Police Week declared in Oxford

By Kelsey Kimbler - kkimbler@civitasmedia.com

OXFORD — For the City of Oxford, Monday, May 15 through Sunday, May 21, will be known as Police Week, according to a proclamation Mayor Kate Rousmaniere read during a city council meeting on May 2.

According to the proclamation, Congress and President of the United States have designated Monday, May 15, as Peace Officers’ Memorial Day, and the week that follows, Police Week. Oxford has chosen to recognize the week and day in honor of the work Oxford Police Department does in the city.

Mayor Rousmaniere also declared Saturday, May 13, National Association of Letter Carriers Food Drive Day. On Saturday, Oxford residents were encouraged to leave non-perishable food by their mail for collection. Every year, Oxford Choice Pantry receives a large amount of their inventory through this day.

Economic Development Director Alan Kyger spoke during public comments on behalf of Jessica Greene with Enjoy Oxford, formerly known as the Oxford Visitors Bureau. He asked that council waive park permit fees for the Summer Music Festival, for which the band list was recently announced. There will be 15 shows and 10 different genres showcased throughout the summer. Council approved his request.

Sharon Klein, Director of Community Wellness at McCullough-Hyde/TriHealth, spoke on behalf of the Coalition for a Healthy Community, as her organization has been a partner with them for several ongoing years. She made a request for the use of Memorial Park, as every summer the Coalition holds Yoga in the Park.

This will be the third year of the event which takes place every Saturday starting in June. The coalition offers a free yoga lesson open to the public. The session caters to all fitness levels, from beginners to Yogis.

Council approved the request.

Also during the meeting, there was a resolution on the agenda to authorize a donation of $500 to the Oxford Area Coalition for a Healthy Community, in order to assist with funding for outside consulting services.

Coalition Health and Wellness Coordinator Amy Macechko took to the podium to further speak to the issue. She began by thanking council for its donation of $1,000 per year for three years. The coalition is in the process of preparing its annual community report, for which Macechko offered to attend a future council meeting to share her findings with the public.

The coalition is a community organization that relies heavily on volunteers to function. Formerly government funded, now the coalition relies on contributions from its partners.

As for the requested $500, this is to fund a visit from Mark Fenton, a public health planning and transportation consultant. He will work with various groups in the community to develop plans to further physical activities, improve walk-ability, public transportation, bicycle routes, and other non-motorized models of transportation.

Funding for this visit is also being provided by Miami University, the Miami University Greek Community Fund, the Talawanda School District, and McCullough-Hyde Memorial Hospital. Funds from the Interact Thriving Community grant will also be utilized.

Council approved the proposed resolution.

A resolution was passed authorizing the city manager to develop an agreement for city council approval between the City of Oxford and the Oxford Community Choice Pantry Board of Directors for the lease of land at the city-owned Merry Day Park.

This proposed lease would permit the construction and ownership of a 2,000 square foot structure. The building would then be utilized for the collection, storage, and distribution of food items by the Oxford Community Choice Pantry. The lease will be for 25 years with 10-year renewable options.

If for any reason the structure is no longer utilized by the Pantry, ownership would revert back to the City of Oxford.

Council approved a resolution from Oxford Police Chief John Jones to authorizing the city manager to enter into a $225,000 grant agreement with the Ohio Department of Public Safety, in order to engage in and coordinate as a lead agency for the countywide OVI Task force. According to Jones, this will be the third year OPD has been a part of the task force and they are simply asking to reapply.

At a previous meeting, council discussed changing the name of Collins Run Road to South Main Street. Council decided at that meeting to bring the issue up as an ordinance.

Collins Run Road is being straightened into Main Street, so it will become one cohesive road. To save confusion, council member Edna Southard proposed changing to name to one. This is a decision which will also effect Oxford Township, as their headquarters and police division is housed on Collins Run Road.

The township is not in favor of this decision and believes the road should stay Collins Run Road, arguing many roads have different names at different spots. Council member Southard believes the matter should be simplified and one road name is for the best.

A second reading of the ordinance will be held at the next Oxford Council meeting. The reconstruction on Collins Run Road will begin on June 1.

City Manager Doug Elliott read several ordinances regarding improvements to parcels of real property located in Oxford. Representatives of 4-Leaf Development LLC. and city staff have been meeting to discuss and develop plans on the road outlined in a 2006 development agreement between the two parties.

Under the terms of the agreement, 4-Leaf may elect to construct the road and dedicate it as a public road. The city has the responsibility to finance the road through a Tax Increment Financing (TIF) program and execute a Payment In Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) agreement with the developer.

The city will need to determine the cost of the roadway and the value of the proposed property tax exemptions which should be sufficient revenue to retire the association debt. If the revenue is not sufficient, the City is responsible for any shortfall under the terms of the agreement with 4-Leaf.

In order to implement the TIF Program, city council will have to adopt five ordinances to establish the necessary TIF Districts which incorporate the Trinitas Project. One will be a commercial TIF and will include the duplexes and multifamily units. The other four will be residential TIFs.

Each residential TIF will include a group of single-family units. The Talawanda School District and the Butler Technology and Career Development Center have been notified of the city’s intent to establish these five TIF districts at 75 percent of incremental assessed value for 10 years.

In other business:

•Council accepted the bid and authorized the city manager to enter into a contract with Everett J. Prescott Inc. for the acquisition and implementation of a fixed based automated meter management system at a cost to not exceed $187,275.

•Council approved a resolution to authorize the city manager to apply for a grant from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources through the NatureWorks grant program for the purchase of a playground structure for Leonard Howell Park.

The next Oxford City Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 16, at 7:30 p.m. in Oxford’s courthouse.

By Kelsey Kimbler


Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH

Reach Kelsey Kimbler at 937-683-4061 or on Twitter @KKimbler_RH