TWINSBURG – Most of the planned sanitary and storm sewer improvements in the Darrow Road area will have to wait another year after City Council decided not to award a contract to have the work done this year.

The contract with Nerone & Sons of Warrensville Heights worth $547,562 was first considered by Council on March 19, but members voted not to award it at their April 14 meeting.

Of the total cost, $147,562 would have come from the city’s street construction, maintenance and repair fund, while $400,000 would have come from the storm sewer improvements fund.

The work would have replaced deteriorating sanitary and storm sewers, including culverts, catch basins, inlets and manholes on roads such as East Idlewood, Cannon, Bissell, Sharonbrook, Edison, Industrial Parkway and Sunview.

Law Director David Maistros told Council that in light of expected lower revenues because of the coronavirus pandemic, City Engineer Amy Mohr recommended that the sewer work be delayed. He noted a couple of the smaller portions of the project which need immediate attention could be done in-house this year.

Finance Director Sarah Buccigross explained much of the street construction, maintenance and repair fund is made up of general fund money.

She added income tax revenue, which goes into the general fund, was up 12 percent (about $860,000) through April, but the Regional Income Tax Agency estimates income tax revenue could be $2 million less this year than originally expected because of the current high unemployment numbers, while another $3.5 million in income tax payments could be delayed.

Buccigross said the city has already laid off employees and delayed capital improvements to deal with the decreased revenue, and will continue to monitor the budget situation to see if additional revisions are warranted.

Other business

Council approved continued tax incentive agreements for another year under the Community Reinvestment Area and Twinsburg Occupancy programs.

Councilman Bill Furey, who is a member of the committee that annually reviews the agreements, explained they are scrutinized to determine whether the recipients of the tax incentives have met their job creation and increased payroll goals.

CRA agreements which will continue are with Cellco/Verizon, LUR/Richter & Associates, Vistar/PFG, Western Reserve Wire Products, Twinsburg Industrial Properties/Fed Ex and spec building, Omega/Amazon and O’Reilly Auto Enterprises.

TOP agreements which will continue are with American Bottling, Professional Plastics, Keystone Components, Freedom USA/AVA Direct, Intigral Inc., Scratch-Off Systems and Spectrum Diversified Designs.

Agreements were amended with two companies which did not live up to the their job creation and increased payroll goals. Lianda Corp.’s TOP grant was reduced from 33 to 25 percent of withholding taxes collected, and HC Companies grant was reduced from 40 to 30 percent.

Furey explained that if the two companies do add jobs and increase payroll this year, their original percentages could be restored, but if they don’t, other action could be considered.

Finally, Council OK’d the city’s participation in the Ohio Department of Transportation’s road salt bidding program for the 2020-21 winter season, and authorized Service Director Chris Campbell to let ODOT know how much salt the city plans to purchase next year.

It was noted this year was the first that the city participated in ODOT’s program, and officials were satisfied with the results. The city paid about $74 a ton for salt this year.

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