County hears city concern over elections board

Tiffin City Councilman Jim Roberts spoke to Seneca County commissioners on behalf of Tiffin City Council Tuesday about the proposed relocation of the Board of Elections.

He said the move would result in less income tax revenue for the city and would remove more county offices from the county seat.

The Board of Elections is looking to relocate due to space issues, specifically for in-person voting booths. At the current location, the spaces are not private.

Roberts brought to the board a motion from council to consider keeping the Board of Elections in Tiffin.

Commissioner Holly Stacy said the Board of Elections is still looking at the space and a decision has not been made.

Roberts said he was thankful for cooperation between county and city officials.

“I think we’re having an excellent spirit of cooperation,” Roberts said. “I’ve never seen it before like this.”

In other business, Department of Job and Family Services Director Kathy Oliver reported on the child welfare program. She said 17 children are in the program now and the highest number she had seen as director in the past was 90.

She attributed the dramatic reduction to collaboration between the staff and public officials.

Oliver said the current funding necessary for the child welfare program is $600,000. Last year, DJFS requested $300,000 from commissioners.

She asked the board whether they wanted to provide $300,000 for next year with the possibility that $100,000 would be returned to the county later.

Commissioner Fred Zoeller suggested using the $100,000 for maintenance projects to keep the building in good shape.

In another matter, Charles Lawrence suggested using an abandoned railroad track beds for an all-terrain vehicle trail. He said the trail would require stop signs when it crossed roads and poles at each entrance to restrict the size of the vehicle allowed on the trail.

He also said it would bring in tax dollars for the county through people visiting.

Zoeller suggested starting a committee to look into the project, including the process, funding and ownership of the land in which the railroad beds are located.

Stacy said the building of such a trail could also bring other businesses to town.

Any individuals interested in joining the committee may contact Zoeller at (419) 447-4550 Ext. 106.

Zoeller said he is to speak with representatives from Sandusky County about the Wolf Creek Petition. He said he wanted an understanding from the other board about the issues that Sandusky County may face if the petition is granted, including potential flooding in Bettsville.

Board President Jeff Wagner said he intends to make his decision to affirm or rescind the petition based on the opinion of the county engineer, and Stacy agreed.

County Administrator Stacy Wilson said software for the county auditor’s office can be cost-allocated and paid for through the capital improvements budget line.

Wagner said that if the money is in the capital improvements line, then he would rather pay it up front.

The board is to move forward on a resolution at a later meeting.

Zoeller said he spoke with precinct workers about their pay on Election Day. He said they made $6.66 per hour and would like a raise.

He said he did not know whether the county had control over the pay. Wagner said he thought the local Board of Elections set the amount.

In new business, the board approved:

A supplemental appropriation of $6,130 for the Concealed Handgun License Fund.

A fund transfer of $12,000 to be made to the CR 38 Bridge Project Fund.

A resolution authorizing fund transfers of $10,000 be made to the Bridge Rehab 12/38/592 Project Fund.

An appropriation adjustment of $500 within the General Fund.

A supplemental appropriation of $7,999.53 for the Sheriff Highway Safety Grant Fund.

Supplemental appropriations of $911,656.62 for Capital Facilities Note Retirement Fund for 2013.

A supplemental appropriation of $1,750 for the Seneca County Ditch Maintenance Fund for 2013.

A resolution appointing members to the Community Corrections Board.

Bill vouchers.