COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Welcome to the Massillon City Council Meeting for Monday, November 17, 2014.  We have in attendance with us the following city officials:  Mayor Kathy Catazaro-Perry, Auditor, Jayne Ferrero, Deputy Auditor, Debbie Bonk, Law Director, Perry Stergios, Community Development Director, Larry Marcus, Fire Chief, Tom Burgasser, and Health Dept. Commissioner, Terri Argent.  On the wall to your left are agendas for anyone who wishes to follow tonight’s meeting.  Also if you look at the agenda, under item #5 is where the public can speak on any item that appears on tonight’s agenda and then under item #17 is where the public can speak on any item that does NOT appear on tonight’s agenda.  I want remind anyone with cell phones, please turn them down or set them to vibrate. 

  1.       ROLL CALL

Roll call for the evening found the following Council Members present:  Milan Chovan, Sarita Cunningham-Hedderly, Michelle Del Rio-Keller, Nancy Halter, Ed Lewis, Paul Manson, Andrea Scassa, Megan Starrett and Shaddrick Stinson.

Roll Call of 9 present

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, Madam Clerk.  I would like to recognize Councilwoman Nancy Halter for tonight’s invocation and pledge of allegiance.

  2.       INVOCATION

COUNCILWOMAN NANCY HALTER - Gave the invocation for tonight.


COUNCILWOMAN DEL RIO-KELLER – Chairperson of Streets, Highways, Traffic & Safety Committee led those in attendance in the Pledge of Allegiance.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Madam Clerk, are the minutes of the previous meeting transcribed and open for public viewing?


COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Are there any additions or corrections to be made?

COUNCIL CLERK ROLLAND – No, there are not.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – If not, then the minutes stand as approved.  Thank you. 


COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – We have arrived at #5.  This is the section of the agenda where citizens may speak on a topic that appears on tonight’s agenda.  If you would like to speak, please come to the microphone at this time and give your name and address for the record and the topic you want to discuss at this time. 

JIM HUEBNER – I live at 55 – 6th St. S.E., Massillon, OH.  I wanted to just speak briefly tonight on supporting the Health Dept. in their arrangement at their current location.  I’ve been back in this area for 13 years and they’ve been to at least four (4) different places in that amount of time.  I think that the City has nothing to gain in terms of cheapness of rent because the department itself pays for, through its fees, its own rent and utilities in its current facility.  Unless somebody else has their eye on using that money for a different purposes, it’s pretty much a self-sustaining operation and I think they ought to be able to stay where they are.  Every time they move, they have remodeling and upgrading expenses to pay; moving expenses to pay and I was thinking maybe City Council would like to move to the third floor of the Senior Center.  Then you could make your horseshoe here face the proper direction so everybody could see you and we could feel like we are participating with our City government.  Thank you.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you very much.  Is there anyone else?

JO ANN RYDER – 1631 Windsor Rd. N. E., Massillon, OH.  I would like to read a little letter that I have written.  I have been on the Board of Health for 13 years and I am a retired office manager from Atkinson-Feucht Funeral Home.  I served very willingly and dedicatedly to this Board in the Health Dept. and I also volunteer at the Health Dept.  The proposed relocation of the Massillon City Health Dept. in its present location at 111 Tremont Ave.  S.W. to the Massillon Senior Center, Lincoln Way N.W. is not in the best interest to the citizens of Massillon, Ohio.  The proposed location is in an area that does not provide public parking facilities for day to day working facilities for the City Dept.  The proposed location is in a high traffic area with insufficient parking facilities and insufficient working areas for the staff and the clientele.  The present location has a private, off-street parking area adjacent to the working areas for both staff and clients.  This area is also of interest to the clients where the adult bringing a child or children, may have one or more to remove from the vehicle that the child or children are in, making required seat belt removal and transfer to a store, etc., unsafe at the proposed new location.  There are many times when the adult has a responsibility for more than one child to bring into or be at the Health Dept. location.  Also the proposed new location would not provide adequate parking to accommodate the general public for birth and death certificates and various permits.  Parking would be especially inadequate when both departments have a test, clinic, etc. scheduled for the same day.  The layout at the present location is excellent for the staff and clientele in the area also able accommodate the business that they handle there.  All areas involved in the day to day operation of the department are adjacent so the department is able to operate very sufficiently.  Thank you.

VERNON JOHNSON – 307 Arthur St. S.E., Massillon, OH.  The question that I have is how many of you have ever been to the Health Dept. to see the operation and what their needs are to efficiently operate?  That’s just my final question of Council.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Unfortunately, it’s not a question and answer session, so…

VERNON JOHNSON – It’s not?  I just wanted to ask.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – And before we get started again, if someone comes up and speaks at the microphone, if possible, could they sign that sheet that is down on the table because it’s very difficult for our Clerk to hear the names of constituents who are coming to the microphone to speak. 

EDWARD HAMPTON – 123 Shriver Ave. S.E., Massillon, OH.  And I’m here also to talk about the relocation of the Health Dept.  My thing is that, I don’t want you guys to lose sight of why you guys were elected.  You elected to take care of people.  So, when you decide to vote on things, you have to look and see what’s best for the people.  And I think, at this time, just making a relocation because you may not want the money going to a church or whatever, but to move it to a place that’s not feasible for people, not in the best interest of the people, is not a good thing.  So, that’s another thing; my request was for you guys to at least visit the place to see what goes on there; to see what’s best for the people.  It’s not about party lines or any like that.  You guys were elected to take care of everybody.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Is there anyone else?

LEROY WHITE – 213 – 19th St. S.E., Massillon, OH.  I understand that you are considering moving the Health Dept. to the Senior Center.  As a senior citizen, I know how difficult it is for me to find adequate parking when I’m downtown.  My heart goes out to other seniors who may need to use the Health Dept. if located at the Senior Center.  My heart especially goes out to the young mothers who need services of the Health Dept. for carrying babies, diaper bags, baby carriers and possibly doing this while trying to keep hold of one (1) child or maybe two (2) or another.  What would happen if a little one got away and ended up in one of Massillon’s busiest streets from trying to go to the Senior Center to receive health care services?  This would be a lot more risky than crossing the parking lot at the present Health Center.  You need to think about these things.

ERIN WISE – 311 Ertle Ave. N.E., Massillon, OH.  I’m also the director of the WIC program.  So, I don’t know how many of you have actually come and visited or been on our services, but, we are probably one of, I would venture to say, the City’s most populous programs.  We have raised by 90 participants in the last three (3) months.  We have so many mothers that benefit from this program.  Mothers, children; over half of the infants born in the State of Ohio are on our program.  So, when you think about moving us to a place that’s very small, I’d just like people to know that we have 50 to 60 people who come into the Health Dept. on a daily basis.  I have six (6) days left in my clinic month and I have 250 people scheduled to come.  So, sometimes I think we need to think about that.  I’m also the mother of two (2) small children who listen extremely well, but every once in a while, we have a child who is screaming; flying out of their seats.  On a daily basis I probably take at least one (1) to two (2) children out.  I have mothers call me and I say “do not bring your kids out, they are sick, come up and I will come out to your car”.  It’s actually a joke and all the league clinics say I do “drive-by” services because I know what it’s like.  I know what it’s like to take your kids out; I can only imagine having to try and get two (2) children out of a car, into a stroller, onto the elevator, down here and then into a very small area.  Our kids are adventurous, already walk half way around the Health Dept. sometimes, but it’s very important to them to be able to have a safe and secure environment when they come into our facility.  When they’re into a new facility, depending on where you guys would put us, we need to have safe parking, we need to have safe areas and we have that right now.  We have a safe area for our children to play.  I have a safe area to be able to take these moms and help them out.  The other thing too, depending on space and areas that we’re talking about, I have mothers who come into me and talk about their rapes, their domestic violence situations, their children who’ve been abused sexually or physically.  We have to make sure that they have a safe and private place to be able to come.  The last thing they’re going to want to do is fight their way to get to where they are going to then come in and tell me their horror stories that they’ve lived on a daily basis.  I think sometimes unless you’ve walked in their shoes or come to sit into one of my clinics for a day and listen to the women and the men who tell me their horrible, horrible stories.  We have a hard time displacing them and putting them somewhere else.  Just the few people that I have talked to in the last two (2) days about this, they’re like “Oh my gosh, are you guys serious?  You have no way of moving again.  It’s hard enough to get to this place sometimes”.  So I think sometimes we need to keep them in mind more than anything else.  So, for my 900 applicants that I see on a monthly basis, that’s why I’m here.


