Swanton Village Council heard a Tree Commission report at its Feb. 10 meeting and approved a public hearing for a possible zoning change on Airport Highway.
Tree Commission member Roger DeGood offered a presentation to Council about the tree-related activities that took place in 2019. They included a tree risk assessment and a tree risk assessment workshop.
Former Mayor Ann Roth contacted the Division Forestry about conducting an assessment in Memorial Park. But before that could happen a large red oak was felled in a windstorm, destroying the open pavilion, DeGood said.
After that, Division of Forestry Regional Urban Forester Stephanie Miller and Tree Commission members were able to do that assessment. “We went over and evaluated all the trees that presented a specific risk to health and hazard,” DeGood said.
There were 17 trees that were found to be at risk of falling within the next year in areas that are often occupied.
“Seven of those were removed,” DeGood said. “We’re trying to get the rest of them removed, but the weather’s not been cooperative at this point. So, that will remove a lot of the risk out there.”
He said the situation led members to believe they needed to be further educated. So, they hosted a tree risk assessment workshop in Swanton, with attendees from as far away as Cincinnati.
A student-led tree valuation exercise, an Arbor Day celebration, the suppression of gypsy moths in the village, and the decision to put more focus on the care of existing, recently planted trees were among other items discussed.
Council also scheduled a public hearing on the proposed rezoning of 13950 Airport Hwy. Along with the rest of Airport Highway, it is zoned commercial.
Because it is a house, the owner is requesting a change to residential to make it easier for potential buyers to receive a home loan.
The public hearing is scheduled for March 23. The village must publish notice of the hearing once a week for two weeks and a minimum of 30 days prior to the hearing.
The item was discussed at the Feb. 4 Planning Commission meeting, with the Commission recommending the change contingent on the property to the east also being rezoned.
• Council approved the first reading of ordinances for street lighting and leaf collection assessments. The lighting assessment would increase from $28 to $31 but the leaf collection assessment would drop from $15.50 to $12, for an overall decrease of 50 cents per property.
The ordinance requires three readings for final approved.
• Council approved the final reading of an ordinance accepting the annexation of one acre of property on County Road H (Dodge Street).
• Village Administrator Rosanna Hoelzle reported that village officials have been working with the Ohio Department of Transportation to see if better timing is available for the signal at the intersection of Main Street and Airport Highway.
• A video application was submitted to the HGTV show “Home Town Takeover,” according to Hoelzle. The video should be released to the public soon.
• Council accepted the resignations of Dennis Brown, code enforcement, and Sara Ferrell from the Fire/EMS division.
Reach Drew Stambaugh at 419-335-2010 or on Twitter @Swan_Enterprise