Oil, gas boom may lift Cadiz to city status

CADIZ – Village council received an update on oil and gas progress in the county Thursday from Rich Milleson, economic coordinator for the Cadiz Community Improvement, who stated that the MarkWest project is on schedule to begin production by the end of the year and Chevron has announced it is looking for venues to locate field offices in the area.

Milleson predicted that the growth in the area from the shale boom will increase the population of the village of just more than 3,000 residents more than 5,000 in as little as two years and change the status back to a city. Milleson also expressed concern that the village is not prepared for the growth and that potentially could deter potential development.

“We are currently locked and cannot add any new sewer hook-ups, we can not afford the gradual upgrade of the system,” Milleson said. “We have local land owners and business wanting to develop land, put in housing and apartment complexes but we can not accommodate them.”

Village Solicitor Costa Mastros addressed the issue telling council that ongoing discussions between the village and Kokosing regarding a plan to fund replacement of Cadiz’s antiquated sewer system could be reaching a conclusion.

“The original deal had the water and sewer programs interlocked,” Mastros explained. “The new proposal allows us the option to split the two programs.”

“I feel that they are moving our way,” Mastros added. “We are beginning phase I with the North Trunk Line project which will rehabilitate or replace the existing sewer transmission line.”

“The water sales will create revenue will defer the cost and fund Phase II but the sewer plant construction or Phase III will require a loan or grants to accomplish.”

Mayor Ken Zitko assured Milleson that in the two months since the packets were first delivered council has been working diligently with the EPA and Kokosing to facilitate the project. “This is a very significant investment,” said Zitko. “We are locked into a commitment and a timeline and we will most likely vote on the master agreement next meeting.”

“We have the option separating out the water and waste water agreement,” Mastros explained that under the new conditions, the master agreement would not commit the village to any path. “I will meet with the steering committee Monday and next meeting we can vote on the agreement.”

“We also have the right to refuse or ask for further explanation on any amendment or addendum.” Mastros said.

“The situation is getting critical,” Kenny Mason of the Cadiz CIC echoed Milleson’s concerns. “We have to move on our findings and orders,”

At the recommendation of Mastros ordinance 2012-19 was pushed forward to accommodate part of phase I of the sewer project. “It is a standard road use agreement with Stock Township.

There will be a pre-bid meeting on the North Trunk Line on Oct. 23 and bids will be opened on Nov. 7.

Council also heard from Greg Foxx representing Frontier presenting a proposal for a new phone system.

Amy Ossman, village Clerk-Treasurer explained that the current system is antiquated and the current telephone employees have to call in retired personnel to repair the outdated equipment.

“We have dropped calls and problems communicating between departments,” Ossman stated.

The new system will feature 14 digital 12 button phones on a system handling up to 100 stations. The system will link the village offices, police department, parks and water departments.

Foxx recommended the village use the dollar out capital lease program and agreed to send a contract to Mastros who will prepare an ordinance for the next meeting.

Nip Mattern, owner of Mattern Tire located at 349 Lincoln Avenue in Cadiz asked council for advice on changing the zoning of the adjoining residence he owns from R1 to C1.

Mattern stated his intentions were to raze the house and build a new garage on the lot then tear down his current garage to accommodate additional parking.

Mayor Zitko referred the matter to the zoning board of appeals.

Councils next regular meeting will be held Nov. 1 at 7 p.m.

Palmer may be reached at mpalmer@timesleaderonline.com