At Monday's Austintown Township reorganizational meeting, trustees had to deal with the absence of its former Fiscal Officer Mike Kurish. Kurish had submitted his resignation on Jan. 5 for personal reasons.
At the meeting, trustees filled the vacant seat with Dianne Fry who led off the organizational meeting for 2012. Fry was authorized by the trustees to send proper notice to the Board of Elections that there was a vacant elected position in Austintown. In the meantime, trustees are accepting letters and resumes of those interested in the position.
The person that is appointed would have to finish out Kurish's term, which means they would have to run for the officer in November 2013.
In public response, resident and Senior Center volunteer Gary Brant said, "I just want to thank Mike Kurish for all he has done for the township. I was shocked when I heard he quit."
Turning to good financial news, Township Administrator Mike Dockry reported a big savings over the same time last year. He said the township has saved over $8,000 in overtime for snow removal and salting compared to last year at this time. He said it is one of the advantages of the warmer than normal weather pattern the area has been going through.
In other business:
During the reorganizational meeting, held prior to the regular meeting, David Ditzler was selected to fill the position of board chairman for 2012 with Jim Davis selected for vice chairman.
Police Chief Bob Gavalier reported the prescription drug drop box has been used heavily by residents. He told trustees that in the last two months, more than 80 pounds have been dropped at the box. The issue came up as to whether needles could be placed in the box, referring to instances such as used insulin needles. It was noted that the Mahoning County Board of Health, located in back of the Senior Center, has special free boxes made for needles and that department would handle the collection of them.
Fire Chief Andy Frost said with Christmas over, it is time to get the live trees out of the house. "They are probably dried out," he said. He continued by saying the trees could ignite easily and would go up quickly. Park Supervisor Todd Shaffer said the park is accepting trees up to Jan. 31. The trees collected this year will be taken to Berlin Lake where they will serve as fish habitats.
Zoning Inspector Darren Crivelli said for 2011, the township saw a total of 12 new single family homes that brought the total evaluation for the year at $5.9 million.
Trustees approved a motion regarding expenses for 2012 Ohio Township Association conventions, seminars, and CLOUT meetings attended by fiscal officer, trustees, and/or administrator, and State Auditor's and Bureau of Workers Compensation Seminars.
Approval was given to request advances from the 2012 real property collections for 2012.
A motion passed to approve two agreements with Gallagher Benefit Services (medical broker) Business Associate Agreement required by HIPAA Law and Compensation Disclosure that provides compensation information Gallagher receives from medical insurer (Medical Mutual).
Trustees approved the holiday for township employee.
Trustees approved an Ohio Division of Liquor Control new permit for International Drive Thru LLC, d.b.a. Route 46 Drive Thru, 136 N. Canfield Niles Road, Unit A, Austintown Township, Austintown.
Trustees agreed to request a hearing on a new Ohio Division of Liquor Control permit applied for by Laura M. Stephany, 1051 North Canfield-Niles Road, Austintown. Police Chief Gavalier said he objects to the issuance of the permit.