Allen Slaughter reclaims Smithfield council seat


Staff writer

SMITHFIELD – Allen Slaughter reclaimed his same council seat at the Village Council meeting on Tuesday after being appointed to the position left vacant by Jordie Lindsay last winter.

Slaughter was appointed in mid-April.

Ted Boyd, mayor, asked for the utilities report from Ron Saxon, street and water chairman, saying they have a “useless” mindset in testing the village water. “We are trying to keep costs down,” he said.

Cleaning a sewage plug on the south side of Mill Road caused a spill and 75 feet of pipe were laid to correct the overflow that went into the lake.

The department will clean up, cut grass and fix broken sewers as the May project, it was noted.

Bryan Felmet, village solicitor, was welcomed back to the council meetings after an illness.

Debbie Coconaughter, fiscal officer, reported on a clerk’s session, saying that it was a help to her and she found contacts who could point her in the right direction if she ran into trouble.

A 1995 Ford pickup was purchased for the street department from Staffalino’s in Martins Ferry. The cost was $600.

Coconaugher said much of the village equipment is left out in all kinds of weather as there is no place to store it. She also said the village is in need of push mowers, weed eaters and riding mowers for use on the village grounds.

Ron Malin, Smithfield Township trustee, reported on the tire collection to be held May 29-30 at the bottom of Quaker Hill. Televisions, batteries or tire rims will not be accepted.

Robert Mieczkowski, police chief, gave the April report including 68 citations, 79 warnings, 15 canine calls, two child related calls, two parking violations, 17 assists to other departments, two domestics and one breaking and entering.

The house that caught fire on May 4 on Main Street is being entered by young men going in and out, it was noted. Mieczkowski said it will be boarded up so no can can go inside.

The chief said a safety expo will be held later in the summer, including DNA and finger printing on juveniles so they will have records if needed.

“Regarding the (breaking and entering) on High Street, we are doing all we can to end this and other thefts and robberies. It is getting to the point where someone is going to get hurt,” he said.

“If anyone sees anything strange, out of the normal, going on, call our office at (740) 733-7815. If we can’t be reached there, call 911 and they will page me and relay the information,” he said.

Council approved a contract for electricity at a rate of 6 cents per hour for three years. As it stands the rate of 6 cents can’t go up, but they will be paying a distribution fee, according Slaughter, councilman.

John Ney, energy consultant with World Energy, was present to discuss the program and will meet with council members at another time.

Fred McGee, Wood Street resident, appeared before council to see what could be done about gas line trucks turning onto the one-way Wood Street. He is afraid someone will get hurt.

“Regarding animals, a house across the hill from us has dogs barking all night long. Some dogs have been known to get loose and once one had my wife cornered on the porch,” he said.

“I have lived there since 1962 and kept the peace but everytime something happens the dog owner calls the law on me, ” he said.

Saxon said the dogs were known to bark when people went by too, and Felmet will look into the situation.

Paul Greene, Northern Cemetery member, reported Wood Dunlap had cut the grass at the cemetery twice for $700. That cost was paid for by the Friends of Smithfield and Greene asked that council pay for two sessions out of the cemetery levy fund. Coconaughter will check to see if this had been approved as a resolution.

The Friends group also contracted Ed Fiddler to cut on the steep hills, as long as he has valid insurance and is responsible for accident.s

Greene reported the Smithfield Memorial Day celebration will be held on May 27. The Millard R. Burris American Legion Post 396 will meet at the Quaker Cemetery at 8:45 a.m., have a brief service and march to Northern Cemetery.

The Riddles Run House of Prayer will provide a float for the parade, with Linda Jackson in charge of the float. Boyd will speak at Northern Cemetery; L.A. Gatewood, Smithfield A.M. E. Church and McIntyre Church, will be the emcee; and Tom McCain, commander of the Piney Fork American Legion, will take charge of the firing squad.

Council members praised workers who helped in having the old Mortland Building razed and the ground leveled and planted.

George Harrah said he talked with an official at Raze demolition company about the burned out hardware building and said they would have to send notices to the owners to do an assessment and then will be assessed through city taxes.

Council gave approval for the board of public affairs to buy a flow meter that was burned up in making repairs at the chlorine house. The cost is $1,400, over the $2,000 cost of a new one.

Coconaugher reminded council of a written contract with the team using the baseball field below the recreation complex. There is a discrepancy on the thought of cutting areas of the field that have never been cut before, she noted.

A contract is also needed for the Smithfield Little League team.