Davey Crawford Light Pole Still Without a Home; WVFD May Be Reimbursed For Damaged Equipment

Woodsfield's historic Davey Crawford light pole continues to find itself in limbo after recent events had made it appear that the pole would soon be in a new home. In recent weeks, Pioneer Pipe of Marietta had refurbished the light pole at no cost to the Village. Although no formal motion was ever made, discussion by council had referred to one of the islands in the main square as a new home for the pole.

During the regular session meeting of Woodsfield Village Council on July 7, Councilwoman Carol Hehr reported that Light Plant Superintendent Floyd Longwell had measured and believed the pole could go into one of the islands with two foot of clearance on either side to avoid being hit by traffic. After the report Councilwoman Hehr motioned to install the pole in one of the islands as long as it had the aforementioned two feet of space on either side.

A long pause followed before Councilman Bill Moore finally seconded Hehr's motion. During discussion, Councilman Dale English said he believed someone from the village needed to talk to the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) before placing the pole there. English said past conversations about the pole being installed in the square had led to ODOT telling the village the pole must have a special break-a-way base.

Councilman Rick Shipp expressed that he didn't believe Longwell's measurements were accurate. He referenced that Village Administrator Rick Schuerman had measured and had said it would be a "tight fit." He said he believed placing the pole in front of the Hollister Parry House Museum, a back-up plan stated by Hehr, would be a better option.

A vote was taken after the discussion. With Councilman Matt Vinskovich absent, councilmen Shipp, English and Mike Cox voted "no." Councilwoman Hehr and Councilman Moore voted "yes." After the failed vote, Hehr said, "You want it somewhere where people can see it." She referenced its historical value to the town (dating back to the 1940s) and asserted that she would be bringing the issue up again at a later date.

In other business, Woodsfield Volunteer Fire Department Chief Mike Young reported on his department's response to the well pad fire near Hannibal. Young said his department has been advised by EMA to submit a bill to the pad operator for all damaged equipment for possible reimbursement. Because harmful chemicals were involved, the department has been told to destroy all turn-out gear, boots and other items that may have come in contact with such chemicals. Young said the department used much of its fire retardant foam and may be reimbursed for that as well.

Young reported that more than 20 firemen spent more than 12 hours fighting the fire. "What we endured down there was unbelievable," he said. He and council commended the firemen and their efforts at the blaze.

Village resident Dale Saffle spoke to council about a water runoff issue at his home just off of Oaklawn Ave. According to Saffle, the height of the roadway is causing massive amounts of water to flow onto his property during heavy rains. He said he had approached council about the same problem "more than a year ago" and had heard nothing back.

Councilman English and Administrator Schuerman both said they saw two options: either the village install curbing which will cause the water to flow down the street instead, or Saffle install an apron and a drain. Schuerman said Saffle's lot is private property that is below grade level and that such issues are not uncommon in the village and are often addressed by the individual. Schuerman told Saffle he would view the road and the property with Streets Superintendent Andy Copley.

In an ongoing project, Schuerman reported that the structure for the sign entering Airport Rd. had been installed. He said he is now waiting for the sign company to install signs advertising the businesses on the hill. The businesses have been without proper signage since Monroe Central High School and Woodsfield Elementary School were built adjacent to Airport Rd.

In response to the Woodsfield Bicentennial celebration, council and administration thanked the village workers for their efforts in making the village look good and the Bicentennial Committee for their efforts to host the event. Councilwoman Hehr made a motion to have a plaque made by M.A.C.O. Workshop recognizing all the Bicentennial Committee members. Her motion passed unanimously.

Village Council's next regularly appointed meeting will be held July 21 at 6:30 p.m.