Tri-Village News

Marble Cliff waiting for answers on power outages

AEP planning presentation for council meeting

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Marble Cliff Mayor Kent Studebaker reported at Village Council's meeting Monday, Jan. 20, that he and other village officials met last month with representatives from American Electric Power in an attempt to find out why a series of power outages occurred last year in the village.

Over a six-week period in May and June, four outages knocked out power for a total of 13 hours.

Council was not satisfied with the information AEP representatives provided on the issue at the August council meeting, Studebaker said.

While not acknowledging whether the change several years ago of running the village's electric circuit from the Hess Avenue station rather than the Fifth Avenue station may have had an impact on the power outages, the utility did promise at the December meeting to look into the issue, Studebaker said.

The village had asked AEP to present a final analysis of the power outage issue at council's January meeting, but the utility had not completed a report in time, he said.

"The hope is we will have something for next month's meeting that would take an analytical look at our situation and what are some recommendations for addressing this," Studebaker said.

AEP told the village that last spring and summer, crews were working underground at the Hess station, and "how they set things up was a mouse sneeze would shut off power for their safety," Fiscal Officer Cindy McKay said.

That is understandable, she said, but the village had not been notified those precautions had been taken, she said.

Also at the Jan. 20 meeting, Village Council members unanimously elected Matt Cincione as council president.

Former President David Roark opted not to run for re-election in November.

Cincione is starting his fourth term on council.

Council also held a second reading of an ordinance to amend legislation from 2010 granting resident David Bell a lot split with variance for the parcel at 1123 Cambridge Blvd.

Bell is asking for the amendment to allow him to add on to his garage. He told council he would use the extra space as storage and work space for his woodworking tools.

In 2010, Studebaker voted in favor of the lot split to break a 3-3 tie on council. Cincione, Roark and Robert Sterneker voted in favor and Jack Kukura, Linda Siefkas and Kendy Troiano voted against the ordinance.

At the Jan. 20 meeting, Siefkas and Kukura indicated they would vote against the new request to amend the original ordinance. Troiano said she would be willing to vote for it, since the village has granted other residents permission to build garages larger than what Bell is proposing.

Four votes would be needed to grant the amendment. New council member Dow Voelker, who won Roark's former seat, recused himself from voting on the issue because he has worked for Bell as a lawyer.

That meant it appeared council's vote for the amendment would be 3-2.

Both Siefkas and Kukura noted their decision to vote "no" would be based largely on the opposition to the original lot split from Bell's neighbors.

Studebaker, who could cast a vote only to break a tie vote on council, suggested Bell talk to his neighbors to see if he can get their approval of his plan before council holds a third reading and another vote at next month's meeting.

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