Rutland Council, official discuss cell tower need

Staff Report

RUTLAND, Ohio — The Rutland Village Council during its October regular session welcomed county officials and discussed a cell tower project, among approving a number of agenda items.

The Council conversed about the installation of a cell tower with Meigs County Probate Judge Scott Powell, Meigs County Common Pleas Judge Linda Warner and Meigs County Court Judge Michael Barr. State Rep. Jay Edwards was unable to attend due to an unforeseen issue.

A letter signed by county officials was read and circulated before the Council exhibiting advocacy and support for the installation of a cell tower in the Rutland area.

The letter stated in part, “There are no cellular phone services in Rutland, Ohio. The Village of Rutland is the center and hub of the west part of Meigs County. It houses numerous new businesses and several restaurants. State Route 124 through Rutland is very active with both commercial and residential travel. In addition to the Village of Rutland’s 400 citizens, there are another 2000 people living in the Rutland Township that have no cellular service.

“Most important to our request is the fact that Rutland is the location of the largest school in all of Meigs County. Both the Meigs Local Primary School and the Meigs Intermediate School along with the Meigs Local bus garage, are located in Rutland and have over 1000 students and staff in attendance every school day. In addition, there are countless parents and others that come every day to the school for business and extra-curricular events as a result of the school. There is clearly much more going on in Rutland than a census or simple statistics would show. There is a true need to provide cellular coverage to protect our children and families in an emergency,” added the letter which was signed by 13 county elected officials.

Mayor Tyler Eblin responded and indicated that he and members of Council will collaborate in drafting written support and are committed to working with county and state officials in formulating the best plan forward in launching such a project.

No further action was taken on the cell tower project; however, Mayor Eblin has indicated his intent to ensure ongoing discussion with county and state leaders to ascertain the next steps.

“There have been prior attempts to achieve cell service in Rutland and surrounding communities in western Meigs County,” Eblin said. “Although none came to fruition, I’m confident that through continued collaboration with county and state officials and strong advocacy, we can achieve this infrastructure critical to our community.”

In other business, council approved a motion to keep trick-or-treat in the Village of Rutland on Oct. 29, 2020, from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. The village council concurred that the fire department may continue determining the date and time for trick-or-treat as done in previous years.

Presiding over the Council was Mayor Eblin. Members present included President Pro Tempore Duane Weber, Councilman Rick Bolin, Councilman Steve Jenkins, Councilwoman Kimberly Willford and Councilwoman Madalyn Wood. Also present were Fiscal Officer Susan Baker and Clerk of Mayor’s Court Brooke See.

The Rutland Village Council will reconvene in regular session on Nov. 2, 2020, at 6 p.m. at Rutland Civic Center.

More information from Monday’s council meeting will appear in an upcoming edition of The Daily Sentinel.

Information provided by Rutland Mayor Tyler Eblin. The Daily Sentinel managing editor Sarah Hawley contributed to this report.

Staff Report