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(Demolition Grant, Golf Course Equipment, Mudcat Contract, Freedom Festival, Fire Hire)

City to Raze 16 Vacant Houses
By Catherine Stortz Ripley, CT 
April 14, 2015

The second phase of the city's housing demolition project, funded largely by a Community Development Block Grant, is advancing. On Monday evening, April 13, 2015, the Chillicothe City Council approved bids from two companies to do the work. Phase 2 includes the razing of 16 old houses. The council approved bids from Red Rock of Kidder (the company that completed the first phase) and Truitts Dirt Works of Linneus. The demolition project was bid with each structure listed separately. The Council selected the lowest and best bids for each structure. Red Rock and Truitts Dirt Works will each take down eight structures. Red Rock's bid totaled $43,945, and Truitt's bid totaled $33,435. The first wave of the demolition project involved the removal of 21 structures. The total project cost for the removal of all 37 houses is $220,721. Grant funds cover $125,000, while the property owners are responsible for $500 per structure ($18,500 for all 37 houses). The city's cash portion is $77,221, which includes an additional $38,000 that was approved Monday evening from the city's demolition fund. Bids had come in higher than anticipated; therefore, the city approved the additional $38,000 from the city's demolition fund rather than cut the scope of the project. In addition to cash, the city also is providing in-kind labor which includes inspections and the seeding of lots after the structures have been removed. Structures on the demolition list: 416 Vine, 118 Webster, 736 Missouri, 422 Vine, 424 Cowgill, 910 Maple, 432 Washington; 312 Third Street, 210 Third Street, 201 Third Street, 113 Trenton Road, 20 Webster Street, 603 Missouri, 207 Cherry, 1003 Jackson.

Also Monday night, council members:

  • Passed an ordinance accepting a grant-writing contract from Community Fundworks;
  • Approved a contract with Grand River Entertainment (Mudcats) for the lease of Shaffer Memorial Park for Chillicothe Mudcats, a college-level summer baseball team;
  • Passed an ordinance authorizing the execution of an entertainment services contract between the city of Chillicothe and the Freedom Festival Committee. The city has agreed to provide $3,000 to go toward the Freedom Festival which, this year, will be on July 3.

The council also passed a resolution authorizing an interfund loan from the sales tax capital improvement fund to the general fund in the amount of $253,715 to be used for the purchase of golf course equipment and establishing repayment terms. The agreement calls for the balance to be paid back in five equal payments, with an interest of 1.7 percent. The resolution passed 4-1, with 2nd Ward Councilman Wayne Cunning voting against the measure stating that there should not be an interest rate assessed on the loan.

Also Monday, Fire Chief Darrell Wright presented an ordinance approving an addendum to Mike Booth's contract for emergency management. The chief also introduced Nathan Zabka as a full-time firefighter/paramedic.

An executive session, closed to the public, followed the regular meeting at which time the council approved the hiring of seasonal employees. Mayor Chuck Haney presided over the council meeting with the full council present.

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