THE OFFICIAL NEWSLETTER OF
NORTHFIELD CENTER TOWNSHIP TRUSTEE
PAUL G. BUESCHER
~ KEEPING NCT RESIDENTS INFORMED SINCE 2005 ~
#448 THURSDAY MARCH 31, 2016
FIRE DISTRICT UPDATE
Back in 2010, my fellow two Trustees, Brent Sommer and Rich Reville and I worked closely and successfully with Sagamore Trustees Rosemary Snell and the late Richard Barrett and Jim Hunt to form our current Fire District. I wanted to give the district a generic name such as the “Brandywine Falls Fire District” because our goal was always to encourage other area departments to join the district. However, the Sagamore Trustees really wanted their name included so we ended up naming it “The Northfield Center-Sagamore Hills Fire District.” Despite the name the District has always been open to other departments. With that in mind, I would like to clear up some misinformation that has been floating around on some blogs.
Last fall we began hearing from very highly reliable sources that the Sagamore Hills Trustees were talking with some area communities about starting another fire agreement or district with them. On at least two occasions the Sagamore Hills Trustees were asked about this and they indicated that they “were just rumors.” However, our sources were adamant so I began to take some proactive actions. I began talking with Northfield Village Mayor, Jesse Nehez to explore the possibility of the Village joining our District so that we could keep it going. I did this because Ohio law forbids a Fire District to remain in existence with less than two communities. Some bloggers are accusing us of doing the same thing that Sagamore was doing – Holding secret meetings and making secret decisions. Mr. Nehez and I were simply investigating the possibility of any interest they might have in joining the District to keep it going if and when Sagamore decided to leave. This proactive approach that I took had the blessing of my fellow Trustees John Romanik and Rich Reville and I have kept them fully informed of our talks. Simply put, the talks began with the Village to hopefully become an ADDITIONAL partner in the District and at the worst, to become a REPLACEMENT if Sagamore pulled out. All of this can still be salvaged and even enhanced if Sagamore would reconsider or at least delay their decision until we can all sit down and iron all of this out.
In my March 15th newsletter I stated the following about Sagamore Hills, “They are planning to begin a Fire District with the City of Macedonia!” I was wrong when I stated “Fire District.” The plan is actually a contracted service. The proposal calls for the City of Macedonia to provide fire and EMS coverage to Sagamore Hills for $750,000 for each of the first two years of the contract. The City also offered Northfield Center a similar proposal for $375,000 for each of the first two years. The question then becomes, why isn’t Macedonia proposing an actual Fire District for all four communities as opposed to service contracts? After all, an actual Fire District would pool the resources of all four communities and all four communities would have equal input in the administration, management and finances involving the District.
The City of Macedonia appears to have created some confusion in the matter of the creation of a Fire District. Please, let it be known that I am NOT picking on Macedonia. I am simply using public records to document the confusion created over this matter.
In last week’s NewsLeader, (Sagamore Hills Trustees Vote To Leave Fire District) Mayor Joe Migliorini is quoted as stating, “Our hopes [sic] is that all of our communities can come together on creating a fire district that will benefit all of us where we’re not having to duplicate services.” However, when all of the area communities first began discussing an area-wide Fire District back in 2009, Macedonia Fire Chief Tim Black addressed the matter as recorded in official Macedonia Council meeting minutes. Chief Black stated, “A fire district is contrary to Macedonia’s Charter.” He also stated, “…..to dissolve an exceptional department is not realistic and not fair to the residents of Macedonia he added. Macedonia has no intention of becoming a fire district and losing its autonomy.” This took the wind out of further talks back then and led to our formation, the following year, of our current fire district with Sagamore Hills. Again, I want to emphasize that Chief Tim Black runs an EXCELLENT Fire Department. I just wanted to point out this confusion.
Today, we are facing a number of options to resolve the situation that, through no fault of ours, we’ve been pushed into. When we get the facts and figures together YOU will be presented everything through public hearings and through this newsletter. We will NEVER make any decision without YOUR input. I have received many suggestions and comments from many readers. I will not be publishing them because I plan to take a poll and I do not want to prejudice anyone. This is a very fluid situation so stay tuned for the poll and future updates.
The following is a link to an online petition to the Sagamore Hills Trustees:
QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
Q >>> – Is putting out the trash cans earlier than 7pm really a problem? My in-laws are 88 & 89 years old, and their daily home helper leaves by 3pm. She puts out the cans before she leaves. During the winter, it’s dark at 5:30pm. Who determined that 7pm is the correct time to put out your cans? My guess is they were not considering the elderly population and 2nd shift workers in Northfield Center. Please reconsider.
A >>> – There is really nothing to “reconsider.” This has been on the books for many years, well before our time. In all honesty, this is one of those rules that is rarely enforced. It is used when common sense is ignored by those few who try the patience of our zoning inspector and more importantly, their neighbors. I am referring to those who habitually leave these containers at the curb for SEVERAL days both before and after scheduled pickups.
Q >>> – Hi Paul, I heard again that there was a meeting regarding the Mather family home and turning it into a park. I talked to you several weeks after the fire and I think we were both surprised that people were pushing that so soon. Anyway can you tell me what when on at that meeting? I’m totally against this and would like to know why people that do not live in our development are pushing for this to happen. Thank you for your time.
