Salem will increase pool fees
SALEM — Salem individuals and families will have to pay a little more for their passes to Centennial Pool next year. Parks director Shane Franks, though, said for family passes “we’re still lower than anybody else in Columbiana County.” Season passes will increase to $60 for an individual (from $40), and to $100 for a family of five (from $60). Each additional family member (up to five additional) will cost $25. At other pools, the cost for a family pass is $150 and up. Daily admission will increase to $5 for adults (from $4), $4 for students (from $3), and $3 for children 5 years old or younger (previously free). The commission also set a price for seniors age 62 years old and up at $4. There was no separate price for seniors previously. Pool rentals will increase to $35 per hour, from $25, and the cost for a lifeguard for rentals will increase to $15 per hour for each lifeguard on duty (from $10). In holiday matters, pool manager Amber Smith asked the commission for their opinion on her idea to serve as a drop-off point for Letters to Santa. “I think it’s fine. We could use a little Christmas cheer,” commission member Lori Colian said. Kids can address their letters to Santa Claus, 325 S. Santa Claus Lane, North Pole, AK 99705 and drop them off at the Salem Parks & Recreation Office, 2222 Oak St., just off of Southeast Boulevard. A mailbox will be located just inside the door in the vestibule where the letters should be placed. Smith said the letters should not be mailed. A self-address stamped envelope should be included so Santa can answer the letter. Letters should be dropped off by Dec. 14 to receive a response. Franks and parks foreman Jim Grimm also told the commission about plans to erect a 15 to 20-foot tall Christmas tree in front of the fountain near the entrance to Centennial Park. The tree will be lit and decorated. Karnofel said she’s been watching a lot of Christmas movies and asked about having people from the community bring an ornament and make a wish when they place it on the tree. “Wouldn’t that be kind of fun?” she said. Franks said he liked the idea, but asked that community members wait until after Thanksgiving to place their ornaments and make a wish, giving the parks department a chance to get lights and other decorations on the tree. He also noted that ornaments won’t be returned.
— Mary Ann Greier
Salem buys two school buses
SALEM — The Salem school board accepted the bid for the purchase of two new school buses from Myers Equipment for $82,187 each. The bid does not include the cost of security cameras. In other matters, the board and Superintendent Sean Kirkland offered best wishes to fifth-sixth grade Title I teacher Marjorie Shivers on her retirement after 18 years at the end of the school year. The board approved the hiring of Janie Shaw as a two-hour kitchen worker at Reilly Elementary and in a 4-1 vote, approved a leave of absence without pay starting Nov. 30 for the rest of the school year for Southeast School fifth/sixth grade teacher Michelle Kosko. Board member Ted Bricker voted against the leave of absence. When asked why, he said due to the current situation with COVID-19 and the fact that the district is having a hard time finding substitute teachers. The board approved fall job titles for volleyball, winter job titles for basketball and wrestling, Megan Gustaeval as athletic trainer for winter and spring sports. The following athletic supplementals were approved: Bill Cowgill, volunteer junior high boys basketball; softball head coach Mike Thorpe, softball jayvee head coach Kristen Toy, softball varsity assistant coach Eric Markovich, high school girls head track coach Amie Cochran, high school girls assistant track coach Bill Neapolitan, high school track volunteer assistant coach Tom Rumsey, junior high head girls track coach Jarrod Niederheiser, junior high head boys track coach Russ Hopple, volunteer head swimming coach Jordan Graham, and volunteer assistant swimming coaches Kristen Reynolds and Matt Zeigler. The board approved a list of winter game workers, with board member Brittany Zamarelli abstaining since her father Frank Zamarelli was on the list.
