Trumbull to discuss invasive species in Mosquito Lake

Trumbull commissioners to discuss spending $300K to stop spread of hydrilla

WARREN — Trumbull County commissioners are expected to discuss today providing $300,000 needed to stop the spread of hydrilla, an aquatic invasive species, in Mosquito Lake.

Commission President Denny Malloy during Tuesday’s commissioners workshop emphasized the importance of providing the funds so the county can purchase the chemicals needed to stop the spread of the vegetation in the lake, which provides recreational opportunities and drinking water for thousands of area residents.

“Scientists say if we don’t do this now, we’ll have to spend double the amount next year,” he said. “They want to do a treatment in April.”

“If we wait much longer, it will double in the spring,” Malloy said. “If we wait until next spring, it will be $600,000.”

“They wiped it out in the Cleveland Metroparks system,” Malloy said. “It is 80 acres right now. Next year, it will be 160 acres. This costs about $20,000 per gallon to treat this.”

Commissioner Mauro Cantalamessa said it may be spread to other lakes by transporting a slither of it to another location.

“It is really a regional issue,” he said.

Malloy said it is a risk the county has to take.


Commissioners defended last week’s 2-1 vote to allow nonessential employees to end the workday at 2 p.m. Monday to allow them to experience the total solar eclipse. Malloy noted the majority of the 30 counties that are in the eclipse’s path of totality are closing their offices for some portion of the day.

Malloy said Trumbull County is allowing its workers to leave work 2.5 hours earlier than most employees would typically end their day. The workers are using calamity days.

Essential employees — 911 workers, dispatchers, sheriff department patrol office and others — will work their normal shift. Those employees whose normal shift begins at 4:30 p.m. will work their normal shift because the eclipse is expected to be completed. The height of the eclipse is expected to take place in Trumbull County between 3 and 3:15 p.m.

“We are in the zone of totality for the eclipse,” Malloy said. “There are 24 Ohio counties that are shutting down for the whole day and the rest are shutting at noon.”

“All of the counties in the zone are paying their employees,” he said. “This is what I feel is best for employees safety wise and this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

“Any employer in the county can do this,” he said. “I’m standing behind last week’s vote. We made a restriction that is less than what other communities have done.”

The county’s hotels are 85% filled, he said.

“There are people coming here for the eclipse,” he said. “They are expecting 10,000 people coming into our county.”

Human Resources Director Alexandra DeVengencie-Bush said workers will not be able to collect overtime.

Also at the meeting:

l Bill Hart, Trumbull County maintenance, said 14 electric poles at the Trumbull County Fairgrounds need to be replaced or put deeper into holes because all of them are leaning and swaying with high winds. The 30-foot class III poles are only 2 feet in ground.

“The poles are pulling over,” Hart said. “They would hydrovac or hydrojack them.”

The cost will be $40,820. Hart received only one quote for the work, and is looking to get additional quotes.

The commissioners hope to vote on paying for the work during next week’s meeting.

l Bloomfield Township Trustee Roger Peterson asked the commissioners to eliminate a $215,000 American Rescue Plan request to help pay for a new fire station and replace it with a smaller amount to be used for a new ambulance. Commissioners in the last several weeks approved requests from four communities — Bazetta, Braceville, Champion and Girard — for ambulances that had average costs of between $150,000 and $180,000.


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