VICKI THEIS – 1015 Andrew Ave. N.E., Massillon, OH.  I work at the Health Dept. also.  First of all, we’re the only department in the City that has to pay rent, to begin with.  I don’t think that’s right.  But, that’s how it is for the time being and I think that the St. James Life Center is the perfect place for us; it’s just got a great set-up.  We have four (4) divisions in our Health Dept. and there’s room for everybody to have their own space and take care of all of our customers.  As they said, the parking is a great advantage.  I think that we’re helping St. James and they’re helping us.  They’re a part of our City also.  They are giving us a decent rent and actually they want to renew it for two (2) years at the same cost as last year.  You’re not going to find that anywhere else or anybody else to do that and if I understand it correctly, they can only rent possibly to non-profit type organizations; that would be us.  So, I think we’re helping each other out in this respect.  We all like where we’re at, at the Health Dept. and we’d like to stay there a while longer.  Thank you.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Is there anyone else?

TOM BURGASSER – Fire Chief.  I wasn’t going to talk, but I heard something that captured my attention.  I spoke to Mr. Chovan about this earlier today.  The opposite end of the coin and if you listen to some of the WIC participants, some of those people talk, they are going to tell you that they have children in and out of there, everyday; and I don’t think it’s any stretch, you can talk to Massillon City Schools and find that on a given basis, with influenza season, you have sick kids all the time.  You are also going to place them in the Senior Center where senior citizens’ auto-immune systems are compromised left and right.  I think you should think about that.  Thank you.


JOHN RELFORD – 35 Maple Ave. S.E., Massillon, OH.  Basically everything that everyone has spoke on, was practically everything that I was going to say, but, I think we’re missing the picture when you want to relocate someone.  Everyone here knows the shape that this City is in.  We are all doing the best that we can do to help you and everything else.  Having tax levies and all that stuff ain’t going to recoup what you have lost 20 something years ago.  Relocating somebody to an inadequate place where there’s not enough room…I’ve worked in that building, the Senior Citizen Building, for five (5) years under the feeding program.  You don’t have the space, you don’t have anywhere for people to park.  If you park up in that deck, you don’t know who you’re going to run into, what you might have; all you would be doing is setting yourself up for a suit, and we have had enough suits in this town to where you don’t need no more.  Because I have walked upon homeless folks who camp-out out there; walk through the stairways when I parked the van up there in the garage.  You got people who would be hanging out up there; you have no security.  Now, someone could get robbed and then if you’re going to have kids coming to the Health Dept. and stuff like that, and seniors and that, you’re putting them at a risk.  So you need to think about that; safety and the wellness of people.  That should be you guys’ priority.  Taxes folks ain’t going to get nothing.  No sooner than the tax levy failed, the first thing that came out of one of the council person mouth was relocating of the Health Dept.  The Health Dept. is one of the lowest things that you are paying as far as rental and all that stuff.  Which don’t make no sense.  You’re throwing thousands of dollars away out there at that golf course to where you need to get rid of that and under no municipality, no Parks & Rec should be under.  Some of you have been in office long enough to where you know this should have never happened.  But, the previous Mayor, he decided to put the Parks & Rec under one umbrella.  You’re constantly throwing money out for that trying to keep it to par and stuff like that to where you should have let them people be on their own instead of bringing it into the City and have the City constantly keep on paying out all that money, which you is.  Money that you done lost 20 some years ago, you’re not going to get back in 2014 by relocating people and doing all these insensible things, which is insensible.  And proposing a street light tax or anything like that, that don’t make no sense.  All you doing is having people pay more fees for something; like where I live at, all the streets lights ain’t on anyway and you can’t see anything, know what I mean?  But, we get penalized for that and you got one gentleman, all he thinks about is taxing something, which don’t make no sense.  Think about the wellness and the safety of people using the Health Dept.  That floor…you got one (1) floor up there at the Senior place where it’s just one (1) floor.  There’s not enough room.  We used to store our food and stuff up there; there’s no enough space.  Tell me, you know, would you put yourself in jeopardy if you get caught up in that garage?  Somebody walk upon you, rob you or beat you up or something like that.  Would you want to risk yourself?  Think about that.  Think about safety of people and that.  Instead of always wanted to tax somebody or take the lowest thing on the totem pole and talking about, “cut them”.  It don’t make no sense; and the idea of the Mayor tells you guys something about right before the tax levy and that, was to be voted on, you arguing about police cruisers.  So, you might need police cruisers, but, your one (1) councilman, well, let’s get an Explorer; a SUV.  Now which one is more expensive?  Would you rather pay for a cruiser or pay for a SUV?  It don’t make no sense.  See, you people, your problem is, you don’t use common sense about using the money; you wouldn’t be in this shape if you just use common sense sometimes, that’s all it is.  Thank you.

LOUIS SCHANER – I’m the Medical Director of the Massillon Health Dept. and I’ve been there about 15 years.  We have the hardest working employees in the City; in any of the Health Depts.  There’s four (4) Health Depts., I’m sure ours is the hardest working employees.  To move again, and we’ve moved about four (4) times; I think it would be disastrous for this City.  We have…it’s very efficient, I’m sure it pays for itself.  People come there, they’re very happy.  We deserve our children and our adults the best facility we can give them and I think we’re at that place now.  Thank you.

DANK WEBB – 2638 Wood Owl St. N.E., Canton, OH.  I’m the Pastor’s Stewart over at St. James AME Zion Church which is the Board of the Church and I just was listening to the situation with a little bit of information that I would like to read to you.  Thank you for the opportunity to speak.  It is my understanding that the Center should work for the good of all residents including the workers.  The Massillon Health Dept. is here to serve its residents by providing many services.  What is the main reason for moving the Health Dept. to a new location?  Cost – to provide services is very important.  Minimum cost – and if you’re getting maximum service, how does the cost to run your Health Dept. impact the City’s budget?  Is it cost?  Is it not enough working space for employees?  Is it not enough space for clients to work?  Is it because there is not adequate parking space?  Is the building not maintained?  If it is cost, keep in mind, the Health Dept. is being charged far below the going rate.  The average cost of per square foot for renting office spaces in this area is between $12 to $14 per square foot and in most cases, these buildings do not provide adequate parking or waiting areas.  How does the areas you are proposing to put the Health Dept. in compare to the present location?  Does the staff have adequate space to work in?  Would you, who are choosing to making a decision to move, would you want to work in the space you are proposing for your Health Dept. employees to work in?  How many of you, and I say again, how many of you have visited the present Health Care facility which is the Life Center?  The Life Center has provided all of the above services in the past at a cost inconvenience that surpasses all expectations.  Are there any underlying reasons for wanting to move the department?  Thank you.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you. Is there anyone else?  Okay, we will move into Introduction of Ordinances and Resolutions.  Ordinance No. 150.



            ORDINANCE NO. 150 – 2014                   BY:  POLICE & FIRE COMMITTEE

AN ORDINANCE directing the Director of Public Safety and Service of the City of Massillon, Ohio, to enter into a contract with Waikem Ford of 4321 Lincoln Way E., Massillon, Ohio, and Ford Credit for the purchase of two (2) police cruisers for the Massillon Police Department at a contract price not to exceed Fifty Nine Thousand Five Hundred Fifty Dollars Ninety Two Cents ($59,550.92), and declaring an emergency.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Councilman Chovan.

COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – Thank you, Mr. President.  Previously we passed legislation to the Finance Committee to go ahead and to fund this purchase and this is simply the Police and Fire Ordinance that directs the Public Safety and Service Director to go ahead and actually initiate the paperwork with Waikem Motors.  Like I say, we’ve already passed the financial part of this, so, is there any discussion on this or any questions about it tonight?  Seeing none, I’m going to move to waive the rules requiring three (3) readings and bring this forward for a vote tonight.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Seconded by Councilwoman Del Rio-Keller.  Roll call for suspension.

9 yes for suspension


9 yes for passage

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, Madam Clerk.  Ordinance No. 150 has passed.  Ordinance No. 151.


AN ORDINANCE directing the Director of Public Safety and Service of the City of Massillon, Ohio, to enter into a contract agreement with various programs through the Community Development Block Grant Programs for the FY 2014/2015, which the City has provided through the CDBG Program funding, and appropriating from the unappropriated balance of the 1229 HOME Program Fund and declaring an emergency.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, Madam Clerk.  Councilman Manson. 

COUNCILMAN MANSON – Thank you, Mr. President.  I’m going to ask that you bring Mr. Larry Marcus up from Community Development.  One thing I want to comment on here, the paperwork that we received just to make sure everybody clear on the legislative request; the second page, there was a line on there that said the “Health Foundation of Greater Massillon through the Neighborhood Partnership Program” provides grants – that one is not on the list for this year and I want to make sure that everybody that got it, I think everybody got it the other night, but just if you didn’t, I wanted it in the record so we know.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Okay.  Mr. Marcus, if you please, come up to the podium.

LARRY MARCUS – Thank you, Council President, thank you Council members.  This is again, our annual plea to sign contracts.  We have received the approval for the CDBG funds – a Community Development Block Grant Fund from HUD.  We are anxious to sign this contracts with the members.  We have gone through the approval process, application process and HUD has approved it. 

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Are there any questions for Mr. Marcus?  Thank you very much.  Councilman Manson, you still have the floor.

COUNCILMAN MANSON – Okay, seeing no questions, I’d like to make a motion that we waive the rule requiring three (3) separate readings and bring Ordinance No. 151 – 2014 forward for passage.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, seconded by Councilwoman Scassa.  Roll call for suspension

9 yes for suspension


9 yes for passage


COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, Madam Clerk.  Ordinance No. 151 has passed.  Ordinance No. 152.

ORDINANCE NO. 152 – 2014                   BY:  FINANCE COMMITTEE

AN ORDINANCE making certain appropriations from the unappropriated balances of the 1100 General Fund, the 1234 Parks and Recreation Fund, the 1205 Safety Forces Improvement Fund and the 2105 Stormwater Utility Fund, for the year ending December 31, 2014, and declaring an emergency.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Councilman Lewis.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – Yes, this particular ordinance has a lot packed into it, so I will read the sections and if there are any questions from anyone about those sections, we can go into detail; the Auditor is present to discuss.  Section 1 is the transferring of the unappropriated balance of $72,000 for an account entitled “Workers Comp. Pre-Paid”, that is for the next…it will be paid out this year, but is for the upcoming.  Section 2 shows $18,000 to an account entitled “Salary – Legends”; $2,000 to an account entitled “Utilities” – those are not coming out of General Fund, those are coming out of Park & Rec Fund.  Section 3 is to appropriate the unappropriated balance of the Safety Forces Improvement Fund and for $7,000 to an account entitled “Services/Contracts” and the last one is Stormwater or Storm Sewer Repairs for $9,718.  We reviewed all of these at the last Finance Committee meeting and there was not too terribly much conversation, but if there are any questions or comments tonight?  Seeing none, I make a motion that we suspend the rules requiring three (3) readings and bring Ordinance 152 – 2014 forward for a vote.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Seconded by Councilwoman Del Rio-Keller.  Roll call for suspension.

9 yes for suspension


9 yes for passage

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, Madam Clerk.  Ordinance No. 152 has passed.  Ordinance No. 153.

ORDINANCE NO. 153 – 2014             BY:  FINANCE COMMITTEE

AN ORDINANCE making certain transfers in the 2014 appropriations from within 1201 Street Construction M & R Fund, for the year ending December 31, 2014, and declaring an emergency.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, Councilman Lewis.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – Yes, this ordinance is transferring money from the 1201 M & R Fund as stated.  It is transferring $27,503.40 from “Salary – Safety”, $26.98 from Workers’ Comp., $6,569.62 from Hosp/Eye/Den/Pres/Life for a total of $34,100.  That will be transferred into “Salary – Street” and “P.E.R.S. – Street” for the same amount.  Any questions?  Seeing none, I make a motion that we suspend the rules requiring three (3) readings bringing Ordinance No. 153 – 2014 forward for a vote.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Seconded by Councilwoman Del Rio-Keller.  Roll call for suspension.

9 yes for suspension


9 yes for passage

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Ordinance No. 153 has passed.  Ordinance No. 154.

ORDINANCE NO. 154 – 2014             BY:  FINANCE COMMITTEE

AN ORDINANCE making certain appropriations from the unappropriated balance of the 1229 HOME Program Fund, for the year ending December 31, 2014, and declaring an emergency.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Councilman Lewis.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – Yes, this ordinance is really just appropriating the HOME Housing Program that we discussed at the Finance Committee meeting last week.  This is part of, or coincides with CDBG and other development programs that we do within the City.  Is there any questions or comments this evening?  Larry Marcus is present for any of those questions.  Seeing none, I make a motion that we suspend the rules requiring three (3) readings and bring Ordinance No. 154 – 2014 forward for a vote.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Seconded by Councilwoman Scassa.  Roll call for suspension.

9 yes for suspension


9 yes for passage

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, Madam Clerk.  Ordinance No. 154 has passed.  Ordinance No. 155.

ORDINANCE NO. 155 – 2014             BY:  FINANCE COMMITTEE

AN ORDINANCE making certain appropriations from the unappropriated balance of the 1203 FY 2014/2015 CDBG Program Fund, for the year ending December 31, 2014, and declaring an emergency.


COUNCILMAN LEWIS – Yes, to begin, first I apologize.  Ordinance No. 154, the money was coming from HUD and I said CDBG; I just wanted to make that correction.  No. 155, though, is CDBG and it mirrors the Community Development that we already passed through Mr. Manson’s committee.  There were no questions then; I would assume that there are no questions now?  This is simply the finance side that allows the appropriations to take place.  I make a motion that we suspend the rules requiring three (3) readings, bringing Ordinance No. 155 – 2104 forward for a vote.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Seconded by Councilwoman Scassa.  Roll call for suspension.

9 yes for suspension


9 yes for passage

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, Madam Clerk.  Ordinance No. 155 has passed.





COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Did the Council representative get a copy of that letter?

COUNCIL CLERK ROLLAND – I included it in the packet.  Did everybody get there’s?





COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Councilman Lewis, I need a motion to pay the bills.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – I make a motion that we pay the bills.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Roll call to pay the bills.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – I need a second.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Seconded by Councilwoman Del Rio-Keller.  Roll call to pay the bills.

9 yes to pay the bills

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, thank you very much.  Council Clerk will pay the bills.


            COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Councilman Lewis.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – I wanted to just report that I’ve been in communication or contact with Mr. Ken Koher about the Budget that we are working on.  As many of us know, there was a revision needed because 2015 will have 27 pay periods instead of the 26.  He has told me that he will have the draft budget out in the morning, e-mailed to all of us and we will then, in turn, make sure to have a budget meeting at our next work session which would be the 24th.  As you all know, we only have two (2) more Council meetings after this, so I am fairly certain that we may have a couple extra meetings in there to look at the budget.  So please prepare your calendars and be aware of that.  That is it.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Is there anyone else?  Are there any Resolutions?  Councilman Manson.

