A SMALL price to pay for a better Bellaire has unfortunately been laid to rest.
Two weeks ago, a village councilman proposed a $6 monthly fee be implemented to create funds to help operate the All-American Town. I was very supportive of that motion, as it would have generated possibly $140,000 a year.
That is a staggering amount, a total which could have done wonders in Bellaire if utilized properly.
Great idea right?
Unfortunately, that great idea is not a legal one.
Village council was made aware of that setback this past Thursday. I don't know if it would have ever come to fruition, but the $6 fee was a sensible and cost-efficient way to revitalize the city.
With that scenario no longer possible, council opted, after much debate and a second vote, to implement a $3 a month "utility/lighting fee." A similar proposal was introduced a month ago as a street light fee.
While the "utility/lighting fee" carries with it a much smaller price tag, I am not supportive of it.
It does create a windfall to ease financial burdens in some village departments, but is utility based. The fee will begin taking effect with the December water billing.
That being the case, I expect to see quick results -- that being more and brighter street lights in operation throughout the village -- especially in the West Bellaire section, which features many darkened areas.
One good aspect of the new fee is that village council will meet in November of 2011 to review its effectiveness.
THE FEEL good story known as Bellaire High football this fall continues to impress more and more. The upstart Big Reds of Jose Davis posted another eye-opening win Friday night, disposing of a quality Indian Creek team at Wintersville. Creek entered the season harboring post-season aspirations.
The Big Reds are a surprising 6-3.
Prior to the season, many expected the Reds to be capable of possibly just two or three wins. No more. After having their lunch handed to them in the opener against Wheeling Central, doom and gloom enveloped the Reds' expectations for the campaign.
What Davis, his staff and players have accomplished is truly remarkable.
The pride is back within the program and now the annual SPARKY showdown with Martins Ferry again takes on the luster and excitement of days past. If the Reds could have caught a break last week against Edison, they would be in playoff talk this week.
Regardless of the outcome against the Purple Riders Friday night, Davis should receive EVERY coach-of-the-year award he is eligible for.
BARNESVILLE NATIVE Tom Harp was inducted into the Muskingum University Athletic Hall of Fame last weekend.
Harp was a key member of the 1949 and 1950 Muskingum grid teams that captured Ohio Athletic Conference titles. In 1949 he was a two-way standout at fullback and defensive back while in 1950 he starred at defensive back and quarterback.
After his playing days, Harp enjoyed a successful coaching career.
In 1954 he guided Massillon to the state football championship. His high school coaching prowess proved a springboard to the collegiate ranks. Harp owns the distinction of the youngest Ivy League head grid coach (33) at Cornell and the ACC (38) at Duke. Harp is also the omly man to coach both Army and Navy.
The 1945 Barnesville High graduate was in town this summer as that class observed its 65th anniversary. He is the son of Frank and Esther Harp, both deceased, but his sister -- Marjorie Plumly is a real estate agent who still lives in Barnesville.
MARTINS FERRY Chamber of Commerce held its monthly meeting Tuesday. It was reported that last weekend's Tour of Churches was a major success. It was also noted that anyone wishing to order Koeze Nuts, needs to do so by Nov. 1 The chamber may be reached by calling 633-2565.
THE FIFTH Annual Boo in the Park is planned in Bellaire for Wednesday, Oct. 27 from 6-8 p.m. The event is open to all children age 12 and under who reside or go to school in Bellaire. Station sponsors are still needed and anyone wishing to do so should call LouAnn Bennett at 740-676-4817. Some 600 youths are expected to take part
I BLOGGED recently on Ohio State's setback against Wisconsin. It came as no surprise losing at Madison. The tone was set on the opening kickoff, returned for a Badger TD. The Buckeyes battled uphill the balance of the night. All is not lost in BuckeyeLand, however. OSU dropped to 11th in the AP poll and have the ability -- with much help -- to become a factor in the national title hunt. A win at Iowa is a must for that to happen.
ALTHOUGH his Browns suffered defeat, I was impressed with how Colt McCoy handled himself in his pro debut against the Steelers. If I was Browns' head coach Eric Mangini, I would stick with the rookie quarterback instead of bouncing back and forth.
THE BELLAIRE Octoberfest celebration continues to experience growing success. It was reported at Thursday's chamber meeting that the third annual Octoberfest enjoyed its most profitable event ever.
As a result, some 80 needy youths in the Bellaire School District will benefit, as the Octoberfest's proceeds are targeted to provide winter clothing for underprivileged children.
Kapral may be reached at bkapral@timesleader online.com