— Mary Ann Greier
Leetonia eyes tax incentive plan
LEETONIA– Village council has authorized village solicitor Walter Newton to draw up legislation for a Community Reinvestment Area (CRA) Program, a incentive tax exemption program benefiting property owners who renovate existing or construct new buildings. Mayor Kevin Siembida reported a housing survey has been completed and said the next step is submitting legislation to the state. The board also approved the third and final readings of resolutions adjusting cemetery rates and rules. The first resolution increases Oakdale Cemetery rates for grave opening by $100 and burials for cremations and infants by $50. Cemetery Clerk Heather Rae Kelm said last month the increases are needed due to increased costs for the gravedigger. The second one amends the cemetery’s rules and regulations, suspending grave sales in section 1 through 12 due to inconsistent historical records, making it hard to determine where bodies are buried; limiting the time frame for use and number of people allowed in the chapel due to seating capacity and lengthy services requiring personnel on hand; and requiring review proofs of monuments for appropriate content. Additionally, council approved an emergency resolution to sell village owned personal property that is no longer in use through Internet auction within the 2020 calendar year; and an emergency ordinance to sell a truck and wooden playground equipment through Baer Auction. Council also agreed to order truck route signs for the new business at the former former Advantage Trucking location on the south side of town establishing a route using Mill Street for access instead of Pearl Street, which many residents complained about under the former property owners. The company will pay for the signs and their installation. Also at the meeting, Siembida reported village hall offices will be restricted to appointment only with the police department open for emergencies only until further notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
— Kevin Howell
South Range ups pay for subs
CANFIELD — The South Range school board has increased the floating substitute pay to $100 for the school year retroactive to Nov. 2 and approved as floating substitutes for the second semester Christian Silvestri, Christine Horton, Nycole Barkett, Patricia Schaal, Richard Hura, Matt Giambattista, Denise Kosek. Carlson noted that other districts in the area hired their floating substitutes at a higher rate and a couple of the district’s substitutes left for the other districts. The board also purchased a new 72 passenger conventional school bus from Myers Equipment Co. for $86,040, including the trade-in of two buses; approved the High School Ski Club for 2020-2021 pending release due to COVID-19 restrictions, with Ken Kuzior as an unpaid volunteer advisor; and granted permission for the high school band to travel to Orlando, Fla., March 23-28, 2022, to perform at Disneyland. The trip will be chaperoned and transportation provided by a licensed motor coach company. The board granted a one-year limited educational aide contract to Diana Hatszegi effective Nov. 2; accepted the resignation of Nicole Lester as a long term substitute effective Nov. 25; approved the memorandum of understanding of Shari Lewis’ contract from 210 days to 230 days at her per diem rate retroactive to Aug. 1; terminated the contract of technology assistant George McDowell effective Nov. 17; and hired George McDowell as a custodial assistant. The board also granted supplemental contracts to Brady White for boys seventh-grade basketball and approved as volunteer coaches John Richardson for wrestling and Ross Lanzo for freshman boy’s basketball.
— Kevin Howell
WB to ease meeting restrictions
BELOIT — The West Branch school board will begin allowing the public to attend meetings again next month. The board agreed to move their meetings to the high school auditorium to allow community members to attend in-person while practicing social distancing. The meetings will also continue to be live streamed on the district Facebook page. Acting Superintendent Micki Egli reported the state house bill regarding virtual meetings has been extended from the original Dec. 31 limit to July 1. However, the bill includes a clause that states effective Nov. 17 government meetings, including school boards, are not restricted by the 10-person mass gathering rule. She said if the board holds meetings in the auditorium, 120 people can attend while practicing social distancing. Board member Mikki Kanagy said she is concerned with people entering the building, requiring more cleaning, but board President Courtney Stryffeler said the meetings had only been closed to the public because of the executive order, and said the meetings should be open again if permitted. Stryffeler said if the janitorial staff has to clean after the school board members meet, then it does not make a difference if the public attends. Also at the meeting, Egli reported a safety tip line is being established for students to anonymously report issues and concerns to district administrators. Egli said the tip line is available through the current phone system. Students can call in to the tip line to ask for help or report information and will be provided a code number to call back to check on the status of the report. Administrators can respond to the code by voicemail message. Egli said the district will receive posters displaying tip line information that will be distributed at each of the district’s buildings. The tip line information will also be promoted by the guidance counselors and posted on the district’s website. Additionally, Egli reported calamity days will no longer be reported via radio stations. She said reporting is more timely through television stations, district one calls and social media.