A >>> – The only meeting that I think you might be referring to is a recent Zoning Commission meeting where several people spoke about the Mather property. I did not attend that meeting so I do not know what occurred. One thing that I did hear was that the ‘group’ planned to attend and speak at our next Trustees meeting. I can tell you that we worked diligently towards the successful demolition of the Mather home. The property has now been restored to nature, thus ending the Township’s involvement in the matter. Our job is done! Any and all plans for the property’s future is entirely up to the property owner(s) and our zoning code.
Q >>> – I haven’t heard anything about the proposed re-zoning behind Spitzer. Can you please give me an idea of what the status of it is?
A >>> – This is still in the hands of our Zoning Commission. I understand that there will be another hearing in the near future.
YOUR GENERAL COMMENTS
NOTE: All comments must include your name and a phone number. This information will NOT be published. However, if you want your name to be published with your comments you should include the word “SIGNED” next to your name.
I would like to bring to the table that a study was done at the expense of the tax payers. Its results stated the a non recommendation was made as a result of the study done by the professional firm. It point blank recommended NO MERGER WITH MACEDONIA. I know this is a real mess. I have never heard of a Fire District disbanding…in essence, this is what Sagamore Hills is doing. Can it be done legally?. It depends on what law firm is consulted. The State of Ohio Attorney Generals Office is a good source to consult. I suggest also that there should be some research into the violation of the Sunshine Rule…There had to have been numerous meetings to come up with this decision. …as well as the dispatch change. These were not all done Publically nor in Executive Session. Where are the records? This needs review & exposure. The elected [Sagamore Hills] officials need to be held accountable legally for any violation of the public’s trust. Lastly, The truth is going to come out. The hard reality is…bailing out in times of difficulty is not a resolution nor an answer to financial problems. It only creates more.
I can’t believe Sagamore Hills is taking the actions they have encroached upon. Any Sagamore Hills emergencies is on the other side of Route 8 and will require another 10 minutes to attend any issue on this side. I think it is a big mistake. Stinks.
Please pass along a warning to Marwick residents to be vigilant and communicate with First Energy before trimming. First Energy tagged one of our trees for “trimming” a few years ago leaving a door hanger as communication. We were at work when the trimming occurred. Instead of cutting down overreaching branches as we thought that is what “trimming” meant, they cut the whole top half of the tree down leaving the bottom half still standing like a totem pole ready to be carved. Leaving us to pay someone to take down the bottom half of what was a perfectly healthy tree. Complaining to First Energy after the fact was a waste of time and resulted in nothing but frustration. I wish I would have contacted First Energy when I received the door tag to understand the complete scope of the work before it occurred and made sure I was at home to reconfirm scope with the cutting crew.
To person that made the comment about Nick Kostandaras not knowing Hazel Dr and NCT is in Summit county…. Its not a matter of Nick knowing where he is, its a matter of NCT NOT enforcing their own nuisance laws! The guy with the animals is NOT zoned agricultural period! His noise, smells, and eyesore of a yard are interfering with the enjoyment of our own property! And according to NCTs OWN LAW he is in violation. So why are they dragging their feet on this? Every surrounding property is fed up with this guys nonsense. Its time to find someone with a spine to lawfully stop this!
Signed Sam Lardomita. Hazel dr.
ZONING INSPECTOR’S RESPONSE:
The County does not control the actions of agricultural use, the State does. He is in compliance with State regulations and Townships are bound by the State regulations and they can’t zone for agricultural uses. I have repeatedly been annoying the property owner with the Public Health Department and they were just out there a week ago to make sure he was in compliance. I realize this is a very sensitive issue but the State hurt all communities, not only Townships, when they did away with the acreage requirements under the guise of allowing Urban Farming. We do not have much legal basis to do much about this agricultural problem. Granted this resident has gone to an extreme pushing the farming regulations, unlike most who just have a couple chickens or a goat but regulating them becomes very difficult. We are not the only community experiencing this problem in the County. Even Municipalities are having this problem since the State law trumped their Ordinances also. Nuisance complaints are some of the hardest to prove in a court because you need concrete evidence to the complaint, thus the reason the Health Department being out there. I am hoping that maybe since Summit County is a Charter County that maybe something can be done thru this route with County Council but that is going to take time. We need to get on our State Legislators to modify some of these regulations. I am working on this situation.
Paul G. Buescher
Northfield Center Twp. Trustee Vice-Chairman
Northfield Center-Sagamore Hills Fire Dist. Board
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<<<<< DISCLAIMER >>>>>
TrusteeBuescher@aol.com is the official newsletter of Northfield Center Township Trustee Paul G. Buescher and emailed under Blind Copy to hundreds of Township residents, businesses and others. The comments and opinions expressed are those of Trustee Buescher and do not necessarily reflect those of the other two Trustees. Comments under “Your Comments” are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect my feelings or thoughts. I also reserve the right to not respond to any emails that do not contain both the name and address of the sender. I also reserve the right to publish in whole or part, on my NS7 newsletter. any comments from this newsletter. This newsletter is not an official publication of the Township but is sent to residents requesting it as a public service by Trustee Paul G. Buescher exclusively, at his own expense and time. If you wish to unsubscribe from this newsletter, simply send a blank email to TrusteeBuescher@aol.com with the word “UNSUBSCRIBE” in the subject heading.