Monday, May 14, 2012


The agenda for the May 7th meeting was pretty extensive, resulting in a "marathon" meeting which lasted until 10:45. This is how it went:

R-12-06 Resolution of the Common Council of the City of New Albany Concerning the CBDG FY2012 One-Year Action Plan -Zurschmeide passed 9-0 This was a plan to allocate the Community Block Grant

R-12-07 Resolution concerning Statement of Benefits for Globe Mechanical, Inc By the Common Council of New Albany - Caesar Passed 9-0 (Tax Abatement)

A-12-06 Ordinance for the Appropriation to Unsafe Building Fund from Rainy Day Fund - Zurschmeide 1 & 2 ($130,000 for demo and $20,000 for grass cutting) Passed 8-0, 1 abstention

G-12-08 Ordinance Establishing a Separate General Fund Checking Account and to End Unnecessary Commingling of Funds - Zurschmeide 1 & 2 Passed  9-0

G-12-09 Ordinance for the  Transfer of Funds to Reimburse Edit Fund for 2011 Shortfall Disbursements - Coffey 1 & 2  Passed 9-0

A-12-10 Ordinance for Appropriation of Edit Money for the Purchase of Police Vehicles - Blair 1 & 2
Passed 7-2 This was for the purchase of 17 new police vehicles. CM Benedetti, and CM
Zurschmeide voted against this on the first 2 readings.  There will be more discussion on this before the 3rd reading, I will not be voting for this many new police cars. 

A-12-03 Appropriation for Spring St. Hill road repairs - Caesar 3 Passed 6-3. CM McLaughlin, CM Blair and I voted against.

G-12-05 the Pars Dept Inter local agreement As you know, the veto was unfortunately upheld.

The Agenda for May 17 is much shorter but will still have a lot of discussion.

R-12-08 A Resolution Urging the Federal Highway Administration in Regards to the Ohio Bridges Project, to Recommend Building the East End Bridge Immediately and Deny Tolling on Interstate 65....... - Gonder

G-12-08 - ...Separate General Fund Checking Account... - Zurschmeide 3

G-12-09 - ...Reimburse Edit Fund... -  Coffey 3

A-12-10 - ...Police Vehicles... Blair 3

Monday, April 23, 2012


I apologize for not posting on the most recent city council meetings.  Until there was a comment last week about an ordinance I did not know if anyone was reading this blog.

Lately, there have been so many postponements and tabled ordinances there is not a lot to write about,  Here is the update so far.

G-12-04 the Bond Issue for $6 Million Dollars passed 9-0.  I know this is a huge amount of money but these repairs are necessary.

G-12-05 The Parks Board Ordinance passed 5-4.  As you probably read in the "Tribune" I was one of the five supporters.  This will be revisited in August and the County Council is supposed to pay their share of the funds necessary to keep our parks open and in order.

These have been tabled:

G-12-06 Ordinance for the Appropriation to Unsafe Building Fund from Rainy Day Fund.
Mr. Zurschmeide wants time to collect more information.

G-12-07 An Ordinance Establishing the City of New Albany Ethics Commission. Mr. Gonder tabled this after Mr. Robison wanted to work with Mr. Lorch to tweak this Ordinance.

A-12-03 Appropriation for Spring St. Hill Road Repairs. Mr Caesar tabled this again because we do not have the final report from the second engineering group.

I know it looks like the Council is moving slowly, and maybe we are, but we all want to have all of the information available before voting on these important issues.

Again, I am asking for your input.  How would you vote on these issues?  And why?

Friday, March 16, 2012


The agenda was short but the Ordinances were extremely important.

G-12-04 The Master Plan Ordinance was not an easy decision.  Yes, it is  a huge amount of money, but it will be Spring in four days and we cannot put these repairs off any longer.  I have watched people stand at the podium for years and talk about flooding and even raw sewage flowing through their homes.  These will be large projects and they need to be paid for when they are completed, and they need to be completed ASAP. That is why I voted for this Ordinance, and I believe the other council members had the same (or similar) reasons.  It passed 9-0 on the first two readings and is expected to pass on the third.

