GALENA — Activity is heating up in and around Harlem Township during the summer, with builds, projects, and several ideas on tap in the southeastern corner of Delaware County.
New homes are being built by different developers, some using common access gravel driveways shared by multiple owners, along some of the roads on and near the county line. Orange barrels are out, with road construction projects taking place on Gorsuch and Green Cook roads, as well as in Central College and New Albany. The county will also work on Trenton Road.
Harlem Township trustees David Jackson, Jerry Paul and Bob Singer heard an interesting idea during the public comment session of their May 19 meeting. Jennifer Tieche “did a presentation on the potential of an enclosed ice-skating rink, to be located at the old concrete plant, next to the playground,” said the meeting minutes. “Teiche proposed that the 1.79 acres be leased to Mastodon 829 LLC (for profit) and briefly described the proposal. … Cost to build is approximately $900,000 and the LLC has investors ready. Approximately 100 spaces will be needed for parking. The septic system will need more research. Tieche believes that this would be a great venue for the community.”
Next, Harlem Township Heritage Chair Roger Neibarger announced there would be no Heritage Days Festival for the second year in a row. Due to the loss of several fundraisers in 2020, HTH would only be able to hold a one-day event, and its committee decided against that. The intent is to resume the festival in 2022, and possibly host an event later this year. Another idea discussed during a recent trustee meeting was a Friday night polo match in the township, which was referred to HTH.
The trustees approved Neibarger’s request to hold a food truck fundraising event, which took place on May 27.
Also at that meeting, residents in the Brookview and Keller Pines subdivisions complained about reckless driving and speeding. Prosecutor Tyler Lane said the township has no authority and that this was a law enforcement issue. Lane and the trustees went into executive session “to discuss potential litigation on complaints received on trash in yards.” A letter would be sent to a homeowner on Harlem Road.
Readers may recall efforts to add playground equipment at the community park. On May 19, the trustees approved spending $4,500 to assist on purchasing the “Cloud 9 saucer swing, which enables handicapped children to enjoy the freedom of swinging.”
Also, four memorial trees were planted around the playground area on May 1. The park restrooms are now open to the public.
In April, the trustees okayed buying a vehicle stabilization kit for the fire department. According to the minutes, this equipment is “used to secure unstable vehicles and other objects as a result of crashes and other mishaps to allow emergency personnel safer access.” Also, the trustees approved replacing the concrete on the south ramp of the station in front of the apparatus bays, including the catch basin.
At a subsequent meeting at the end of April, the trustees went into executive session to discuss litigation. When they came out of the session, they moved to settle the legal proceedings.
During the March meeting, the maintenance staff reported four culverts were replaced on Green Cook Road between Robins and Fancher roads. The trustees approved the conditional hires of three part-time Harlem Township Division of Fire employees, while a full-time employee was allowed to stay on as a part-time employee. At a later meeting, a part-time firefighter/paramedic was hired to full-time to fill an open position. As of May 19, the division had responded to 224 calls this year.
The trustees were told the township’s road signs were in good condition and did not need to apply for a sign grant. In addition, the trustees approved the painting of the inside of the firehouse/township building.
At the end of March, two rezonings for properties without addresses were approved from Agricultural Residential to Single Family Residential. One was 11 acres on the west side of Green Cook and southwest of Center Village roads. The other was 5.7 acres on the south side of Trenton Road and the west side of state Route 605.
At the February meeting, a video laryngoscope was purchased for the fire department, trustees accepted a 24-month electrical supplier contract with Energy Harbor, and the zoning inspector bond was renewed. In addition, proposed amendments to Articles VII, VIII, XXI and XXVII of the township’s zoning resolution were approved.
Gary Budzak may be reached at 740-413-0906 or on Twitter @GaryBudzak.