Cerny stated the total for the bills was $41,121.13 including the last payroll.
Bob Schroeder made a motion to pay the bills. The motion was seconded by
Gary Mortus. Gary Mortus, aye; Bob Schroeder, aye; Bill Rofkar, aye.

Correspondence included:

A letter from the Administration of the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office expressing their appreciation for the financial contribution and continued support of their Marine Patrol Program.

An invitation for the 2009 Police Memorial Day Ceremony which will pay tribute to the Police Officers of Ottawa County and The United States of America. The ceremony will take place Thursday, May 14, 2009 at 11:00 a.m. at Harris Elmore Union Cemetery, Elmore, Ohio. A luncheon will be served immediately following the service at the Elmore Historical Building, 353 Ottawa Street, and hosted by the Village of Elmore Police Department. An RSVP is required.

A request from American Legion Post #113 of Port Clinton to decorate graves, conduct Memorial Services, and otherwise engage in activities appropriate to the celebration of Memorial Day, May 25, 2009. And in accordance with the Ohio Revised Code request from the Board of Catawba Island Township Trustees an appropriation be made to the post for the purpose of properly observing Memorial Day within the township.

A letter from the Ottawa County Board of Elections regarding the Special Election on Tuesday, May 5, 2009. Dan Barlow and his staff have been made aware of the election and will have everything in place at the Community Hall Tuesday morning.

A letter of correspondence from William Van Der Giessen regarding the last meeting of the Catawba Island Zoning Board where he submitted comments and concerns. The Zoning Board suggested he share his concerns with the Catawba Island Trustees. Mr. Van Der Giessen feels there is a loophole in State and local zoning that allows
for the establishment of farm animals contained in residential environments.
Mr. Van Der Giessen expressed concern for possible health and environmental risks as well as a potential reduction of property values.

Bill Rofkar also noted he had received bids for a gravel road in the cemetery. Bids were read aloud: Ken Gill; $1,980, Molnar Construction; $2,783, and Heileman Excavating; $3,150. William Rofkar made a motion to award bid to Ken Gill seconded by Robert Schroeder. All voted aye.

Tony Corona from Fairway Villas said the CIC is building a restroom off the back hole of number three on the golf course. He stated they would begin framing this week and wanted Catawba Trustees to be aware of the situation.

Bob Snyder and others spoke to the Trustees concerning the issue of farm animals on Muggy Road adjacent to Catawba Bay. They would like to see the Trustees contact Ohio representatives and talk about the issue of allowing agriculture in residential areas.
Bill Rofkar said he feels the Trustees should approach the County Prosecutor and get his opinion again to see if there has been any change in Ohio law or if he would be willing to fight the issue. Gary Mortus said he feels the Trustees should also contact Dennis Murray and Mark Wagoner and possibly lobby a change to the Ohio Revised Code. A letter will be sent to them requesting a meeting with Catawba Island Township Trustees concerning the issue. Gary Mortus also feels the situation could be considered “cruelty to animals” and it should be looked into further.

Matt Montowski, Chairman of the Catawba Island Zoning Commission, noted the group from Catawba Bay came to the Zoning Commission meeting on April 22 expressing their concerns of farm animals on Muggy Road. Matt Montowski said on April 23 he called Todd Bickley, Director of Regional Planning for Ottawa County, about the groups concerns and Todd Bickley said it clearly sates in the Oho Revised Code what is covered and what is not covered. Matt Montowski read the following:

“The Ohio Revised Code confers no power on any Township, Zoning Commission, Board of Township Trustees, or Board of Zoning Appeals
to prohibit the use of land for agriculture purpose or construction or use
of buildings or structures incidental to the use of agricultural purposes on
land on which such buildings or structures are located on.”

Matt Montowski said he asked Todd Bickley if we could get that changed and Todd Bickley’s response was that Ohio is such a rural state and the farming lobbyist are so strong in Ohio that in his opinion there would not be a chance of getting it changed.

