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AGENDA 12-16-2014

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Category: Middletown City Government
Forum Name: City Council
Forum Description: Discuss individual members and council as a legislative body.
Printed Date: May 29 2024 at 2:19am

Topic: AGENDA 12-16-2014
Posted By: Vivian Moon
Subject: AGENDA 12-16-2014
Date Posted: Dec 12 2014 at 8:28am

TUESDAY, December 16, 2014




3. PUBLIC HEARING- Public Hearing - Zoning Map Amendment – 4927 Shaker Rd.



6. CONSENT AGENDA. . . Matters listed under the Consent Agenda are considered to

be routine and will be enacted by one motion and one vote of consent. There will be no separate discussion of these items. If discussion is desired, that item will be removed and considered separately.

(a) Approve City Council Minutes: October 21, 2014

(b) Receive and File Board & Commission Minutes:

     Historic Commission- August 25 & October 16, 2014

(c) Confirm Appointment - David VanArsdale, Public Safety Director

(d) Receive and File Oath of Office for Brian Blake



1. Ordinance No. O2014-69, an ordinance establishing a procedure for and authorizing an amendment to the contract with ABL Management, Inc. for jail food service and declaring an emergency.

2. Ordinance No. O2014-70, an ordinance changing the zoning classification for approximately 112 acres of land located at 4927 Shaker Road to a BCF (Business Center Flex) District. (1st Reading)


Under the authority of O.R.C. 121.22 (G) (1) To consider the appointment of a public official; and O.R.C. 121.22 (G) (4) Preparing for, conducting, or reviewing negotiations or bargaining sessions with public employees concerning their compensation or other terms and conditions of their employment.

Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 12 2014 at 9:16am


October 16, 2014
Ms. Romero noted that the property at 115 S. Main did not sell at Sheriff’s Sale and would be readvertised for a lower price. Mr. Dixon asked about the restoration of the Rose Furniture Building. Mr. Kohler said that he is not aware if any work is being done on the property.

It has now been over a year since City Hall wrote the check for this property.
Does anyone have an update on the Rose Furniture Building?

Has anyone seen plans or blueprints for this building?
When are Robinette and Coon going to start work on this building?

Check #214535 for the Rose Furniture Deal was written 10-04-2013 in the amount of $300,000 from the Downtown Fund.

Posted By: VietVet
Date Posted: Dec 12 2014 at 10:15am
300 thou of taxpayer money and no one in the city building knows what the status of the funds are? Kind of a loose attitude toward accountability isn't it? Was there a time limit to use or lose the money or has Robinette been given the latitude to hang on to it forever? (and perhaps spend the money on another project?). Dunno. Isn't it about time to approach Robinette with the "use it or lose it" theme?

Mr. Kohler said that he is not aware if any work is being done on the property

Shouldn't we be a checkin' know.....just to be a good steward of the people's money as the city has been in the past.

I'm so proud of my hometown and what it has become. Recall 'em all. Let's start over.

Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 12 2014 at 10:52am
Construction contracts usually only contain 4 main items.
1. Customer approves and signs off on material, final design and blue prints.
2. Cost of project
3. Date that project will start
4. Date the project will be completed

imo..City Hall simply does not know how to write a contract on these buildings or .........................????

And City Hall just can't seem to understand WHY we are going broke....LOLLOLLOLLOLLOL

Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 17 2014 at 9:27am

Posted: 9:03 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2014

VanArsdale confirmed as public safety director

By" rel="nofollow - Staff Writer


    Middletown City Council approved the appointment of police Chief David VanArsdale to become the city’s public safety director effective Jan. 4.

    In his new role which is part of a reorganization of the public safety department, VanArsdale will oversee the Divisions of Police and Fire. His annual salary was set at $98,576 and will report to City Manager Doug Adkins. VanArsdale became chief following the retirement of former chief Greg Schwarber in May 2011.

    Adkins announced the new position during the presentation of the 2015 Public Safety budget.

    He said an assessment center will be scheduled during the first quarter of 2015 to select a new police chief. Deputy Chiefs Mark Hoffman and Rodney Muterspaw are expected to participate in the assessment center and whoever is selected as chief, the other will become the assistant chief.

    In his new role, VanArsdale will report to Adkins.

