FAIRBORN — Fairborn Mayor Paul Keller declared May as Miami Valley Military History Museum Month, as the organization seeks public support to bring the museum to Fairborn.
The purpose of the proclamation is to encourage Fairborn residents to support the museum’s move to the city, the process of which currently depends on raising the appropriate funds.
“We would really like to be your neighbor. We have a lot to offer you, and we want to serve you,” museum curator Mark Conrad said Monday.
The museum is hosting additional fundraising events the rest of this month, including a silent auction on Saturday, May 15 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the Fairborn Senior Center. Tickets are $5 in advance and at the door.
Sixth grader Felix Sun spoke during public comments at the council meeting as well, asking the council to recognize and celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month. Sun and his mother, Jing Zhao, presented ideas for the city to celebrate the occasion, including events at the library and schools.
“Many Asian Americans live in fear, not only because of the pandemic but because of violence perpetrated against AAPI communities. Our schools should teach young people about the history of the AAPI communities, their struggles and contributions to American society,” Zhao said in her comments.
The council applauded Sun for his courage in public speaking, and Keller gave him the city’s challenge coin once the meeting adjourned.
“Currently in school, his class is learning about how the government works,” Zhao said afterwards. “This was also a good opportunity for him to see what local government looks like as well.”
City council unanimously passed an ordinance to decrease the Enterprise Management Fee (EMFee) charged to the sanitation fund from 20 percent to 10 percent for 2021 and 2022. The ordinance also eliminates the quarterly deposit requirement, an action that will avoid raising sanitation fees to residents for the time being.
Sanitation services provided by the city’s sanitation fund include waste removal, landfill monitoring and maintenance, and street sweeping. Per its existing contract, the current rate for services is not sufficient to cover the cost, according to a presentation by Finance Director Randy Groves.
A sanitary utility must be self supporting, according to codified ordinance, and user rates must cover cost of operations. As an alternative to raising the rates charged to citizens, the city is pursuing a temporary reduction to the EMFee.
“2021 is not the right time,” Groves said. “With the COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on residents, we’re looking at alternatives to raising fees.
According to the presentation, every year the EMFee is reduced to 10% delays need for rate increase for citizens out to another year. This temporary reduction for 2021 and 2022 delays a need for sanitation rate increase to 2023, a likely increase of just over three dollars.
The council also approved an acquisition of a parcel of land by BW Greenway, located between East Dayton Yellow Springs Road and Beavercreek city limits. BW Greenway is applying for CleanOhio grant funding for acquisition and conservation of the land. The money will go towards purchasing the property, adding a parking lot, and removing invasive species. BW Greenway will also acquire about four acres near the end of Graceland Drive, though grant funding for that parcel will be only for acquisition.