BYESVILLE, Ohio -- During Wednesday night's Byesville Village Council meeting, Village Administrator Brennan Dudley reported on a recent meeting with the EPA.
On Monday, the environmental agency issued "findings and orders" against the Village of Byesville. The fines, totaling just over $31,000 were for past violations which took place between 2006 and January of 2013. Dudley stressed that the fine has nothing to do with the recent complaints of discolored water which has been plaguing the village's water system. Officials continue to make it clear that Byesville's water is safe to drink.
The Village Administrator points out that the fine is primarily for the high amount of chlorine in the backwash water from the water treatment plant, a problem that was fixed some time ago. Dudley adds that the village will be appealing the fine.
In other matters, Council gave its approval for the Byesville Fire Department to purchase new protective equipment. Chief Ron Tatgenhorst reported that their turn out gear it between 7 and 12 years old. The protective gear typically consists of helmets, bunker coat, pants gloves and boots protect firefighters, from most everything firefighters may encounter, including some chemicals, water, the weather, as well as flames and high temperatures. The Chief reported that the equipment will be purchased from Finley Fire in McConnellsville, with a new set costing approximately $1,500 each, within the department budget.
Also Chief Tatgenhorst reported that the department has received some new safety equipment. Thanks to the Guernsey Co EMA, the department, through a FEMA grant, has the "Passport" system. The system consists of a set of metal tags, a set for each firefighter on scene. As a firefighter goes into a fire, one tag remains on the firefighter, one is hung on a special board at the command center. This "Passport Accountability System" helps keep track of who is in the burning building (or other emergency) and who is not.
The Chief also notes that all fire companies in the area have the same system, important when multiple companies are working together, such as the recent BonTon building fire in Cambridge.
In a related matter, Council on Wednesday night unanimously approved placing a 1 mill fire renewal levy on the fall ballot. With voter approval in November, the 5 year levy will keep taxes at the same level, and will ensure funding for the FD for the maintenance and purchase of equipment.
Village Administrator Brennan Dudley also reported to Council that the Village Sewer Dept will be conducting smoke testing throughout the village, beginning the week of August 5th.