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Published: Tuesday, 7/19/2005

Some in Maumee to face assessment

Maumee City Council last night voted to assess property owners along River Road for the installation of sidewalks around the new Fort Miami Elementary.

The school is being constructed on River just east of Carew Lane. City officials said sidewalks are needed on both sides of River to ensure the safety of children walking to school.

"Because of the traffic, we don't think it's appropriate for the kids to have to walk in the street," Larry Gamble, the city's director of public service, said.

The sidewalks will be installed on the north side of River from east of the school to the Ohio Turnpike and on the south side of River between Michigan and Key streets.

The city plans to pay for the sidewalk installation by assessing property owners based on their frontage along River. The assessments can be paid over a five-year period, officials said.

Councilman Brent Buehrer was the dissenting vote in the 4-1 decision to construct the sidewalks. Council members Richard Carr and Douglas Brainard were absent.

Mr. Buehrer said some properties on the south side of River have very small yards, so adding sidewalks could cause hardships for these property owners.

Residents who will be assessed for the project did not receive letters about the issue before last night's council vote.

Councilman Todd Zimmerman said he agreed with putting in sidewalks, but hopes in the future that city officials will notify residents before City Council decides to move forward with an assessment project.

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