At Monday’s township meeting, trustees approved the initiation of hearings on the rezoning of properties on eight different streets from R2 to R1.
Assistant zoning inspector Eric Harris said the neighborhood that is east of the Wedgewood Plaza and south of New Road was originally zoned as R2, which allowed for duplexes. The properties in question were located in the Highland Park development.
“The move to R1 will maintain the integrity of the neighborhood,” Harris said.
He said the move would keep the neighborhood for single family homes only.
Also under zoning a motion was passed for the exterior repair of a duplex located at 243 Third St. based on the determination of the Austintown Fire Department inspector that the exterior be restored to pre-fire conditions with all costs being deducted from the fire proceeds deposited with the township.
After regular business was completed, Fiscal Officer Mike Kurish spoke on the loss of funds from state cuts. He said by the year 2015, Austintown Township will have its state funding cut by $1.5 million.
“That leaves us with the choice to either reduce services or ask for an operational tax levy,” Kurish said. “As a board, I think we should ask the state what they have done to get their fiscal house in order. The state balanced their budget by taking away funds from Austintown Township and other townships in Ohio.”
Kurish suggested a letter be sent to the governor and the state regarding cutting local government and services.
Trustee Dave Ditzler suggested having the state come in to do an audit of the township to see where it is not being efficient. He said Austintown is already running lean and making do within the present budget. As for paying for the audit, he suggested asking the state to do it.
“I suggest we ask the state to pay for it since they are taking away the township’s ability to afford it,” Ditzler said.
Trustees approved a motion for sending the letter.
In other business:
• Trustee Lisa Oles mentioned a complaint about pot holes around the recycling bins on Raccoon Road. Mike Dockry said he would have the road crew fill them in.
• Dockry reported the curb and gutter project on Yolanda was finally completed and there is just some clean-up details to take care of.
• Trustees approved the reappointment of Keith Marstellar to a five-year term on the Austintown Township Zoning Commission beginning Nov. 27, 2011 and expiring on Dec. 31, 2016.
• A motion was approved to increase burial opening and closing prices to $400 for township residents and $425 for non-residents. Dockry noted the last increase was made in 2007.
• A notice was read regarding the transfer of a liquor permit (classes D1, D2, D3, D3A, and D6) from RYCA Developers Inc. dba Upstairs Lounge and Patio 4500-1/2 Mahoning Ave. to Saadey Enterprises LLC and Patio, 4500-1/2 Mahoning Ave., Austintown.
• Several residents spoke on the passage of the Senior Center levy, thanking trustees for the dedication to keeping the center going.