Tuesday, June 14th, 2016

Marion board set to pursue new facilities

By Tom Millhouse
MARIA STEIN - Marion Local school board members announced Monday night they intend to pursue construction of a new auditorium, gymnasium and agriculture education complex.
As a first step, board members voted to establish a capital projects fund. They approved the transfer of $500,000 from the general fund into the new account. School officials reported the project's preliminary cost estimate at $15 million. Other amounts to be set aside in the new fund have not been determined.
"Discussions will continue on choosing an architect and creating a timeline to fund this project," superintendent Mike Pohlman said. "All funding options will be considered, including a levy, capital campaigns, grants and utilizing our capital fund savings account."
Pohlman said the board will spend the next year getting more detailed drawings and evaluating ways to fund the new facilities. No timetable has been set for the project.
While board members evaluate the long-range major improvements, they also are looking at other improvements.
"The practice band field and concession/restroom facility are still being pursued and discussed," Pohlman said. "All funding options are still being considered for this also." He noted estimates are being sought for those projects.
Earlier this year, board members reviewed input from residents who participated in a survey to gauge interest in various facility upgrades. A proposal for a new gym and ag education complex received a 70 percent approval rating, second only to the restroom/concession facility (which garnered a 75 percent approval rating). Forty percent of the participants favored the auditorium project.
Board members also met with Chickasaw engineer Brice Schmitmeyer and Chickasaw Board of Public Affairs members Al Lochtefeld and Jim Moorman concerning the district's tying into the new water system being pursued by the village.
Schmitmeyer updated the board on costs associated with extending a water line from the proposed new treatment plant in the industrial park south of the village. In addition to a new treatment plant, the village also plans to erect a new water tower.
The district would pay an estimated $600,000 to extend a 12-inch water line about 5,000 feet along state Route 716 to the south edge of district property, according to Schmitmeyer. He said based on a 30-year payback with a .55 percent loan, the district would pay $652,375. No firm estimate has been made on what the district's monthly bill would be if it ties into the Chickasaw system.
Schmitmeyer said the district's current expenses for maintaining its water wells would be eliminated if the water line were extended to the school.
He added the village will likely fund the project through a loan by the Ohio Public Works Commission, with the project going out for bids in late 2017 or early 2018. The project's total cost has been estimated at $2.5 million to $3 million.
The village will pursue the project, regardless of whether the district ties into the system, Schmitmeyer said.
Lochtefeld said the water line extension "would help out the entire community." He predicted when the project is completed, "you'll see a lot more development" in the industrial park.
Schmitmeyer said if the school pays to have the line extended, it would be compensated if residences or businesses in the area tap into the line.
"We don't expect an answer tonight," Schmitmeyer said, adding the village will be back in touch with the board later this summer.
Board members took no action on the issue.
Additional online story on this date
St. Marys native will compete for Olympic swimming berth later this month
In 2012, Josh Fleagle was an 18-year-old competing at the U.S. Olympic Swimming Team Trials.
Four years after having missed the cut, Fleagle returns to the stage a better swimmer with his eyes on the prize. [More]
Subscriber and paid stories on this date
New Bremen
NEW BREMEN - Village officials are seeking solutions to problems at Komminsk Legacy Park's splash pad.
Council members and officials on Monday voic
Hi-Tech Wire added warehouse, four jobs
ST HENRY - School board members on Monday approved a 100 percent, 10-year tax abatement for Hemmelgarn Enterprises, doing business as Hi-Tech Wire, in St. Henry.
ST. HENRY - Village council members at Monday's meeting authorized paying the final installment on the Willow and Parkview streets reconstruction project.
ST. MARYS - City officials plan to replace electrical transformers this year to ensure substations operate smoothly.
Council members heard first reading of an ordinance authorizing the sale of a damaged transformer previously located at the Lore Substation east of AAP.
MARIA STEIN - Marion Local school board members handled a number of personnel issues at Monday's regular meeting.
The board accepted the resignatio
FORT RECOVERY - School board members accepted the resignation of district band director Samuel Piehl during a special meeting this morning. The resignation was effective immediately.
MONTEZUMA - This weekend's Zuma Days festival will feature activities for visitors of all ages, with organizers saying they want to provide fun for the entire family.
CELINA - After a successful first week to the season, Grand Lake looked to start off week two strong with rival Lima looking to hand the Mariners their first loss.
ST. HENRY - Kole Murlin threw a complete-game three-hitter, Tanner Freeman went 4-for-4 with two RBIs, and the Celina ACME baseball team defeated St. Henry 6-4 on Monday night at Wally Post Athletic Complex.
Compiled by Colin Foster
The Coldwater ACME team ran its record to 6-3 with a 10-7 victory over Fort Recovery on Monday at Veterans Field.
A couple must make many decisions before the wedding day about the venue, the invitations, the songs - and now, the hashtag.
With the rise in techn