The trustees began with an executive session prior to the beginning of the organizational meeting. Trustees adjourned from executive session at 7 p.m. and moved quickly into the organizational meeting, run by Fiscal Officer Julia Pemberton. Motions to fill key roles as well as a variety of items were decided during this short meeting.
Township Organizational Meeting
Fiscal OfficerJulia Pemberton called the meeting to order and began with a list of motion requests for key organizational roles and items for the 2023 year. Among them:
A motion was made to nominate John Festa for trustees chair. Motion was seconded and passed.
Motion was made for mileage reimbursement set at $0.655/per mile for the 2023 year. Motion seconded and passed
Motion was made to accept the following legal holidays when Town Hall would be closed and employees off for the 2023 year:
New Year’s Day, Jan. 1
Presidents’ Day, Feb. 20
Good Friday, April 7
Memorial Day, May 29
Juneteenth, June 19
Independence Day, July 4
Labor Day, Sept. 4
Columbus Day, Oct. 9
Nov. 23 and 24, Thanksgiving Day and day after
December 22, 23, 24, 25, Christmas holidays
Motion seconded and approved.
Motion to keep vacations at two weeks for one- to nine-year employees, four weeks for 10-year employees and five weeks for 15-year employees. Cap set at five weeks. Motion seconded and approved.
Motion to keep sick days at 12 per year; a doctor’s note needed for absences in excess of three days; bereavement policy (see handbook); overtime defined as anything over 40 hours and no compensation unless approved; overtime compensation to be time and one-half regular wage. Motion seconded and approved.
Motion was made to nominate Matt Benner as the representative to the Mantua/Shalersville Fire District. Motion was seconded and passed.
Motion was made to nominate Sue Lilley as the alternate representative to the Mantua/Shalersville Fire District. Motion was seconded and passed.
Motion was made to nominate Sue Lilley as the representative for the Regional Planning Commission. Motion was seconded and passed.
Motion was made to nominate John Festa as the alternate representative for the Regional Planning Commission. Motion was seconded and passed.
Motion was made to nominate John Festa to the Chagrin Watershed Committee. Motion was seconded and passed.
Motion was made to nominate Sue Lilley as the alternate representative to the Chagrin Watershed Committee. Motion was seconded and passed.
Motion made to adjourn the organizational meeting; motion seconded and passed.
Regular Township Meeting
John Festa, Board of Trustees/Chair
Susan Lilley, Board of Trustees
Matthew Benner, Board of Trustees/Vice Chair
Julia Pemberton, Mantua Township Fiscal Officer
Regular Township Meeting
This regular township meeting consisted of multiple reports by department heads to the trustees. Departments scheduled to report tonight are: cemetery, fiscal officer, custodian, service department, zoning inspector, and representatives of the Chamber of Commerce and the Mantua Restoration Society. Trustees will also share with one another and the public new business and progress and/or completion of old business items. There will also be motions to increase service department employees’ hourly wages and to initiate payment of January’s bills.
Regular Township Meeting
The meeting opened at 7:18 p.m. with the Pledge of Allegiance.
A motion was made to accept the approval of minutes for the 12/1/22 special meeting and the 12/2/22 regular meeting. Motion seconded and passed. The reading of the minutes was suspended.
Fiscal Officer’s Report
Julia Pemberton reported to the trustees that the financials were not complete as of today and may not be complete for some time.
Robin Gano, who would deliver this report, was not present.
Tim Bennet reported to the trustees that it has been a very busy start to the year. He currently has five teams practicing at the facility over four nights (Mondays through Thursdays). It’s a tight squeeze, but they are making it work. The Civic Center is starting to fill up, with two bookings already for January and two for February. March weekends are already completely filled. This is good news!
Service Department Report
Bryan Tayerle was not in attendance. Trustee Matthew Benner stepped in to deliver the report. The township received another load of salt. Snow removal equipment is maintained and ready to go. The service department did not receive one call after the last snow event! Everything ran smoothly, and they kept up with the snowfall. Benner asked the trustees to verify and sign the report to ODOT confirming that Mantua Township comprises 38.160 miles of roadway. A motion was made to sign. This was seconded and approved.
