Bellefontaine Examiner

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Council may soon see a $200,000 paving project measure

Last year’s $700,000 paving program — the largest in Bellefontaine’s history — improved 36 of the worst sections of city streets, but there is much more that could be done, City Engineer Tim Notestine told the City Council’s Finance Committee on Tuesday.

“This list would cost about $1.3 million,” he said, holding up a copy of the streets that could be paved, “but not all of this has to be done right away.”

He noted Bellefontaine started a program that ran through the 1990s of spending about $100,000 a year on paving.

It addressed years of neglect and built a foundation that helped the city weather recent economic downturns, he said.

“We just haven’t had the money until last year,” Mr. Notestine said. “We had a lot of money last year and we used it to hit the worst of the sections.”

He would like to build on the work with a $200,000 project this year.

“I used to think $100,000 a year would keep us up to snuff, but then the price of asphalt tripled,” he said. “Now, I’m thinking we need more like $200,000 a year.”

Committee members Mark Fissel, Deb Baker and Dave Haw seemed receptive to the proposal and said they would work on an ordinance for council’s consideration.

In regular action, council members approved on first reading a $260,000 project to improve the intersection of Main Street and Reynolds Avenue, which leads to the Crossroads Business Center.

The area is home to AcuSport Corp. and other businesses. AcuSport is in the midst of a $12 million expansion.

Grant funding from the Ohio Department of Transportation, Ohio Department of Development and private industry, along with recycling of traffic lights from abandoned school sites and crossings will cover the project.

Diane Hager, chairwoman of the Rules Committee, gave an update on the stray and feral cat issue in the city.

No new ordinances are proposed at this time, she said. Rather, the committee would like to pursue a private grant opportunity to fund a capture, spay/neutering and release program.

The initial phase will be establishing a hotline for residents to call and report on cats in their neighborhoods.

If the numbers are adequate, the community could receive funding for a two-year program.

Patrick Wolfe, who complained several weeks ago of strays in his east Chillicothe Avenue neighborhood, said the program still does not address his concerns about disease, registration of cats and containment of pets.

The council’s next meeting is at 7:30 p.m. July 9.

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