ODOT is examining another busy Mentor bridge for potential rehab work, the police department wins a traffic safety award and more details on lockdown at autism school — those items and more in the latest weekly city manager report to City Council.
• On Nov. 13, at 1148, the Mentor Police responded to the Cardinal Autism Resource and Education Center, located at 5028 Forest Rd., for a disturbance/trespass complaint. The complainant, who is employed at the center, advised that she and her ex-husband, identified as 46-year-old Armand R. Dinardo Jr. of Mentor on-the-Lake, are currently in a custody dispute involving their teenage daughter. Dinardo had driven the daughter to the center to pick up her cell phone from the mother. The mother advised her daughter that she would not be leaving with her father. School authorities wanted Dinardo to leave the property, but he refused. Dinardo was advised numerous times to leave by Mentor Police, but he still refused. Dinardo identified that he had a concealed carry permit and a handgun was seen in plain view on the center console inside the vehicle. He then drove his vehicle to another area of the front parking lot near the school. Upon seeing officers with weapons displayed and taking up tactical positions, school officials went into an immediate “lockdown.”
Dinardo continued to disobey commands to exit the vehicle. He then drove slowly towards officers with his hands in the air. Officers were able to get him to stop the vehicle. He was removed from the vehicle and taken into custody. Dinardo was also found to have a large machete behind the driver’s seat. Dinardo did not pick up the handgun during the incident. The lockdown by the school was completely appropriate for the situation. He will be charged with two Counts of Illegal Conveyance of a Deadly Weapon in a School Safety Zone (Felony 5), Inducing Panic (Misdemeanor 1), and Criminal Trespassing (Misdemeanor 4).
• On Nov. 19, a contractor working for ODOT performed preliminary analysis on the Center Street Railroad Bridge for determination of what rehabilitation will be necessary for the bridge deck. During their operations, one lane of Center Street will be closed to performance of deck testing. Cores will be taken of different portions of the deck during the operation.
• AAA East Central announced today the national award winners for Northeast Ohio. Several communities in Lake County received awards ranging from Bronze to Gold, but the city of Mentor was the only community to receive the prestigious Platinum Award. Capt. Kevin Knight along with officer Marilyn Satterfield were in attendance to receive the honor. Each year, AAA accepts applications from communities and are asked to describe in detail the efforts and successes of their transportation safety initiatives. Emphasis is placed upon what AAA calls the “3E’s”: enforcement, education and engineering. The top platinum award is given to communities that have achieved great success within the area of traffic safety. The gold award recognizes projects and initiatives that demonstrate superior effort within traffic safety.
• A juvenile student at Mentor High School was arrested on Wednesday for making a bomb threat at the school. The suspect wrote on a bathroom wall about a bomb placed inside the school. The school was evacuated and then searched by police and school administrators; nothing was found. The juvenile was interviewed and confessed to making the threats. He was charged with inducing panic, making false alarms and criminal damaging.
• A shoplifter was arrested and charged with robbery after a confrontation with a JC Penney loss prevention officer. The suspect was attempting to steal six wallets when she was approached by the LPO. She punched the LPO in the face and ran out of the store with another female. Both females were arrested in the area of Baker’s Square.
• Mentor Police received three traffic enforcement grants in 2011 and participates in all the National Mobilization campaigns. This is in addition to the Third Grade Seatbelt program and poster contest, high school mixer and shakers program, bike helmet purchasing and safety citation programs, Officer Phil elementary school program, child safety seat inspections, a Bicycle Patrol Unit, and others. Mentor officers are members of the Lake County Safe Communities and the Greater Cleveland Safe Kids Coalitions which provide the public with many safety initiatives and countywide projects. We are very proud of this achievement.
• On Nov. 11 at 3:01 p.m., the fire department was called to White Oak Drive to extinguish a woods fire.
• On Nov. 11 at 6:24 p.m., the fire department responded to a call involving a male’s hand stuck in a lawn mower. The fire department had to cut the mower deck with a saw to free the male’s hand. The male was treated and transported to Lake Health.
• On Nov. 13 at 2:18 p.m., paramedics responded to an industrial accident where a male suffered a significant hand injury. The male was treated and transported to a trauma center.
• On Nov. 14 at 12:50 p.m., the fire department stood by as Mentor School officials and the police department investigated a bomb scare in the E-wing of the high school. The school was evacuated; however, there was no device found.
• On Nov, 14 sometime after 1 p.m., a contractor struck a natural gas line at 8651 Station St.; however, the fire department was not notified until well after the event. The fire department is following up on this incident. There were no injuries and the line has been repaired.
