BG plans ahead for another water treatment reservoir

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Bowling Green officials plan to spend $220,000 to buy some acreage for another water treatment reservoir. A few years ago, the city purchased 76 acres on Hull Prairie Road with the thought of putting another reservoir there in the future. The one problem was a house that sat on four acres in the center of the acreage at 23134 Hull Prairie Road. But the owner of the house, Jay Largent, has now asked if the city is interested in purchasing his house and the four acres for the appraised price of $220,000. The Board of Public Utilities voted Monday evening to do so. “This could be advantageous for us,” Director of Public Utilities Brian O’Connell said, explaining that 80 acres is much more desirable than 76 acres with a house in the middle. “It does give us a more viable site for a reservoir.” A larger reservoir would provide additional raw water storage as well as better quality raw water to the plant. Until the new reservoir is needed and the house is demolished, the city may rent it out to make some income. Or the city may trade the land for other acreage closer to the water treatment plant that is four miles away from the Hull Prairie acreage. According to O’Connell, there’s enough money for the land acquisition in the 2017 Water & Sewer Capital Improvement Fund. Also at Monday’s meeting, the board of public utilities voted to enter an agreement with the Wood County Port Authority to help extend services to a new portion of the Woodbridge Business Park….

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Seniors over 90 celebrate their secrets to long lives

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   The seniors got all gussied up Monday to celebrate their longevity and share more than nine decades of stories. The wall was lined with walkers as they sat around tables and caught up with old friends. “We want to celebrate the residents of Wood County who are 90-plus,” said Alisha Nenadovich, sales manager at Brookdale, as she pinned corsages onto each senior who entered. “It gives them a chance to see people they don’t normally see,” but people who they attended school or church with decades ago, Nenadovich said. This was the sixth year of the 90-plus Spectacular sponsored by several senior organizations and held at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Bowling Green. In many ways it was like a reunion for the 75 seniors. “Longevity is something we want to celebrate,” said Danielle Brogley, director of programs with the Wood County Committee on Aging. Two of the attendees were over the century mark. Elfreda Rusher, 100, was a business education professor at Bowling Green State University. Lucille Wood, 101, worked as a manager for United Savings. Certificates were handed out by city and county officials to each of the seniors over age 90. Sheriff Mark Wasylyshyn joked that his presence was required because of two women at one table who were sweet on the same man decades ago. One ended up as his wife. “There may be a fight breaking out,” he said, smiling. “I’m here to keep the peace.” As each senior was recognized, facts about their lives were read to the crowd. Several had marriages that lasted longer than…


What’s happening in your community (updated May 22)

NEWLY POSTED: Habitat for Humanity plans Home Builders Blitz, May 25 On May 25, professional homebuilders, families, and community supporters will join with Habitat for Humanity of Wood County to celebrate and raise funds for the 2017 Home Builders Blitz. In 2017, the Home Builders Blitz will help more than 200 families from across the country build strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter. Locally, Habitat for Humanity of Wood County and professional homebuilders will help two area families build a place they can call home. The public is encouraged to attend the event on May 5, starting at 6 p.m., at Buffalo Wild Wings, 1550 E. Wooster St., Bowling Green, with 15 percent of sales going to support Wood County Habitat. Habitat homeowners help build their own homes alongside volunteers and pay an affordable mortgage. Since its inception, Habitat for Humanity of Wood County has built 35 homes.   NEWLY POSTED: Wood County Historical Center lists June events During June, the following events are scheduled at the Wood County Historical Center: Power of Yesteryear Tractor Show – June 3 & 4 Mommy & Me – June 7 WWI Fashion Tea – June 8 (sold out) Wood County Employee Picnic & Safety Fair – June 13 Amateur Radio & Log Cabin Demonstration Days – June 24 & 25 Checkers Car Wash celebrates grand opening, May 26 A Ribbon Cutting Ceremony to celebrate the grand opening of Checkers Express Car Wash will be held May 26, 11 a.m. at 1033 S. Main St., Bowling Green. RSVPs are appreciated by contacting Marissa Muniz at MarissaMuniz@bgchamber.net or by calling the Bowling Green Chamber at (419)…


Kroger adds finishing touch to new marketplace

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The transformation of the Kroger Store on North Main Street into a Kroger Marketplace has been a work in progress for all, employees and customers, alike to see and experience. And that experience has been trying at times, conceded store manager Kim Richmond. Every day the store’s associates had to answer queries. Where’s the bread today? And for her it meant late night calls reporting problems at the store. Once it was even a fire. Turned out to be a minor blaze. As a bright new produce section opened up in the north end, in the south end other sections looked like a grocery store in a sci-fi dystopia. On Wednesday the Marketplace put those day behind it. Everything is bright and new. The shelves are packed, and the aisles lined with folks offering free tastes of some of the store’s new products – fried Japanese peppers, all-beef hot dogs and more. There’ll even be a new service starting Thursday that those befuddled customers of a few weeks back would have appreciated – ClickList, a service that allows customers to shop online, drive to the store and have their groceries delivered to them while they wait outside, never having to get out of their cars. The marketplace will also offer The Little Clinic, staffed by nurse practitioners, who will be able to diagnose, treat, and prescribed medications for common illnesses. The store features an extensive deli and cheese area. Roberts, who grew up in Pemberville, started her career at Kroger as a meat counter clerk in 1994. Times and expectations of customers have changed….


