By JIM MAURER
CAREY — Carey Council on Monday approved an agreement with Findlay Income Tax Administrator Andrew Thomas to “administer, enforce and collect” income taxes levied by the village.
The agreement was tabled at the Aug. 6 meeting because it did not contain an emergency clause to make it effective immediately.
Findlay had requested the legislation’s passage by the end of August to allow the city tax department time to collect data, get the forms online at the city tax department’s website, and be effective Jan. 1 for the 2018 tax collection next year.
The village will pay an estimated $24,000-$26,000 annually to the city, about half what was paid to the City of Cleveland Central Collection Agency, Division of Taxation, annually in recent years.
A change was sought because of complaints about the assistance provided by the Cleveland agency.
Separately, council discussed the village’s wastewater treatment plant upgrade. The nearly $11.2 million project includes construction, design, bid document preparation, financing applications and contingency funds, Village Administrator Roy Johnson said.
Some of the borrowed money will be at zero percent interest and some will be at about 1.5 percent, payable over 30 years through the Water Pollution Control Loan Fund/Ohio Water Development Authority.
The village collects a half-percent income tax from residents for sewer-related projects, which would fund the work.
Some of the existing equipment will be replaced and still-usable older equipment will be sold, Johnson said in a report to council.
Jones and Henry, a Toledo engineering company, is handling design and will prepare the bid documents. It takes about six months for permit approval, Johnson said.
Construction is expected to begin next spring and be completed in about two years.
“The major item we need to make clear tonight is that even if we apply for the funding, we still have the ability to stop the process and reject the project clear up to the point where we have bids in hand, if we so choose,” Johnson said.
Separately, after months of review, site visits and testing, the village administration recommended Eaton Cooper for an automated meter reading system, using cellular technology, for electric and water meters.
The company bid about $879,456 for the work, which will take about 120 days to complete once the meters are received. Five companies were reviewed in recent months.
The village administration will look at finance options for a five-year payback.
Legislation is expected at council’s Sept. 4 council meeting, a day later than usual because of the Labor Day holiday.
A possible raise for the person who is mayor, beginning with the next term in January 2020, was proposed by Mayor Jennifer Rathburn. The mayor’s salary of $12,000 annually has not changed for eight years.
A survey of similar-sized communities indicates an average of $12,200 annually.
Johnson said Rathburn has been more involved in day-to-day operations than recent mayors, and he recommended $16,000.
The position does not include health insurance. Discussion is expected to continue at the next council meeting.
Separately, mosquitoes from a Wyandot County site tested positive for West Nile virus. The county health department recommends removing any standing water to reduce mosquito breeding options.
Also, council approved a motion to have village personnel enforce the property maintenance standards. One resident has refused repeated requests, through letters and face-to-face meetings, to clean up their property.
Separately, council approved an ordinance which changes the closing hour of village parks from midnight to 10 p.m., to coincide with the village’s 10 p.m. curfew for teens 16 years old and under. The village administration may grant exceptions to the closing time for events such as wedding receptions.
Village offices, except the police department, will be closed Aug. 31, the “floating” holiday selected by employees, and on Sept. 3 for the Labor Day observance. Curbside recycling will be done a day later on Labor Day week.
Council also approved the annual trick or treat celebration throughout the village for 6-7:30 p.m. Oct. 31. A rain date will be the same time on Nov. 1. Residents should leave a porch light on if they want to participate.
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