The Chillicothe City Council met in regular session Monday night with a heavy agenda. Click to hear KMZU’s Mike Stone talk with Chillicothe Mayor Chuck Haney:

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One item on the agenda was an ordinance to amend the contract with a development company pertaining to the clean-up and transformation of the Old Women’s Prison, Mayor Chuck Haney says the holdup was not council, but outside agencies. “The holdup has been the state and the environmental issues that are out there. It hasn’t been the city, it hasn’t been Foutch Brothers.” Haney said. “His (Foutch) plans are to refurbish those buildings, turn them into apartments and turn that into a community of its own, with its own Rec Center that’s open to the public.” Haney adds.

Part of the Old Prison decision during the meeting was to allocate $50,000 of existing funds to board and seal 166 windows and 44 doors to stem deterioration of the facility before the project is undertaken.

Another discussion was undertaken to determine the fate of the Arch at the East entrance of Simpson Park. There was some opposition, but council approved a proposal by the Festival of Lights Committee for a redesign of the now permanent structure. “Once the Vo-Tech School goes back into session, they’ll do the work they have to do, that was discussed here tonight, so that it will look good all season long and not just at Christmas time.” Mayor Chuck Haney said. “We anticipate once they do that in August that hopefully, it will be completed and we’ll be able to get that in place for the Festival of Lights that goes on for that six week holiday period.”

The redesign includes an insert in the top of the arch by Chillicothe High School 2013 Valedictorian Caela Ashford which can be seen below.

Simpson Park Arch Design by Chillicothe H.S. 2013 Valedictorian Caela Ashford

Council also approved the private use of Chilli Bay by the S.A.L.T. (Simply Achieving Life’s Triumphs) Organization for a fundraiser in late July.

Other agenda items included the hiring of seven new paid by call firefighters. That item was moved from the regular session to the executive portion of the night due to the full agenda. According to Chief Darrell Wright, those hires were approved by council and the new crew members are Eric Rasmussen, Patrick Shufflebeah, Hershel B. Davis, Michael Lamp, John Z. Parks, Tyler Monier and Zachary Ireland.