In light of this November's scheduled Springboro schools renewal levy, a new attempt at a Clearcreek fire levy has been postponed until spring 2014 as to not create heightened stress within the community. According to our township trustees, Clearcreek Fire District's Chief Kidd now has a green light to begin a spending spree of over $7 million in Fire District surplus funds. Hey! Wait a minute! Isn't the annual operation budget of Clearcreek Fire District less than $7 million? Shouldn't us taxpayers be asking to have back some if not all of that $7 million? Knowing that he has this $7 million budget surplus to play with, please call Chief Kidd directly and ask him why he wants to shut down the fire station on SR 48. Such a closure would appear to be less about budget finances and more about intimidating the voter.<quoted text>
...and where have you been since May of this year, when the taxpayers proved to the Township government leaders that NO
ADDITIONAL LEVY IS NEEDED to provide public safety services.
We are now learning that the fire chief needs some training in fiscal responsibility; Mr. Kidd needs our help to help him learn how to budget priorities, working more efficiently for the public that he loves to "help."
CLEARCREEK TWP., Ohio - Trustees in Clearcreek Twp. - third among 11 Warren County townships in net property taxes - disagree about asking voters for an additional 4.5-mill levy to fund fire protection and ambulance services.
Join the discussion below, or Read more at EMS1.
#1914 Jul 17, 2013
#1915 Jul 17, 2013
If you were there at the township meeting, you would not be asking these questions now....they are going to be spending some of the that surplus to delay putting the levy back on the ballot in May of next year. A delay tactic by Wade, sure...but it's also a delay of them taking our money now. Stop being an armchair general and get more involved.
#1916 Jul 17, 2013
So sad...Bernie must be hard up. Seems there isn't much for a washed up fire chief to do than stalk Topix all day. Seems to have a hard on for the mayor too. I was taught to respect our veterans. What a piece of work!
#1917 Jul 17, 2013
Agenbroad disgraced the Marines and Springboro with his lies..." I was a silver star winner. "
#1918 Jul 17, 2013
Becker disgraced our community by improper touching of his staff, inappropriate behavior with members of the community, abuse of power and lack of operational knowledge, skills and abilities during emergency incidents...I personally watched him basically burn one of our neighbors homes down at the corner of Lytle and Sycamore Springs Dr.
The two don't compare. Becker ran to Cleveland when he realized he was about to be fired. At least Agenbroad has served our country and our community for years and still continues to do so.
#1919 Jul 17, 2013
Agenbroad continues to corrupt this community with his union money, thus buying influence...he acts like he was the only one that served this country. He wears his service on his sleeve.
#1922 Jul 18, 2013
I'd say his involvement in veterans issues speaks for itself. Seems every city event has some show of respect for the veterans in attendance. Veterans day and memorial day have always been special to me because my father has passed now but previously served in Korea. You may disagree with him politically, and that's fine, but he does a better job than most respecting our service members.
Bernie Becker was a marine too. It was somewhat funny that he was kicked out of the fire department, because he was kicked out of the marines too. He's one of the very few people who served in the marines who is actually an "ex-marine".
#1923 Jul 18, 2013
They had to put off the levy until Spring. They couldn't spend all their surpluss cash by November!
#1924 Jul 18, 2013
Seems Bernie has tucked his tail between his legs...maybe Janice tugged the leash?
#1925 Jul 20, 2013
heard that the mayor is supporting shelia lairson over his one time buddy david vomacka. Shows one how the mayor's loyalty can flip over at any time. Always watch your back with the mayor...he's a crook.
#1926 Jul 29, 2013
Township hotbed for public meetings issues July 27, 2013
CLEARCREEK TWP., Warren County
Clearcreek Twp. trustees are headed back to court in a lawsuit accusing them of “regularly and systematically” meeting in violation of public meetings law.
Separately, a local lawmaker is moving forward with a bill in part designed to prevent elected officials in Ohio from holding “pre-meeting meetings” like those forming the basis for the lawsuit.
At issue is when private discussions between elected officials violate Ohio open-meetings law.
