(by Dedra Cordle, Staff Writer - February 21, 2009)
With the city of Columbus announcing a reduction in city services, including yard waste pickup and cutting noxious yards, the Southwest Area Commission discussed holding a spring cleanup day for the area.
“It would be nice to get people together, maybe assign a street or road to them for two or three hours and have everyone pick up the garbage along the way,” said commissioner Ed Walters.
The other commissioners agreed that having a cleanup day in the spring and fall would be beneficial to the community due to the reduced city services.
“With fewer code enforcement officers and more complaints, we need the neighborhoods to step up,” said Jim Lee, Columbus code enforcement officer and liaison to the commission.
“We all have to look at different ways to clean up because the city does not have the resources to clean up as much as they did before.”
He suggested that if you see a vacant or occupied house nearby with tall grass that needs to be cut, think about doing it yourself.
“We have to help our neighborhoods out.”
Resident Marilyn Sandusky agreed with that sentiment.
“We have a lot of tenants at Briggsdale Apartments who do a lot of community service work and I would like for us to be able to work something out,” she said. “We all want to be productive and be a part of the community.”
The commission said they would discuss a potential date for the proposed cleanup day at next month’s meeting and will encourage local businesses to get involved as well.
At the meeting, chairman Horn announced that longtime commissioner and current fiscal officer Roy Bertossi was resigning due to an increased workload at his regular place of employment. In a statement read to the commission members, he said he could not commit any time right now, but would be willing to assist with the elections in August.
In his stead, the commissioners unanimously voted to appoint first-year commissioner Kathy Hatfield as their fiscal officer for the rest of the year. Both her new position and Bertossi’s resignation are effective immediately.