NP council discussing revising ordinance

By Kelsey Kimbler -

NEW PARIS — The Village of New Paris is thinking of revising its sanitation ordinances. During a village council meeting on Monday, Aug. 7, council members Mary Jame Thomas and Kathy Smallwood resolved to review the ordinances and see if they could come up with something more effective.

The sanitation issues have been something Thomas has been dealing with for some time.

The required notices have been issued to houses in violation, and Thomas is having issues with some owners responding. In fact, she has had to begin the court process in several circumstances. “I’ve sent out over 20 letters. I messed up on a couple of them. We have two cases going for the court system,” she said. “We just can’t get people to clean their properties though. I’m working on it.”

“The fines that the court imposes, where is that information coming from? Our own ordinance? Part of our zoning ordinance?” Smallwood asked.

“It’s our ordinances and then I send them a letter asking them to clean their properties up, because they’re in violation of the ordinances. They get 10 days and then after that I send them a final notice and give them another 10 days,” Thomas answered. “They do have the right to appeal on the first letter, but they have to do it within five days. After the final notice and after the 10 days then it’s court proceedings.”

“I’m wondering if we can’t get those ordinances updated. Have we had a talk about that in the past?” Smallwood asked.

“There’s some things I would like to see changed on ordinances,” Thomas said. “There was in 2012 a new ordinance in there and it just doesn’t seem to have the power to get things done that the old one did. I’m thinking that maybe the old ordinances and the new one we can use both.”

Smallwood and Thomas resolved to meet, review the ordinances, and see if they could work out a new one which would be more effective.

During her village finance report, Smallwood said, “Our finances are what they’ve always been. We’re making it. Right now there’s no reason to worry about them too much.”

In safety news, for the month of July, the New Paris Police Department handled 146 calls for service, took 30 reports, made four arrests, issued 14 citations, and served 45 warrants.

The Board of Public Affairs (BPA) is losing one of its members. Allen Melody is moving out of New Paris. Council requested an official letter of resignation from him, which he provided, and they approved his resignation. Ed Davies was suggested as his replacement, which council said they had no issue with. He will be sworn in during the September meeting.

In other news:

•The New Paris Chamber of Commerce donated two picnic tables to the park shelter, which brings the total up to six.

•The village’s bicentennial celebration will be held on Aug. 18, at 7:30 p.m. at the shelter near the basketball court.

The next New Paris Village Council meeting will be held on Monday, Sept. 4, at 7 p.m. in the New Paris Village Building.

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