Township resident Jack Chrisman’s lawyers filed the lawsuit in July 2011, claiming Trustee Ed Wade and former Trustee Dr. Gregory McDonald met with former Trustee Dennis Lamb in November 2009 and February 2010 without notifying the public.
Chrisman claimed the meetings were attempts to convince Lamb to resign before the end of his term, opening the seat for McDonald.
After Lamb retired, McDonald did not run for his seat. Trustee Jason Gabbard won the election, defeating four other candidates, including Chrisman and Russell Jones.
State Sen. Shannon Jones, a Republican who is married to Russell Jones, plans to seek a hearing with the Ohio Senate’s State Government Oversight & Reform Committee on S.B. 93, a bill calling for changes that would bar privately held, pre-arranged meetings by elected officials.
“We have to err on the side of the public’s right to know and work around those practical challenges. That’s how you preserve the public’s engagement in their government, that’s how you preserve their confidence in their government,” she said.
Last week, lawyers for the trustees and township resident Chrisman scheduled a final hearing on Dec. 20 and a two day trial on Jan. 30-Jan. 31 in Warren County Common Pleas Court to determine whether the meetings — which the trustees and administrators admit to holding — violate Ohio Sunshine Law.
The 12th District Court of Appeals ordered Judge James Flannery to hold a trial to decide whether the meetings were more than informal gatherings limited to gathering information, rather than sessions where decisions were made beyond the eyes of the public.
“Reasonable minds could differ as to whether the discussions at the pre-meeting meetings were prearranged and extended beyond information-gathering and into deliberations,” the 12th District Court of Appeals said in its decision.
The trustees and their lawyer have said they respect the need for open meetings and records. However, they say the standards set by Chrisman’s lawsuit and Jones’ bill will inhibit local officials taking care of government business.
“I think that they’re overzealous,” lawyer John Smith said, pointing to the cost of the Chrisman lawsuit in time and legal fees.“It’s done nothing but suck money, life and time out.”
The 12th District has yet to rule on a dispute over a ruling ordering Chrisman to pay more than $2,000 for bringing frivolous claims as part of the lawsuit.
Clearcreek Twp. pre-meetings
Earlier this month, during public comments at a special meeting, Gabbard indicated the trustees discussed public business privately.
Referring to Trustee Ed Wade, Gabbard said,“You and I have discussed this individually” during comments at a July 15 meeting on whether to place a fire levy on November ballots.
The trustees — and other Ohio public officials — will continue to meet privately on public business, buoyed by rulings like Flannery’s in the Chrisman case, lawyer Christopher Finney said.
“They are completely confident the judge will be consistent with his prior rulings,” said Finney — who with lawyer Curt Hartman — has brought lawsuits claiming public meeting and public records violations by local governments around Ohio.
“The courts have created this artificial differentiation between discussion and deliberation,” Finney said.
Wade and Lamb testified that the meetings fell short of deliberations. Trustee Cathy Anspach and Fiscal Officer Linda Oda have sided with Chrisman in the lawsuit.
#1927 Aug 1, 2013
Ed Wade pulled his petition to run for Clearcreek Twp Trustee on February 27, 2013. Maybe he will get a clue AND NOT RUN. RE-ELECT CATHY ANSPACH. She PROTECTS our hard-working Tax Dollars.
#1928 Aug 1, 2013
Bernie, common now...you don't pay taxes in Springboro anymore. You don't even live here! Find a hobby! Maybe use your trifocals for some stargazing...its a different type of gazing than you're used to but you'll enjoy it..
#1929 Aug 4, 2013
Let's stay focused on running ahead of Ed Wade and Dale Lamb and win the election focusing on the winning agenda of township trustee Cathy Anspach. Cathy Anspach is serving the township people well, and she has earned this township voters trust.
#1930 Aug 4, 2013
Yes, but it'll will be the 2 against 1 same ole boys against one woman. Ladies, is there one out there with good sense to run?
