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Village hoping for FEMA assistance

COAL GROVE — While the county is in the midst of road and bridge repairs from May’s torrential rains, and still seeking additional FEMA money, the Village of Coal Grove is hoping to see some money of its own for repair work.

At Tuesday night’s council meeting, village clerk Debbie Fields told the council that a FEMA inspector had made his rounds through the village and submitted five work requests for various locations in the village that were damaged in May and April.

“He, in his opinion, thinks we shouldn’t have any trouble (getting the money),” Fields said of the inspector.

The five areas in need of repair are: a box culvert under Memorial Street, a culvert under Marion Pike that drains into Ice Creek, a collapsed tile under Zornes Road, a collapsed tile under Lane Street and a water line replacement on County Road 6 due to a hill collapse in April.

Mayor Larry McDaniel said the Memorial Street culvert is the most important to fix because it is near a pump in the sewer system.

“We’ve got to get that one fixed,” he said.

The areas on Lane Street and County Road 6 have already been repaired. The combined cost of the projects was about $6,861, Fields said.

“It had to be done on an emergency basis,” Fields said, and the village hopes to be reimbursed for the repairs.

The culvert near Ice Creek is only thought to be clogged, but the work to clean it out and test it would cost nearly $14,000, McDaniel said. Without the FEMA money, McDaniel said the village would not be able to afford all the repairs.

“We would have to borrow money to do that,” he said.

Fields said the FEMA inspector estimated right about $60,000 for all the repairs. If approved, FEMA would provide 75 percent of the money. The state would then give 12.5 percent and the village would also have to put up 12.5 percent.

McDaniel said he felt confident that the village would be approved.

Also at the council meeting, village attorney Mark McCown informed council that, due to an oversight, an area of the village was improperly zoned as residential and must be changed.

In 2007 when the new zoning ordinance was written, the southwest sides of High Street, Hornet Lane and Carlton Davidson Lane were zoned as residential, instead of commercial. The needed change will have to be approved by the planning commission.

Council also had a second reading of ordinance 13-11 approving a two-year contract for legal services with McCown and Fisher.

There was also an executive session for collective bargaining with McCown. There was no action taken after the executive session and council adjourned.