ASHLAND – The Ashland City Council Thursday night approved two ordinances to extend the boundaries of the city and reviewed updates on two longstanding nuisance properties.
On final reading the council approved Ordinance 1171 to annex Sabre Heights and Ordinance 1172 to annex other areas around the city.
Council Member Paul Gossin reported that busing into Sabre Heights was approved at the Ashland-Greenwood Board of Education at a recent meeting. The busing issue was a concern to residents, as previously the school district did not provide busing for students living outside of city limits.
Council Member Jim Anderson asked City Administrator Jessica Quady what additional information was needed to officially fold Sabre Heights into the city boundaries. Quady said the city’s auditor will need to have all of Sabre Heights’ financial bills and books.
The council approved another ordinance that would provide road maintenance for the additional roads adjacent to Sabre Heights and its contiguous properties. Quady said bids were out for road and lift station upgrades.
“There’s one mile of that road that gets heavy use,” she said.
In other action, the council again reviewed two property nuisance cases that were given multiple deadline extensions for cleanup. The property at 2604 Adams Street, owned by Mike Lesley, was given an extension for clean up until Jan. 16. Lesley’s property has unlicensed motorcycles and pickup trucks parked on grass. Quady said City Zoning Administrator Lenora Isom recommended having a structural engineer evaluate the illegal lean-to-structure.
Gossin said they needed a plan and a target date beyond the mid-January council meeting to move forward.
A walk-through by council members and Quady was scheduled to take place this week at the second property at 204 South 23rd Street owned by Steven Williams. Williams, who has had hip replacement recently, said he was grateful to his children for helping with most of the cleanup.
Quady said she would look into zoning, but reminded Williams that according to Ashland’s regulations, “All vehicles need to be licensed, operable and parked on a hard slab surface.”
In other business, three new employees were hired: Trevor Keller in the Utilities Department and Jerry Jewell and Terry Macrander in the Public Works Department.
During his report, Mayor Rick Grauerholz said that Ashland’s fire and rescue crews received high praise from first responders during the recent I-80 accident that killed three people.
“Our people worked well with other and got a lot of compliments for their skills,” Grauerholz said.
Quady reported that additional residents were needed for the Historic Preservation board, the Planning Commission and the Board of Adjustment.
The next meeting of the city council will be Jan. 2, at 7 p.m.