Published: Wednesday, 30 August 2017 09:38
By Cheryl Splain, KnoxPages.com Reporter
MOUNT VERNON — Gordon Yance, former president of First-Knox National Bank, will serve as the treasurer of Citizens for Mount Vernon, a ballot issue committee supporting the city's request for a ½ percent income tax increase.
Yance was a member of the City Finance Group, a group that met for a year to analyze the city's current finances and future projections. As a result of his work with the finance group, Yance said, “I became firmly convinced of the wisdom of placing the ½ percent income tax increase on the ballot.
Gordy Yance - file photo
“This is a nonpartisan issue from our perspective,” he continued. “It is solely for the future of Mount Vernon.”
The proposed tax increase will be targeted toward police and fire services. Yance said the current ½ percent income tax, which residents voted in 34 years ago, now only pays about half of the police and fire departments' needs. The additional ½ percent is “in the best interest of the citizens of Mount Vernon,” he said, adding that he and his wife Fran have made a commitment to financially support the ballot initiative.
Those wishing to support Citizens for Mount Vernon can mail contributions to P.O. Box 545, Mount Vernon, OH 43050.
Published: Tuesday, 29 August 2017 11:00
MOUNT VERNON — At Monday's city council meeting, Dennis Swingle once again asked for the city's help in controlling truck traffic on Edgewood Road. He said that when he and other neighbors submitted a petition asking for speed bumps to be installed, he did not realize the magnitude of the problem.
He said that after meeting with Mayor Richard Mavis, Swingle was told that in 2016, 10 semi trucks were recorded on Edgewood Road in a 24-hour period. In March 2017, that number was over 62 semis in 24 hours.
“It really has pointed out to me that it's a huge problem and it's been going on for a while. The Mount Vernon Police Department can't get there in time to do anything about it,” he said, adding that he did not blame the MVPD because he knows it is spread thin.
Even if it is a temporary solution, Swingle said that speed bumps will help until the city comes up with something more permanent. “I am sure the semis would not appreciate speed bumps,” he said.
He thanked Safety-service Director Joel Daniels for tracking down a few of the drivers after neighbors provided license plates and truck numbers.
Health Commissioner Julie Miller updated council on the department's activities. Highlights include applying for up to $209,000 in grant money to assess gaps in and offer more tobacco cessation education in the county; the least amount the department will receive is $70,000 to $75,000.
The number of patients visiting the community health center continues to rise; plans are to open another dental position, and medical services are growing as well. The center is applying for a $150,000 grant to enhance mental health services within the health center's jurisdiction. Miller said plans are to hire another provider and technician to reach those who need mental health services.
Councilman John Francis read a proclamation designating September Hunger Action Month.
In other business, council:
*Directed Daniels to submit an application for grant money for the Parrot/South Main Street intersection improvement project
*Designated First-Knox National Bank, PNC Bank, STAR Ohio and Home Loan Savings Bank as depositories for the city's funds
*Approved appropriations that include $1,000 from the Foundation Park Conservancy for the Rastin Challenge, $636,228 from a FEMA grant for a new Quint fire truck, $11,821.07 in excess water bill collections, $1,500 from VFW Charities of Ohio for the police bike patrol, $337,900 Bureau of Workers Compensation refund and a $30,000 grant for the municipal court's MERIT Drug Court program.
*Approved fund transfers
*Adopted legislation banning the cultivating and dispensing of medical marijuana within the city limits
*Approved a $2-per-hour raise to bring the MERIT Drug Court's coordinator pay to $22.40 per hour. The city pays $17 of that; the rest is paid through grants.
*Approved an amendment to allow for two safety-service administrative assistants for a one-week period. Dee Woods will retire the end of September; the amendment allows for training of her replacement.