BROOKVILLE – With the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services allowing for a 0.9 percent increase in EMS transport costs member of Brookville City Council authored a motion to adjust the rates for such services for the Brookville Fire Department.
At the Jan. 7 City Council meeting Brookville Fire Chief Ron Fletcher asked council members to consider such an increase.
“It is certainly an appropriate increase,” Fletcher said. “We can always evaluate it down the road (to adjust).”
Fletcher also commented that the redesign of the State Route 49 and Brookville-Salem Road intersection has provided benefits for firefighters thus far.
He said that before the redesign, which took place during 2019, vehicle speeds south of that intersection for vehicles getting on Interstate 70 eastbound approached the 60 MPH to 70 MPH range.
The redesign, which included a reduction from two lanes of travel to one, has helped.
“The re-design has been a ‘God-send’ for us,” Fletcher said, likening previous traffic in that area to being on an auto raceway as vehicles speed past at high speeds.
The veteran Brookville fire chief also noted that in 2019 there were no line of duty injuries suffered by members of his staff.
Brookville Police Chief Doug Jerome said that his department has completed all Ohio Collaborative Community-Police Advisory Board training and evaluation procedures ahead for the targeted end of 2020 goal.
He said that the policies and procedures as set forth by that board, and followed by the local police agency, “Holds us to a higher standard,” Jerome said.
“It is awesome to have all these certifications and have them up-to-date,” he added. “I am very proud of our agency.”
When his department was going through the accreditation process Jerome said that evaluators were impressed by the amount of community-oriented activities the Brookville Police Department engages in.
In other business council approved the resignation of Meghan Wheeler, Clerk of Council. They appointed Kim Duncan, who has been working for the city of Brookville for several years, as interim clerk.
As noted by both City Manager Sonja Keaton and Finance Director Michell Brandt the city ended 2019 $124,196 below where it began the year for all funds.
Keaton noted that the city is still waiting to hear resolution of possible reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for money spent related to the May 27, 2019 tornado. That figure is approximately $145,000 noted Keaton.
Keaton also noted that meetings have been set-up between the city and both Clay Township and Perry Township related to establishing new fire service contracts for those entities.
The existing contracts expired Dec. 31, 2019, and there is a 90-day grace period where services will still be provided.
Keaton also noted that the city of Dayton is implementing five percent increases for water for the next three years, starting with 2020.
She asked council members about establishing increases to city water customers and legislation to that effect will be coming at a future meeting.
Keaton said the new increases by Dayton will be reflected in the June billing statements, which will cover the period March 1 through June 1, 2020.
Brandt noted in her report that the General Fund year-to-date revenue is down $390,422 compared to 2018.
Of that amount income tax revenue is down $446,712. In 2019 the city lost the Payless distribution facility and in 2020 is scheduled to lose IMI Norgren.
The new General Motors Duramax engine facility is scheduled to come on line later in 2020.
Both Brandt and Keaton said that they will continue monitor all city funds in 2020 to see if action is needed and try to come up with plans to establish new revenue streams.
Oaths of office were taken by council members Stephen Crane, JD Fowler and Matthew Swabb, all of whom won re-election to their council seats in the November election.
Mayor Chuck Letner also received an oath following his election victory in November.
The next meeting of Brookville City Council is set for 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 7, in Council Chambers at the Brookville Municipal Building, 301 Sycamore St., Brookville.
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