COUNCILMAN MANSON – Yes.  At last week’s Committee Meeting, we discussed a letter and everybody should have a copy of this that we wanted to have forwarded to all the department heads pertaining to when legislation should be in.  I talked to Mr. Townsend before the meeting here and  we said that we have a copy done up and everybody can take a look at it and criticize or critique it and, I guess, give your approval to go ahead with what we had talked about.  Is there anybody that has looked at this or would you like some more time to look at it before a letter is forwarded?  We didn’t vote on it, we basically had a consensus; everybody believes that we need to enforce this rule a little bit.  In no way, I know myself, what I want to say is that if we have any kind of emergency, I have no problem at all.  But, I do think that anything that comes up that would come in after these things, that the individual chairman of the committees, that particular committee that it would apply to, that they would be the one that handles it and checks it out and finds out if there is an emergency reason for any of these things.  None of us wants to miss any dates or anything, but we also want to have things in a timely fashion to discuss and there’s too many times that things are coming in on Monday and we’re supposed to be talking about them and we haven’t even seen them yet.  That’s it.



COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Ordinance No. 137 was tabled on November 3, 2014, until November 17, 2014, which is today.  Ordinance No. 137.

            ORDINANCE NO. 137 – 2014                   BY:  FINANCE COMMITTEE

AN ORDINANCE amending Section 2(D) OCCUPATION LIST OF CLASS TITLES-MUNICIPAL COURT of Ordinance No. 127 – 1997 by repealing Section 2(D) OCCUPATION LIST OF CLASS TITLES – MUNICIPAL COURT, and enacting a new Section 2(D) OCCUPATION LIST OF CLASS TITLES – MUNICIPAL COURT, in the City of Massillon, Ohio, and declaring an emergency.


COUNCILMAN LEWIS – Yes, this ordinance is the one that we had great discussion with, at the last work session with Judge Centrone.  As we discussed there, this would essentially take four (4) court employees and elevate their classification by one (1) rank, which would essentially give them, also, a raise in the process.  There were objections raised, but the judge did defend those saying that he did not believe Council is giving a raise, they were simply reclassifying the position; that he, the Court, would be giving the raise.  They also stated that they would be paying for the raise.  That they could see themselves covering the cost of the raise including the P.E.R.S. contribution through 2016 and quite possibly even 2017.  There were also some other questions as to whether or not if we did not do this if they would find themselves in a position where they may have to hire two (2) new employees and this there’s always the grand argument of if we do not do this and they give us a court order telling us that we must do it, if we are prepared to have a court case, essentially, before Council over a $6,000 raise per year is what it amounts to.  I haven’t heard much input from the Council members, so obviously this is coming forward for a vote and I did not know if they wanted there to be discussion before there was a vote to be made.


COUNCILMAN STINSON – I have a question.  When we spoke with Judge Centrone, it was mentioned, would it be considered a step or would it be totally, you know, did we ever get a consensus on that?  Because you said that if we brought in somebody new, then they would start at the higher wage unless it was just a step.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – The only safety net we have in there is there might be some other follow-up legislation to help clean that up a little bit, but they do have, what I believe, is an Admin I and an Admin II position and an Admin II is low, it’s only a 9S.  So, in theory, even though we have Admin I’s up to where I believe this takes us up to about a 14S, they could still hire new in at the 9S rate.  So they do have that safety net where they don’t necessarily have bring someone in at the high rate; that would be their defense.


COUNCILWOMAN SCASSA – That was more or less my question when I was discussing this with Councilwoman Starrett, before the meeting, because it seems like perhaps you were a little bit on different pages with Judge Centrone and looking over the classification, I am seeing there is a 9S, 12, 13, 14, but I guess just so we’re all on the same page that a new hire doesn’t have to necessarily be brought in at that 14.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – From what I understand, obviously, that is an administrative function of the Court, (correct) so if they want to bring them in at 14, that is outside of the purview of Council.  What they do have, we’re not locking them in.  They do have the safety net at the 9S.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Are there any more questions?  Councilman Lewis.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – I make a motion that we bring Ordinance No. 137 – 2014 forward for a vote.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Seconded by Councilwoman Del Rio-Keller.  Roll call for passage.

5 yes and 4 no; (Manson, Cunningham-Hedderly, Halter, Lewis voted no)

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Ordinance No. 138 has passed.


COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Ordinance 137 has passed. 


            ORDINANCE NO. 138 – 2014                   BY: HEALTH, WELFARE & BLDG. REGS. COMMITTEE

AN ORDINANCE authorizing the Mayor of the City of Massillon, Ohio, to enter into a two (2) year rental agreement with the St. James AME Zion Church Life Center for office space to be used by the Massillon City Health Department, and declaring an emergency.


COUNCILMAN STINSON – Thank you Mr. President.  I would like to call up Terri (Argent), Director of the Health Dept.

TERRI ARGENT – Mr. President, City Council.

COUNCILMAN STINSON – At our last work session Council members wanted someone from the Health Dept. and from the church here to answer any questions that they may possibly have in regards to extending this lease, so I’m opening up to anybody that may have any questions for Ms. Argent.  Mrs. Halter.

COUNCILWOMAN HALTER – Mrs. Argent, I don’t have a question, I just want to make a comment that I hope you understand that, at least my understanding is, we’re not moving you anywhere.  We would just like to have the lease made into a one-year lease to give us a year to study, to do our due diligence, especially since the income tax didn’t pass.  So, we need to take a year to look things over, and, in fact, probably, you’ll end up staying right where you’re at.  I don’t think we’d do anything without consulting with you and your Board and all that.  And it’s, nobody said we’re going to move you to the third floor of the Senior Center.  Okay?  Just so you understand that.


COUNCILWOMAN STARRETT – I would echo Councilwoman Halter.  I think a lot of what we heard tonight was either we’re moving the Health Dept. or we’re not.  I think a lot Council discussion last week was simply is it possible to do a one-year lease so we can, at least, research this and as she said, do our due diligence and see if this is even feasible.  The problem is this just came to us so late that we have not been able to do that and that was our only concern.  Can we have the time to research it, not do we need to move them right now.  More of let’s just look it over and see if it’s even a possibility.

COUNCILMAN STINSON – Okay.  Is there anyone else?  If we were to move or relocate you to the third floor of the Senior Citizens Center, what would you actually need to function there?

TERRI ARGENT – I’m not sure I understand your question.  I looked at the third floor Friday and first of all, we’d need restrooms.  There’s no restrooms on the third floor and along with that, well, I made out a whole list of everything the Health Dept. needs to run.  If you want me to pass the list around, I’d be happy to do that, but, we need at least two (2) restrooms also and that floor is not plumbed at all.  So, talk about expense; that would be your first expense, that would be a problem.  If I may (yes you may) pass these around.  There’s a number of requirements of what the Health Dept. would need to operate and I had those printed out and there’s a little sentence up above on what each department does, just to clarify that and why we need that space.  But this is a minimum space of what we need.  We currently have more than this right now.  Was that your question?  Did I answer that?


COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Are there any more questions for Ms. Argent?  Councilman Chovan.

COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – Thank you, Mr. President.  Not so much a questions, but, again, from a lot of the comments we heard tonight, I think there’s a misunderstanding that the choice is to leave the Health Dept. where it is or to take it to the Senior Center.  That’s not what we discussed.  That’s how it was reported in the newspaper, but that’s not the discussion in front of us right now.  The discussion in front of us is to see, we don’t know if it’s feasible to move it somewhere else, we don’t know if it’s even smart to do that.  But, that’s why we asked for a one-year lease to be able to give us time to look at this.  Our lease expired at the beginning of September and we didn’t even get this new lease to look at until after that.  So, you know, that’s all we’re saying.  If we have to vote on a two-year lease tonight, I’m prepared to vote “no”.  If we were voting on a one-year lease, I would be prepared to vote “yes”.  But the way it’s written, it’s a two-year lease.  And that’s what we’ve been discussing last week and what we’ve been discussing all along, is giving us some time to see, in light of the financial situation the City’s in, doesn’t make sense to move the Health Dept. anywhere; maybe in another City owned facility, we don’t know.  That’s what the purpose of this vote tonight is.  It’s more or less, are we going to vote to accept the two-year lease and push this thing out a couple of years or vote on a one-year lease to give us time to actually due diligence to figure out if it behooves us to move or if it doesn’t, that’s the issue tonight.  It’s got nothing to do with the Senior Center, in my mind.  If anybody else disagrees, please tell me.  Thank you.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Councilman Manson.

