By: 1808Delaware Staff

During the Monday evening virtual meeting held by Delaware City Council, several city officials shared details of City operations over the time which has passed since Council’s last meeting.

While the mood was generally upbeat, words of caution were also present as the City awaits news on important revenue items.

Among other items, Mayor Carolyn Riggle talked about the status of events taking place this year. Several community gatherings, such as the Delaware Arts Festival, have already been cancelled, and the status of late summer and fall events is unknown at this point, Riggle indicated.

The City has responded to needs and requests, she added, making such moves as to add parking lots for restaurant food pickup, changing due dates, and suspending shutoffs. As for yard waste removal, such services are not possible at the present time, Riggle said, as three City personnel must ride in the same truck. This will be remedied soon with the imminent arrival of additional masks.

The Mayor added a request to residents to please put all trash in designated receptacles and make sure lids close, so staff does not have to come into contact with refuse.

Finance Director Justin Nahvi told Councl that most revenue line items remain strong, with income tax about 3.8% up, property tax revenue up 2%, and utility charges have a 1% increase. More will be known on these after closing of the month takes place after friday. A hardship application will be going on in May utility bills.

City Manager Tom Homan mentioned that work on finalizing the City’s recovery plan is currently underway.

Fire Chief John Donahue shared that operations are going well, and that the Department is waiting on the arrival of surgical masks so that they can take on additional responsibilities such as yard waste removal. 20,000 masks are expected this Friday, with an additional 30,000 on order for City staff, Fire and Police Departments, and patients with whom they come into contact.

No personnel issues are present concerning COVID-19, Police Chief Bruce Pijanowski stated.

Lastly, Economic Development Director Sean Hughes shared the results of a local business survey, which included the following results:

  • 85% of businesses stayed open in full or in part, with only 15% closing entirely.
  • One-third of businesses that closed did so voluntarily; two thirds did so pursuant to orders from the State of Ohio
  • 36% of businesses have not laid off any personnel, with another 36% laying off half to all staff.
  • One fourth of all employers provided some sort of paid leave.

The new Business Recovery Task Force is working on several fronts, including worker safety, meeting new state requirements, patron safety, consumer confidence, business services, and marketing the fact that businesses are still there and open.

Image by Elliot Alderson from Pixabay

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