NP to apply to join PCDP

By Kelsey Kimbler -

NEW PARIS — New Paris Village Council chose to move forward with joining the Preble County Development Partnership (PCDP) during a meeting on Monday, Feb. 3.

Council member Kim Fields and New Paris Park Foundation Treasurer and NP Chamber of Commerce Vice-President Nicole Riegel-Wood spoke to council on the matter, explaining it would cost approximately $4,581.50 per year, but expect the partnership to benefit the village as a whole. New Paris would be responsible for appointing someone to sit on the PCDP board to represent the village.

Fields said, she spoke to Lewisburg’s representative, who indicated they earn their annual fee back because of the benefits that come back to the village from joining the partnership.

Reigel-Wood explained, representatives currently sit on the PCDP Board from Eaton and Lewisburg, but as of yet, New Paris is not represented.

“This would pretty much be someone representing New Paris, sitting on that board, and [giving] New Paris a say,” she said. “Essentially the money is going to come back into New Paris and we’re going to blossom.”

Mayor Kathy Smallwood said, she believes the New Paris Chamber of Commerce would be willing to pay part of the annual fee. She added, council can try for a couple years and if they don’t make money back, they are welcome to leave the board. However, she hopes council will give PCDP time to prove the partnership can be beneficial.

Council discussed waiting to make a decision until they knew the Chamber of Commerce would be willing to split the cost, but according to Riegel-Wood, PCDP will hold its meeting to vote New Paris in on March 14. The village will have to submit its application prior to that.

Riegel-Wood said, “I would almost have to say, the Chamber would help if that is what it is going to take so we can have a spot on the board. I think it is important for our business community and I think you need to vote to allow [Jeff Ginter] to be the one to represent New Paris.”

Council unanimously approved a motion to join PCDP in collaboration with the New Paris Chamber of Commerce, with Jeff Ginter specified as the representative.

Riegel-Wood also spoke on behalf of the New Paris Chamber of Commerce and the New Paris Park Foundation.

She asked council to approve New Paris Chamber of Commerce’s permit for outside beer sales during the Independence Day celebration planned for July 3. She explained, council does the same for the beer tent at the Apple Fest.

Council member Mary Jane Thomas asked if The Lampost could use its permit, since the festivities will be located in front of the business. However, Reigel-Wood explained, the State Liquor Board indicated the Chamber of Commerce would have to use its permit, since it is a Chamber event.

Council unanimously approved a motion for the New Paris Chamber of Commerce to have outside beer sales during its Independence Day Celebration on Difederico Drive.

Riegel-Wood also spoke on behalf of the New Paris Park Foundation, which wishes to apply for a grant through TimkenSteel. The application is due at the end of February, so Riegel-Wood proposed they move forward and apply with the intention of the funds benefiting the rehabilitation of the basketball court.

Council approved a motion to allow Susan Laux, with Mote & Associates, apply for the grant through TimkenSteel.

In other business:

•Luther Conway was named council president for 2020. Council member Peggy Bishop nominated Conway, noting his many accomplishments since joining council, and the issue passed unanimously.

•New Paris Police Chief Jeremy Schroeder shared his January safety report. He shared, the police department handled 121 calls for service, issued 15 reports, made no arrests, issued eight citations, and gave 23 warnings.

•Schroeder also reminded council the police department does operate a medicine drop box, so citizens can properly dispose of outdated or opened prescription they no longer need. The drop box is outside the police department and is accessible at all hours. He clarified, they do not accept liquids or syringes in the drop box.

New Paris Village Council will hold its next regular meeting on Monday, March 2, 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