MECHANICSBURG – Village Council on Monday took a step forward in its attempt to address the mounds of boxes filled with paper records that’s been accumulating in village-owned buildings since 1987 by establishing the Mechanicsburg Records Commission.

“We have boxes upon boxes upon boxes (of records) that need to be disposed of properly,” Village Administrator April Huggins-Davis said. “I’m going through the boxes and inventorying what we have. It’s a long process because it has never been done.”

Village Solicitor Joe Jimenez informed council the first step toward properly handling the records is to establish a records commission, which council agreed to form. The newly established commission consists of Fiscal Officer Dan Eck, council member Charles Foss, Huggins-Davis and Jimenez.

According to the Ohio Revised Code, the function of a records commission is to provide rules for retention and disposal of records and to review applications for one-time disposal of obsolete records.

Huggins-Davis said some records, such as personnel records, need to be kept for a long time, while others can be disposed of after a few years or after examined by an auditor.

Huggins-Davis added permission for the one-time disposal of records needs to be approved by the county auditor and county historical society before they can be shredded.

In other business:

•To move forward with the Water Distribution Improvement Project (water main replacement), council passed a motion to spend $5,400 for a Permit-to-Install (PIT) through the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.

“It’s a fee based on the cost of the project, and we’ve done it for all the other projects we’ve had,” Huggins-Davis said. “It’s part of the application process for OPWC (Ohio Public Works Commission) and OWDA (Ohio Water Development Authority). If we have the Permit-to-Install prior to putting in the funding application, it gives us some extra points, and we might get funded.”

•Following discussion on the Zika virus, council agreed to have Huggins-Davis look into the possibility of hiring a company to spray for mosquitoes this year.

“We usually don’t spray because the only mosquitoes that the spray gets are the ones that happen to be out,” Huggins-Davis said. “We haven’t sprayed in years, but we may want to reconsider this year.

“The best protection is to keep standing water away from your house, wear proper clothing and use DEET,” she added.

•Council member Bill Farley agreed to purchase, based on a request from EMS Chief Steve Castle, two new hallway doors in the municipal building for the entrances to the Mechanicsburg Fire & EMS office and bay.

•Foss informed council several residents expressed concerns over high schoolers speeding down East Race Street after school. Mechanicsburg Police Department Sgt. Jeremy Nangle said the concerns will be addressed.

•Four Dumpsters will be available to village residents at the Street Department building on Mill Street from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on April 30 for the annual spring community cleanup.

By Joshua Keeran

Joshua Keeran may be reached at 937-652-1331 (ext. 1774) or on Twitter @UDCKeeran.