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Ironton PUC meets tonight at city center

The Ironton City Council’s Public Utilities Committee will meet tonight at 5 p.m. to discuss several items.

Among the topics of discussion will be renter/landlord Ordinance 18-86, creating a final version of the tri-fold survey, the hiring of an economic director and the impact of the recent forum the city had.

On Dec. 27, the council had the first reading of Ordinance 18-86, which repeals Ordinance 10-75 and amends Ordinance 08-53.

The new ordinance would require a security deposit of $200 of all renters and have all city water bills be put in the renter’s name. It would require the same amount of homeowners.

Once the account is closed out, and if there is no delinquent payments due, the deposit will be returned. The ordinance also requires the mayor to provide a monthly report on delinquent water bills.

“It was tabled and I want to get that behind us,” said PUC chair Chuck O’Leary.

The reason for the change is because the city water bills are currently in the name of the renters name and the city has had issue with a large number of renters running up a large water bill and then moving without paying. The city has to use a collection agency to try and recover the money.

The survey has been discussed at several council meetings. Essentially, a survey would be put on the water bill and ask citizens what they want to do, such as fees or tax levy to help right the city’s financial situation. The water bill was chosen because it only goes to city residents and no one can stuff the ballot box to sway opinions.

O’Leary said that they will have an economic development person from another city coming in to educate them on the duties and goals of an economic director.

Although the meeting is open to the public, there is no audience participation like at regular council meetings. There will be no action taken on any of the items.

The PUC meeting is in council chambers on the third floor of the Ironton City Center.