Bolivar to consider noise barrier along I-77

Bolivar to consider noise barrier along I-77

Image Credit: Lori Feeney

Bolivar resident Anne Straus presented a petition to Bolivar Village Council at its December meeting requesting the Ohio Department of Transportation evaluate constructing a barrier wall along I-77 to reduce noise in the village. Straus said a number of Canal Street residents have said they cannot use their back yards due to the noise level.

Mayor Tim Lang said his only concern is the barriers not obstruct the line of sight for Canal Street businesses and Fort Laurens. Council agreed to proceed with a resolution in support of an ODOT feasibility study, with the understanding there is no guarantee ODOT will agree to perform the study.


Lang said he and council members Mary Vincent and Robert Lloyd interviewed two candidates last month for the position of village administrator. They recommended hiring Matt Judy. Council voted to hire Judy at a rate of $18 per hour, with Finlayson and Oberlin abstaining.

Lang also thanked Mary Vincent and Robert Lloyd for their years of service on council and welcomed Tim White and Loretta Diveley as new council members beginning in 2022.

Vincent said the finance committee recommends bringing water billing in house due to a software issue with Huntington Bank. Council voted to let the Huntington contract expire at the end of 2021.

Will Bellinger said the planning commission will hold a public hearing on Jan. 6 regarding a zoning variance at 409 Canal St. NE.

Bellinger also reported for the safety committee, saying the Dodge Charger cruiser, which has been replaced, will be listed for sale on

Robert Lloyd reported for the street and alley committee, saying a pallet of calcium chloride needs to be purchased for combating ice on the new concrete sidewalks. Street superintendent Kyle Porter said calcium chloride is preferable to salt, which would pit the concrete, and that the calcium chloride will be given to local businesses. Council approved the purchase with a maximum expenditure of $700.

Fiscal officer Patty Smith presented Maria App’s final time card, showing a total of 96 lost hours. Smith also reported she was paid incorrectly prior to taking the position as fiscal officer on Oct. 25, but the discrepancy was corrected in the following payroll, repaying the village for the excess.

Water rates presentation

Nathan Davis, senior rural development specialist for Ohio’s Rural Community Assistance Program, delivered an online presentation regarding village water rates. David explained the process of the water rate study he had completed and presented suggestions for projected water rates for 2022, 2023 and 2024. The rates include 1% set aside for repairs/maintenance of unforeseen expenses. Lang requested a first reading by title only to adopt the proposal outlined by Davis.


Council approved the following:

—A resolution to amend appropriations to meet current obligations.

—A resolution approving temporary appropriations for 2022 in the amount of $325,969.

—An emergency ordinance authorizing the distribution of levy funds for the fire contract between the village, Lawrence Township and Zoar Village.

—An emergency ordinance to amend the Water Rules and Regulations to permit monthly billing.

—An ordinance to hire Zach Nussbaum retroactive to Nov. 8, 2021, at a rate of $10 per hour (Bellinger abstaining).

—An emergency ordinance contracting with the Tuscarawas County Public Defender Commission for indigent defense services for 2022.

—An ordinance granting a 2% raise for all employees for 2022.

Council heard the first reading of the following:

—A proposed parking ordinance that would allow the village to issue fines and tow vehicles that are left on village property.

—An ordinance to implement metered water billing.

—An ordinance to increase Porter’s pay rate.

Council heard the second reading of ordinances to do the following:

—Contract with Tara Wright Timberlake as legal counsel for the village.

—Contract with Fitzpatrick, Zimmerman and Rose for prosecutor services.

—Deed the Santa Claus house (structure only, not land) to Bolivar Main Street Association.

The next meeting will be Jan. 3 at 7 p.m. at Village Hall.