New Waterford council OKs $1.4 million budget

NEW WATERFORD – Council approved permanent appropriations of $1.4 million Tuesday with a 5-0 emergency resolution.

The money will be used to pay for current expenses and other disbursements during the fiscal year ending on Dec. 31.

Councilwoman Doris Ogle was absent.

In other business, council tabled a new, one-year contract with the Unity Fire Department until the next meeting when Ogle will be available.

It was unable to pass the agreement by emergency resolution because it takes five votes and Councilman Tom Cresanto is a member of the department and would have abstained from the vote.

The contract had a $7,000 increase, going from $30,500 annually to $37,500 but

Mayor Shane Patrone said he didn’t see any reason it shouldn’t pass and didn’t want to give it three readings while noting “they were very kind to us.”

Council also approved the appointment of Greg Van Pelt to the position of fire chief, filling the opening left by long-time chief Bryan Henderson who resigned to take a position on the Unity Township trustee board.

Van Pelt was voted on by the 33-member department and Patrone recommended him for the position which pays $5,000 a year.

It is a continuous appointment, Patrone said.

Van Pelt, 41, a 23-year member of the New Waterford Fire Department, was the assistant chief for six years.

Henderson will remain on the fire department as assistant chief. The department has firefighters and EMTs.

In other business, council discussed purchasing a new 2012 ambulance at a cost of between $80, and $90,000. The current ambulance is a 1995.

The fire department will pay for $10,000, there is $30,000 in the ambulance fund and the village can finance the remainder of the cost.

Patrone said he would have the newly appointed fire chief work with Fiscal Officer Dave Slagle on the financing and suggested that Van Pelt “start looking” for an ambulance.

With the green light for a new ambulance welcoming Van Pelt as village department head, Village Administrator Fred Fink, amused at how easily Van Pelt got the ambulance, turned to him and joked that, “It gets worse from here.”

In his report, Fink said there were four water breaks and two sewer plus along with two new check valves installed at the water plant.

He said the entire water plant had been cleaned along with the Creek Road pump house. “We will start on the wastewater plant,” Fink said. “It needs cleaned, painted, organized and an inventory taken and recorded of stock and equipment.

“That will definitely be done.”

He said 180-feet of sewer line on state Route 46 was replaced.

Larry Shields can be reached at