By Allison C. Gallagher
WEST MILTON — The West Milton Council recognized village residents who won this month’s Community Pride Award, as well as heard discussion on language in the RV ordinance, at its meeting Tuesday.
This month’s Community Pride winners are James and Jean Napier of 995 Princeton Road; Ruth Ann Mattis of 23 Duerr Dr.; and Larry and Karen Callahan of 2 S. Main St.
The council reviewed the language of CM-14-15, better known as the RV Ordinance, from the previous month’s workshop. Mayor Jason Tinnerman was not present at the workshop, so the council discussed what progress they made in defining what is a recreational vehicle, what is a commercial trailer, and what qualifies as the hard surface for the trailer to be parked on.
Tinnerman read over the length requirement, which states that an RV or trailer be no more than 30 feet long and asked about why a trailer larger than 20 feet was okay under the current language.
“Most of the trailers I’ve seen are not that long, so my concern is that with the 30 foot criteria we’d be open to accommodate almost anything parked in town,” he said. “I don’t want our ordinance to be so open to anything that we basically can’t enforce it.”
Council member Don Dohrman explained that 30 feet was the safest bet and chosen because many RVs are closer to 25 feet long.
“We’ve got some smaller homes in town where neighbors are pretty close to each other,” Tinnerman said. “I don’t want a big RV to be parked in between small houses and become a nuisance to neighbors that way.”
Neil Shade, who lives at 20 Beech Nut Dr., took the opportunity to ask the council about the proximity issue when citizens were invited to speak. According to Shade, a 30-foot hard surface parking pad is too long for most residential homes and in most neighborhoods. Years ago, when he applied for permission to build a storage shed in the back of his property, he was informed that there was a certain length the shed had to be away from the property line so it wouldn’t be too close to his neighbors home.
“I feel that 30 feet is too long, but I am also concerned with the length the hard surface would have to be away from the neighbor’s house,” Shade said. “Is there a set amount of feet a parking pad for an RV needs to be away from the neighbor’s property line? With how close the homes near mine are, I don’t want a large RV parked onto what becomes my property.”
The council thanked Shade for his time and decided to look into the issue further.
Municipal manager Matt Kline reported that a bidding process has began with the Ohio Department of Transportation to start working on the “Safe Routes to School” path.
According to Kline, the path has been a long time coming and will be connecting Hamilton St. to Haskell St. in front of the senior citizens center. From Haskell a path connecting into the bike path at the baseball fields will be installed so to help kids walk to school without having to walk in the street and ensure safety.
The Park Board has found someone to fill the vacant seat. Kline announced that Fred Cherry of 63 N. Williams Dr. was willing to step into the role.
A new business is opening in town. Candle Country, which has its main shop in Greenville, will be opening a business in downtown West Milton next door to Carole’s Coiffures.
In other business, Kline asked the council to approve CM-14-14, which authorizes the municipal manager to approve a health insurance contract for city employees. According to Kline, the new policies would cost $2,500 for families and $1,200 for singles.
“I want people to know that looking into policies for the new year has been a task that I’ve taken pretty seriously to make sure the cost is reasonable,” Kline said. “The good news is that the insurance cost has been down, and that premium costs are down 16 percent.”