COUNCILMAN MANSONYes, thank you.  There probably would be some people that disagree a little bit but, that’s neither here nor there.  My main problem with this was we got the legislation and like Mr. Chovan said, the lease had already expired a month before that.  But our request, and we spent a month talking to people and with people with the proposal that said for the first year, we were going to be given a discount and it was going to be $28,000 and then after that it would go to $35,000.  And I know, myself, when this was brought forward by Mr. Stinson the other day, two weeks ago, that we had had no discussion  after when that letter came that there was a typographical error, I believe, that’s what it may have said, I’m not even sure, I don’t have a copy of the letter.  But it said there may have been a typographical error.  Well, a $7,000 typographical error is a serious thing and some people said that they did not wish to vote for this without at least talking about it at one committee meeting.  And I will agree with Mr. Chovan, I think the newspaper misrepresented what most of the discussion was that night.  I won’t say nobody said anything about the Senior Center, but much of it was about the change in the request for legislation.  And I think for us to have acted before on an error of $7,000, a supposedly typographical error, without investigating it and looking at it, we wouldn’t be doing our job, at all.  I, for one, am very proud of have the Health Dept. in Massillon.  It has been, since I’ve been here, and I believe in four (4) different areas.  But I used to use it myself, I used to get my flu shots there.  I don’t now, I think you cut me off a couple years ago or something.  But, that’s not the point.  If we look at that Senior Building, whether we go for a one-year lease or a two-year lease, it’s not a big deal.  But if we’ve looked at that Senior Center and it’s not adequate, there’s no way it would be considered to try to push it into something like that either.  But, to not look and to not take a second look at this legislation after it came to us with a $7,000 change, I feel like we wouldn’t be doing our job and that’s why I personally asked to give it a second reading and have further discussion on it.


COUNCILMAN LEWIS - I just have a couple of comments, but they’re not directed to Ms. Argent if we wanted to make sure we cleared her first before we continued on.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Are there any more questions for Ms. Argent?  Thank you.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – I guess I’ll initially go ahead and come into agreement with some of the comments that have already been made.  I know that we had mentioned the Senior Citizens Building as an example, but this is a classic example of when Council is brainstorming ideas which is highly productive and necessary in order to efficiently run this City.  Where one idea was brainstormed and the next thing we know, it’s getting taken to the bank and it becomes fact, when it’s not.  It was said numerous times, at the last meeting, that we would like a time to investigate and research and if it didn’t make sense to move, no move would take place.  Hence, the reason for a one-year contract so that the City could do its due diligence.  We are in fiscal emergency.  The tax levy just failed.  I would think every department is now on notice.  You will be scrutinized for everything.  Because now we have to come up with this money.  That levy represented 1.6 million dollars to this City and now we have to find that money elsewhere.  And I don’t know where it’s going to be, but I will tell you, $35,000 a year rent is about 10% of the footprint that the Health Dept. has on the City which is $305,000 annually, approximately, that’s a 10% reduction.  Currently our General Fund is $ -384,000.  If we saved $35,000, we’d be out to about 8% to 9% savings.  These are real savings; it’s seems like small change, but it’s real.  I understand that it’s convenient where the Health Dept. is and I would love to be able to offer every citizen of this City as much convenience as possible.  But the bottom line when you’re in fiscal emergency, running deficits, convenience kind of gets set to the side.  It would be convenient to have a fire station on the northeast side, we don’t.  It would be convenient to have an entire fleet of police cars that are up-to-date and ready to go, we don’t.  It’d be convenient to have a lot of things that we don’t have and we have to be responsible and move forward responsibly.  I would also say I have toured the Health Dept.  Ms. Argent is doing an amazing job, their staff is wonderful.  My wife and I used WIC services seven (7) years ago when you were up by the hospital and I swear, my woman, my wife; that sounded awful, I apologize to my wife.  Because, what I meant to say was my wife is in love with the woman that helped us and still talks about the service we received at WIC to this day.  So, I have a great appreciation for the work they do, but we have to be responsible and do what’s best for our City.  I would love to know, did we get an offer for a one-year lease?

COUNCILMAN STINSON – Yes, I’ve got that.  A representative from the church please.  Mrs. Reverend Martin.

REVEREND ROSALYNE MITCHELL-MARTIN – 1930 Stoner Ave. N.E., Massillon, OH. Pastor of St. James AME Zion Church.  Let me just say, when I came to St. James and we looked at the lease for the Life Center, we looked at the rate that they were paying which was $3.00 per square foot, we did a market analysis of what we could get for that space.  It was $12 to $14 a square foot, but knowing that the Health Dept. could not afford that kind of increase, when we re-wrote the lease two (2) years ago, we said we would raise it to $5.00 per square foot, but the City said “well, can you give us a chance to work up to that?”  So we paid $4.00 the first year; $5.00 the second year, knowing that we could have gotten more, we agreed to that.  I worked 20 years in the Health Dept., so, I have a special place in my heart for that.  I worked in the WIC Program for 20 something years.  So, when we thought about the $5.00 per square foot, we said we could live with that.  Knowing that it’s going to cost the church; that’s not even enough to cover what we owe on that building.  But we want to keep the building available to the citizens of Massillon.  We want to make it a real Life Center and the Health Dept. is helping us to do that.  So this year, when we thought about it, we looked at the space that they’re using that’s unauthorized.  So I said to Terri, can we charge for that unauthorized space and she said “Really?  We don’t have the money to do that”.  And I said, okay, we’ll leave it where it’s at, $5.00 per square foot; we wouldn’t charge you for the space that you are using and we wouldn’t try to raise it for another two (2) years.  And that’s why we went with $5.00 per square foot for another two (2) years.  When you say you want a one-year lease, I was informed that at one year the rate goes up.  It cost more to have a one-year lease.  We agreed to a $5.00 per square foot for two (2) years, that is the contract that we drew up.  If you want to go for one (1) year, we can raise the rate and give you a one-year lease.  Understanding that since the City is not sure they want to stay there, we have to market that building and should we find a tenant that wants to be there after one (1) year, then what are you going to do with the Health Dept.?  You know, we don’t want to put them out, we want to keep them there.  We take care of that building, we like the staff that’s there and we like the presence in the community serving the citizens of Massillon.  Like I said, especially since I spent time and I know what the Health Dept. does.  But we can’t afford to be held hostage by the City every year with a one-year lease.  At least we’re guaranteed for two (2) years at $5.00 per square foot, we can live with that.  It cost the church to live with that, but we’re willing to do that.  But if you want a one-year lease, it’s going to cost more than $5.00 per square foot because that space would warrant that.  And that’s the stance that the church wants to take.  A month to month lease is the same thing.  We’re going to be marketing that building if you’re only going to have a one-year lease.  We can’t wait for a year and then you decide to move out; we need somebody in that building.  So, after a year, if you’re going to go year to year, we find a tenant, then you’re going to have to find a place for the Health Dept.  We want them to stay there, that’s why we offered a two-year lease at $5.00 per square foot.  Any questions?


COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – Thank you.  What would you increase the rate to for a one-year lease?

REVEREND MITCHELL-MARTIN – It would be $8.00 per square foot.

COUCILMAN CHOVAN – And I understand your argument about if it’s only a one-year lease you would have to market to somebody else.  But you’d have that same situation with a two-year lease as it approached the end of two years.

REVEREND MITCHELL-MARTIN – Well, at least two years, you could decide if you look and find another place, I’m sure you’re not going to find a better place for $5.00 per square foot.  Or a building that will house the Health Dept.  I mean, they have four different departments in there.  I think sometimes people think it’s a Health Dept., but there’s four (4) departments in there; full departments that have their own clientele and do a great job.  So, the space that you need to house the Health Dept. would have to be adequate.  So at two years, you have two (2) years to find it.  Should you find it, we have two years to find a tenant.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you.  Councilman Manson.

