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Residents voice concerns to city

Roughly 30 citizens packed into the City Council Chamber to voice their concerns about city services Monday night at the Community Improvement Committee meeting.

“The purpose was to follow up on discussions we had before and further explore issues such as property values and maintenance,” said Daniel Gordon, First Ward council member.

Residents called for numerous changes in the city from how it enforces ordinances to suggestions of adding green spaces.

David Donnelly critiqued how the city enforces its codes.

He referred to an instance when he received a city warning to obtain a permit for a swing set or pay a fine.

Donnelly suggested that instead of just sending a letter, the city should send an employee to discuss the problem with the resident and then send a letter if it doesn’t get cleared up.

Later at the city council meeting, Public Works Director Brian Craft addressed Donnelly’s concern.

“We hand out a notice, then try to talk to someone at the door,” Craft said.

Another idea from residents was to keep the old junior high school site on West Wooster Street a green space.

The city could transform the space into a community gathering space with a bandstand and benches, said resident Wally Pretzer.

Third Ward Council Member Mike Aspacher said he saw the opportunities to keep it a green space and would be willing to have further discussions with organizations for further development.

Overall, Gordon thought the meeting generated community interest.

“I think we got what we wanted — for citizens to come out and be part of the conversation,” he said.

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