Newton Falls nixes move to former school

Village manager cites grant opportunities that would be lost

NEWTON FALLS — The move of village offices from the municipal court building and annex will not be happening after all.

Legislation that would have allowed the village manger to enter into a contract with the Newton Falls Board of Education was pulled from Monday night’s agenda. The ordinance would have allowed the police department and other village offices to move to the former elementary school.

“There were some financial opportunities that would be available to us if we were to establish a municipal center, not in the school,” Village Manager David Lynch said. “It just didn’t make sense to forgo those opportunities. I’m talking about some grants that are out there. When you go from a local municipal center to a former school building, those grants aren’t available to you because you don’t have ownership of the property.”

For now, council is planning to remain at the municipal court building, he said.

“I would say within the next five or 10 years, we’ll be identifying a new location,” Lynch said. “This building has some inherent problems involving plumbing and some infrastructure that will probably force us out of this building.”

There are no plans to revisit the school as a potential location.

“It’s possible it could come back, but if I’m being honest with the community, it’s off the table,” Lynch said.

If the legislation had passed, the village would have been paying close to $8,000 in monthly expenses.

In other business, council:

• Authorized Lynch to enter into a contract with Bodnar Consulting Services to redesign and manage the village website;

• Authorized the county engineer to advertise and accept paving bids for 2019;

• Discussed the advertisement for a replacement for the 1st Ward council seat. Joseph Battisti resigned his council position earlier this month. Council has 60 days to appoint a new member. If they fail to do so during that period, then the duty falls to the mayor.

cramey@tribtoday.com

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