Township website to get an overhaul, trustees say

by Chris Studor

Feb. 1 township trustees meeting

Trustee Melissa Augustine, who asked the board to consider revamping the township website last month in preparation to allow public access to meeting footage, said she has received support from her fellow trustees on the initiative.

Augustine said that while providing taped recording of township meetings remains a possibility, “the entire website needs to be revamped [before that can happen] because right now we [don’t’ have a place] on the website to even put a meeting recording.”

Currently, the township’s zoning commission and board of zoning appeals are the only meetings recorded by the township. However, the recordings are exclusively audio recordings. Augustine said secretaries for both commissions have indicated they would benefit from having video footage to review to better discern who is speaking during the meetings.

Trustee Monique Marzullo-Ascherl said she, too, strongly believes the township website needs an overhaul, but agreed with Augustine in that the work needs to be completed before the topic of recording and broadcasting meetings can even be discussed.

To move the initiative forward, Augustine said the board plans to contact at least three website development firms to present ideas for the overhaul in the coming weeks. She said the entire process is likely to take a year given that the township still has to address any additional costs associated with recording the meetings

In other business:

• Ascherl announced that the Hinckley Fire Department has received a MARCS grant for $12,827 which will be used to replace radios for the first responders.

• Augustine reported on the first Citizens Steering Committee for the update of the township’s comprehensive plan. She said a second meeting was anticipated on Feb. 22. In addition to taking in community input, the committee is now expected to begin the process of identifying what areas of the comprehensive plan need to be revised. The update process will include a community survey and public input meetings.

• Township Fiscal Officer Martha Catherwood received approval of the township’s permanent appropriations, with estimated revenues of $7.1 million, for 2022. She said copies of the appropriations budget are available by calling 330-278-4181 and requesting an emailed version. ∞