• Public Education Specialist Nate Peters assisted staff from Lake Health with “Hands Only CPR Training” at the Lake County Safety Council’s monthly meeting that was held at the Holiday Inn Express Nov. 16.
• 2012 Sidewalk Program: 325 parcels were identified in Council’s Resolution of Necessity for sidewalk repair. To date, 155 parcels have completed work, leaving 170 parcels that will be assessed if work has not been completed by the property owner before T.C. Construction begins. Because of cold weather, T.C. Construction may not start work until March of 2013.
Parks and Recreation Department
• Black Brook Golf Course will be open until 2 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day. With the recent nice weather, Black Brook had 122 rounds played on Sunday and in the month of October they had a total of 1,472 rounds played.
• On Nov. 9, the Senior Center celebrated Thanksgiving with a wonderful luncheon at LaMalfa with 223 seniors. Rave reviews were received for the entertainment of the Temptations.
• The Senior Center hosted 230 people, including 167 veterans, at the Veteran’s Breakfast Nov. 10.
• On Nov. 12, the Senior Center crew completed preventive maintenance and some repairs. This included fitness equipment preventive maintenance and replacement of door thresholds at both the 615 and Munson Road entrances. The crew also cleaned and waxed the floors in some of the activity rooms.
• Letters have been sent from the Marina to dockers who have not yet paid their deposits for the 2013 boating season. Follow-up phone calls have been made. If a signed contract and payment are not received by the deadline, same dock assignment cannot be guaranteed in the coming season. Dock relocation requests will be started this week; waiting list requests will begin shortly thereafter. Questions can be directed to Bob Martin at the Parks & Recreation department.
Economic and Community Development
• Tom Thielman & Ron Traub manned a table at the NE Ohio Entrepreneur Expo. There were 159 participants; the cities of Cleveland and Mentor were the only government participants, although several business incubators were present. Several communities walked the floor of the exhibition hall. While Mentor officials didn’t pick up any direct leads, they did have conversations with individuals and literature was handed out.
• Traub met with Ray Jurkowski of Laketran and several manufacturers in the Tyler/Heisley corridor regarding a survey instrument to assess interest in limited bus service to this “neighborhood.”
• Traub participated with several others regarding “hot” employment opportunities in the region, state and U.S. in the future for the Lake Shore Compact Stakeholders meeting.
• Traub met with representatives of Lake One Stop and the Greater Cleveland Partnership regarding sources for workers and training opportunities for a Mentor manufacturer.
• Tom Thielman attended the newly energized Manufacturing Committee of the Mentor Area Chamber of Commerce at Great Lakes Power. Topics included bulk purchasing, outside contractors, energy savings opportunities, waste and scrap removal and how the group should proceed. After the meeting, a tour was given of Great Lakes Power.
• Tom Thielman attended the Board of Directors meeting for the Lake County Development Council. LCDC approved a $1,000 grant for the Alliance Working Together manufacturing group to be used for student scholarships for manufacturing careers.
• MEACO approved a $25,000 Mentor Small Business Loan for the Second Sole running shoe store to help finance building façade improvements.
• Departmental 2013 budget reviews have been completed. Compilation of a draft line item budget and Capital Improvement Program for the 2013 budget is under way for the City Council budget work session today.
• The Ohio Municipal League has drafted sample Resolutions expressing opposition to recently introduced legislation (HB601) by Representatives Cheryl Grossman (R-Grove City) and Mike Henne (R-Vandalia) mandating numerous changes to current municipal income tax administration procedures that are very alarming. If adopted, HB601 will cause a loss of revenue to cities and will impose “unfunded mandates” that hamper the ability of municipalities to administer local income tax collections.
• Congratulations to Jay Luteran, city IT administrator, who will be retiring Dec. 10.
Public Works Department
• Traffic signal improvements on Plaza Blvd.
• Residential brush chipping
• Dura patching - Glen Lodge
• Inlet basin rebuilds (4) - Spinach and Yellowbrick
• Implemented “Holiday” Signalization program
• Constructed benches for the Dog Park
• Removed street flags
• Planting trees and shrubs at E. R. Walsh Park
• Constructing sandstone wall at Lagoons entrance
• Cleaning 42” storm sewer - East Avenue
• Storm sewer televising - Living Homes area
• Right-of-way improvement on South Shandle completed
• Preparing bid documents for generator at FS #1
-- Betsy Scott, BScott@News-Herald.com, @ReporterBetsy