Decades of BG service

Tribute was paid to the careers of two longtime City of Bowling Green employees last week.

Retired Clerk of Council Kay Scherreik, and retiring City Attorney Mike Marsh, were lauded for their decades of service.

Council President Mark Hollenbaugh presented to Scherreik a framed copy of a previously-passed resolution honoring her service. Scherreik served as clerk of council from October 1989 until May 31 this year.

Hollenbaugh read the resolution, noting that under her watch council passed over 5,000 pieces of legislation, and that Scherreik was “a trusted and reliable resource for many council members.”

“Her consistent voice, guidance and professionalism was a needed and impactful presence for the legislative body to complete its work,” he read.

Scherreik said that she’s witnessed many others receive similar resolutions.

“I’m honored to receive one of these,” she said. “I appreciate this very much – more than you know.”

State Rep. Haraz Ghanbari, R-Perrysburg, presented a commendation from the Ohio House of Representatives to Marsh. Marsh has served as city attorney since late 1987 and is set to retire from that post at the end of this month. Monday’s council meeting was, technically, his last, said Mayor Mike Aspacher.

Calling him “diligent and painstaking in all of your endeavors,” the commendation said Marsh has “attained a noteworthy record of service to Bowling Green” over his 35 years.

“Time and time again, you have shown a sincere commitment to performing your duties” in a professional manner, Ghanbari read. “You have shown how very much a conscientious, industrious person can accomplish.”

It further cited Marsh’s “unflagging dedication to your community. … We look with continued optimism to a future that will continue to thrive as the result of your continued efforts, Mike.”

Aspacher said he seconded Ghanbari’s words.

“We are certainly grateful for all of his many contributions,” Aspacher said. “We will be announcing very soon details for an opportunity for” the community to share their appreciation for Marsh’s work.

Marsh said that Hunter Brown, Bowling Green city prosecutor, who has been transitioning into the role of city attorney, will replace him.

“We’ll continue to work together for however long it takes,” Marsh said. “He’s going to do a good job for you.”

Public Services Director Joe Fawcett also thanked both Scherreik and Marsh for their service.

“You are two very good examples of the professional nature of our staff, both in your roles here and as you exit the city,” he said.

Also at the meeting, council:

• Heard from Wood County Green Party co-chair Joe DeMare, about what he said was soon-to-be proposed city legislation designed to encourage residential solar power. DeMare said the Green Party doesn’t support the legislation because it “does nothing to address the structural limits to solar in Bowling Green.” He said there are impediments that have been put in place by the city utilities board that place “an artificial cap on what should be an economic opportunity for everyone in Bowling Green.”

He said that the Green Party will be running a mayoral candidate next year, noting that the mayor appoints the members of the board.

• Heard Fawcett address a question from Councilman Bill Herald about the length of time it takes the signal to change at the downtown crosswalk near the Ben’s store. Herald asked if there were options available to speed it up. Fawcett said the light there is sequenced off of the immediate stoplights north and south, which are in turn sequenced off of other stoplights. He said that, according to the city engineers, the timing is largely locked in. However, he said he could speak to the engineers about it.

“I have asked that in the past, and the answer, unfortunately, has been that it’s at the timing it needs to be for efficient traffic flow,” Fawcett said. “Certainly I can ask again.”

• Heard from resident Sean Brennan, who said that while he is in favor of the proposed zoning update which is being discussed, he is concerned that the 5-foot setbacks for properties in the proposed “Pedestrian Residential” district would be out of place.

• Introduced a resolution authorizing Municipal Administrator Lori Tretter to enter into a renewal of the agreement with the Wood County Public Defender. According to the legislative package document prepared for council, the city has had an agreement with the public defender since 1962, “as authorized by the Ohio Revised Code, to provide legal representation to indigent persons charged with violation of city ordinances. The fee of $100 per case, as previously negotiated, remains unchanged. The agreement has an annual renewal clause and requires a resolution adopted by city council.”

• Introduced a resolution adopting and authorizing an amended Community Development Block Grant housing policy and procedures manual. According to the legislative package document, the manual contains proposed amendments, concerning allowing condominiums to be an eligible type of dwelling for some programs and projects.

• Heard from Hollenbaugh that council will hold its annual strategic planning meeting Oct. 6 at 6 p.m. He said that no action will be taken at the meeting, and there will be no public comment.