Steps taken toward new offices

Geauga County Commissioners took steps Tuesday to begin a move toward constructing new county offices.

Commissioners agreed to seek requests for qualifications for a construction manager at risk and an owner’s representative for the construction of new county offices. Submissions are due by Dec. 6.

The commissioners began looking at constructing new offices after evaluating existing offices and finding them lacking in efficiency and security.

Although county officials have proposed moving the Geauga County Courthouse and county offices from Chardon Square, Chardon city officials have voiced their objections to the move.

Road projects planned

The Geauga County Engineer’s Office has begun planning its road projects for next year.

Deputy Engineer Shane Hajjar received Geauga County Commissioners unanimous approval to proceed with projects for Auburn and Bell roads in Auburn and Newbury townships as well as Caves Road in Russell and Chester townships.

The roadwork on Auburn Road will extend from Franks Road to Kinsman Road (Route 87) and along Bell Street from Munn Road to Auburn Road. The Caves Road work will extend from Kinsman Road to Mayfield Road (Route 322). Both projects will proceed in 2020 and traffic will be maintained during the repaving.

In addition, Mr. Hajjar said, two bridge reconstruction projects are also planned. The Taylor Wells Road bridge in Claridon Township will be replaced as will a Thompson Road bridge in Thompson Township.

The bridge work will proceed in late 2020 or early 2021, Mr. Hajjar said. Both projects will require road closings and detours, he said.

Making school bus safety a priority

Schools and communities across Ohio are promoting bus safety Oct. 21-25 for National School Bus Safety Week, according to the Ohio School Boards Association. In Ohio, 800,000 children take school buses to and from their places of education, proving that transportation plays a vital role in education.

OSBA heard from approximately 5,000 bus drivers across Ohio that about 1,500 car and truck drivers passed buses illegally in one day alone. Drivers ignored red lights and stop signs on the buses, and disregarded the Ohio laws that require them to stop. When motorists deliberately drive around a stopped bus, it puts students in danger, according to OSBA.

OSBA said that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has reported that students are 70 times safer taking the bus to school than traveling by car. The School Bus Safety Week is designed to reassure parents and students that this mode of transportation continues to be the safest by informing community members that there is always time to stop for a school bus.

County OKs new recycling center

Geauga County Commissioners sealed the deal Tuesday to bring a household hazardous waste disposal and recycling collection center to the county.

Commissioners unanimously approved a lease agreement with Geauga Trumbull Solid Waste Management District for a 4.02-acre parcel of land on Merritt Road. The waste management district will pay $1 per year until Dec. 31, 2040. Two, five-year options at $1 per year are also part of the lease.

Geauga residents currently have to travel to Warren in Trumbull County to dispose hazardous waste.

Commissioners must still put out bids for construction of the facility.

Commissioner James Dvorak said the facility will likely open mid-summer next year.

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