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Township updates sign regulations

September 27, 2012
By J.T. Whitehouse , Town Crier

Austintown Township trustees adopted some changes to the zoning regulations at Monday's meeting. The changes involved political signs and temporary nonprofit signage.

"The Ohio Supreme Court ruled on political signs saying we can't prevent them," said zoning inspector Darren Crivelli. "They can go up 365 days a year as long as they are on private property."

To comply with the change, the new Article XVIII, Section 1806, Paragraph 3, Political Signs will have language removed that allowed political signs only during a period 30 days prior to an election and seven days after. The rest of the article will remain in force, which confines political signs to private property. The signs cannot be posted in the right-of-way or on utility poles.

The second issue involved the same article's Paragraph 7 regarding temporary civic, nonprofit signs. The article will limit the time a special, nonprofit event sign can be placed. It limits such signage to 10 days prior to an event and if placed on private property, the owner of that property has to give permission.

Both changes were approved by trustees on Monday.

"The resolution will be forwarded within five days to the Mahoning County Planning Commission for consideration," Crivelli said. "It will then go before the Austintown Zoning Commission and will come back to trustees for the final approval."

On a different matter, Township Administrator and Road Department head Mike Dockry informed trustees that the Ohio Department of Transportation released their state-purchase road salt prices for the coming season. He said it will be $37.13 a ton compared to last year when it was $48.31 a ton. Dockry said last year's mild winter has left the township with an excess amount that is being stored by the state. The township had to purchase an agreed minimum amount of road salt under the state purchasing plan. Since the mild winter didn't require the use of a large amount, the township has the large inventory left. It meant less was needed this coming season.

"We reduced this year's amount [ordered] by what we have in storage," Dockry said.

While Monday's meeting dealt with township business, a good deal of the trustees' comments were aimed at last Friday's sweeping football victory over rival Boardman. The trustees and fiscal officer all spoke highly of the Falcon football team and the great season it is having.

Trustee Jim Davis said he was also impressed with the Fitch Athletic Hall of Fame and the new inductees. He said Tim Kelty has done a good job at honoring Fitch's rich history of great athletes.

"I would like to have a proclamation for Tim and his staff for the work they have done," Davis said.

All trustees agreed and will have one prepared for a future meeting and presentation.

In other business:

Trustees approved 14 properties for nuisance complaints ranging from debris and junk to high grass.

Trustees passed a motion declaring vehicles at 138 Russell Ave. and 515 Westgate Blvd. as junk vehicles and thus are subject to an order to remove them.

Trustees approved a leaf collection agreement with the Board of Mahoning County Commissioners for the Recycling Division. The Division will award the township $13,000 to conduct the collection. Also approved was the bid from Allison Brothers for a truck and operator for the leaf collection at a cost of $115 per hour. This cost was the same as last year. The leaf collection was set for Oct. 22 through Nov. 15.

Trustees set the Halloween trick-or-treating from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 31.

Liquor permits were approved for Belleria Pizza West, 3460 South Meridian Road and for Walgreens, 5501 Mahoning Ave.

Under public response, Mike Cook, vice president of the Austintown Little Falcons and Jim White, president of the Austintown Little Colts, addressed the meeting regarding an upcoming game. On Sunday, Sept. 30 the two Austintown youth football organizations will be playing each other at Fitch, starting at noon. The clubs field three teams according to age and weight. Cook said this year's winning high school team has players that went through one of the two programs when they were younger. White said everyone should come to Sunday's game and "see the future high school Falcons play."



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