— Kevin Howell
United handles personnel action
HANOVERTON — The United Local school board this week hired Jeni Stewart as elementary teacher and Tina Sanlo as short hour cook, as well as approved 40 days of extended time for Vocational Agriculture teacher Douglas Sutton for the 2020-2021 school year. The board also granted supplemental contracts for the 2020-2021 school year to Stacey Zines for yearbook advisor, Noleen Moore for volunteer coordinator and Katie Bibri for sixth-grade chorus; and coaching contracts to Mike Ward for assistant varsity boys basketball, Nicholas Rhodes for seventh-grade boys basketball and Angela Benner for ninth-grade winter cheerleading. Additionally, the board approved as volunteer coaches Mike Hawkins for bowling and DJ Ogilvie, Travis Ellyson, Jordan Phillips, Mike Ward, Jime Headley, Jon Newburn, Ethan Antram, Matt Brooks, Sean Weyant and Nicholas Rhodes for the weight room.
— Kevin Howell
Mahoning County commissioners donated a quad-sink to West Branch.
Branch to add outdoor WiFi
BELOIT — The West Branch school board has approved a contract with Itsavvy LLC to install public outdoor WiFi for the district for $31,026, fully funded by the Connectivity Broadband Grant, which is federal CARES Act money set aside by the state for hot spots and devices for students. The board also approved a contract with E-Rate Connection (Richard Kevern & Associates) at $2,200 to manage the 2021-2022 federal E-Rate program application process, which helps secure discounts for telecommunications and internet access. Additionally, the board purchased a school bus from Myers Equipment for $89,142 using funds from the Ohio Department of Education’s School Bus Purchase Program, which will cover $42,864 of the cost; and accepted donations of $231 from Zoetis for the FFA program and $650 in labor and materials for roof repair at the middle school from Tremco/Kevin Butler. The board agreed to compensate Shane Blommel $500 to complete the boys’ soccer head coach position for the 2020-2021 school year. Blommel filled in for Matt Thomas, who has been on administrative leave since October after being charged with two counts of sexual contact with a minor in Portage County. The board hired for the 2020-2021 school year Abbie Millard as the Lead Mentor for the 2020-2021 school year, Shannon Keck-Phillis as mentor and Deborah Clegg as a home instructor on an as needed basis; approved the job description for an auditorium manager supplemental position, which is to manage/implement the technical requirements of all auditorium events and manage technical resources of the auditorium; and granted winter coaching supplemental contracts to Chris Dorris for varsity wrestling head; Joel Szymanski for varsity wrestling assistant; Nick Mancini for junior varsity wrestling; Kenny Faulkner for assistant wrestling; Trae Hillyer for varsity wrestling assistant; Jonathon James and William Pigg for middle school wrestling; Ryan Ficco, Mark Brink, David Wayt and Christian Wayt for wrestling volunteers; Jordan Graham for swim assistant volunteer; Karen Rice for cheerleading advisor volunteer; and Alyssa Hatton and Brooke Kuzmaul for freshman cheerleading. The board also approved Victor Trimmer, Kip DeShields, TJ DeShields, Earl Trimmer, Todd Miller, Scott Showalter, Shawn Alazaus, Chuck Filek, Dave Blasiman and Chris Tucker as clock workers; Korben Tennefoss as student clock worker; and Patty Butcher and Jody Edie as ticket takers. Acting Superintendent Micki Egli noted clock workers are just individuals who can run the clock when needed.
— Kevin Howell
ELO teachers contract extended
EAST LIVERPOOL — The city school board has approved an extension of the current agreement with its teachers union past the first nine weeks. Superintendent Jonathan Ludwig said negotiations will begin again in either February or March. In other action, the school board spent $17,644,58 on cameras and accessories to go in East Liverpool’s six new buses. In other matters,, Patricia Milhoan resigned as a food services staff member for the district but will keep her bus driver position. The district also hired the following substitute staff: Kristan Davis and Roxann Kelly for crossing guard; Davis, Kelly and Helen Russell as secretaries; Davis and Kelly for food services staff members; Stephen Scott Jividen, Davis and Marialice Brunner as custodians,
— Stephanie Ujhelyi