Grove City now has self-insurance to cover its workers compensation.

Grove City now has self-insurance to cover its workers compensation.

On Sept. 17, City Council voted 4-0 to establish a Workers Compensation Self-Insurance Fund and appropriated to it $157,880 from the city's general fund.

Councilwoman Maria Klemack-McGraw was absent.

"We'll be able to manage our workers' payments when they get hurt," finance director Mike Turner said.

While the fund will have a third-party administrator, Turner said the city can expect probable cost savings on the arrangement.

"Our premiums are up to $300,000 per year," said Turner, adding the city's claims have averaged about $86,000 annually over the past five years. "If we take claims as they have been historically, we would see definite savings."

Councilman Steven Bennett, the chairman of council's finance committee, said other municipalities have adopted self-insurance models for cost-saving purposes.

Council also voted unanimously to appropriate $1,505,288 toward engineering and land acquisition expenses for the widening, extension and improvement of North Meadows Drive.

Last week, council approved an economic development agreement with Mount Carmel Health System, which plans to construct a 36,775-square-foot emergency care center and a 68,215-square-foot medical office building at 5525 Hoover Road.

The agreement calls for the extension of North Meadows Drive from state Route 665 to the intersection of Hoover and Holton roads, running parallel to Interstate 71.

The project is estimated to cost $12.5 million. Mount Carmel will contribute $3 million toward construction as well as the land the road will run through, a $1.5 million value. Additionally, the city expected to receive grants from the Ohio Department of Transportation and the Ohio Public Works Commission totaling $1.38 million and an interest-free loan from the commission of $400,000.

Under the terms of the agreement, the extension must be complete by Oct. 31, 2013.

Mount Carmel is scheduled to hold a groundbreaking for its construction project at 5 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27.

Council also voted 4-0 to issue bonds with a maximum amount of $1.45 million to refund bonds previously issued by the city to pay for improvements to Dennis Lane and the reconstruction of Hoover Road.

"We're closing out some bonds and reissuing them at better rates," Bennett said.

Additionally, council approved development plans recommended by the planning commission.

One of the plans calls for the construction of a Texas Roadhouse restaurant at 1879 Stringtown Road, on about 2.67 acres of land west of Parkway Centre Drive, owned by Bob Evans.

The other will see the construction of a 1,920-square-foot office building and 6,000-square-foot warehouse building by Turner Transportation on Seeds Road.