    Adkins said the some of the duties of the public safety director will include the development of a five-year plan to reduce public safety spending to 60 percent of General Fund expenditures; reduce the number of EMS calls for service; reduce crime; develop long-term dispatch and jail solutions; improve discipline throughout the Fire and Police divisions; change the public safety culture internally with staff and externally with the public; active interaction with landlords to improve business practices; better use of police reserves and explore similar program in the Fire Division in the future; conduct a heroin summit with Atrium Medical Center; use of chronic nuisance/public nuisance laws and Community Revitalization and other tools to deal with problem properties; and partner with Atrium Medical Center with chronic EMS issues.


Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 17 2014 at 10:26am

    At the last council meeting Mr. Doug was granted the establishment of new positions of assistant managers at a cost of $4,000 each. Their jobs will be to attend meetings and functions that Mr. Doug does not have time for because of his demanding job.
   Then at last night city council approved the establishment of a new position
Public Safety Director at a cost of $98,576.
    Once again my three little gray cells are going TILT…TILT… TILT. I seem to be a bit confused with all the above changes.
    So we are paying Mr. Doug $115,000 + to be City Manager. Now we are going to pay all these other people to do part of his job? I thought Mr. Doug already had a big 5 year plan for the city. Wasn’t that what he presented in his 120 page booklet to the city council?
Once again City Hall is adding more jobs to the top of the pyramid.
    Yes sir them boys down at City Hall are doing just a fine job of spending taxpayer money.      

Posted By: over the hill
Date Posted: Dec 17 2014 at 11:40am
We're not saving money we're spending it. We're not consolidating jobs we're adding them. MMMMMMMM

Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 17 2014 at 12:25pm

Posted: 8:00 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014

City Council to consider diversity commission

By Vivienne Machi

Staff Writer


    At tonight’s meeting, Hamilton’s City Council will hear the first reading of a resolution to create a Diversity and Inclusion Commission dedicated to improving diversity within the city’s workforce.

City Manager Joshua Smith said that the commission — the first to study and work to improve the city’s diversity, according to officials — has been in the works for about four months, since he and Hamilton Mayor Pat Moeller attended a community meeting at Bailey Square in the Second Ward this past July.

    “There was a very consistent theme of people asking the mayor and myself why the workforce was not more representative of the city,” he said.

    Southeast Civic Association President Bob Harris, who has advocated for a city diversity commission for at least 20 years, organized that meeting, and called it one of the most effective community meetings he’s seen.

    “They (the city) heard directly from the people that they would never have heard from at City Council, who did not bite their tongues,” he said.

    Harris hopes to be involved with the commission if the legislation passes.

    “I am optimistic…but I do not want to be a part of a committee where people are not sincere,” he said.

    While Smith said that the city has always worked to make itself more representative, “this puts guidelines behind it, and invites more citizens’ participation,” he said.

    The proposed legislation describes the 14-member commission as serving in an advisory capacity to City Council, the city manager and the administration, with the goal “to study internal and external barriers to diversity and inclusion in the City workplace and in the community and make recommendations regarding such barriers.” Each City Council member would select a Hamilton resident to serve concurrently with their term of office and the city manager would appoint the remaining seven members from city staff to serve for three to four years, as well as three nonvoting members of the commission.

    Smith said his members would hail from departments including civil service, law, and the police and fire divisions.

    “It’s important to have them at the table to have a more diverse workforce,” he said.

He said he was particularly interested in ensuring a diverse geographic composition on the commission. City Councilman Archie Johnson, who has pushed for diversity measures in legislation and was involved in the commission’s development, agreed that having residents from all over the city was key.

    “A lot of time we try to ignore that (Great Miami) river, and while it’s not something that divides us, it’s something that defines us,” he said, adding that many residents who live on the east side of the river feel excluded when they feel that much of City Council and city administration live on Hamilton’s West Side.

    Johnson said he thought comments he made at an Aug. 27 City Council meeting asking," rel="nofollow -  and subsequent public discussion helped the issue finally take hold.

    According to the United States Census Bureau, African-Americans moved from 7.5 percent of the Hamilton population in 2000 to 8.5 percent in 2010, and residents of Hispanic or Latino origin increased from 2.6 percent to 6.4 percent in that same time frame.

    Hamilton is seeing a change in age demographics as well. Between 2000 and 2010, residents aged 25 to 34 have jumped from 14.6 percent to 15.3 percent, aged 35 to 44 decreased from 15.3 percent to 12.3 percent, aged 45 to 54 increased from 12.5 percent to 13.7 percent, and aged 65 to 74 decreased from 7.5 percent to 6.3 percent. The city also has seen a decrease in married couple families, and an increase in single-mother households, single households and same-sex couples.

