Mayor Day announces Battle Motors expansion plan

Mayor Day announces Battle Motors expansion plan

Image Credit: Lori Feeney

New Philadelphia Mayor Joel Day reported to city council on Dec. 13 that Battle Motors has secured $120 million in growth capital, which will be used to fund the expansion of the Crane Carrier plant on Reiser Avenue Southeast.

The additional capital will be used to double the size of the existing plant to 350,000 square feet and allow the company to add the workforce and machinery needed to increase production of electric and compressed natural gas refuse trucks.

Day thanked Simpson Heating and Air, Gradall Industries, and other local businesses and individuals who helped replace the toys lost in the Toys for Tots warehouse fire in Sherrodsville. “Gradall Industries President Mike Popovich told me the company matched dollar for dollar the contribution made by its employees, and that amounted to well over $2,000,” Day said.

The mayor yielded the remainder of his time to Wilma Mullet, executive director of the Tuscarawas Arts Partnership. Mullet gave a presentation on the Tuscarawas County Sculpture Tour, which will place 4-foot-tall sculptures in the shape of Tuscarawas County in communities that choose to participate. An artist will be employed in each community to paint the sculpture in a way that reflects that community’s identity.

“The idea behind this is to create a sense of unity but then also celebrate the unique cultural identity of each community,” Mullet said.

The goal, according to Mullet, is to create tourism opportunities using the sculptures.

City service director Ron McAbier said the city saved more than $22,000 on salt this year. Last year salt was priced at $69.93 per ton, and this year it was priced at $54.42 per ton. McAbier said the city purchased 1,500 tons for the coming winter season.

City to allow lateral hires

Marvin Fete, city law director, told council he has developed a policy in conjunction with safety director Greg Popham, the mayor and police chief Michael Goodwin to include civil service lateral hires. Fete said such a policy is critical because there may be people employed by other police or fire departments who want to work for New Philadelphia but do not want to retake the civil service exam for reasons of privacy.

“When they take the exam, it becomes public knowledge,” Fete said, something the applicants may not want their current employers to know.

Kelly Ricklic, chair of the safety, health and services committee, asked that an emergency resolution be passed allowing the city and Buckeye Career Center to partner on a firefighter training commander. He also asked for emergency passage of an ordinance authorizing the city to receive funds from the Johnson & Johnson opioid settlement agreement.

Council President Don Kemp said newly elected council members Mitchell Pace and Jim Seindenright, Jr. will be sworn in at the Dec. 27 meeting.

Legislative

Legislation passed during the meeting included the following:

—A resolution to contract with the Village of Baltic for ambulance billing services provided by the New Philadelphia Fire Department.

—An amended ordinance for temporary appropriations for fiscal year 2022.

—An emergency approving an agreement between the city and Buckeye Career Center for the services of a firefighter training commander.

—An ordinance accepting the terms of the national opioid settlement between Johnson & Johnson and OneOhio.

—A resolution to contract with the county commissioners and the Tuscarawas County Sheriff's Office for the housing of inmates at the county jail and to include payment of housing costs of $70 per inmate.

—An ordinance to contract with the county public defender’s office for legal representation of indigents.

Council also heard the following:

—The first reading of an ordinance to annex into the city three parcels located in Goshen Township owned by Investment Source LTD, Michael and Randy Mosier, and Ryan Ruth.

—The second reading of resolutions to recognize Jeffrey Erb, Rick Marcalettie, John Zucal, Rob Maurer and Maureen Wenger for their years of service to the citizens of New Philadelphia.