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July 1, 2015


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Bluffton Council/School Board

Elementary summer academy staff and fall coaches offered contracts

A host of fall 2015 coaching positions were approved at the June 25 Bluffton school board meeting.

In addition, the board approved several classified substitute custodians, bus drivers, cafeteria works, secretaries and educational aides.

The board also approved elementary summer academy certified contracts. Those contracts, at $21.15 per hour, were awarded to Janelle Bogart, Christine McCafferty, Heidi Steiner, Ryan Dunlap, Barbara Maag, Linda Sycks, Christy Garmatter and Brandie Stackhouse. Summer academy is from Aug. 10 to Aug. 21.

Bluffton council meeting: More comments on both sides of the Shannon Cemetery issue

While several significant topics crossed Bluffton council’s Monday night agenda, Shannon Cemetery consumed one hour of the agenda with several comments from visitors taking both sides of the issue.

Ray Mumma formerly of Bluffton told council members that he had several objections to the cemetery improvement plan.

He asked council to explore obtaining a ground penetrating radar (GPR) to find the graves at the cemetery.

“We think there needs to be more research done to restore this cemetery,” he said.

School board meets June 13

The Bluffton school board will hold a special meeting at 8 a.m., Saturday, June 13, in the superintendent's office, according to Greg Denecker, superintendent.

The purpose of the meeting it to hire teachers.

Various opinions aired concerning Shannon Cemetery at Monday's council meeting

A standing-room only audience of nearly 50 persons packed Bluffton council chambers on Monday.  Most of those attending had a viewpoint to share about the Shannon Cemetery on Jefferson Street.

Eleven persons - residents, former residents, and others interested in cemetery preservation - addressed council, offering opinions on what should or should not take place there.

David Steiner, council president, presided over the meeting in the absence of Mayor Judy Augsburger.

Shannon Cemetery on Monday's council agenda

Bluffton council will open the floor to comments about the Shannon Cemetery on Monday night. 

The cemetery project, intended to clean up and memorialize Bluffton's pioneer resting place, recently came under criticism from several persons who do not live in Bluffton. 

School board accepts three resignations, hires four teachers

Four new certified employees were offered teaching contracts and three resignations were accepted at the May 11 Bluffton school board meeting.

New contracts were offered to:
• Emily Warner, 1-year contract, MA +15-Step 8, $50,558
• Amy Butte, 1-year contract, MA-Step 6, $45,611
• Becky Boblitt, 1-year, MA-Step 12, $55,110
• Angela Francis, 1-year, MA-Step 12, $55,110

Richard Johnson will join Bluffton council tonight

Richard Johnson will be sworn in as Bluffton's newest council member on Monday. He was selected to replace Everett Collier who resigned in April.

Several other reports are on the agenda. Jamie Mehaffie, village administrator, will update council on the following:

• Beaverdam Contracting has completed the water line replacement projects on Kibler and Garmatter. Both Kibler and Garmatter are scheduled to be resurfaced in 2016. Bluffton Paving will perform some sealing of joints to help the surface maintain until the resurfacing.

Council appoints Richard Johnson to vacancy

Bluffton council didn't take much time selecting a replacement for Everett Collier, who resigned his council post on April 20.

In a special meeting on April 28 council voted to name Richard Johnson as Collier's replacement. Johnson will be sworn in at the May 4 council meeting.

Dave Steiner, council president, told The Icon that the vote in favor of Johnson was 5-0 and that there were no other candidates under consideration. Steiner also said that Johnson has taken out petitions to seek the office in the general election in the fall.

Four council committee meetings set

Several Bluffton council committee meetings are scheduled. Those follow:

• Thursday, April 23, personnel, 3:15 p.m.
• Wednesday, April 29, finance, 7 p.m.
• Monday, May 4, 7 p.m., utilities, 7 p.m.
• Monday, May 4, recreation, 7:30 p.m.

Everett Collier resigns as Bluffton council member

Everett Collier resigned from his Bluffton council seat on Monday. Collier, who was first appointed to council in January 2012 later ran and was elected, and was serving his first full elected term.

Collier did not give a reason for his resignation.

His absence opens a vacancy on council that will either be filled by council appointment or by mayoral appointment. Council has 30 days to select a replacement. If council does not fill the vacancy Mayor Judy Augsburger will appoint his replacement.