    Should the legislation pass, $50,000 has been budgeted for 2015 to pay for city administration-wide diversity training and a diversity consultant to work with the commission as needed, with $10,000 coming out of the general fund and $40,000 out of the utility fund.

    The city will hear a second reading and vote on the legislation at the Jan. 14 City Council meeting.

Since City Hall seems to follow in the footsteps of Hamilton, will this be the next thing that we see on the city council agenda?

Posted By: Stanky
Date Posted: Dec 17 2014 at 1:49pm
I would think this new Public Safety Director position, if done right, would involve bringing in an "agent of change". Instead we are given another internal person who probably was a part of the problems we already have.

Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 17 2014 at 2:21pm
Yep, Stanky, same old, same old....mercy

Posted By: spiderjohn
Date Posted: Dec 17 2014 at 3:29pm
Actually, this "what if" was addressed at a meeting of the Citizens' Advisory Board to the Police Dept.
A Miami consultant led a mock scenario to assess the reaction and ability of the Board members. Seemed to go well.

Participating were Board members, police chief, union rep and a council member rep.

As to whether this organization would be asked to become involved if the real deal would unfortunately occur remains to be seen.
In the past, this board was told emphatically to "stay out of it" and that we had no right to involve ourselves.
Since then, most faces have changed within the city admin.

Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 17 2014 at 4:06pm
Thanks for the information and update Spider.

Posted By: VietVet
Date Posted: Dec 18 2014 at 6:34am
Why is it necessary to have a "Safety Director" (VanArsdale) who, the story says, will "oversee the police and fire departments" and then create a police chief position as well? This wreaks of a top-heavy, high paying, paper-shuffling, information passing, meeting going waste of taxpayer money position to me. Why do all public (and private) departments have to have this drastic "several managers overseeing a few worker bees" ratio?

Mercy, what a waste.

Wanna save some money and increase revenue city people? Eliminate all the Directors of this and that and Asst Directors and middle management and manage the workers with a lower level of supervisor requiring less pay and retirement costs. It makes no sense to pay multi-layer positions that don't actually contribute to the operation other than to shuffle papers.

I'm so proud of my hometown and what it has become. Recall 'em all. Let's start over.

Posted By: rowdione
Date Posted: Dec 18 2014 at 5:50pm
32 years of historical restoration, engineering & consulting the Rose building is a loss. The fragile façade will be severely disturbed by any demolition without astronomical cost of stabilization!

Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 18 2014 at 6:41pm
Well Rowdione
What should City Hall do-do-do now since they have already written the check for $300,000 and the check has been cashed ? Hmmmmm

Posted By: acclaro
Date Posted: Dec 18 2014 at 7:44pm
Honestly, are these quasi investors like Robinette just shaking down city hall for the cash they are throwing out, then grabbing tax credits, which don't have impact upon capital improvements (one still has to invest the cash- the benefit is just the back end tax which isn't paid), and then reselling the property with tax credits which carry forward (w/o the work and improvements ever being done)?

Seems to be several '25-35' top shelf rentals for lease, residential, with $ Mm to be allegedly spent. Yet, to date, no $$$ spent.

These speculators appear to be playing market shorts just like stock IMO, but getting $$$ before putting out any $$$.   

'An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.' - Winston Churchill

Posted By: Mike_Presta
Date Posted: Dec 19 2014 at 1:34pm
In the warped world of Middlletown municipal government:

"Money wasted downtown is money well spent!"

“Mulligan said he ... doesn’t believe they necessarily make the return on investment necessary to keep funding them.” …The Middletown Journal, January 30, 2012

Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 19 2014 at 2:04pm

Can you put that quote on a bronze plaque for us?
Two years from now we can give to City Hall as the perfect gift.

Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 21 2014 at 12:11pm

Posted: 8:00 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014

City: Public safety position makes department more efficient

By Vivienne Machi

Staff Writer


Hamilton’s police chief will wear a different hat starting in January.

The city of Hamilton announced in August that Hamilton Police Chief Scott Scrimizzi had been selected to become the city’s public safety director in 2015, a position which oversees the city’s Police and Fire Divisions and which has traditionally been held by the city manager.

Scrimizzi, who has been chief of the Hamilton Police Department since 2012, submitted his resignation on Dec. 15, as required to accept the position of public safety director." rel="nofollow - On Wednesday, the city named Captain Craig Bucheit as Hamilton’s next police chief, effective Jan. 2,  and Scrimizzi is expected to take the mantle of public safety director on Jan. 5.

While a draft employment contract for the director of public safety has been submitted to the city’s law department, at the time this newspaper went to print, it had not been signed yet, according to Law Director Heather Lewis. Szicrimiz’s salary as police chief was $120,994 with benefits.

