GENEVA — City council is still working to hire a new city manager and went into executive session to discuss personnel at the end of its regular meeting Monday night.

Geneva City Council President Philip Cordova said the council is still negotiating to hire a city manager. He previously said there were 23 applicants. Six people were interviewed for the position and two were called back for second interviews.

He said there was no action anticipated after the Monday evening meeting. The position became available when former Geneva City Manager Doug Starkey resigned to take a job as the Ashtabula County Department of Environmental Services director which he started last week.

Tammy Shuttleworth is the acting city manager until a new one is hired.

A resolution declaring racism a public health hazard was brought up as a first reading during the meeting.

A visitor representing an Ashtabula environmental group asked for the city’s support of an appeal of an Ohio Environmental Protection Agency permit for construction of the Petmin pig iron plant in the Ashtabula Harbor.

Ashtabula County Water Watch has appealed a permit approved by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency that they say will allow more chemicals to be released into the air and not provide for a CO2 recapturing facility

Geneva City Councilman Jeffrey Griffiths asked council to support the group’s the permit appeal. Cordova said he would like to have a representative of the company, or Growth Partnership for Ashtabula County, give their side of the issue, before bringing the matter up for a vote.

Petmin is a South African company seeking to build the facility that would employ more than 100 permanent employees and 700 construction workers, according to numbers provided a a public hearing last year.

“Pollution won’t just stay over the harbor ... we have vulnerable populations in Geneva as well,” Griffiths said.

Sara Brower, a representative of the environmental group, said the emissions would provide health hazards for area residents and wanted Geneva’s support.

“I strongly encourage you to sign on to it,” Brower said.


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