#1931 Aug 5, 2013
There are a number of folks what are willing to run but WADE calls them in and threatens them so they will not run against them. How sad.
#1932 Aug 5, 2013
How sad that ex-chief Bernie Becker has nothing better to do with his time...tellthetruth Bernie, why did you flee your post at the Clearcreek Fire Department to run up there to Cleveland??
#1933 Aug 23, 2013
How does the fire department hire full time people when they have no money? It appears that the fire department deviated from the original plan of having a combination fire department, one that the residents voted for, for a full time department. There was never enough money in the budget for such irresponsible act. Time to get rid of WADE and NOT to rehire LAMB.
#1935 Sep 11, 2013
Fire official accused of identity fraud
Posted: 12:05 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013
By Lawrence Budd - Staff Writer
An assistant chief with the Clearcreek Twp. Fire District is under investigation for identity fraud.
Christopher Vecchi was placed on administrative leave on Aug. 15 as a result of an allegation that he committed the fifth-degree felony, according to a notice obtained Tuesday by the Dayton Daily News.
“We have been working through these issues in an attempt to resolve them in a manner that will benefit everyone,” said Vecchi’s lawyer, Dave Duwel.“He’s not been charged with any crime.”
Officials declined to elaborate on the allegation or provide other records.
The internal investigation is being conducted by the Clearcreek Twp. Police Department.
Clearcreek Twp. Police Chief John Terrill, who is handling the investigation, did not respond to questions or a records request.
Vecchi’s movements away from his home are limited during the investigation.
“As a stipulation of your administrative leave, you are required to remain at your residence,” according to the leave notice.
Vecchi, a firefighter in Clearcreek Twp. since September 2003, is required to remain at his home from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on weekdays for visits, according to the notice.
“Should you have an emergency situation arise that should require you to be gone from your residence during these hours, you shall immediately contact the fire district and seek permission from the fire chief,” according to the notice.
Warren County Prosecutor David Fornshell said his office referred the case to Clearcreek Twp.
police, but was unaware it involved Vecchi.
Vecchi was named assistant chief in February 2012.
No disciplinary hearing has been scheduled, said Administrator Dennis Pickett, who declined to elaborate on the allegation, pending conclusion of the investigation.
No charges have been filed in local courts.
“Identity theft and identity fraud are terms used to refer to all types of crime in which someone wrongfully obtains and uses another person’s personal data in some way that involves fraud or deception, typically for economic gain,” according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
In Ohio, identity fraud is the criminal charge used in cases involving the alleged theft of a person’s identity or fraud committed using the stolen identity, according to authorities.
Sounds like the whole group is fraudulent in some form of another. We only wish Springboro would take the FD over and disband the fire district. They are an embarrassment, especially when the KIDD tried to levy more money from our pockets when they already have 7 million dollars in the bank and even closed one fire station. How dare you say you here to protect the people? WADE must go and DO NOT re-elect Lamb, Wades buddy.
#1936 Sep 25, 2013
Why is this guy still around?
Clearcreek administrator retiring after 35 years
DDN -- CLEARCREEK TWP., Warren County — Township Administrator Dennis Pickett is expected to announce his retirement Wednesday after 35 years in public administration.
Pickett, 57, said he was retiring, effective July 31, 2012.“It’s just time,” he said.
Pickett, administrator in Clearcreek Twp. since November 1985, also worked as administrative assistant in Franklin Twp.“I certainly will miss him. He’s been good for Clearcreek Twp.,” said Ed Wade, chairman of the township trustees.
In his time with the township, Pickett has seen the community and staff grow, and the government move from a small office to a sprawling government center.
However, he clashed with Linda Oda, the fiscal officer elected in 2007, prompting a review last year by the trustees. Also last year, Trustee Cathy Anspach sought discipline against Pickett for failing to advise township officials that former trustee Dr. Greg McDonald, a local dentist, had been receiving health insurance for himself and his wife that was subsidized through funds set aside for unemployed workers.
On Tuesday Anspach said their dispute was in the past.
“I think he’s just burned out on the job,” she said.
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