Martha Jacob – Ripley Bee
Members of the Ripley Village Council entered into executive session at its April 12 to interview six applicants seeking a seat on council after Councilman Bill Taylor rendered his resignation at the March 8 council meeting.
Following the executive session, council unanimously named local resident Travis Arnett to fill the seat.
Also during the meeting council heard from Darrin Brookbank, the owner of Brookies.
Brookbank wanted to ask council how he could organize a block party on Main Street in Ripley. He asked not only for permission, but also for instructions on how to go about organizing such an event.
“I just wondered if the street could be closed down for an event like this,” Brookbank said, “It would be an open container event in a roped off area, and be designated for a few hours?
We would like to get the Lion’s Club involved. We think this would be a way of moving people back downtown as opposed to just visiting the river area.”
Councilman Charles Poole said he personally felt like it was a good idea, while Mayor Tom Leonard told Brookbank would have to obtain a permit from the state liquor board regarding the open container issue, but no decision was made by council regarding the event, with plans to discuss it again at another meeting.
Membership manager with Air Evac, Shannon Hicks spoke briefly to council about bringing his air medical company to the Village of Ripley.
He talked about programs that the village could apply for, that would save residents money when emergency air transport was necessary. Council listened intently but decided to do a little more research on the matter before making any decisions.
Village Administrator Pete Renshaw reported that he was taking a good look at the sewer plant pump station at Ohio Valley Manor which needs to be rebuilt inside as well as needing a new control box. “Even though it’s operational,” Renshaw said, “It’s 22 years old and needs to be replaced. We’ve begun repairs on it already and all the galvanized steel piping will be replaced with stainless and we should get 25 to 30 years out of it.”
Renshaw added that every one of the sewer pump stations that the village owns are to be placed in a cycle for rehab so that the village will never have everything go down at once.
Renshaw discussed having American Electric Power (AEP) replace street lights with LED Lamps on a 10 year lease, but the administrator recommended having the village do the work instead of AEP. He also brought up recent damage done by a windstorm including shingles on the Third Street garage.
Discussion continued on whether the village should continue to maintain the USDA Revolving Loan Program. Renshaw explained that the four loans that the village is currently maintaining take up a lot of time and work. He said there is still $9,305 left in the account but there hasn’t been any requests for new businesses in six months. No decision was made.
Council approved making a $500 donation to the tree committee. Joel Barnett was approved as acting police chief for the village in the absence of Chief Bowman who is temporarily out on sick leave.