GREEN  The city’s historic Lichtenwalter Schoolhouse began its reconstruction journey May 28 when Green City Council approved a $435,900 contract with Cavanaugh Building Corporation to rebuild the schoolhouse following extensive damage due to arson three years ago.

Council members and Green residents alike spoke in support of the reconstruction project at the May 28 meeting.

 “(The schoolhouse) is a valuable asset to our communities that other communities don’t have,” said resident, Pat Carleski. 

Mary Kocsis taught in the Green City Schools district for 24 years and now works for the Northwest Local School district in Canal Fulton. She has also taught said a program held at Lichtenwalter for Green Schools third graders, which includes a full 1800s curriculum. 

Kocsis said she is thrilled that the schoolhouse is being repaired and noted that teachers in other districts, including Jackson and Northwest, have expressed an interest in the program. 

Councilman Chris Humphrey said the Lichtenwalter program is important for giving young people “knowledge, appreciation and understanding” of the past in a time when “knowledge doubles every couple of years.”

Councilman Stephen Dyer noted that one of his two sons went through the program as a third grader, but his younger son was not able to due to the fire.

“I’m glad future generations will be able to enjoy this historic structure,” Dyer said.

Other actions

Council also modified budget appropriations in order to transfer funds to pay legal fees and recently Council-approved student internships and co-ops.

 Humphrey noted that council approved the paid student internships at an earlier meeting. This legislation, he said, is necessary to pay the students.

“The students are happy to be getting the experience and I think they will be even happier if we can pay them,” Humphrey said of the $22,803 expenditure.

The transfers also included a $7,500 to the law firm Walter Haverfield for its work advising on implementation of the voter-supported charter change making the city law director an elected position.  City Council had previously approved an amount not to exceed $30,000 to Walter Haverfield for these services. Finance Director Steve Schmidt said in a memo to Council that the additional $7,500 was needed “to complete these services.”

Legislation declaring the necessity for various easements along Massillon Road in relation to three upcoming roundabout projects was also approved by Council.