Girard seeks grant for boat launch project

GIRARD — City officials will be seeking grant money from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Watercraft for safety enhancements for the planned installation of a canoe/ kayak launch off the Mahoning River below the Girard-McDonald viaduct.

City council gave its approval Monday to proceed with grant application seeking around $10,000 from the Navigational Aids Grant Program for 2017.

Mayor James Melfi said the construction of the boat launch will be completed next year. The grant would be used for installing buoys and warning signs upstream and downstream of dam by the river;

He said the city has been able to secure $75,000 from ODNR for the project. Of that, $8,500 was spent on required studies for mussels, salamanders and other wildlife in the wetland area.

In other business, Melfi reported the Ohio Department of Transportation would not be paving state Route 304 until next year, but might do some work to smooth the road surface this fall.

The entire project was originally scheduled for this fall with most work to be done next spring.

”They told me they may try to scarf the road surface by tearing up the old asphalt and put one layer on to make it smoother. We are running out of season so we have no other choice,” Melfi said.

ODOT has approved American Industrial Services of Canfield at $356,682 for the project with the city’s share $55,000 that Melfi said the city would likely get back.

In other action, council:

l Heard from Melfi that a safe walking path from the football stadium to the Liberty Memorial Park ballfields was completed off Elruth Street. The path was the idea of Girard High School senior Maura Avery for her senior project. Melfi said the area has a dangerous curve on the roadway for people previously walking on side of the road;

l Will purchase a single axle chassis dump truck with a snow plow for $83,600 from FYDA Freightliners of Youngstown;

l Heard from Councilman-at-Large John Moliterno that income tax collections are up this year $47,536 compared to last year with additional wage tax money from an agreement with Youngstown concerning Vallourec Steel. Treasurer Mark Zuppo said withholdings have been up;

l Heard from Councilman Steve Brooks of plans to discuss the speed camera enforcement with officials. He noted vehicles are slowing down on U.S. Route 422;

l Set a public hearing on vacating a portion of Stull Avenue east of Beechwood Drive for Nov. 28.