Mayor details plans for riverfront

Published 12:00 am Saturday, May 11, 2024

SOUTH POINT — When Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine made a stop in Lawrence County on Monday to unveil funding for projects in the county, one of the recipients was the Village of South Point, who will be getting $1.27 million for renovations to the existing boat ramp.

Mayor Jeff Gaskin discussed the plans for the funding at Tuesday’s council meeting.

He said he envisions something for South Point that is half the size of what Ashland, Kentucky has across the river, with a two-lane launch and 200 feet of sea wall.

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“The whole area will be revitalized,” he said.

In addition, he said the riverbank would be made handicapped-accessible and there would be a new shelter constructed, a twin to an existing one.

He said there would be other aesthetic improvements to the site as well.

Gaskin said he was pleased with the process DeWine set up for municipalities to receive the funding, which was designated for the state’s Appalachian counties.

He said the application was done with cities and villages teaming up and that it ensured funding would not be concentrated on the larger cities.

“The governor made sure that didn’t happen,” he said.

Gaskin said he has also requested $600,000 from the legislature in the capital improvement bill, which he hopes will be awarded for creating a walking trail and a stage for concerts.

“We’re really moving along, folks,” he said. “We’re doing really well.”

Neighboring Burlington also received the same amount of funds for their riverfront park.

In other business, the council:

• Voted on a third reading and passed an ordinance on the issue of recovery center businesses in the village.

Gaskin said the ordinance would require a license for such businesses, issued by the village. He said, once these businesses are licensed, the village could them make sure all guidelines are being followed, such as those from the state fire marshal and those on occupancy.

Gaskin said he is not opposed to drug recovery businesses, noting that he has worked as a licensed counselor himself, but said he must also address issues such as resident concerns on property values.

• Voted to repeal an ordinance, passed last month, modifying vacation for village employees.

Gaskin said this was done after consulting with a labor relations attorney and that the village will start over on the process, retaining the attorney for guidance.