LACROFT – Two of the three directors in the Township of Liverpool are running for re-election this year and are being challenged by a relative political newcomer.
Mike Bahen and Dennis Giambroni hope voters enjoy the job they do with Keith Burke as the township head, choosing to keep them with elected Shirley Flati, who is running for the CFO position after being named earlier this week. year. Flati is undisputed.
Brian Miller, of Macrum Street in the Dixonville neighborhood, hopes to see himself on the board of directors next year.
The Township of Liverpool has a very active security force, including a full-time police service headed by Chief Jayson Jackson.
The incumbents noted that the department employs full-time police officers and two part-time police officers. Both men said Liverpool Township Police currently do not have body cameras for their officers but are looking to change that.
As Giambroni, who chairs the board of directors, explains, â(Body cameras) would help protect police and citizens from false accusations, allegations of misconduct or abuse. It also increases the transparency and accountability of our officers, (as well as) helps prevent and defuse confrontational situations between officers and civilians. “ In recent years, he adds that the ministry has updated equipment guaranteed through grants, such as bulletproof vests and computers in cruisers – some of which have been funded by taxes.
Miller would also like officers to be offered incentives to enjoy long careers in the township police force. “As far as equipment and services are concerned, agents should have all the training and education they want”, he added.
Bahen, himself a retired township fire chief, says the Township of Liverpool has one of two township-owned fire departments in Columbiana County.
With its LaCroft and Dixonville stations, he said the township funds its departments through levies and recently purchased two new fire trucks (one for each station) which are expected to be delivered around August 2022. Special attention is being paid applications for grants, which allow the department’s equipment to be modernized at low cost to citizens.
Miller agrees this should be a priority, committing to “Become familiar with what is needed and how to further streamline any process to which funding is given.” It is important to keep the equipment up to date and in good repair.
A former township highways employee who now works with the Ohio Department of Transportation, Miller knows firsthand the plight associated with township highways. âThere are approximately 36 miles of township roads that need to be maintained. This is funded by taxpayer dollars. The biggest obstacle is keeping the roads maintained and updated. Some asphalt roads need to be improved. At this time, the equipment was updated. I would keep the roads maintained and the equipment updated.
Bahen agrees that the biggest hurdle is keeping the roads on a schedule to repav them every five to seven years as part of the township budget. âIf we are re-elected, we will receive money from number 2 in 2023, (and) the board wants to use it to re-route Candle and Lantern streets as well as Lighthouse Court. It will cost around $ 140,000 per mile. We only get about $ 122,000 for (complete the job), but this board is going to try to do it.
Giambroni is very appreciative of the township road team, which is doing the job. âWe have to adhere to a strict schedule for road resurfacing. You must or you can lose them. Our road team is second to none. They work well together and are always on top of issues, (knowing) when to make things a priority.
The two directors also praised Zoning Officer Kayla Crowl and Waste Control Supervisor Marion Perkins. Miller agrees that the waste control program needs to work well, and the township is divided on the subject of zoning.
“The job of a leader is to help citizens reach a compromise, so that everyone feels that their opinion is hard and implemented” he explained, adding that while some areas, such as Dairy Lane and around St. John’s Lutheran Church, are zoned, other areas, such as Dixonville or the Shadyside / Campground area are not.
The pandemic has put broadband deserts at the forefront of the conversation in parts of the community, such as for residents of the township campsite. Administrators chose to spend some of its US bailout money to expand coverage in this area, allowing more people to take advantage of Internet access to work and learn from home.
The three trustees agree that it was a good investment.
âWe worked on trying to get broadband about a year ago when COVID broke; (however), at that time, the township did not have the funds to help. When the ARP money came out, it was a way to help residents â, Bahen said.
Giambroni said it was a ” no fuss “, and if there are other areas, administrators will consider this as the cost factor. He was happy that the COVID money was there to help.
Miller also agreed that âExtending coverage (was) a good idea (and the fact that it did) at no cost to taxpayers (was) a bonusâ.
He added that if he was elected to serve, he wants to be accessible to everyone: âI would be open to both the older generation and the younger generation to learn more about the issues and concerns of both. I would (also) like to reach out to the surrounding areas (municipalities) and to the cantons to expand into all areas to work together â, Miller said.
Giambroni concluded that it is important to maintain the current teamwork atmosphere, which includes himself, Burke, Bahen and Flati. âWorking as a team is essential to make the right decisions and get the job done in the canton. We need to be able to discuss and communicate with each other when decisions need to be made. “