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Police chief to drivers: stay on the streets and off curb area

By Leigh Ann Rutledge
FPS Reporter

Drivers sneaking through alleys to avoid downtown traffic could be cited for making an improper right turn when the wheels of their vehicle run up over the curb and into the grass.

Carrollton Police Chief Ron Yeager explained the citation during the Monday meeting of Carrollton council.  Tom Konst, a Carrollton resident, visited council to discuss some concerns he has with increased traffic within the village.  He told council he lives at 108 E. Main St. along the alley which runs from 2nd St. SE. to E. Main.  During peak traffic hours, vehicles, including extended cab pickups, are using the alley and turning right onto E. Main St.  As they turn, they are driving over the curb and causing the soil to erode.   As the soil erodes, the wheels are getting closer to the fire hydrant located in front of his home.

Mike Leslie, superintendent of the water and sewer department, said the hydrants are designed to breakaway with minimal leakage if struck. 

However, Leslie and Kenny Skinner, superintendent of the street department, will view the area in question.

Konst said his biggest concern is traffic congestion in the Public Square area.  He noted three incidents in the last five days he has witnessed semi trucks attempting to turn onto SR 9 are having issues with vehicles in the intersection. These are vehicles either attempting to make a left hand turn and have pulled down into the intersection or are waiting for a green light causing the truck not to have enough room to make the turn.

He suggested the village contact the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) to investigate the possibility of changing the light sequence to where only one direction of traffic moves at a time.

Konst feels this could allow all traffic to clear the intersection before the next light turns green thus allowing traffic to flow smoother.

Konst works for the Carroll County Auditor’s Office and told council traffic will probably be worse beginning this summer.  He is responsible for Carroll County’s Current Agricultural Use Value (CAUV) assessment in Ohio.  CAUV is a differential real estate tax assessment program that affords owners of farmland the opportunity to have their parcels taxed according to their value in agriculture, rather than full market value.  If a well pad is placed on farmland property, it becomes taxed as commercial property.  Konst is required to inspect well pad sites for tax purposes.  Last year, he inspected 15 sites.  This year he has 105 site inspections scheduled (which includes the previous 15 due some having increased in size).  He is only inspecting sites where permits were issued through Sept. 1, 2012, and therefore expects the number to increase throughout the year.

Carrollton Mayor Frank Leghart told Konst and council he will contact ODOT and discuss the possibility of a study and light sequence change with them.

In an unrelated matter, Village Administrator Denny Roudebush told council he, Leslie and Leghart attended a meeting Friday at Atwood Resort to discuss water and sewer possibilities for the SR 9 and SR 171 area.  Around 30 people attended the informational meeting, including local, state and federal officials to see the best way to provide infrastructure to the SR 9 project.

In other business, council:
-HEARD department supervisor’s monthly reports.

-WAS reminded participation is still needed in the Rural Community Assistance Partnership (RCAP) training sessions.  If council does not have enough participation, the village could lose $1 million dollars and $50,000 in funding for the Water Treatment Plant and Brenner Rd. Waterline project. 

-LEARNED the mayor has been in contact with Vievu regarding clip-on cameras for village police officers.  Cameras are available through a 30-day trial period program and are issued through the program according to the size of the municipality.  The village qualifies for only one but Vievu did say they would extend the trial period if needed.  They are also sending the dash attachment to use.  Cameras cost $899.99 each and the dash attachment is an additional $29.  Officers have a split opinion on the idea of clip-on cameras.  Chief Yeager said a concern is for officers on a foot pursuit; the camera could be lost during the chase.

-SET a public works committee meeting for March 11 at 6 p.m.

-SCHEDULED the next council meeting for March 11 at 7 p.m. in council chambers.

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