New Franklin applies for three parks grants

Carolynn Mostyn
Suburbanite correspondent

NEW FRANKLIN – City Council approved the application of three grants for the construction of a pavilion, tennis and pickleball courts during its April 7 meeting.

Council approved the application for an Ohio Department of Natural Resources Ohio Nature Works Grant to partially construct tennis and pickleball courts at the Sisler Field complex. The grant, $150,000, would require matching funds from the city of $37,000 and $2,500 for the writing and submission costs. The court construction costs are estimated at $500,000.

Mayor Paul Adamson said the city are in a good position to receive the AARP grant as it is specified for pickleball courts, which is a sport that older adults are avidly participating. An AARP Community Challenge Grant to help with the construction of the courts would be for $250,000 with no match. The city would pay the $900 fee for the writing of the grant.

An American Rescue Plan Act Grant for $241,300 grant would come from the Ohio 16th Congressional District, if received, would pay for the construction of a pavilion at the Sisler Fields.

In other action, council:

• Approved increasing the mayor’s salary beginning Jan. 1, 2022 from $72,000 a year to $90,000, by a 5-2 vote. Council members Terry Harget (Ward 2) and Judy Jones (at large) voted against the raise. The mayor’s salary has not been increased since the city incorporated in 2006.

• Approved a resolution authorizing the city to purchase the real property from the proposed split of 6663 Hampsher Road consisting of 1.88 acres for the sum of $15,000. It is planned to use the property for a new Service Department building.

• Authorized the city to enter into a contract with the city of Barberton to provide prosecutorial services.

• Approved a bid with Northstar Asphalt in the amount of $1.2 million for the 2021 road paving.

• Requested more time on a proposed resolution that would authorize New Franklin to enter into an agreement with Mason’s Cove for the administration, management, development, operations and maintenance of the Tudor House Civic Center.

• Heard from Finance Director Susan Cooke who clarified that the police and fire departments are not operating at a deficit. New Franklin did not experience a decline in income and gas tax, as a result, the city is financially healthy.

• Heard that the city of Norton will need to apply for emergency funding from the Ohio Public Works for repairs on the Kungle Road Bridge.

Announcements:

• The Rescue Act Fund will be received in two installments, the first being in June in the amount of $1.35 million and the balance at a later time.  The total amount received will be $2.7 million. The city will explore whether these funds can be applied to paving the roads.

• The city is planning on a Memorial Day Parade and an upcoming event at the Tudor House.

The meeting can be seen on the city’s Facebook page.