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Prepare for the worst: Motter says village school should be ready for shooting

February 28, 2012

Waynesfield Police Chief Nathan Motter

WAYNESFIELD — Waynesfield Police Chief Nathan Motter told Waynesfield Village Council members it was time to develop a contingency plan in case of a violent school event.

Motter said he contacted Waynesfield-Goshen High School Principal T.J. Winkler Monday after a gunman opened fire inside a high school cafeteria in Chardon at the start of the school day, wounding three students, two of whom later died. A suspect, now reported as being a 17-year old student, was arrested a short distance away. The school is approximately 30 miles east of Cleveland.

Motter said that after talking with the principal, they had decided it was best to meet with Wayne Township Fire and Rescue personnel and other first responders to develop a plan should a similar event happen in Waynesfield.

“We received several phone calls and e-mails today after the event happened,” Motter said.

“Our schools are the most susceptible places to this.”

Motter said he would be willing to meet with a representative of the school and the fire department as well as other agencies to develop a plan in case an event would take place.

“We want to discuss pertinent issues for these entities and the roles they would assume should a violent school event take place,” Motter said.

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent a letter of findings to the village saying improvements needed to be made to the village’s sanitary sewer system.

Fanning/Howey and Associates representative Craig Mescher said it was possible that improvements could be made to the village’s current system, helping the village financially.

“I have taken a look and it is possible that changes be made without replacing the sewer system,” Mescher said, “but the EPA is saying you need to tell them what action you are going to take.”

Mescher said the main problem has been with the two lagoons only being approximately 6 feet deep, which has prevented enough room for the lagoons to not have enough room for its three levels The shallowness of the lagoons is not allowing the sludge to be processed by bacteria and other natural agents.

Mescher said that zero percent loans are available to do a study for the improvements. The money used for the study can be rolled over to pay for the sanitary sewer improvements after a plan is put in place, he said.

“We are not going to be able to get grants to pay for the entire project,” Mescher said.

Councilors tentatively planned to apply for the loan after further investigation and develop a n improvement plan.

While water levels are easily testing at safe levels, Village Administrator Fred Rowe told councilors now was the time to replace the iron filter for the village’s water system.

The current filter was installed in 1993. The life expectancy is approximately 12 years. The new filter is expected to cost approximately $24,000.

“It is just a normal part of maintenance,” Rowe said.

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