Ripley Police Department in dire need of new vehicles

By Martha Jacob –

In the absence of Ripley Village Mayor Tom Leonard, vice mayor Charles Poole led the Nov. 22 council meeting.
Ripley Police Officer Josh Miller started the meeting off informing council that his department is trying to purchase two new vehicles.
“We currently have a 2009 Charger and a 2001 Expedition,” Officer Miller explained, “They are starting to really beat up our budget with constant maintenance.
“In two years we spent over $11,000 in maintenance costs alone. Where as the 2014 Charger which we bought brand new has only cost us $390 in maintenance.”
Officer Miller went on to say that his officers on an 8-hour shift is the equivalent of putting 43,800 miles on the vehicle per year, minimum.
“I’ve contacted the Municipal Lease Program,” Miller said. “because we don’t have $50 to $60 thousand dollars sitting around to buy a vehicle outright.
“I found out that it would be about $54,000 to get us into two vehicles, a Taurus, all-wheel drive and an Explorer, all-wheel drive. With a 5-year lease at 6.4% interest, or a 6-year lease at 6.5% it would mean a quarterly cost of $3,188. That would be around $1,000 a month, or $12,000 a year.”
Miller said he was also offered a full year’s deferments on payments, but could still use the new leased vehicles.
Poole suggested the village look into other options to see what was available and placing the issue in the Safety Committee for more discussion.
In other business, council had the first reading of an ODOT Ordinance for a bicycle path coming through the village at no cost to the village.
Council also briefly discussed a rat and cat issue within the village and what could be done. Council will look into programs to help with feral cats.
“In regard to the early warning siren on Red Oak Creek,” Village Administrator Pete Renshaw said, “I picked up another antenna from the electricians and it has been installed and is higher up than the previous one and the coax cable also needed replaced, so electricians will be back to check it out.”
Renshaw reminded council that he had been working with Brandstetter Carroll, Inc., a civil engineering firm regarding water problems. The company specifically deals with water lines and water towers.
“Unfortunately, the first thing they wanted to do is a geographic survey of the entire town,” Renshaw said. “Fire hydrants, water valves, pipe sizes. We’ve already had part of one of the surveys done in 2011, but no one can tell me who did it. But they were able to open it, so that knocks $5,000 right off the top.”
After a brief discussion on the issue council tabled it until after the first of the year.
In regard to Easton Alley in the village Renshaw said that letters had been sent out to all the people living there, about resetting the timing on a traffic signal at the site.
Renshaw said that about 99 percent of the new pipeline is now in the ground and taps were almost in.