COUNCILMAN MANSON – So you’re saying that you would like, if we didn’t go with the two-year lease that you would want $8.00 which would amount to, the way I figure it out, that would be about $48,000.  Okay, that’s all.

COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – Because, just so I’m sure I understand, if I may, one more thing.  I think we have about 7,000 square feet that we’re using but 1,400 you’re just letting us use.  So I’m basing that $8.00 per square foot on 5,600 square feet, not the full 7.  That’s where I came up with the 48.

REVEREND MITCHELL-MARTIN – 7,000 is what you have.  You have an additional square footage that’s not in that 7,000.

COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – So, that does not include the other 1,400 that they…

REVEREND MITCHELL-MARTIN – Right, that’s an additional space.  What they actually have that they’re paying for is 7,000.

COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – Okay, I’m sorry.  At last week’s meeting, we were told that the 7,000 included the 1,400 that we’re not being charged for.  So, you’re saying that does not?

REVEREND MITCHELL-MARTIN – No, it does not; it does not.  And that 1,400 is that whole front desk area, that’s not in the space that they’re paying for.

COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – Yes, but I thought when we talked about that we said 7,000.

COUNCILMAN STINSON – That’s the part that they don’t charge us for now.

COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – I know, but I thought that was part of the total 7,000 we were using.


COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – Okay.  Thank you for clarifying that.  So then we’re looking at 56,000.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – We have one more question.  Councilwoman Scassa.

COUNCILWOMAN SCASSA -  Well I guess just to further clarify so we got the numbers down, if we for the one-year lease at $8.00 per square foot, then would that be applied to 7,000 square feet or would you then start charging for the 1,400?

REVEREND MITCHELL-MARTIN – It’s the 7,000 square feet.

COUNCILWOMAN SCASSA – Just the 7,000.  Okay.

COUNCILMAN STINSON – So we’d still get the 1,400 square feet.

REVEREND MITCHELL-MARTIN – That’s under consideration (okay).  We may have to market that price in order to equal…

COUNCILMAN CHOVAN – Well, we’d have to know that in any agreement before we could vote on the agreement.

COUNCILWOMAN SCASSA – But I guess, I’m sorry, so we’re clear.  So, a one-year lease would cost us $56,000?


COUNCILMAN LEWIS – I guess, this just further…I need more information.  One being, why am I in late October receiving a lease that was over in September and now I’m trying to decide what the best option is.  I should have had this this summer to look over and have these conversations.  Instead we’re sitting here already with an expired lease having to try to make a decision on the spot and that’s not fair to Council and it’s not fair to the citizens of this City to expect the leaders of this City to make such a decision.  It is not a surprise that we were discussing the potential of moving the Health Dept.  I know it’s been brought up numerous times in at least to past two (2) years.  I can’t recall if it was either a fiscal emergency plan or the performance audit, but in one of those big packets that we have done, it was named as a potential thing to look at.  So, this is not a surprise.  What is a surprise is that I got a lease that was expired.  I would love for us to table it and have another discussion about it, because if I have to vote tonight, I would be voting “no”, because I do not have enough information to vote “yes” on.

REVEREND MITCHELL-MARTIN – But the Health Dept. is still occupying the building.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Councilwoman Del Rio-Keller.

COUNCILWOMAN DEL RIO-KELLER – Thank you.  That actually is one of my questions and I don’t if we can answer it tonight.  The lease we have in front of us starts September 1st.  I would assume we’ve paid you September, October, I don’t know if we would have paid you November.  So, my question would be if we would do the one-year lease, and like I said, I don’t know if you can answer this, would that start September 1st since we’ve already paid September or would it, like when would that new dollar amount actually start the twelve month cycle?  Since we’re already into November and this lease we’re looking at was September 1st?

REVEREND MITCHELL-MARTIN – The lease was given to the Health Dept. who had to take it through their Board of Health and then come back to Council.  The lease that, the new lease that we gave went through the Board of Health first and then they approved it and then it comes to Council.  So that started September 1st.

COUNCILWOMAN DEL RIO-KELLER – Okay.  So, if we would get more information and go with the one-year lease, are you going to ask…when would that officially start, the new rent payment if we only did the one-year lease?  Would you want reciprocal money back to September 1st or would you start a new lease with the date we would receive the new lease?

REVERENCE MITCHELL-MARTIN – Well, that would have to be discussed at our meeting whether we would start.  They’ve already paid; we haven’t cashed the check for the rent that they paid at the $5.00 per square foot (okay) at the 7,000.  So, we have not cashed that check yet, so, it would start for November.


COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Are there any more questions? 

COUNCILMAN STINSON – Thank you very much.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND - Thank you.  Councilman Stinson, you still have the floor.

COUNCILMAN STINSON – Well, I know that the church needs an answer and the Health Dept. is looking for an answer also.  So, if there’s no other questions, I say we move forward for a vote to go into a two-year lease agreement.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – I just have one last comment.  I want to make sure that we take note by admission of the church, that we received…that the Board of Health did not receive the change of lease until September after their old one has expired.  I’m a landlord and I don’t present lease agreements to my tenants after the old one has expired.  I do it preemptively.  So, I understand that we’re in there and I understand that is causing people to want to know what’s happening, but we do have to have time to process this.  And I would ask that if this goes down tonight, I would ask and plead with the church to please so leanacy to the City and to allow us to continue to make our monthly payments while we work out this in the best interest of all parties concerned.  We just need a little more time.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Okay.  Is there anyone else?  Councilman Stinson.  Oh, Councilman Manson.


CAROL HERRING – Mr. Councilman, can I speak at this time too?

COUNCILMAN STINSON – Mr. Manson has the floor.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Let’s listen to Councilman Manson and then I’ll have you come up.

CAROL HERRING – Okay, thank you.

COUNCILMAN STINSON – She’s a trustee.

COUNCILMAN MANSON – Yes, I guess first of all, the reason…we may have acted on this before if there wouldn’t have been a change in there and I’m still not satisfied with the answer in the change.  But also, looking at the higher rate, I don’t see where extending this lease two years and going on with the study that we’re talking about would be a really serious problem for the City.  I just, I don’t think that right now that we probably need to drag this thing out.  At least that’s the way I’m going to vote.  But I also understand there are the draw backs, you know, the other people and, but that’s where I have been coming down on this thing for a little while, that the two years is not a hardship for us and I think we should consider going ahead and renewing the lease.  If in fact, I guess, are we convinced that we were paying $35,000 last year?


COUNCILMAN MANSON – Everybody convinced on that?  That’s, I believe, it would be better for us right now probably to extend this thing to the two years.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – I just have to chime in with my two cents and this is towards Councilman Stinson.  The reason I’m asking you this question is because you have talked with the secretary, the reverend; things of that sort and I’m looking at this list.  That’s a very extensive remodeling, where ever you decide to go.  And so if you consider that the lease starts in September, we’re almost into December so, you have nine (9) months for a one-year lease to do all…you have to find a place, I heard someone mention a study, you have to do the study, you have to find a place then you have to cut the deal with the people whose going to do the construction.  Councilman Stinson, do you actually think that this Body would have time to do all this within nine (9) months?


COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Okay.  That’s my question.

COUNCILMAN STINSON – We haven’t even looked, I mean, like you said, the third floor of the Senior Center was just a suggestion.  I mean, we’ve been in a number of different locations.  We’ve been up by the hospital, we’ve been in the Shearer’s Company.  I mean so, you know, it’s hard to say where we would actually be able to find some place.  So, I mean, somebody even mentioned why not put it in the Rec Center.  I mean, that’s the e-mail that I got.  I don’t know.  Would we have to fix the Rec Center to accommodate the Health Dept. also?  Those are questions that still need to be answered, but the fact is, we’re still using their facility.  They have not cashed our check in good faith that we would make a decision on this and so, therefore, I think one of the trustees had something else to add.  Ms. Herring.

