FAIRBORN – Fairborn City Council voted to adopt an ordinance at its Oct. 5 meeting that would allow the city’s police department to abate individuals if they are found guilty of nuisance crimes.
Chief Terry Barlow of the Fairborn Police Department said it is meant to target felonious drug use.
“The worst thing we could do is use this ordinance [recklessly],” Barlow said. “This ordinance will be used for the betterment and positive outcomes of particular residences and particular apartment complexes.”
If an officer responds to a call and finds felonious drug use, severe alcohol violations, persistent nuisance partying, extreme gambling crimes, prostitution and the housing of thieves, burglars and robbers taking place, the department’s supervisor would then investigate the totality of the situation, including the current incident and the history of the individual.
If they are found guilty, the individual would have 15 days to leave the property, and could not return to the numerical address for 365 days. Barlow said during a recent interview that the department would express zero tolerance for felonious drugs.
“We have a significant drug problem in Fairborn, like every community around here,” Mayor Dan Kirkpatrick said. “We are taking steps to deal with that problem – hiring more police officers, bringing in drug dogs – this is another tool to put in the toolbox to help us fight this drug problem.”
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Council held a public hearing to rezone an area within the 2100 block of Commerce Center Boulevard from industrial research to a planned commercial development for the establishment and operation of a commercial storage facility. Members will vote on the matter during the Oct. 19 meeting.
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In other areas of business, council passed resolutions that would allow the city to apply for grant dollars for upcoming roadway construction, as well as a project that would make roadways more bike-friendly. Funding would not include dollars to go toward bike racks, although internal discussions are taking place regarding the placement of such.
In preparation for the presidential debate next year, the city will move forward with the second phase of the Colonel Glenn Highway project. Construction items include visually enhancing the area with Wright State University in mind. Bidding for construction will take place in January, while it would begin in March. The project is to complete by Sept. 1, 2016.
“The presidential debate is a kick in the rear to get us going on this,” Kirkpatrick said. “I think it’s a great thing … We’re going to have people from all over the world in our city of Fairborn, and they’re going to be going to the Nutter Center to the debate, and anything we can do to put a positive foot forward to turn more heads from the rest of the world, I think it’s a great thing.”
Citizens of Fairborn will see six nuisance properties get demolished, located on Lowell Drive, Salem Avenue, Ohio Street, Funderburg Road, Wilbur Avenue and Marchmont Drive, in hopes of increasing property values, as well as the morale of the neighborhoods and discouraging crimes from taking place. Three of the properties have asbestos present; two of the locations saw deaths take place, therefore it looks as if the individuals left all the furniture as is. The city has demolished 46 properties in the same manner since 2012.
“The entire structure could never be occupied again,” Community Development Director Mike Gebhart said. “What comes along with that – mold damage, theft.”
The city is in the early stages of planning an industrial park at the Interstate 675 and Interstate 70 corridor in hopes of capitalizing on its current assets and making the area as developable as possible. The resolution passed during the Oct. 5 meeting allows officials to make agreements for potential future businesses. The industrial park is estimated to being 1,500 to 2,300 employees to the area.
“This development would bring, let’s say, 2,000 employees to [the area to eat lunch]. Where do they eat lunch? The closest location would be the downtown or Broad Street areas. We’re trying to improve those areas anyways,” Chris Wimsatt, economic development director said. “It naturally helps us bring private sector investment to those areas.”
Council members appointed Paul Keller as the deputy mayor. The appointment comes after the retirement of former deputy mayor James Hapner. Keller frequently encourages citizens to support local businesses during the council comment portion of regular meetings. Councilman Rob Hoffman made the initial nomination.
Whitney Vickers can be reached by calling her directly at 937-502-4532. Readers can also follow her on Twitter by searching for @wnvickers. For more content online, visit our website or like our Facebook page.