April 19 township trustees meeting
by Chris Studor
Township trustees have unanimously selected Proximity Marketing as the firm to update the township’s website at a maximum cost of $7,000, Trustee Jack Swedyk said April 19.
The project , which includes making the website more user friendly and providing the means to allow residents to view recorded township meetings at their convenience, could be completed in two to three months.
“We won’t be able to get a link for meetings right away but it is a possibility that we will be able to use a U-Tube channel for that purpose which wouldn’t use up space on the township’s computers,” said trustee chairperson Melissa Augustine.
In other township business, Augustine made a motion to step down as chairperson of the Citizens Steering Committee. The Steering Committee, comprised of 14 members, is charged with helping to gather public opinion on what areas of the comprehensive plan needs updating. Additionally, the steering committee is charged with drafting questions for a township survey, based on public input, tentatively scheduled to be mailed out to all residents in early May.
“The former board of trustees assigned me to be the chairperson of the Steering Committee to make the transition smooth as I was the only incumbent trustee elected to remain on the board of trustees following the November election,” said Augustine.
Augustine said she hoped the other trustees would work collectively with her on the project and assume equal responsibility but, to date, she said that hasn’t been the case.
“I am stepping down in hopes that the other two trustees will take equal responsibility for this process,” she said. “ Additionally, I am very disheartened that the other two trustees have not shared with me emails they received from a special interest group pertaining to the comprehensive plan audit process and that this special interest group is working to undermine the project. It is confusing to residents when someone posted a draft of potential questions for the community survey on social media as if they were the final questions which they are not.”
Ascherl said she believes she and Swedyk have been helping to facilitate the process.
“I feel this is coming out of nowhere. I’m just not comfortable with you stepping down. What can we do to help?”
There was no resolution to Augustine’s request to step down as committee chairperson at during the meeting and Augustine said days following the meeting that neither Ascherl nor Swedyk had contacted her with regard to helping.
As for the community survey, she said it will be mailed to every resident in early May with a postage-paid return envelope. The results will be summarized by OHM Planners, a firm hired to assist the steering committee and trustees with the comprehensive plan audit. OHM is scheduled to present the survey findings to the Steering Committee on June 2. The survey results will be turned over to trustees and the zoning commission, which will determine any changes to be made.
In other business at the township meeting:
- Fiscal officer, Martha Catherwood, said trustees should be aware that the roof on the township administration is approaching 25-30 years of age. She said if and when a new roof was put on, trustees should look into installing solar panels as grant dollars may be available to help with the cost. She said solar panels would provide the township with electricity in a power outage emergency providing residents with a place to go. Catherwood said currently there is no place in the township for residents to go during a long-term power outage.
- Swedyk announced the township’s summer asphalt paving program will include Bellus Road, Michelle Ridge and Oakwood Lane. The county engineer’s estimated cost of the project is $317,673.
- The annual township Memorial Day parade is set for Monday, May, 30. The parade will step off from Our Lady of Grace Church at 9 a.m., and travel south down State Road, stopping for a ceremony at the Memorial Park. The ceremony will be followed by a program at town hall to formally recognize Hinckley veterans, host a flag-folding ceremony and honor Hinckley’s Citizen of the Year. Refreshments will be served after by the Hinckley Women’s Club. ∞