G-12-13 The Audit Assistance Ordinance was not a difficult decision for me.  The State Board of Accounts has been telling us that we have problems for years.  The Auditors will be giving helpful information to get our accounts in order.  This also passed 9-0.

A-12-03 Spring St. Hill-Councilman Bob Caesar tabled this .  He is confident that the new report will be completed by our next meeting on 4/2/12.  If not, he is willing to table it again.

I know that many readers will disagree with my decisions but I am trying to do what is the best plan for New Albany and all of our citizens.

Monday, March 12, 2012


G-12-04 An Ordinance Authorizing the Issuance of Sewage Work Revenue Bonds for the Purpose of Providing Funds to Pay for the Cost of Certain Additions...
(This is the $6,000,000 Appropriation to implement the Master Plan).
Coffey 1 & 2

G-12-13 Ordinance Allowing the Appropriation of $8,000.00 for the Purpose of Paying for a 2011 State Board of Accounts Audit Proposal
Coffey 3

A-12-03 Appropriation for Spring St. Hill Road Repairs
Caesar 3

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


I guess by now everyone knows how we voted Monday.  Sorry to be posting at this late date but I have been very busy these last two days. 

I will list each Ordinance and Resolution in order and explain the reasons for my votes.

R-12-04 (Electronic devices for council members)
I was not in favor of this at the beginning.  I did not want the taxpayers to pay for an iPad or laptop that would be for my personal use.  Pres. Benedetti explained that the funds would come out of the council's budget which was already paying for paper, copiers, and even for the officers to deliver our packets.  When she explained that this expense would be less costly in the long run I changed my mind and voted yes.

G-11-13 (Audit Assistance) To me this was a no-brainer, especially when I was told that Charlie Pride of the State Board of Accounts approved.

A-12-03 (Spring St. Hill) This was not as easy to vote on.  Most of the council members (me included) want to see more information before making a final decision. 
  1. We want another Engineering Firm to re-evaluate the proposal
  2. We want to explore other options.
  3. We want to see how FEMA answers the second request for assistance.
I just want to say that everyone on this council takes their responsibility very seriously.  We all want to do what is best for you.  

Thank you for your comments, please keep them coming.

Saturday, March 3, 2012


As you know, our  neighbors in Henryville and Marysville have lost everything.  Valla Ann Marcus is collecting canned goods, blankets, etc. and will have these items delivered.  If you can help please take your donated items to the Admiral Bicknell In, 600 E. Main St, or call 981-8000 if you have any questions.

Thank you,


Thursday, March 1, 2012


I was asked to post the agenda for council meetings in advance.  I will also be posting the results of Monday's meeting.  This will probably be posted on Tuesday since we are having a work session following the regular meeting.

R-12-04 Resolution Concerning Procurement of Electronic Devices for City Council Use (Zurschmeide)
This was discussed at an earlier work session.  The council members receive so much information and documentation in paper form that it may be more cost efficient to supply the members with a small device such as a tablet PC, small laptop or iPad. CM Zurschmeide would be assigned to gather the information to see which device is most cost effective, should this resolution pass.

G-11-13  Ordinance Allowing the Appropriation of $8,000 for the Purpose of Paying for a 2011 State Board of Accounts Audit Assistance Proposal                                                             (Coffey 1 & 2)
Our State Board of Accounts has found numerous errors in 2011 as in the past.  The proposal is to hire the London Witte Group LLC to assist in solving our audit problems.  This is to help the city be in compliance with the State Board of Accounts on several issues bank account reconciliation, financial transactions, records entries and fund reporting.

A-12-03 Appropriation for Spring St. Hill Road Repairs                                                              (Caesar 1 & 2)
The low bid for this project was $540,000.  The city has been asked to help fund the repairs in addition to requesting disaster relief from FEMA.

There will be a work session Monday 3/5 to discuss Spring St. Hill

I am presenting this agenda without any editorial comments.  This is mainly because I have just received the packet and have not had time to study it.  Also, I prefer to wait until the meeting and listen to all comments from the citizens and from city officials before making a final decision.