Township trustees mull Beacon Hills Park regulations

Ken Lahmers
Special to MyTownNEO
Kent Weeklies

NORTHFIELD CENTER – Township trustees have proposed regulations and the posting of signs relative to the use of Beacon Hills Park and its pavilion, and likely will approve them in the near future.

With the arrival of warmer weather, the park at Beacon Hills Boulevard and Pleasantview Drive soon will be ready to use after improvements were made with general fund money and a $114,885 NatureWorks grant from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

The grant funded 75 percent of the total cost, with about $43,000 coming from the general fund. The park was closed for a year while the improvements were made. Interim Service Director Frank Buehner said crews are completing fence installation and finishing up other work.

Improvements were made to the tennis and basketball courts, a pavilion with lighting was built, playground equipment was refurbished and moved from Crestwood Park, parking and benches were added and drainage issues were resolved.

Some of the expenditures included $17,980 for the pavilion, $7,000 for electrical work, $10,000 for parking and walkways, $7,374 for basketball court improvements, $6,800 for playground equipment relocation and $39,365 for landscaping/grading.

At their regular meeting April 5, trustees considered a resolution approving the rules and placing them on signs at the park, but delayed final approval until their next session to allow for further review.

OTHER BUSINESS

Trustees OK’d a natural gas sales agreement with NextEra through Northeast Ohio Public Energy Council’s municipal non-aggregation pricing program at a rate of $2.72 per thousand cubic feet. The agreement runs for 24 months starting June 1.

They also approved regulating transient vendors, which includes imposing a $50 registration fee per solicitor up to $150 per vendor. Soliciting can only be done from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Saturday.

Job descriptions were approved for the service director, zoning inspector and township secretary, while job descriptions were amended for the road foreman and road worker and the latter two positions will now be called maintenance foreman and maintenance worker, respectively.

Trustee Rich Reville explained the township is advertising for a permanent service director upon advice from its legal counsel. Buehner is serving as interim director after the death of Rick Youel.

Trustees adjusted the 2021 certificate of estimated resources to show a $571,254 decrease in the coronavirus relief fund and increases of $501,567 in the fire district, $64,239 in the police district and $5,446 in the general funds.

Trustee Russ Mazzola told his colleagues talks have commenced with Macedonia Mayor Nick Molnar and other city officials about the possibility of building a Nordonia fieldhouse for various indoor recreational purposes.

“This is very preliminary, but I think it’s a great idea and it would be a tremendous asset,” he said. “They haven’t talked much about funding yet.”

Township parks-recreation committee member Rick Patz said “positive feedback” for the project has been expressed.

Reville explained the township is looking at offering Tax Increment Financing to a couple of new businesses in the Joint Economic Development District to help solve stormwater problems. He also said attorneys are hoping to wrap up work on a new fire contract.

Township Administrator Helen Humphrys said a $700 NOPEC grant may be used to buy a couple of good-sized trees to plant at Beacon Hills Park. They would be dedicated in memory of former Township Administrator Sam Ciocco and Youel. She said the dedication could take place at an Arbor Day ceremony.

Capt. Donald Joseph of the Summit County Sheriff’s Department reported deputies responded to 608 calls for service in March, and warned residents to be aware of unemployment scams, which have been prevalent locally and statewide.

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