By Martha Jacob
Ripley Village Council met in regular session June 26 before a full council. Mayor Tom Leonard updated council on the statewide MARCS radios program which is currently taking place. Leonard said that the Ripley Life Squad, which is a private group, had been told by MARCS that they could not participate in the upgrades. Mayor Leonard said that the squad had approached him with a solution. Councilwoman Nowana Bingaman, a member of the life squad said that the upgrade was a transition to a different frequency and that only public entities could add the radios. Bingaman said that a solution to the problem was that the village pay for it with the life squad reimbursing the village. Ripley Village Fire Chief Tony Pfeffer was in favor of the plan. Village solicitor Tom Mayes stated that the village would own the radios and lease them to the squad. Councilman Charles Poole commented that he thought the squad was contracted by the village for life squad response within the village. Mayes agreed to write up a contract between the two. In other business, Chief Pfeffer told council that the roster of firemen was up to 30 people with the addition of four new people. He discussed the number of fire runs made so far this year and that he expected to finish the year with about 125 runs. Council members also discussed an issue where his department was responding to Aberdeen calls and if it was fair to residents of Ripley. Pfeffer told council that his department was still in the running for a grant that they had applied for in February for new airpacs. He said that new trucks were working out well and that a lot of new equipment had been purchased in the current year Other topics discussed during the meeting included high weeds on Front and Second Street needed sprayed and storm water drains at Front and Mulberry Street were now clear. Also a ‘Slow Children Playing’ sign was now in place near the intersection of Meadowlane Drive and Congress Street Pete Renshaw, village administrator, informed council about his concerns with the water treatment plant operator leaving Ripley. Renshaw stated that even though the operator of record with the EPA, Dustin Dryden, was leaving the village, he had agreed to remain until a new operator was hired, a further check with the Ohio EPA requires that the operator of record to log in at least twenty hours per week, so he would be unable to remain. Renshaw said that so far he had only received one resume. The discussion continued for some time as council members shared possible candidates who would be qualified to fill the position. Renshaw also told council that the village needed another laborer for the street department who could float to other departments as needed. Mayor Leonard said that the village had another employee in the street department who wasn’t replaced when he left the village and who the village could afford. Renshaw was authorized to search for another part-time laborer. Renshaw also discussed the lack of streetlights on Shawn Drive. In other actions, it was decided that some fire hydrants would be painted. Councilwoman Tiffany Reginstein thanked fiscal officer Brooke Butcher for the excellent job she did on setting up the village’s new facebook page.