CAROL HERRING – 3452 Banyan St., Massillon, OH.  Yes, I’m in Perry Township, but I am also trustee here in Massillon at St. James.  I just want to say that, first of all, the Life Center is part of our vision of ministry here.  It’s not just, it’s not like a money maker for us, but we have a vision and we wanted to provide services for the people, the community that would be health services and other services that would make, could make their lives better.  So, it is part of our ministry.  The other thing is, I wanted to tell you is that St. James has really been helping to support the Health Center.  As you have heard, with the rate of $5.00 per square foot and we know the last two (2) places, you paid $14.80 and $14.00 per square foot.  We are very, very generous in working, I know because my pastor worked with the Health Dept.  She has a passion and she understands how it works.  I heard someone say here, well Massillon City can’t afford this because of the tax levy and to my understanding, the money for rent does not come out of the Massillon City tax payers, out of your General Fund.  Am I correct on that?  I believe that the Health Dept. has their own fund, their own budget and that budget comes from the State and from the services that the Health Dept. provides.  So, if this isn’t costing Massillon City taxpayers anything and so I wanted to make sure that everyone in here understood that.  But, well, somebody tell me that I’m under a misunderstanding.  I’m right?  Okay, so, I don’t understand, oh, I’m sorry…

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – From my understanding, and if I’m wrong, tell me.  The Health Dept. receives all kinds of grant dollars and things that they can use for things like salaries and rent, what not.  So, when we pay $35,000 in rent from this grant, then that means the City has to pay $35,000 in salary elsewhere.  So we paid $300,000 to support…so when we erase $35,000 in rent, it provides us an opportunity to offset the $300,000 that we pay.  So, we could go down to $270,000 instead for $300,000 that the City pays $300,000 for.  But if you re-direct that money to cover salaries instead of rent or to cover something else instead of rent.

CAROL HERRING – I don’t know if that’s legal.  Is that legal for you to use the money to…?

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – To cover salaries?  Yes.

CAROL HERRING – To cover salaries from the $35,000 that they have in their budget?

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – Unless they have $35,000 that say specifically for rent.


COUNCILMAN LEWIS – And if that’s the case, then we need to know that because then this is a whole new point and no one has said that, which is grant dollars that can be used for operation.

CAROL HERRING – Well, I’m just trying to get straight on this myself.

COUNCILMAN MANSON – That’s what we’re trying to clear. (okay)

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – And that’s why we’ve asked for it to be tabled because there’s a few more questions that need to be answered.  I think, and I don’t want anybody to misconstrue anything.  Council loves what the church is offering and we understand that it’s a good deal.  But free is a better deal, for a building that I already have, you know, so that kind of…

CAROL HERRING – Well, free is good.  I like free.  Free is good, I like free but, free sometimes comes with a cost and if you are trying to, if you want to move them somewhere, I read back in their minutes that, I think the last talk, I think, you had asked for like $20,000 just for the move; the money to do the move.  Well, if you have to renovate a building, I mean, I have tried to renovate my house and I know, you know, when you renovate a building, we’re talking $100,000 or up, so, I don’t see how the citizens of Massillon can benefit from you renovating a building when they already have a very nice building that has everything that they need to do what they do.  And so, I’m just a little confused about why all this and I understand your point about, well we didn’t get this contract, but you know what?  I think, it seems like I remember reading in the newspaper at least a year ago or more that there was a move that you were thinking about with the Health Dept.  Didn’t this come up before?  I think this came up before.  And I’m thinking, well now they’re just sitting here and you say, well we need another year, but this came up over a year ago.  So, I’m saying well if you were thinking about that, why wouldn’t you have that information by now instead of well, we need another year to think about this.  I don’t I follow that.  So, as I said, you’ve heard $5.00 per square foot compared to $14 and $14.80 per square foot plus us allowing them to use the other additional, I think we have been just more than fair because they are a part of our vision.  We have a little more additional space that we would like to put some other services in there that would be helpful to the community.  We’re talking about the Life Center.  That’s why it’s called the Life Center.  That’s what we had as our vision to make it nice.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – We have a question over here.

COUNCILWOMAN HALTER – Yes, I have a statement to make.  I think we’re kind of out of order.  This kind of discussion should go on at a work session, not at our regular meeting.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – I would totally agree with you, but when Council members turn around and proceed with the questioning, then pretty much, they’ve been getting it out of order.

COUNCILWOMAN HALTER – I think it’s out of order, thank you.

CAROL HERRING – Well, I had some points that I wanted to make.  Am I out of order?

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – No, you can make your points.

CAROL HERRING – Okay.  My point is that I did check the ORC 3701-36-04 that states, and I quote “each Health Dept. shall provide programs in such a manner as to protect and promote the public health for the community each Board of Health services”.  Now, to me, I’m thinking, one big thing is, like as you heard, the parking before, that is protecting the people.  The other thing is privacy, so I don’t know where you’re going to find a place like the Life Center that can provide the needs that the Health Dept. needs at this time.  So I don’t know, the Board of Trustees we are standing firm.  We do want a two-year lease agreement and I checked the last two lease agreements that the Council voted on, they were five-year lease agreements, and at the minutes, we were supposed to have a five-year lease agreement when we first started out.  But, somehow when the Health Dept. made the recommendation and it got to Council, Council changed it to two (2) years.  So, we are standing firm on a two-year lease agreement.  We feel that is very fair.  We have been very, very fair and we’ve been very, very giving and we believe that the Health Dept. is good for us and we are good for them.  And I want to say I apologize for a typo that I made, Mr. Lewis.  But, I just can’t and I think when I was here before, most people understood that it was a typo.  Those are my points and I thank you for hearing me and if you have any questions or whatever, I…okay, thank you.


COUNCILMAN MANSON – You know, I made my statement before and I don’t have anything else to state, but I do think we are getting out of order in the way we proceeded here.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Well, it’s very important that Council…

COUNCILMAN MANSON – I understand that…

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – They know that this is not a question and answer…

COUNCILMAN MANSON – And that’s maybe, maybe that’s part of the reason maybe some of these people want to talk about it in committee more.  I made my point on how I feel, but also I have to defend the people that are discussing it too that if there is confusion, we maybe need more time.  That’s why we asked…would not support passing it two (2) weeks ago because we saw a change and we had been talking about this at the $28,000 level for a month.  We had talked about it in public with people and I think we’re wrong if we don’t take time and look at it.  And maybe we’re getting back to the same place we were two (2) weeks ago that we needed to consider talking about it at another committee meeting, if we keep going here.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – I just want to say that after hearing from Mr. Manson, hearing from Mr. Townsend, hearing from Trustee Herring and Reverend, I’m sorry I forgot your last name, but also hearing from you as well, I am waivering on my decision because we have a lot of great information and excellent points being made that need to be considered, however, again, because I don’t have a full picture and time to fully process, if forced to vote this evening, I would still vote “no”, but I behoove this body to table, give us one more meeting to discuss, because look how much leeway in one excellent conversation.  That’s all it took was one excellent conversation and you’re starting to sway people’s opinions.  And I think it works out best if we just give this one more opportunity to be reviewed and discussed.


COUNCILWOMAN SCASSA – You’ll probably kill me but, I would like to call the Law Director up.

PERRY STERGIOS – That’s fine.

COUNCILWOMAN SCASSA – Just ask you some basic landlord/tenant…’cause I guess that’s where I’m sort of waivering at this point.  I know Councilwoman Del Rio-Keller asked about the start of a new lease, what would happen.  We’re technically already into an expired lease and we’ve talked about month to month tenancy, but I guess, where I’m sort of concerned and, again, I appreciate the church and the rate they’re giving us, but if this gets voted down tonight, we’re operating under month to month tenancy, correct?

PERRY STERGIOS – Probably, as long as they…I don’t have the old one in front of me, but I’m assuming if we carry over, we’re going month to month.

