Bethany J. Royer
PIQUA – Tuesday’s commission meeting will begin with an executive session to prepare for and review negotiations on compensation or other terms and conditions of employment for city personnel.
This unusual start may stem from two resolutions (broken down by fire officers and firefighters) seeking a 2 percent wage increase for 37 full-time employees before old business will see to third readings on both the 2014 budget and municipal employee minimum wage increase.
Commission will also hear a second reading on increasing storm water fees before new business:
* Continued city membership to American Municipal Power Inc.
* Retain the services provided by Cooperative Response Center Inc. for customer call answering and dispatch after-hour services for the power system
* Transfers of cash from the general fund for fiscal year 2013 and 2014
* Purchase of no. 2 fuel oil for the city’s gas turbines
* Retain the services of Sawvel and Associates for power system consultation and engineering services
* Eliminate unreliable data lines to transmission substations
Commission will also discuss a resolution opposing House Bill 5 which threatens the financial stability of municipalities, according to the agenda which is available online at piquaoh.org.
As discussed at previous commission meetings, H.B. 5 seeks to alleviate the state of Ohio from what is believed by some to be one of the most complicated local income tax systems in the country. While complications and money may be saved according to proponents, city municipalities such as Piqua see a different side should the bill pass, one that looks vaguely similar to last year’s defeated House Bill 601.
At stake, the loss of an estimated $400,000 to as much as $2.1 million, an amount city leaders have repeatedly stated they can little afford to lose, going so far as to declare an emergency resolution adopted a year ago against H.B. 601 and repeated upon the bill’s resurrection by the Ohio General Assembly in the form of H.B. 5.
Commission meetings are held at 7:30 p.m. every first and third Tuesday of the month, on the second floor of the Government Municipal Complex, in the commission chamber.
The public is invited and encouraged to attend.