PDT Content Manager
The top stories in the Daily Times the week of Dec. 31 to Jan. 6:
Meadows selected as Fifth Ward Councilman
Gene Meadows, a local attorney, was selected Thursday by the Portsmouth City Council to fill the vacant Fifth Ward seat.
“It’s an honor. It’s a privilege. Since I have come to this city I have really grown to love this city,” Meadows said. “I look forward to being able to serve the citizens of the Fifth Ward, and the city as a whole.”
Meadows replaces former Fifth Ward Councilman John Haas, who the council selected as the next City Solicitor.
Clarifying council interview process
City Solicitor John Haas shed some light on the inconsistencies of Portsmouth City Council’s use of executive session.
Council can go into executive session, which is not open to the public, for various purposes including to address personnel issues. Previously council has conducted interviews outside of executive session during a regular meeting of the government body.
Haas explained the decision is council’s prerogative and cited Ohio Revised Code
Section 121.22 which provides in pertinent part some exceptions to the requirement of open session procedures.
“(G) Except as provided in division (J) of this section, the members of a public body may hold an executive session only after a majority of a quorum of the public body determines, by a roll call vote, to hold an executive session and only at a regular or special meeting for the sole purpose of the consideration of any of the following matters:
(1) To consider the appointment, employment, dismissal, discipline, promotion, demotion, or compensation of a public employee or official, or the investigation of charges or complaints against a public employee, official, licensee, or regulated individual, unless the public employee, official, licensee, or regulated individual requests a public hearing. Except as otherwise provided by law, no public body shall hold an executive session for the discipline of an elected official for conduct related to the performance of the elected official’s official duties or for the elected official’s removal from office. If a public body holds an executive session pursuant to division (G)(1) of this section, the motion and vote to hold that executive session shall state which one or more of the approved purposes listed in division (G)(1) of this section are the purposes for which the executive session is to be held, but need not include the name of any person to be considered at the meeting.”
New Boston Schools auction a great success
New Boston Schools held an auction Tuesday in the old school buildings looking to raise some money for the district.
The original projected goal of the auction was $4,000, but the auction ended up raising $24,000. It was so successful, another auction set to happen on the same day had to be delayed.
“I can’t speak for the board, because its a board decision, but I would like to see all of the money go back to the students, most certainly for technology,” New Boston Superintendent Mike Staggs said.
The auction for the contents of the Oak Street building has rescheduled for Saturday, Jan. 12, 2013 beginning at 9 a.m. and is hopeful that the auction for the Oak Street School building will garner just as much support from the community as the Stanton building.
New school blocks sewer access
The village of New Boston is waiting for the state of Ohio to install an access road leading to a sewer manhole at the newly opened New Boston School on Lakeview Avenue, and Village Administrator Steve Hamilton said he won’t approve the school’s final plans until that access is given.
Without access, he said, the village service department is unable to clean out blockages that might backup sewage into surrounding homes and the new school.
Hamilton said the construction plans originally submitted to him used holding tanks to retain displaced water. During construction it was found that the school needed additional holding space, and the plan was redesigned to use the terrace next to the New Boston Stadium as a holding pond.
“We have two manholes in there on that 20-inch main sewer system that comes through there that feeds from North Moreland and Milldale and the upper-end of New Boston. They dug the holding pond out and now the manhole is about 10-feet to 12-feet above the ground and we have no road to get to it to clean it out,” Hamilton said.
New Boston Superintendent Mike Staggs said on Thursday that he understands the village’s concern, but really that is up to the state — not the school — to resolve.
Significant area drug arrests
- The Southern Ohio Drug Task Force has made several major drug arrests, and confiscated eight firearms, approximately $216,000 in cash and 186 pounds of marijuana from Mexico, with a street value of $186,000.
Deputies from the Greenup County Sheriff’s Office discovered a Meth Lab at 57 Water Street in Greenup and the two people accused of operating the lab had two children present. Nick Kintigos and Melissa Gillum were both arrested on meth charges and Kintigos became belligerent during the course of the arrest, causing Deputy Cody Fuller to be stuck by a needle.
Manuel Lofton, also known as “Man,” 33, of 1305 Mound Street, faces 14 counts including multiple counts of trafficking in crack cocaine, possession of crack cocaine, trafficking in heroin, possession of heroin, having a weapon under disability and possession of criminal tools. The Southern Ohio Drug Task Force served the indictment.
Salvation Army sets kettle collection record
The Salvation Army Portsmouth Corps is reporting that $101,500 was collected during this years kettle collection period. Lt. Mark Ferreira with the Salvation Army Portsmouth Corps, was pleased with the collection and said this will allow them to offer more and expanded services to the community.
“Last year (2011) we raised $87,000 and this year (2012) we were shooting for a goal of $90,000 and we ended up raising $101,500,” Ferreira said. “People really came out this year and were extremely generous. Making $100,000 through bell ringing is a dream come true.”
He said the goal for the year was ambitious.