COUNCILWOMAN SCASSA – And we don’t either and I guess my concern is if we do, you know, enter into a stalemate of they want two years, you know, we’re locked in at one year, where does that leave the Health Dept. in the sight of…I guess, what I’m getting at is, for a month to month tenancy, I’m assuming we’re going to keep current on our payments so it’s not, in the sense of it, we would get evicted, if you will.  But, how can a lease terminate in a much quicker fashion when you’re on a month to month tenancy as opposed to actually have a lease?

PERRY STERGIOS – Depends on how long they would let us keep staying there without any written lease agreement.  I mean, they could file…they could evict us tomorrow, if they wanted to play hard ball because it’s a commercial lease.  It’s not a…they don’t have to give us a three (3) day notice…we’re running on faith right now as opposed to any sort of legally binding agreement, we have nothing.  I mean, and I think the reality is and the Council President may have said it best, I’ve been around here a long time and we’re not going to get anything done in nine (9) months.  With regard to this thing, sign the two-year deal and be done with it.  Which isn’t what your question was, but, I mean, this is, how long we just sat here and gone over this?  I mean, but it’s November 17th; sign it.  As I said about the Parks and Rec Board once, pass it, don’t pass it, I’m done.  So, the risk is too much to…they’re trying to help us.

COUNCILWOMAN SCASSA – And that was my question, basically lease question, so we’re all understanding that we are operating without a written lease, right now.  That’s all I had to say.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Thank you, Councilwoman Halter.  Councilman Manson.

COUNCILMAN MANSON – I think the Law Director is out of order.  No, I’m serious.  I’m not being facetious.  You were asked a question; you weren’t asked an opinion.

PERRY STERGIOS – Well, sometime you got to give an opinion.

COUNCILMAN MANSON – Well, maybe; not for Council.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Councilman Stinson, you still have the floor.

COUNCILMAN STINSON – I still continue with the motion to vote on the two-year lease.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Okay.  We need a second?

COUNCILMAN STINSON – It’s at the third reading.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Well, that’s another discussion to that about the second and third reading.  That’s something we talked about; would you like to come up, Mr. Stergios to discuss that?

PERRY STERGIOS – Mr. President, ladies and gentlemen of Council.


PERRY STERGIOS – In my opinion, the matter is up for a vote; it’s third reading.  I’ve had this argument for years (yes, we have) with President Gamber and everybody else.  You don’t have to move to bring it forward, it’s here.  And I think, you (President Townsend) so much share the same thoughts, so, it doesn’t need a second, and it’s up for third reading.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – Mr. President, I make a motion that we table Ordinance No. 138 – 2014 until the next meeting; the first meeting of December, which would be the December 1st meeting, I do believe. 

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – But sir, he made the motion to bring it forward for passage.

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – But a tabling motion would preempt his motion.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – So you’re going to preempt his motion?

COUNCILMAN LEWIS - With a tabling motion, yes.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Okay.  Do I have a second to table Ordinance No. 138?  Seconded by Councilwoman Cunningham-Hedderly.  Roll call to table Ordinance No. 138 until when?

COUNCILMAN LEWIS – I believe is that December 1st would be the first meeting in December?


COUNCILMAN LEWIS – Yes, correct.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Roll call to table Ordinance No. 138 until December 1, 2014.

8 yes; 1 no; Stinson voted no

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Ordinance No. 138 has been tabled until December 1st which is a Council meeting.




COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Okay, we have arrived at No. 17.  This is the section of the agenda for anyone who would like to speak on a topic that did NOT appear on tonight’s agenda.  If you’d like to speak on anything, please come to the microphone at this time and give your name and address and the topic you’d wish to discuss.

KITTY POWELL – I was advised to come to this meeting because I’m trying to make every…  The problem I’m having in my neighborhood is there’s several houses on my street that has more activity than a drive-thru.  I’ve called the Police Dept., I’ve done everything that I can and I’m hoping that maybe I plant a seed.  It’s really great that you guys have a passion about a location, but I’m hoping maybe someone will have a passion about safety of children.  My neighborhood is swarming with children and there’s…it used to be a very quiet neighborhood.  I bought this home because it was a quiet neighborhood.  The house next to mine, across the yard on Griffith Ave. that had a big marijuana drug bust.  I tried several times to make complaints about that and nothing was ever done, until there was a child left alone and then they discovered that this person was growing marijuana in his house.  When it comes to the safety of my children, you guys will see my face if nothing happens.  I will be back here every two (2) weeks.  I will continue to call the Police Dept.  My children should be able to go out in the yard.  If it were your children, you guys would want something done too, and nothing is getting done.  There’s traffic all the time going down these roads.  They can’t…not even just the drugs, you know.  It’s the traffic that it brings, the characters that it brings into my neighborhood.  Cars are getting broken into; it’s the safety.  I pay taxes, my husband pays taxes; we bust our butts for what we have and I’ll be damned if I let some of these gangsters come into my house and take what I have.  I’m sorry…I have three (3) children and there’s always about 8 to 10 kids at my house.  I am like the refugee for kids that don’t have good parental care.  And this is my passion just the same…I didn’t even know about the WIC thing.  So, I mean, obviously it’s a big passion for you guys, but these children are my passion.  This is where I got told to come to and I really hope that someone takes this seriously because my kids are my passion, these are my rights.  I’ve called the Police Dept. in.  I call them all the time.  When you have cars that are coming and going and their only there for three (3) minutes, I mean, unless you know you’re looking out for your mother-in-law and you only get to see them?  Great.  But, it’s not and you know it’s not.  And nothing gets done, nothing.  I’ve called anonymously, I’ve called and said “hey look”, you know.  You know you can hear, the windows are open and you hear things.  My kids are in my house and they hear this.  They go outside and now I’m even starting to worry about that.  I don’t want that and someone needs to listen and something needs to get done.  Because this is my passion, this is my children.  And I will…you guys don’t want to see me all the time, I promise.  The Police Dept., the dispatchers, they put you on “hold” for seven (7) minutes, I’ve been on “hold” while stuff is going down.  I went to the last football game we were at, I was at Speedway.  A guy couldn’t hardly walk to his car.  He gets into the car and drives away into oncoming traffic.  I called the Police Dept., do you guys know I was on “hold” for six (6) minutes?  While this guy, I’m following this guy down Lincoln Way; he is in and out of traffic, almost hitting a telephone pole and I’m still on “hold”.  It’s almost like…to me what should be important is the safety, it’s not being addressed, like it’s…you get put on “hold” while this guy could have killed five (5) people, a whole bunch of people and the dispatcher comes back and says, “there’s nobody available to come”.  You can’t come check on this guy?  This guy then parks at Bender’s downtown and is probably going in to get more drinks and he’s gonna come back out and he could possibly kill somebody, including my children.  And I’m sorry if this is redundant and people have maybe already addressed this, I don’t know and I don’t care, ‘cause this is my family and it’s the safety of my children and I’m sorry you look really bored with me, but this is my passion, okay.  And I will continue to come back as a taxpayer and as a mother until something happens about this.  It is ridiculous that you walk down the street…I’m fat and we’ve been trying to lose weight, and you walk down the road and you can smell marijuana.  To each his own, okay, but, it shouldn’t happen and drugs are going to happen, I get that.  But when you have somebody calling repeatedly about the same houses and nothing gets done, it’s like banging your head against the wall.  And if this was your house and your children, you wouldn’t let it happen.  Whatever neighborhood it’s in, it should not matter if it’s in a certain neighborhood.  There’s no patrol, the policemen used to patrol my neighborhood.  There’s nothing; nothing any more.  I call and there’s still not a patrolman coming around to see what I’m talking about.  It’s very concerning to me because I’m not moving.  I won’t move.  And I’ll do what it takes and I just really hope that you guys listen and maybe you guys can put a little birdie in someone else’s ear and say this crazy lady will come back, ‘cause I will.  This is my life.  These kids are my life.  So, that’s all.


COUNCILMAN MANSON – Did you sign…put your name and address down please.



COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Councilwoman Halter, I need a motion to adjourn.

COUNCILWOMAN HALTER – I move we adjourn.

COUNCIL PRESIDENT TOWNSEND – Seconded by Councilman Lewis. 




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