Proposals for improvement projects, hiring relatives, and water wells took center stage during the Thursday, May 1, Camden Village Council meeting.
“We did get a letter from the Board of [Preble County] Commissioners, the commissioners have allocated $20,600 toward the Cottage Street improvement project. Additionally, the commissioners selected our proposed Second Street project to be submitted to the state for consideration of funding for the neighborhood revitalization competitive programs. Commissioners are also committing an additional $21,400 for the fiscal year 2014 CDGB allocation program for the Second Street improvement project as additional leverage,” read Mayor Dan Michael.
Some 300 additional surveys will need to be completed by the Village of Camden.
Howard White, a Camden resident, told council he intends to build a greenhouse to raise and sell flowers. His issue, however, is the Camden water has been treated with chemicals, which he will not use on his flowers.
“I really and truly believe a garden center would be a great thing for Camden,” said White.
The village has an ordinance which states no wells shall be placed in the city limits, but an exception may give White the opportunity to use well water for his business.
“He’s already got a meeting with the solicitor and village administrator,” said Councilwoman Melissa Shull. “There are probably rules in the Ohio Revised Code, which we did adopt, to take care of such thing.”
White will meet with the village solicitor and village administrator regarding the issue.
Employment of a village maintenance worker, Rusty Wilson, became a topic of discussion, as he is the husband of Rebecca Wilson, the village clerk. Rusty’s job responsibilities will include cleaning and painting road curbs, clearing streets of snow, etc. Rusty will also train and become waste water certified.
“I have issues of him being related to someone on administration,” said Councilwoman Laura Shaeffer. Shaeffer claimed she was told in the past, her relative could not be a village worker.
“It was because he was my nephew by marriage, and I was told to give him a message he couldn’t be hired because I was on the council.” When asked who said that to her, Shaeffer said Rebecca Wilson had told her. Rebecca Wilson denies making the statement.
Councilman Roy Ebbing expressed concern regarding Rebecca signing Rusty’s paychecks, as well as the timeline for Rusty Wilson to obtain his Waste Water Management certification.
“This is why we hired an administrator … we either trust his judgement, his recommendation. We’re expected to accept it or reject it on the face of it,” said Councilman Kelly Doran.
Shaeffer also expressed concern regarding Rebecca Wilson signing Rusty’s paychecks, to which Mayor Dan Michael said, “I approve all paychecks, then [Rebecca] signs them when I approve.”
The motion to hire Rusty Wilson passed 3-2.
Council approved a motion to create handicap parking spots in the Camden branch of the Preble County District Library parking lot.