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Poland Village turns to finances

POLAND — Village council canceled its regular meeting on Tuesday and scheduled a special meeting in its place to discuss finances and what the future may have in store for the village.

Council President Mike Thompson said Celebrate Poland officially has been canceled as has the Memorial Day parade. That left the Poland Junior Women’s League concerned about whether to plan anything for the summer concerts on the Green. Thompson said they asked him about having a shortened version of the concerts, perhaps in August.

Police Chief Russ Beatty said Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine would be weighing in on entertainment and what could and couldn’t happen this summer.

Village solicitor Jay Macejko said he thought it may be possible.

“If social distancing were practiced, I think we could see these events take place,” he said.

Beatty gave a brief report on police activity in the past month. He said it has been quiet because of the stay-at- home order.

As for the Western Reserve Joint Fire District, Councilman Anthony Lattanzio reported the district had stocked up on personal protective equipment and was in good shape.

Councilwoman Martha Morgan said the finance committee met April 28 and fiscal officer Robert Canter gave a few projections as to what the future may hold.

“Taxes come due in August and February,” Morgan said, “We could see a decrease in revenues, and in February of 2021 we could see an affect to our budget. The state said to watch August and February finances to help prepare.”

She said the gas tax is already having an effect and is $1,200 down as of last month. She added that license plate fees are also down, but she expects that to pick up when the state reopens the Bureau of Motor Vehicles this month.

As for August’s real estate tax collection, Canter said it is hard to predict what is going to happen.

“If I am without work for three months and it comes down to paying my taxes or providing food for my family, I am going for the food,” Canter said.

One of the items Morgan said to consider putting on hold was the village’s strategic plan. She said the plan was to have a booth set up at Celebrate Poland to introduce the project to residents. Since that is not going to happen, she recommended putting it off until 2021.

In other business, council approved a resolution requesting the Mahoning County auditor to certify the current tax evaluation for the purpose of passing a 2-mill renewal levy for roads and bridges.

Council members approved holding a regular village meeting on May 19 as there are several issues to be voted on, including police department hiring. It would still be on Zoom and will not include a 7 p.m. caucus, just a regular meeting beginning at 7:30 p.m.

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