Steubenville Council OKs Conservation District Issue

Steubenville City Council approved the Garfield Avenue Neighborhood Conservation District Tuesday night during a relatively quiet meeting.

Council’s approval of the designation means the city will accept no new registrations of single-family dwellings for rental purposes within in the district. The ordinance does not affect other types of rental housing, such as attached dwelling units and multi-family housing units.

Existing single-family homes registered as rental properties are grandfathered in, but such properties lose their status if their rental registration is allowed to remain expired for a year or more.

Council also approved changes to a current ordinance requiring property owners to register all rental units and to notify the city if their address or telephone number changes. The ordinance also set the registration to be renewed every calendar year in January.

An ordinance requiring contractors to renew their licenses every January was approved by a unanimous vote. And legislation ending a bonus payment for the police chief and fire chief who have a bachelor’s degree or a master’s degree received a second reading.

Council’s building and grounds committee discussed changes to the city ordinance governing the tree commission, and 4th Ward Councilman Scott Dressel said he will meet with Law Director Costa Mastros to draft legislation setting new rules for trees on city right-of-way sites.

In other business:

∫ Finance Director David Lewis reported a copy of the 2018 draft budget has been forwarded to council members.

∫ Council approved the reappointments of Virginia Mascio and Stanley Gaston to the board of library trustees.

∫ Fifth Ward Councilman Willie Paul introduced five resolutions for the appropriation of properties for the Sunset Boulevard and Lovers Lane intersection improvement project.

∫ A resolution of commendation for the Steubenville Big Red football team for winning the Ohio Division IV championship was introduced by 1st Ward Councilman DiLoreto.

∫ Second Ward Councilman Mike Johnson proposed legislation to authorize the demolition of several properties throughout the city.

Council met in an executive session following the regular meeting at 6th Ward Councilman Bob Villamagna’s request to discuss non-union city personnel.