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Church may take dispute with ODOT to court

September 30, 2012
By TOM GIAMBRONI - Staff Writer , Morning Journal News

LISBON - The Lisbon United Methodist Church is contemplating taking legal action as a last resort to stop the Ohio Department of Transportation from erecting a traffic light control box on its lawn.

Church representative Jack Dowd attended this week's Village Council meeting to inquire if council was willing to join with the church in seeking an inunction against ODOT, if it comes to that.

Council President Roger Gallo indicated his opposition to taking what he described as an "adversarial" approach to resolving the dispute, preferring they work with ODOT instead.

ODOT recently completed work on several intersections in town where new wireless traffic lights are to be installed. One of the intersections is the one at Washington and South Market streets, where the Methodist Church is located.

At the Sept. 10 council meeting, two church representatives reported that as part of the project ODOT intends to install a 5-foot-high control box on the church lawn in front of an illuminated church sign. Church officials also claim the control box would be located on church property and not within the ODOT right-of-way.

"We still want that moved ... to the other side of the street," Dowd told council. "It just takes away from the aesthetics of the church, and it is one of the most beautiful churches in town."

Mayor Dan Bing said during the Sept. 10 meeting he would contact ODOT, and Bing was asked after the meeting if he had done so. The mayor said he called the number he was given, but it turned out to be a wrong number. Bing contacted Street Department Foreman Jim Oliver to get the correct number, but Oliver told him he would contact ODOT.

Councilman Willis Coleman suggested they schedule a meeting with ODOT, and Bing said he would try to do that.

In other action, West Lincoln Way resident Melissa Percic complained about the storm sewer work performed on Green Street, which borders her property. The project was recently completed but the promised work on repairing her property has yet to be done.

Council member Jeff Snyder said there is a list of items the contractor has to do before the village will sign off on the work, and Percic's property is on the list.

"We'll get you taken care of," he assured her.

Council voted to extend the hours of the two seasonal cemetery workers up to 480 additional hours to the end of the year. This was done at the request of cemetery board President Barry James, who said one of their two regular employees is currently hospitalized, while the other is preparing to retire.

Finally, council adopted a resolution asking Columbiana County commissioners to share the casino tax revenue being received from the state. Like other communities, Lisbon wants commissioners to share the money among cities, villages and townships in the county.

 
 

 

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