Blair, Skomrock Sworn in as Newbury Township Trustees
Newbury Township trustees Jan Blair and Bill Skomrock were sworn in to their third and fourth terms, respectively, at last Wednesday's meeting. Fiscal Officer Marcia…
Newbury Township trustees Jan Blair and Bill Skomrock were sworn in to their third and fourth terms, respectively, at last Wednesday’s meeting.
Fiscal Officer Marcia Mansfield administered the oath of office and fellow Trustee Glen Quigley congratulated them on their combined 20 years of service.
“You’ll have 16 years when you’re done with this term,” Quigley told Skomrock. “That’s quite a while.”
Skomrock’s parents, who usually attend trustee meetings, said they were proud of their son’s service to the community.
“I’m proud of him; as a matter of fact, I’m proud of this group as a whole,” Bill Skomrock, Sr. said. “You’re all so interested in Newbury, it’s pitiful.”
His son added, “When I sat at the other side of this table, in the audience, I thought this was the last thing that I’d ever do. But I can say, it’s been a heck of a ride.”
Blair stressed that the three trustees work harmoniously together as team for the good of the township.
The board has faced financial difficulties in the community during the last few years, as state funding was cut back with the demise of the personal property and estate taxes as well as local government funding.
Most recently, trustees have worked to stretch the budget by cutting the zoning inspector to part time, going to a 40-hour work week during summer months, cutting office hours, listing Grange Park to be sold, applying for a variety of grants and looking into billing insurance companies for ambulance runs.
In other business, trustees unanimously passed a resolution opposing new septic tank rules in the State of Ohio.
Blair said the township received a letter from the Geauga County Health District opposing new regulations on private septic systems and a model resolution recommended by the Ohio Township Association opposing the changes.
“The new rules are even more strict and could hurt us when we go to sell our homes,” Blair explained. ‘Homeowners may have to replace their septic systems before they can sell, even though 97 percent of our septic systems are now approved.”
She added, “We do have a word in this and our word is important.”
Skomrock said people may need to put in a new system that could cost in excess of $30,000 and may not work as well as the one they had.
“(Health Department Director Bob) Weisdack is so opposed to this,” he said. “I would take what he has to say to heart.”
Quigley said one of the new rules would require a homeowner to install pipes and pumps to transport effluent out to the street and back, to allow inspectors to see a system without coming onto a property.
“Why should we incur these extra costs that aren’t necessary?” Skomrock asked.
The resolution passed unanimously. Trustees in neighboring Auburn Township passed a similar measure Monday night.
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