Examples of the director’s duties include managing the development and implementation of the public safety divisions’ goals, objectives and priorities, managing the development and implementation of the city’s compliance with federal and state safety and security programs, including programs under the United States Department of Homeland Security, supervising security of all city facilities, providing public safety consultation services to department heads, coordinating the police and fire budgets, and representing the public safety divisions on public safety boards.

Scrimizzi said from a police chief’s perspective, having a director with a background in public safety to make decisions for the city’s largest departmental budget is essential, and enables City Manager Joshua Smith to focus on running a $323 million budget for 2015.

“We have monthly scheduled meetings to sit down, but he’s busy and a lot of times, we don’t even get to do that,” he said. “It’s such a huge part of the budget that takes up the majority of the general fund, there needs to be a set of eyes on it every day.”

Smith said that while past city managers have been more focused on public safety, he felt that utilizing Scrimizzi’s qualifications as a graduate of the FBI National Academy and the Police Executive Leadership College, as well as city police chief, would better benefit the city’s largest department with no current director.

“We don’t have the luxury of money in these departments, and we need to be operating these departments much more efficiently and effectively than we ever have in the past,” he said.

Hamilton Police Department has requested $13,962,990 for their 2015 operating budget, up $572,367 or approximately 4 percent from $13,390,623 in 2014. Hamilton’s Fire Department hopes to work with a 2015 budget of $11,997,022, up from $11,578,984 in 2014, according to the city Finance Department.

Smith also pointed to Scrimizzi’s qualifications to perform duties such as conducting Homeland Security audits on the city’s utilities at Meldahl, Greenup and the Third Street Powerplant.

“Those Homeland Security audits are very different from what most cities have, and Scott Scrimizzi is the only person on staff who is trained to receive Homeland Security briefings,” he said.

Scrimizzi has been involved in Homeland Security for 15 years, thanks to his work as the HPD SWAT team commander. He was also commander of the Criminal Investigations Division which included the Detective section, Narcotics section and Internal Affairs.

“I think I can be an asset to both chiefs to be able to come, have a decision made in a timely fashion,” he said. “(Smith)’s got a passion for economic development and I think that’s why we see so much positive stuff going on, he can spend more of his time there.”

Hamilton resident James Johns said after the Dec. 17 City Council meeting that he was concerned about the city rehiring retired public safety employees. Fellow Hamilton resident Bob Harris agreed.

“There are people around town with college educations,” he said. “Why do we only take care of our own here?”

Smith said in an August press release that the director of public safety position could save the city an estimated $27 million annually. While examples of those savings were not directly available, he said that maximizing existing resources will help run department more efficiently and ultimately save money.

“We are spending less today on public safety than we were a couple of years ago, and I want to manage those resources and maximize those resources,” he said.

In recent years, the city manager has also held the title of public safety director, but City Ordinance Code 2755 adopted in January 1928 reads that the newly developed Department of Public Safety “would be controlled and administered by the City Manager or by a director of public safety, to be appointed by the City Manager.”

“Being an older city, much of our operations are currently based on legacy — not optimal practices,” Smith said. “I need someone that oversees the department to conduct strategic oversight of that department at a lower cost.”

    Middletown City Council approved Tuesday" rel="nofollow - - he appointment of police Chief David VanArsdale to become the city’s public safety director effective Jan. 4 . His annual salary was set at $98,576 and will report to City Manager Doug Adkins. VanArsdale became chief following the retirement of former chief Greg Schwarber in May 2011.


Posted By: Vivian Moon
Date Posted: Dec 21 2014 at 12:42pm

When I read the above article the phrase "monkey see monkey do" came to mind. Once again we are following in the footsteps of Hamilton.

Smith said in an August press release that the director of public safety position could save the city an estimated $27 million annually. While examples of those savings were not directly available, he said that maximizing existing resources will help run department more efficiently and ultimately save money.

Will having the new position of Safety Director here in Middletown offer the same type of savings? Mr. Adkins please give us an estimate of the annual savings that we can expect.

Posted By: acclaro
Date Posted: Dec 22 2014 at 6:41am
Band aid approach under guise of savings. Serves to bridge police and fire in reducing costs only.

SR5 did what is now being attempted through these public safety positions which are nothing but 95% negotiation roles to drive costs down. No tangible examples of savings. Police chiefs typically put in positions to demonstrate to fire departments, 'we feel your pain.'

'An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last.' - Winston Churchill

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