Jacob Smitley was at City Council's Monday session seeking approval for his next taxicab business in the city. (Times Bulletin/Ed Gebert)
BY ED GEBERT
Times Bulletin Editor
VAN WERT -- Mayor Don Farmer had plenty of good news to share in his State of the City address Monday night.
"...(I)t is my pleasre to report to you that over the course of the last few years through our joint efforts and our community we have made some major strides forward," Farmer stated at the meeting of Van Wert City Council.
He then listed several areas where the city has made significant strides since the beginning of an economic downturn in 2008. Among those items was the falling of the county unemployment rate from 15.2 percent in June 2009 to the current 6.1 percent rate. Also listed were the addition of 300 new jobs in Van Wert in 2013, the expansion of the downtown area and a series of street reconstruction projects that have been finished.
Farmer also looked ahead to coming street projects on W. Main St. and S. Washington St., the construction of park areas at the sites of the former Washington and the former Franklin schools, and the Van Wert Super Site, which is expected to be certified with the state within the next few months.
"Our community is positioned for economic growth now and in the future with the steps that have been taken now, and in the past. I would like to remind our community and council that what we do today affects what we look like and can achieve in the future," he said.
Farmer's speech was given during the regular session of Van Wert City Council. Council members also had several other items of business to act upon Monday.
They did approve Jacob Smitley as the propriator and driver of Van Wert Taxi, a taxicab business for the city. In other action, council approved the move of just over $8,000 in hotel/motel tax revenue from the city's general fund to the economic development fund.