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Council to begin review, cleanup of Ro-Na

The Ironton City Council is getting the ball rolling on renovating the old Ro-Na Theater. On Thursday, council voted unanimously to hire an engineer to conduct a structural report on the condition of the old building. The cost is $10,500 and the report is to be done by E.L. Robinson Engineering Inc.. The report would include a visual inspection of the inside and outside of the building and make recommendations for repairs.

As for the cleanup of the debris in the old theater, councilmen have volunteered to put their backs into it and begin cleaning the old building on July 12 at 9 a.m.

Ironton Mayor Rich Blankenship told the council that while negotiating with E.L. Robinson on the inspection contract, he negotiated a price of $5,000 each for a lead inspection and an asbestos inspection.

“So we should save a few dollars there,” he said.

He also told the council that he would be sending letters to state legislators Todd Book and George Voinovich to see if there is any state funding for Memorial Hall.

He also announced that the city will be having an equipment sale at the city garage on July 19.

A public utility committee meeting is set for July 22 at 6 p.m.

Two other ordinances on the agenda passed. The first would authorize the mayor to purchase a hydraulic breaker and a hydraulic kit for the water distribution department. The second is the purchase of a Vermeer Brush Chipper for the city street department.

Ordinance 08-53 that sets new water regulations for the city was untabled and will be on the next council agenda. It would likely be amended so that the connection fee for renters and property owners would be the same since to do otherwise could potentially be a violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

The ordinance would be amended to make the fee the same, probably around $200.

Ironton City Council meets on the second and fourth Thursdays of the month at 6 p.m. in Council Chambers on the third floor of the City Center.