The following is the latest installment of Mayor Jim Boroff's monthly updates on city issues.
Snow, ice and flooding. We certainly have had a long, hard winter ... and during these past few weeks, we witnessed temperatures ranging from near zero degrees up to and into the 60s. We have had, snow, rain, more snow, ice, even more snow and flooding. This recent flood (although not the most severe in the city's history) was unique.
As long as anyone can remember, never has Rock Creek flooded like it did a few days ago. Heidelberg University, the YMCA, Riverbend Apartments and numerous homes were affected. Water rose at an unprecedented rate and in areas that had never been flooded before, such as across East Market and East Perry streets.
Fortunately, no one was injured, but many of our residents suffered property damage.
I extend many thanks to our police officers, fire and EMT personnel and public works for all their efforts during these troubling times. I also greatly appreciate Fostoria Mayor John Davoli and Alvada Construction for their offers of assistance. It is reassuring to know support is there when we need it.
Income tax. April 15 is the deadline for filing and paying the 2010 city of Tiffin income tax for individuals and calendar-year-end businesses. Filing a city tax return is mandatory for all residents with earned taxable income and non-residents who conduct a business or service in Tiffin. Even those wage earners who owe no taxes still are required to file a return along with a W-2.
If you have questions about issues facing the city, write to me in care of 51 E. Market St., Tiffin, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am happy to speak with anyone who has concerns, suggestions or questions about the city. Call my office at (419) 448-5401 or stop by without an appointment. To ensure I am available, call ahead.
Tax returns may be filed and paid at the City Hall Annex at 53 East Market St. during regular business hours, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. There also is a drop box to the left of the front door for those who cannot make it to the office during work hours.
For those needing assistance in completing the tax form, we offer assistance at the finance office. However, we cannot assist in filling out other tax forms. If you have questions about city income tax or anticipate needing help in filing tax returns, I suggest visiting the tax office as soon as possible to avoid any last-minute rush.
Potholes and street repair. Now that the snow is gone, we are discovering a myriad of potholes more so this year than in most others. The continual freezing and thawing of our streets puts great stress on the asphalt, causing it to break up in heavily traveled areas.
We will conduct our annual street review in the near future and will announce those areas to be repaved. In the meantime, the Public Works Department will be busy patching as many holes as possible.
If you notice a particularly bad pothole or two, call Public Works at (419) 448-5430.
Zoning permits. With the coming of spring-like weather, many of us start to plan improvement projects. I am reminding residents that, if they are considering any construction projects, they must provide the city engineer's office with plans and specifications before they proceed. In most cases a zoning permit is necessary. A permit for any project less than $2,500 is $10. For projects exceeding $2,500, the fee is $50.
A zoning permit is not a "revenue raiser" for the city; instead, it is necessary to assure the intended project conforms to regulations and does not infringe upon the rights of the neighbors. Our purpose is not to limit your rights as a property owner, but to make certain everything is in compliance and to minimize any problems one might encounter.