Zoning Commission Report
A Zoning Commission meeting took place Dec. 8, 2022. The commission reviewed the requirement of increasing the height of fencing around pools from 4 feet to 6 feet. There are lots of questions about this, as it is a statewide mandate. The commission created a resolution and will hold a public meeting about this topic Jan. 16. The meeting notice was sent to the Record-Courier, but it hasn’t been printed as of today. Jan Oros will look into this. There will be a regular Zoning Commission meeting Jan. 12. At that meeting, they will approve Zoning Commission appointments.
Chamber of Commerce
Carole Pollard noted that perhaps because of COVID and/or some poor scheduling, there hasn’t been a meeting of late and that interest in the Chamber of Commerce is gradually shrinking. She further explained that there is hearsay that the Mantua Village Merchant Association may be replacing the Chamber of Commerce. She reiterated that it is just hearsay and nothing definite has come about.
Mantua Restoration Society
Mark Hall reported to the trustees that another Soup and Salad event has been scheduled to take place from 4 to 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 13. The last one was well attended, so they are looking forward to this one. They would like to apply for the NOPEC Community Grant again this year. They will discuss this at their Monday night meeting. Trustee John Festa reminded Hall to inform the township if they are accepted for the grant and to indicate how the trustees can help secure the grant.
Rich Gano updated the trustees with the following information:
He’s receiving many calls for this year already and added that it’s “business as usual.”
71 new permits were issued for the year 2022:
Assorted new homes, pool construction, home addition construction, etc.
He is looking forward to the “All Boards Meeting” scheduled for Jan. 17. He stated that it is always so informational to hear what other Mantua Township departments are working on.
He presented the fiscal officer and the trustees with a spreadsheet outlining the permits from last year and 2023 year to date.
Trustee Reports – New Business
Festa indicated that 2022 was a great year with many accomplished projects. He noted some of the accomplishments as:
A new building was purchased for the service department
A water study was completed
Roads and zoning were on the ball
He hopes that this success carries into 2023.
Checking prices for spring cleanup. He asked if there is a preference: curbside pickup or one-site dropoff. Curbside pickup was the clear preference. He will pursue quotes and report back.
Trustee Reports – Old Business
He reminded all of the “All Boards Meeting” scheduled for Jan. 17. The agenda is forthcoming.
Regarding the Samuel Drive house issue: Since the owner has not responded to multiple notices through regular and certified mail, Festa was advised to place a copy of the letter directly onto the home itself and take a picture of it with the time stamp. He then will contact the Land Bank and let the county proceed with next steps. In the end, this may assist the owner, who has not responded to any communication.
Susan Lilley – no report
Regarding fire department negotiations: They are currently in the middle and are expected to sign soon for both full- and part-time employees.
Completed an assessment of the generator at the school and annex. The recommendation is to give the generator a dedicated energy supply source. Benner collected two quotes: one for $4,650 and the other for $2,995. Both companies are using plastic piping, and the quotes do not include digging. The Mantua Township Service Department will complete the digging. Benner made a motion to move on the $2,995 quote to install a dedicated gas line to the generator. Motion was seconded and passed.
Fiscal Officer Julia Pemberton requested a motion for a $1 increase to the hourly wage for all service employees across the board. Motion was made, seconded and passed.
Mark Hall asked why the wage increase couldn’t have been taken care of at the organizational meeting. Festa replied that it had to take place after the chair was elected.
A resident commented that because no one ever seems to look at or read the Record-Courier anymore, is there a better way to make announcements for special or regular meetings or events for the township? Benner and Festa both replied that they are incorporating announcements onto the website and will try to get information like that up on the township sign.
Jan Oros asked if special meetings are recorded. She indicated that it’s hard to keep up with resolutions when they are passed in special meetings. The trustees responded with a “no,” but minutes are available and will be put on the website.
A motion was made by John Festa to pay all bills for January. Motion was seconded and passed.
A motion was made by John Festa to adjourn this meeting. Motion was seconded and passed.