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The Bethel Township Trustees of Clark County held a special session and work session last Tuesday to discuss the leave of absence requested by Fire Chief Jacob King and to hear the progress of the development along Dille Road.
The trustees approved King’s unpaid leave of absence effective November 1 due to obligations from his full-time job at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.
Chris Ludwick was named acting Fire Chief during King’s absence, and Ludwick and Assistant Chief Jennifer Cotterman’s compensation was raised $5,000 per year during King’s leave.{mprestriction ids="1"}
Allan Neimayer of Clark County Community Development talked to the trustees concerning the zoning and future development of parcels along Dille Road near State Route 235. Neimayer said that the southern portion of the parcel was “bounced around” between being zoned R3 or R4, but now has been zoned as R3, which includes single-family homes and duplexes.
The northern section of the parcel will likely be zoned as I1S, which permits any industrial development except for junkyards, mineral extraction, correctional facilities, and auto wrecking services. Trustee Nancy Brown said she was “frustrated” with the zoning process, saying that the uncertainties in the type of development that could occur within the township were unsettling. Neimayer said that a road extension could be developed from Dille Road to extend straight into Bellefontaine Road, but said that the road won’t be developed until an “end user” for the property is determined.
“I just get frustrated that this isn’t the way it’s always been done,” Brown said, noting that whomever acquires should be a “user that fits the land.” She said that the road extension should dictate the terms of the zoning, asking Neimayer why Clark County will consider granting the zoning when they don’t know what type of development will occur.
Neimayer told her that it was not uncommon for new zoning permits to be issued in order for the price of the land to increase.
“To just zone a chunk Industrial so someone can make money…it’s just frustrating,” she said.
Neimayer said that the Planning Commission will meet on November 4 at Springview Government Center to discuss the zoning, and a Public Hearing will be held November 12 at 8:30 a.m., also at Springview. Residents living within 200 feet of the proposed development have been invited to attend the Public Hearing, as well as the administration from Park Layne Elementary School.
Neimayer said that Clark County Engineers have expressed a concern about viable access points within the proposed development, and that they could request a variance from the Planning Commission.
Trustee Don Minton told Neimayer of his frustrations with getting the county to demolish a house on Beach Drive in Crystal Lakes.
Minton said he was told by Tom Hale of Community Development in April that he would demolish the structure, yet Minton is concerned because the house still stands today. Minton said he was later told by David Fleck of Clark County Community Development that his agency did not have the funds to do so, and that Bethel Township would need to come up with at least half of the funds required. Minton said he personally told residents that the house would be torn down after receiving word from Hale in April, and said he has taken it upon himself to see the structure demolished, as it is unsafe as well as being an eyesore in the neighborhood.
“I wouldn’t want it next door to me, I can tell you that,” Minton said, adding that he keeps “getting the biggest runaround from the county” about the demolition of the structure.
The board meets in regular session the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. at 3333 Lake Road, with the public always welcome.{/mprestriction}

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