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Wadsworth targets trees touching power lines

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WADSWORTH — City Council took action Tuesday night on a housekeeping matter with electrifying implications.

Tree trimming is a typical city operation, but Service Director Robert Patrick said fallen tree branches are the most significant causes of power outages in the city.

As such, while Council passed multiple ordinances pertaining to the city’s service department during its regular meeting, one was to authorize Patrick to advertise for and receive bids for “tree trimming and tree removal for electric line clearance”

“It is really a great thing that we can do to prevent outages,” Patrick said.

At-Large Councilwoman Patty Haskins asked during the meeting if trees that are on private property but have branches hanging over power lines can be treated by the city.

“It could be that, but we also have some areas where we have backyard facilities,” Patrick said. “We have easements on all those areas if it is not in the public right-of -way.”

Council also voted unanimously to purchase an automated refuse collection vehicle through the Ohio Department of Administrative Services.

“We had budgeted $275,000 and it is coming in just under $260,000,” Patrick said during the committee-of-the-whole meeting immediately preceding Council.

According to the draft legislation, the truck will include body and chassis by Freightliner and a “refuse collection body equipment package” through Bell Equipment Company.

This is in addition to signing off on a contract for the removal of “sludge” collected from the wastewater treatment plant and to advertise for and award bids for the purchase of needed chemicals.

“That is an annual item for requirements of different departments for chemical supplies,” Patrick said.

“We do this typically every year, water plant, water treatment plant, we put a package together and go out to bid and we award to the lowest and best,” Patrick added.

City officials will also purchase a Freightliner cab and chassis with snow and ice removal equipment and a knuckle-boom loader grapple truck.

Patrick said the city budgeted $175,000 for the snow and ice vehicle.

“We made the decision to go with a tandem axle to get some greater volume, some greater capacity for both hauling in the spring, summer and fall and then for snow and ice operations,” he said.

According to the ordinance, $146,000 has been budgeted for the grapple truck.

Patrick said the vehicle will feature a crane system and claw that will allow city employees to remove large debris more easily.

“It is really to keep our employees safer,” Patrick said.

Contact reporter Nathan Havenner at nhavenner@medina-gazette.com.
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