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Malvern Village Council had a positive outlook on 2017 at its first meeting of the new year on Jan. 9. The village gained a new mayor, new village administrator and board president to take into 2017.
Former president Bob DeLong inherited the position of mayor, following the resignation of Angela Lambert. DeLong has been president of village council since Alan Artzner inherited the position of mayor on Oct. 6, 2014.
Councilwoman Barb Burgess has been voted to fill DeLong's spot as council president. This leaves a vacancy on the council.
The Malvern Village Council is accepting applications for a councilperson to serve out the unexpired term, which end at the end of the year. Anyone interested must live within the village. Send a letter of interest and resume to P.O. Box 384, Malvern Ohio 44644 or drop them off at Village Hall. The deadline is Tuesday, Jan. 31.
"I think the council we have right now consists of all good people," said Councilwoman Kathy Ritter. "We are doing our best to make things better. It is easy to sit back and laugh at us in council, but I hope whoever joins council is serious about making the village a better place."
Village Administrator Marcus Benson served his first meeting at the table with council.
"I have been settling in and going over the policies and rules," said Benson. "I got a lot of help from (Fiscal Officer) Pat Griffith and have toured the village facilities. I would like to thank everybody for the help getting started. It is a learning experience."
Councilwoman Eunice Thompson and other members of council welcomed Benson personally.
"I hope everybody has been working with you," said Thompson. "We don't need anymore nitpicking or anything like that this year."
In other business, council:
APPROVED the hiring of a independent contractor solicitor, Attorney At Law Chad Murdock of Rootstown. According to Councilwoman Barb Burgess, Murdock specializes in government law and currently is employed by Ravenna and Portage townships. No specifics of pay were settled upon, though Burgess stated Murdock would work at wage comparable to what previous solicitor Vince Slabaugh received which was approximately $9,000 a year or $750 a month. The finance committee interviewed Murdock prior to the council meeting.
HEARD the village is in need of a fire district representative. Anyone interested may contact Griffith at village hall.
HEARD interim tax administrator Alana Evans announce a 14 percent increase in tax revenue for 2016. The total was $226,204.29 which was up $28,270 from 2015. Evans also told council that if they cannot find a tax administrator that she recommends using the Regional Income Tax Agency (RITA). Council asked Evans if she could set up a representative to visit council during an upcoming meeting.
HEARD Superintendent of Village Services Steve Felton report that so far this season, as of Jan. 9 he has used 51 tons of salt on the roads and approximately $2,000 gallons of brine.
LEARNED from Griffith that the volume of mail has seemingly returned to normal following the changing of the keys to the village post office box.