President of the Logan County Area Chamber of Commerce Paul Benedetti gave the Bellefontaine City Council some unusual news Tuesday.
Not only was local business and industry "doing very well", Benedetti said, there is in fact a shortage of workers to fill the jobs that are available in the area.
Benedetti estimated that there are several hundred area jobs that are going unfilled. He told the council that the Chamber, in cooperation with the Logan County Department of Jobs and Family Services and the Ohio Hi-Point Career Center, will be conducting a Job Fair at the Career Center on August 7th in an attempt to help fill some of those positions.
Paul Benedetti talks about availability of jobs in Logan County
But he also told Council that while there is a glut of jobs, the Chamber's attempt to attract new businesses, especially Japanese businesses, has been hampered by a shortage of buildings available to house prospective investors. He cited chronic problems in the banking industry which has slowed the construction of new buildings in Logan County. He went on to say that Bellefontaine and Logan County are facing an uphill battle in this respect, when compared to Marysville, which has a score of sites which are up-to-date and and open to investment.
Also addressing the council Tuesday was Bellefontaine resident Chassity McKee of 124 East Brown Avenue. She pointedly told Council that the dilapidated house at 121 East Brown, which is owned by Gil Myers, is teeming with bedbugs, an infestation which has spilled over to her house. Complaints to the owner, she said, have fallen on deaf ears and she reported that the Logan County Health Department referred her to the City Council. She insisted that action be taken by the Council to force Myers to rectify the situation.
Mayor Adam Brannon told Council that the clean-up from the June 29th wind storm continues, and that city workers are making their third and probable final round through the city. The West Columbus Avenue collection site remains closed and the city is negotiating with a private company to grind the refuse at no cost to the city.
The council passed ordinances authorizing the hiring of a part-time seasonal engineering intern, establishing the Municipal Court Probation Service Fund, appropriating funds for consulting fees for the Transportation Museum and Gunntown Road Project, and giving city-owned commercial towing services preference when operating in the city.
Prior to the Council meeting, a hearing was conducted where Paul Dearwester, 437 W. Chillicothe, asked the city to vacate the north-south alley which divides his property. The council will take action on the request at its next meeting on August 14th at 7:30 pm.