BG demands answers to questions about pipeline

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Last week’s pipeline panel discussion raised questions that Bowling Green officials want answered. “We’ve all been wrestling with this,” Mayor Dick Edwards said Monday evening as he sought council input on the letter he penned. The letter received support from council, including an endorsement from member Daniel Gordon, who called it “strongly and appropriately worded.” The letters will be sent to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman, U.S. Rep. Bob Latta and Nexus pipeline. Slightly modified letters will also be sent to State Senator Randy Gardner, State Rep. Theresa Gavarone, Ohio EPA, Ohio Department of Natural Resources and possibly PUCO. Gordon said the lack of deadlines for the pipeline makes it difficult for those objecting to the project. “It’s a source of a great deal of frustration,” Edwards said. The decision rests with the federal government. “It’s frustrating for municipalities to take on the federal government.” The mayor stressed the need to send the letter as soon as possible. “We are trying to establish a record of concern,” he said. “We will try our best to keep pressing the issues.” Edwards also expressed concerns about the pipeline company, which refuses to answer questions about the project. “I’m disappointed with the Nexus group.” Gordon suggested the city add a timetable to the letter, and warn that the city will take the next step if questions are answered adequately. Even if there is a low probability of getting the pipeline rerouted, “it’s worth taking that chance.” Because of possible threats to the city’s water treatment plant, the city…


BG Schools hears good financial news, hires new athletic director

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   The Bowling Green Board of Education was rich with good news Tuesday evening. The board members learned the district’s finances have taken a turn for the better. They voted to hire the varsity football coach as the athletic director. And they handed out awards for everything from art and math to clean kitchens. Adam Dirk Conner, high school math teacher and varsity football coach, was hired as the athletic director with a salary of $72,500. Conner said after the meeting that he plans to continue coaching football.  His goals as athletic director include supporting the coaches and athletes, plus work toward improving the athletic facilities. Conner said he also supports drug testing of athletes, which the board has discussed. “I’m all in favor of it,” he said. District Treasurer Rhonda Melchi presented the district’s five-year forecast – with some good news. “We’re more confident our state funding will be more stable,” Melchi said. Meanwhile, the district saw its expenditures drop as new people were hired at lower rates than retiring teachers, fewer employees were on family insurance, and the worker’s compensation expenses were lower than expected. Melchi said she is still projecting a deficit in 2020, “but it’s not near as big,” she said. “We’ve done a good job managing taxpayers’ dollars,” Scruci said after the meeting. “We’re happy where we are,” though nothing is certain until after the state budget is done. Melchi also presented numbers to the board about the loss seen when students living in the district go to school elsewhere. The statistics showed $283,677 leaving the district for…


BGSU opens its checkbook as part of state treasurer’s program

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News   If you want to know how much Bowling Green State University spends at the Cookie Jar, you now have the tool to tell you. BGSU became the first of its peers among state universities to post a list of the checks it issues on line. Tuesday President Mary Ellen Mazey and State Treasurer Josh Mandel announced that BGSU’s Ohio Checkbook page was live, allowing anyone to peruse the more than 27,000 individual transactions, amounting to more than $39 million that the university made in fiscal year 2015. Those do not include paychecks. “Starting today,” Mandel said, “taxpayers, students, and families will be able to follow the money.” “As someone who used to work with a lot of local governments I think it’s paramount for all of us to make sure we’re completely transparent,” Mazey said. “It’s not our funds; it’s the taxpayers’ funds and in our case, students’ and their parents’ funds.” Mandel launched the effort in 2014, posting the check information for state agencies, including his own. One agency, JobsOhio, a private economic development agency set up by Gov. John Kasich, is a holdout. Mandel, who is running for U.S. Senate, said he believes that information should be available. After the state, Mandel reached out to cities,villages, townships, and school districts. The program is not mandated, he said. He’s looking for “partners.” The move into higher education is the next step. He described BGSU as “the pointy edge of the spear” will help encourage other institutions to follow its lead and post on OhioCheckbook. OhioCheckbook sites for Central State and Central Ohio…