Minutes of the Drainage Task Force by s90P2am8

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									                           Minutes of the Drainage Task Force
                           Education Subcommittee Meeting
                                         July 15, 2004
                               Fichtner Outdoor Education Center

Present: Jan Lukens, Bill Daugherty, Pam Feagler, Denny Weilnau, Troy Alpeter and Eric Akin

Web Site: Eric said the Drainage Task Force website was now online courtesy of Stark County
at www.co.stark.oh.us/drainage. However, he said that it will be switched eventually to its
permanent address at www.drainage.co.stark.oh.us after Stark County finishes its transition to
new servers. Currently at least three other Stark County websites need to be converted to their
new domain names prior to the Drainage Task Force’s website. Eric hoped that this would be
completed by late July or early August.

He went on to say that he doesn’t believe that the subcommittee should openly publicize the
website (e.g., press release, mass email, etc.) until the site is at its permanent address. This will
reduce public confusion when the switch happens. Also, this delay will give the Task Force time
to increase the site’s content before widely announcing it to the public.

The attendees then reviewed and offer suggestions on how to improve the website. Suggestion
included:
     - Adding the following links: CT Consultants, County Engineers, OSU Extension,
        Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District, ABS Drainage, Stark County EMS, Stark
        County G.I.S., Lake County, and Delaware County
     - Add pictures to the sites Home Page. The committee agreed on adding a picture of a
        local flooding problem, a picture of a local storm water project, and a picture of a Task
        Force meeting.
     - The Committee would like a link to a digital picture of the floodplain map. Eric said he
        didn’t believe that a digital floodplain map was available, but the County and FEMA are
        in the process of updating the Stark County’s floodplain maps and those they should be
        available by the end of the year.
     - The Committee members would also like to eventually see the PowerPoint presentations
        from our meetings available through the website. They also want to look into making
        audio tapes of the meetings available through website. Troy and Eric said they would
        look into this, but that would likely be a long-term project.


Educational Meetings: The Education Subcommittee discussed the Task Force meeting held at
the Marlboro Township Office on June 17, 2004. Eric said that the meeting was intended to be a
“work session”-type meeting with elected township and municipal officials from Marlboro,
Lexington, Washington, and Nimishillen Townships. However, it was mistakenly publicized in
at least one newspaper and one radio station as being a “public” meeting. Also, heavy rains and
flooding the Monday before the meeting increased the public’s interest. As a result, several
residents attended which resulted in less of a “work session”-type meeting with elected officials
and more of a problem identification meeting with the public.
Eric said that although the outcome of the meeting was positive and beneficial, it was not what
the committee had advertised to the local elected officials. He was concerned because this might
damage the creditability of the Task Force and the Education Subcommittee with local elected
officials. Bill said he couldn’t attend the June 17 meeting but was disappointed that this is the
second meeting that the subcommittee has planned that was changed by circumstances that
should have been controlled.

Pam said that these concerns were addressed at the July 1, 2004, Drainage Task Force Steering
Committee and that the consensus of that group is they did not want to exclude the public from
any Task Force meeting. Therefore, they wanted to maintain the format used in the June 17
meeting in any future regional meetings throughout Stark County. Eric said that he agrees that
the public’s involvement is vital to the Task Force’s efforts, but maintaining the current meeting
format will fail in the subcommittee’s goal of educating and opening a dialog with township and
municipal officials. Eric and Pam both felt that the strong public turnout to the Marlboro
meeting limited the Task Force’s interaction with the elected officials.

Pam said that she was invited to the June Nimishillen Township Trustee meeting to give a
presentation about storm water issues and the Drainage Task Force. She said her presentation
was well received and this might be a better way than the current meeting format to educate
elected officials. The subcommittee members were in agreement to pursue this option. Pam said
she would work on a letter to send to all the elected township and municipal official offering
them our services to speak about storm water issues and the Drainage Task Force at one of their
upcoming meetings. The subcommittee members agreed this is currently the best way to address
local elected officials in the desired public meeting format. Pam, Eric, and Bill said they could
help develop a standard PowerPoint presentation with speaking notes so any member of the
Education Subcommittee could present the information to elected officials.

The subcommittee also agreed that they will postpone planning additional regional “public”
meetings like the one held on June 17 until the Task Force has something new (e.g., drainage
plan, funding options, new projects, etc.) to tell public. The Education Subcommittee also
agreed that other subcommittees would be free to schedule public meetings, if needed to fulfill
their goals and objectives. The subcommittee members concluded that our efforts at planning
meetings that do not meet the original goals could be better spent on developing and
implementing other educational programs to inform the public.


Next Meeting Dates: August 19th, September 16th, October 21st; 12:30 pm at the Fichtner
Center.

Respectfully submitted by Eric Akin

								
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