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Firelands Co-Op to receive tax break if it stays in town

By ELLEN SIMMONS • Mar 16, 2017 at 12:00 PM

NEW LONDON — Council approved the recommendation of the Community Reinvestment Area (CRA) Housing Advisory Committee to grant a 100 percent, 15-year period of relief from paying property taxes to Firelands Electric Cooperative if it moves from its current location and stays in the village.

The co-op has been considering a move from Energy Place for some time for several reasons, including structural problems in the office building. It employees 27 full-time and 4 part-time people and would move its entire operation to Industrial Parkway near North Central Ag.

Council recently passed the CRA legislation “to assist and encourage development” in the village for commercial and industrial zoned areas and is allowed to grant 100 percent property tax relief for up to 15 years.

A village resident said she recently attended a community informational meeting about drugs in Vermilion and she would like to help organize something similar to that in the village.

She said, “Heroin in horrible. We are fighting. We want them out.” She was given some information from council members and said she would be planning a rally soon.

Another resident asked if she would be allowed to place a “blessing box” on the tree lawn in front of her home. It would contain non-perishable food and other items provided by her and others for anyone in need. She was told it would have to be at least 40 feet from the center of the road, and she would need a building permit.

In other business on Monday council:

• Passed on first reading an ordinance to raise the basic water rate $2 a month.

• Approved rates for rental of the Hileman Building.

• Heard the water plant improvement project has begun and agreed to allow the water and wastewater departments to purchase a new truck.

• Agreed with the administrator’s recommendation the bids for the forced main/lift station project were too high and not to award a contract at this time.

• Approved the construction of a police garage at a cost not to exceed $50,000.

• Learned a statewide siren test will take place 9:50 a.m. Wednesday.

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