Leetonia to accept Ohio bridge inspection offer

LEETONIA- Village Council Wednesday night approved participation in a bridge inspection program.

Coordinated by the Ohio Department of Transportation through a federal grant, the program include inspection and rating of all three bridges in the village. Two of the bridges – on East High and Madison streets- have been recently replaced. The third – on Washington Street – is in need of repair and the program will help in the village’s attempt to secure funding for it, according to Village Administrator Gary Phillips.

The three-year program is at no cost to the village, Phillips said, except for possible minimal expense to erect load rating signs. ODOT will provide the inspectors.

In other business council approved Everbrite to sweep streets in May to remove grit, keeping it from getting washed into and clogging catch basins. Phillips said the grit can be collected and used again next winter.

Council also approved a contract to provide fire protection to Fairfield Township for $35,000 annually for three years; purchased three Tasers for the police department for $3,800; hired Steven Dixon as a part-time dispatcher; and approved an agreement with the Columbiana County Drug Task Force to provide a detective for $20,000.

Also at the meeting council also approved the purchase of an ambulance for the EMS department at $104,549. EMS Director Kevin Cibula said that the cost will be approximately $86,000 after trade-in and rebates and that he is seeking a $70,000 FEMA grant with 10 percent matching. He said one of the department’s two current ambulances has become a liability due to breakdowns and other maintenance issues and the department is essentially operating with one vehicle.

Council also agreed to start allocating money for a new police cruiser during a Police Committee meeting following the regular council meeting. Police Chief John Soldano suggested a Ford Explorer at $26,000 to replace a 2009 cruiser with 140,000 miles.