Newton hired as NW solicitor

NEW WATERFORD – After accepting the resignation of Solicitor Tad Herold, village council immediately approved Mayor Shane Patrone’s appointment of Walter Newton Jr. to the vacancy on Tuesday.

Herold’s resignation is effective Aug. 31 and Newton, who has served as the Leetonia solicitor for 14 years, was hired with an emergency clause effective Sept. 1 and will finish out the unexpired contract which concludes on Dec. 31 of this year.

Patrone said he has worked with Newton before and was “ecstatic for the opportunity” to hire him.

Newton, a Mount Union graduate, has practiced law for 28 years and earned his law degree at Capital University Law School.

Herold, who resigned to become Columbiana County’s new director of economic development, thanked council noting everyone was pleasure to work with and the village was heading in a great direction.

Herold will also resign from his position an assistant Columbiana County prosecutor.

He explained to council during its last meeting that while there are no attorney general opinions regarding the compatibility of serving as village solicitor and assistant prosecutor and in his new position, “it’s a no brainer” to resign from the two.

He said the prospector’s office receives requests for compatibility opinions from time to time and if the positions came across his desk he would rule a “pretty clear conflict of interest.

In other business, Administrator Fred Fink presented information on a new Caterpillar mini hydraulic excavator that has been discussed.

Fink said the standard Caterpillar 305C had a price tag of $47,779 and the attachments, including a 51-inch ditch cleaning bucket, an 18-inch, 24-inch, and 36-inch bucket and auger drive unit came to $17,734 for a total of $65,513 with a 36-percent state discount on the excavator and 18-percent state discount on the attachments.

Fink said the excavator has a 21-foot reach while noting that, if we go any deeper than this machine is capable of, we have no business doing what we’re doing.”

Patrone said they would schedule a special meeting regarding the purchase and have Fiscal Officer Dave Slagle work out the financing and Newton would draw up the necessary ordinance.

Also, in other business, Patrone wants the village owned property at state Route 46 and Main Street to be surveyed in preparation to selling it.

The property has an occupied apartment building on it and Patrone said the village doesn’t want to be in the landlord business.

Council discussed the parking issues and Patrone said he wanted to sell is as soon as possible.

Also, in response to a question about the proposed Dollar General store, Patrone said he expected to see construction begin about the second week of October.

The company had indicated it wanted to be open by Thanksgiving, but Patrone said a January opening was more likely.