By Doug Hampton
The increase of businesses in downtown Wyoming has created a problem that was discussed during the May 10 Wyoming City Council meeting. Parking is at a premium and the mayor and council are being asked to help find ways to expand parking options.
There are currently few options to add additional parking for customers to downtown businesses and the ones that seem to be the best fit may be cost prohibitive.
Some suggestions that came up during the meeting are: asking employees of businesses not to use the premium spots in front of storefronts and possibly use the municipal parking lot (next to Morrissey Refrigeration) or to use side streets when possible. Mayor Pat Maher will also call on state officials to see if there are any options for additional parking on 7th Street which is also State Route 17.
Melissa Nagode from One Eleven Coffee also asked the council if there would be a way to get a bike rack in the downtown area for the many bicyclists that come through using the Rock Island Trail. Currently many are leaning bikes up against storefronts or otherwise blocking the sidewalk. The council will look into some possibilities on the subject.
Tour of Stark County
Economic Development Advisor Denny Rewerts reported that Timi’s Tours brought a charter bus from the Decatur and Springfield area to town. They ate at One Eleven Coffee, shopped in the downtown area and visited Indian Creek Vineyards and Indian Creek Goat Farm in Toulon. Rewerts says the tour operator reported it was a big hit and they hope to get more tours scheduled.
Rewerts also said that Career Link has a program that could provide people to work for the city during the summer with no cost to the city. Mayor Maher will meet with Career Link representative Tammy Rouse to look into the possibility of using the program.
The city voted to accept two properties being given to the city by Harrison and Marsha Mutz. The properties are located at 611 N Seventh St and 503 S Seventh St. The council will decide at a future date how the properties will be used.
A $1,213,086 annual budget and tax appropriation ordinance was passed by the council for the current fiscal year that runs from May 1, 2016 until April 30, 2017.
Jeff Carlson, who is interested in the Paramount Theater building attended the meeting and told the council he would be interested in leasing the apartment above the theater. Mayor Maher said now that they have heard directly from Carlson that he is interested in an arrangement, they will proceed to look at what options the city has to draw up a lease agreement.
City Streets Superintendent Joe Kinsella and Mayor Maher said they have developed an annual sidewalk replacement program that would replace about 500 feet of sidewalk per year. The program will start with areas most used such as around churches and schools and also look into areas that are damaged such as some spots in the downtown area.
At the end of the meeting Mayor Maher signed a proclamation designating May as Motorcycle Awareness Month. The measure is an initiative of A.B.A.T.E., which has a chapter in Stark County called the Spoon River Riders.