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Barnstone residents barn storm city council

June 14, 2017
By J.T. Whitehouse , The Town Crier

The majority of residents from Barnstone Lane attended the June 7 Canfield City Council meeting to gets answers on where they stand regarding drainage and roads.

Public presentation involved several residents who were speaking for the entire street. Barnstone Lane is a private development to the east of Canfield's East Cemetery. The development contains 20 villas and is a cul-de-sac off East Main Street.

The first to speak was Holly Carpenter who is a new member of the Barnstone homeowners association. She said the two big problems involve the road and the drainage.

On the road, the developer signed an agreement to finish the project. That included the final coat of blacktop on the roadway, which presently is below the curb cuts and makes for bumps at the drive entrances. The problem is the development is private and the city is not responsible for the street.

On the drainage issue, all present were complaining about excessively wet back yards. A few yards have tall grass by the open ditch because a mower can't get in to mow.

"We just want to know who we go to with our problem," said Barnstone resident Joan Cianciola. "We paid a lot of money for the villas. It's unfair that I can't go out on my deck for all the mosquitoes."

Zoning Inspector Mike Cook said only two lots have downspouts emptying into East Main Street drains. The remaining 18 homes flow into the open ditch along the back yards. Cook did say the original plan called for the open ditch to be closer to the homes, but the city required it to be moved away from the homes.

"The drainage problem seems to be a volume issue," said City Manager Joe Warino. "We have asked the developer to provide the volume information."

He said so far, no information has been offered. Warino said it may be an issue that ends up in litigation.

Combining the drainage issue with the unfinished road, Carpenter asked if the developer had to put up a bond. Warino replied the developer chose not to, and signed an agreement to finish the roads once the final lot was sold. That agreement goes with the property, which was sold to another local developer.

Councilman Joe LoCicero said, to date, the city has not been able to get a definite yes or no from developer Gene Russo, who was said to be the owner after purchasing 15 of the 20 lots. LoCicero said if the issue is pursued in legal pathways, it could take a lot longer for a resolve.

"I think that just getting the road in before winter simply needs to be done," he said.

Councilman Chuck Tieche said the paving of the road falls on Russo.

"If he purchased 15 of the 20 lots, then he is responsible for the entire street," Tieche said.

Because the issue of the road and drainage falls on the shoulders of the homeowners association, LoCicero asked to have the officers of the association hold a meeting with council to discuss the issues further.

All councilmen agreed the road and the open storm drain were both on private property and were the responsibility of the homeowners association.

On a different issue, Vicki Palmer addressed council regarding businesses advertising on vehicles.

She said a couple of businesses in the city are placing ads on vehicles, then parking them near the street to generate business.

"Some are really pushing the limits with ads on vehicles," she said.

Council President Don Dragish said he already spoke with the business owners in questions and they have received a letter from zoning.

In other business:

Joe LoCicero said he is working at setting up a welcome program. Several businesses have donated coupons or items to go inside a backpack donated by Trailside Bikes. He said when new residents sign up for water, the city will have the new person's address and a police officer can stop by with the backpack of goodies and welcome them to Canfield.

Council approved a resolution to execute and file an application with Eastgate Regional Council of Governments for a grant for the North Broad Street safety lighting project.

Council approved a memorandum of understanding with Mahoning County regarding the 911 dispatch center.

Attorney Joseph Szeman was approved as special council involving the agreements over water from the city of Youngstown.

A motion was approved in a 4-1 vote to enter an agreement with the Mahoning County Agricultural Society regarding a discounted sewer rate from water that would not flow into the sewer system. Chuck Tieche felt one city ordinance may be in conflict.



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