Another resident in opposition asked if there was anything that could be done about the possible water run off. Gary Mortus noted the Trustees are bound by The Ohio Revised Code the same as County Commissioners. He said the Trustees can not pass an ordinance to stop something allowable in The Ohio Revised Code. Gary Mortus said the Trustees would pursue the avenue of going to the State Senator and State Representative looking at a change with the help of Mark Mulligan and using the case that has already been won as a precedence.

Reggie Langford spoke about his concern for controlling the Gypsy Moth population. He noted Catawba Island did not have numbers large enough to warrant spraying of the island; however, there would be an article in the Catawba Island Magazine informing residents what they can do to take responsibility for protecting the trees on their property. Reggie Langford commended the Township Trustees for being proactive and installing burlap on some of the trees in the cemetery to help reduce the Gypsy Moth population.

Tim Rink, member of Resurrection Lutheran Church on Catawba Island, presented information to the Trustees regarding their request to install a new sign. The request is for permission to install a digital sign in the exact same footprint of the existing sign which currently requires a church member to manually change the letters. It is their goal to enable the church secretary to wirelessly send messages to the sign. Tim Rink noted previous concern for the new sign was regarding movement or flashing messages. He informed Trustees that although the sign would have the capability of moving messages they only wanted to display messages at lengths of at least an hour and a half at a time. Tim Rink assured there would be no animation, movement, or scrolling on the sign and there would be no red or green color projected from the sign. William Rofkar feels there is enough of a grey area to send this to the Board of Zoning Appeals and waive the application fee.

After a brief discussion between the Township Trustees and the Zoning Inspector it was agreed that Tim Rink should appeal to the Board of Zoning Appeals. Gary Mortus made a motion to waive the application fee seconded by Robert Schroeder. All voted aye.

Gary Mortus made a motion to provide $200.00 to the American Legion Post for Memorial Day services seconded by Robert Schroeder. All voted aye.

Robert Schroeder stated in regard to the new section of the cemetery, there would be no above ground monuments and it was stated that the township would furnish a container that would be flush to put flowers in. Robert Schroeder stated the containers are made out of galvanize. William Rofkar stated it has been twelve years and there have been no sales because no one wants a flush headstone. Gary Mortus stated what matters is the perpetual care of the cemetery.

William Rofkar stated for $500 two stations can be installed at Heigel Park for dog clean up and Mullens Tree Service provided a quote for $600 to trim the trees in the cemetery. Both will be accomplished.

William Rofkar stated he received three bids for a new dump truck. Nollenberger with an International chassis. Box, snow plow, and spreader—Newell Equip. $45,289; Kalida Trucking $45,022 and Judco, $40,995. It will be discussed again at the next meeting. William Rofkar made a motion to purchase a cemetery software program (CIMS) at the cost of $8,802.50 which includes the e-hosting fee and the first year and after that there would be a $1,200 a year posting fee seconded by Gary Mortus. All voted aye.

William Rofkar stated at the last Trustee meeting a letter of retirement was received by Fire Chief Dan Barlow. Gary Mortus made a motion to enter into executive session for personnel matters concerning the replacement and promotion of the Fire Chief seconded by Robert Schroeder. All voted aye.

Gary Mortus made a motion to return to the regular business meeting from executive session seconded by Robert Schroeder. All voted aye. Robert Schroeder made a motion to accept Dan Barlow’s resignation as Fire Chief effective June 1, 2009, and wait for a decision from the members of the Fire Department in regard to his replacement. Gary Mortus seconded the motion. William Rofkar stated he is opposed to pushing it back to the membership and said it is important that a decision is made and put things in order. William Rofkar noted he is quite comfortable with Dan Barlow’s recommendation. Gary Mortus stated he also agrees with Dan Barlow’s recommendation but prefers to take it to the membership. Robert Schroeder agrees and said the membership should bring the recommendation to the trustees. Gary Mortus, aye; Robert Schroeder, aye; William Rofkar, opposed.

Gary Mortus made a motion to adjourn seconded by Robert Schroeder. All voted aye.