By Lynne Phillips
New London residents will see an increase in trash pick up rates beginning with the April bill.Council members unanimously approved the $4 per month increase during Monday night's meeting.For senior citizens living alone the rate will increase from $12 to $16 per month, in-town residents from $18.36 to $22.36 and out of town from $20.40 to $24.40.According to village fiscal officer Melissa Wilson the rates have not increased since 2008.As part of the administrator's report Shawn Pickworth told council members there was a water leak on East Washburn Street earlier in February. "It was one of the coldest days so far this winter," he commented."The crew found a two inch line coming off the ten inch main supplying one of the factories had ruptured. The hardest part of the repair was digging through the frostline and getting to the break. Once we got that done we were able to repair the break and get service back on." He added, "The cold temperatures have generated multiple calls everyday with people's waterlines freezing. We have changed out multiple meters that have froze up. The guys are taking care of calls everyday trying to help residents with those frozen lines. We are doing what we can but with this cold weather if pipes aren't protected and even if they are protected, the cold is getting to them."There has been little activity on the village's Sanitary Sewer Overflow Elimination Project, he said. "It is due to the cold weather."The cold is also causing issues with the sewer plants trickling filters. "We had this problem last year at the plant," Pickworth stated. "It will affect our report to the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OEPA)." He added, "I am sure we are not the only ones dealing with these issues."Pickworth's report also included the following:• Workers are busy plowing streets and moving snow piles."Salt prices continue to remain at record highs, $115 per ton. Right now we are getting salt from the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) on an as needed basis," he said.Year to date the village has used approximately 80 tons of salt.• Council gave permission for Pickworth to have bid documents prepared for the replacement and repairs of the roof on the municipal building."I believe we will get better prices now than waiting until spring or summer."The windows in the medical portion of the building need to be replaced this year. Those windows are in really bad shape and if we don't get them replaced they are going to fall out."Pickworth told council members he has been working with an area heating and cooling company to design new heating systems for the water plants, sewer plant storage building, the village garage's two west bays and the fire department."The heating systems we have currently are failing," he said. "Parts are difficult to find and the systems are very inefficient. The company will also be replacing the air conditioning unit in the council chamber/community center this spring. The current unit will not make it through another summer."In other business council members approved the following agenda items:• An ordinance authorizing the village administrator to enter into a contract with the highest bidder for temporary agricultural use of certain public lands.Three bids were submitted. The highest was from Chris Clark for $94 per acre for the first year, $92 for the second year and $90 for the third year. The low bid was for $70 per acre.• Permission for the Sons of the American Legion for the sale of beer at the Hileman Building for their March 14 gun raffle.• Payment of bills as submitted.• Removal of Jonna Rowland's name from bank accounts.• Add Michelle Poppa as a signer on the village's checking account.New London Council members meet for regular meetings on the second and fourth Mondays of each month in council chambers at 7 p.m. The next meeting is March 11.