Documenters: Franklin Township Trustees meeting for Jan. 23, 2024

Franklin Township Trustees
Jan. 23, 2024
7 p.m.


Glenn Russell, Chair
Scott Swan, Vice Chair
Kellie Kapusta, Trustee
Lisé Russell, Fiscal Officer
Richard Smith, Fire Chief
Joe Ciccozzi, Zoning


Dave Akerley, Roads

Listen to an audio recording of this meeting here:

Documenter’s Notes

The meeting was called to order at 7 p.m., and the trustees approved the minutes from Jan. 9, 2024. Todd Peetz, representing the Portage County Regional Planning Commission (PCRPC), presented examples of a comprehensive plan for Franklin Township. Peetz covered marketing, strategic economic development planning, land use, zoning and ease of access to information for citizens. Following the PCRPC presentation, a Mr. Freeman inquired about the vacating of “paper roads” in the Brady Lake area. There are several minor roads that show on township maps in the Brady Lake area that do not exist. The trustees are exploring options and will check with Brimfield, which recently vacated a road. If the roads are vacated, neighboring residents will absorb the land. Multiple citizens expressed their gratitude to the road crew for its work during the recent snow.


Road Superintendent Dave Akerley submitted a written report. A new housing development, Germaine Reserve, is on pace to be dedicated to the township in late spring, weather permitting. Austin Lesak, president of the Germaine Reserve HOA, was in attendance to report the neighborhood’s displeasure with the current road efforts overseen by the developer. The rehabilitation of the Judson Road bridge is scheduled for fall 2024. The entire deck will be replaced. Weight limits on the bridge have been lowered. Engineering estimates for the Hudson Road Phase IV and V have been completed and will soon be ready for bid. Engineering estimates for road repairs and bike paths between Brady Lake and Route 59 have been completed. Construction of a pickleball court, a lacrosse backstop and a small shelter will be overseen by the road crew.


Inspector Joe Ciccozzi reported two permits: a residential addition and a height variance. Ciccozzi investigated an RV on Park Avenue following a report that someone was living in the RV.


Chief Richard Smith reported a resolution to an issue with an alarm system at La Terraza.

New Business

Instead of renewing the fire levy (3.42 mills) this November, the trustees voted to seek a replacement fire levy at 3.5 mills to cover the budgetary shortfall. Chief Smith noted that even at the increased rate, Franklin Township has the lowest fire levy in the county. The township is currently pulling around $300,000 from JEDD monies to pay for fire service. A $1,500 NOPEC Community Event Grant was awarded to Portage Developmental Disabilities. The trustees agreed to reach out to Schneller, LLC to serve as a JEDD business owner participant.


Two resolutions were passed to create new capital improvement funds for the Phillips Park Project as well as the Sixth and Ohio Project. The trustees approved payment of the bills.

The meeting adjourned at 8:13 p.m.

Ryan Lind
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