The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

February 23, 2013

Ashtabula County Township Association gets history lesson on Western Reserve

Star Beacon

JEFFERSON — Jim Donathan of the Ashtabula County Engineer’s Office taught a little history of the Western Reserve and how Ashtabula County’s townships originated at a Thursday meeting of the Ashtabula County Township Association.

The Engineer’s Office hosted dinner for more than 60 township trustees, fiscal officers, road superintendents, zoning inspectors and other township officials.

Donathan’s presentation showed how surveying has changed the face of the Ohio map since Ashtabula County was first established in 1808. He stressed the importance of protecting the survey “monuments,” right-of-way markers, iron pins and other devices that enable surveyors to accurately mark roads and property.

County Engineer Tim Martin discussed future Road Use Maintenance Agreements (RUMAs) that will be used to encourage gas and oil development drilling companies to improve roads, as that industry expands into Ashtabula County.

“We have to protect our infrastructure,” Martin said. “It is most important to improve roads before drilling takes place, instead of repairing them afterwards. We want to make this common practice.”

ACTA president and Plymouth Township trustee, Debbie Friedstrom, welcomed guests, including county commissioners Joe Moroski, Peggy Carlo and Dan Claypool.

Moroski spoke briefly about the newly-passed county budget, which he believes will move the county along a very stable funding base. The county is pursuing a grant to support a Mutual Communications Center, Carlo said.

ACTA members passed a letter of support for the grant. Claypool encouraged township residents to learn about the proposed state budget bill and voice their concerns to state legislators.

Oil and Gas Resources Management will be discussed at next month’s ACTA meeting, with a representative from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.