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COUNCIL MEETING 11/14/16 (Ordinances, Police Grant)

Ordinance Change Boosts Control Over Right-of-Way Usage
By CATHERINE STORTZ RIPLEY C-T 11/15/16

Chillicothe City Council members on Monday unanimously passed amendments to an ordinance regarding the city's right-of-way management. Discussions about establishing this ordinance came following the request from a private company to erect a 120-foot tower on public right-of-way at the corner of Elm and Second streets. Council members approved this ordinance during their regular meeting Monday evening at City Hall. The ordinance will require those who request the use of rights-of-way to provide details about their intentions, according to City Attorney Robert Cowherd. It also requires them to consider the interest of public safety, welfare and health in determining where to put things in the public right of way. "Without this, large poles and other things can go up in the right-of-way and cause public safety hazards and dangers to the public, so we are interested in controlling that," Cowherd said. "We're not interested in restricting competition. That's not the point at all. We're not interested in keeping new things from coming to town. We simply want it done in a standard fashion." Cowherd stated that this ordinance will give the city more information about what someone plans to do, requires the applicant to make sure they have proper traffic control and barriers when they are doing construction in the public right-of-way, and have a plan to return the site to its proper condition.

In other business Monday evening, the council conducted a public hearing to consider an ordinance to vacate an alley located between lots 1 and 4, and 2 and 3 of Block 19 of the Graves and Leeper additions. The hearing was in regard to a request by property owner Steve Waits, a Livingston County resident who plans to build a fine dining steakhouse restaurant. Waits said that the establishment would be family dining. The city's Planning and Zoning Committee had recommended approval of the request.

The council on Monday also was notified that MIRMA, the city's insurance carrier pool, would be providing $3,272 worth in equipment for the city's police department as the result of a city grant application. The funds will be used to buy dash mount cameras and less lethal rounds (beanbag rounds). The city will have until June to make the purchase and MIRMA will present the city with a check. Company representative Jeff Arp made the presentation to Chillicothe Police Officer Jeremy Stephens.

Mayor Chuck Haney presided over Monday night's meeting with Councilmen Reed Dupy, Wayne Cunningham, Tom Douglas and Paul Howard in attendance. Councilman-at-Large David Moore was not present.

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