June 2023

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Veteran's Village to address housing issues

The Board Clermont County Board of Commissioners and Clermont Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA) on May 19 announced plans for a Veteran’s Village in Clermont County to address gaps in housing and services for veterans.

“We know of no other facility like this in the area,” said Bonnie Batchler, President, Board of County Commissioners. “We hope this will serve as an example for others around the county.”

The facility is to include 28 cottages/houses and a community center offering wrap-around services from the Veteran’s Administration (VA) for county veterans who are homeless or living in substandard housing. There will be 22 one-bedroom units and six two-bedroom units for individuals and families. They will range from 700 to 1,100 square feet. They will be fully furnished, with a washer/dryer, broadband access, patio areas and parking spots.

A community center will provide on-site clinical services to individuals who need them, on-site management to address issues that arise, a large gathering space, kitchenette and computer/media area.

Some units will be subsidized, depending on income. Others will be based on a fair market rent.

Read more here

Repainting of water towers begins

Elevated water storage tanks in Afton and Goshen are slated for repainting this spring and summer as Clermont County Water Resources begins a decade-long refresh of 18 water tanks.

American Suncraft Co. of Medway, Ohio, has been awarded a $1.16-million bid for work on the towers, located on Half Acre Road near Milacron in Afton and on Goshen Road near Goshen High School.

Work on the Goshen tower is expected to begin after the Afton tower. Work is anticipated to take two months at each tank. Bid opening for rehabilitation and repainting of the Summit tank took place on March 16. Work at the Summit tank is scheduled to be completed in 2023 also.

The towers will have a blue underside and top, with the county logo on two faces, along with lettering spelling Clermont County and the name of the township. The name Clermont County will also be printed on the top.

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Shelter dog finds forever home after long stay

After 521 days in Clermont County Animal Shelter, Kringle finally has a new home.

Kringle as a stray was hit by a car and had to undergo much-needed medical treatment and rehabilitation to regain his health and mobility. 

During this time, however, Kringle started becoming less trusting of people. He wouldn’t let you touch him and sometimes out of fear would aggressively bark and snap at people he didn’t know. After being poked and prodded, stretched for X-rays, and all the other things required to fix him, it was understandable. 

Kringle won the hearts of the staff whom he grew to trust and never showed any bad manners with the small handful of staff and volunteers that interacted with him on a regular basis. 

Dog Warden Tim Pappas had interacted with him so much that he realized how truly lucky someone would be to have Kringle. He walked like a gentleman, was never food aggressive and just wanted to be a shadow to whoever he trusted. Kringle had many “meet and greets” and every time he would somehow let the potential adopters know he wasn’t for them and they weren’t for him. 

That all changed in early May when an older gentleman came into the shelter and stated his dog of many years passed away two weeks prior and he wanted another dog to help him with his loneliness. The staff took time to get to know the man and realized he was the perfect fit for Kringle.

The man was placed in the outside meeting area and kennel technician Catarina Stayrook armed herself with treats, cheese, hotdogs... and Kringle then proceeded to meet the potential adopter. Everyone at the shelter was excited to see the reaction of the first contact, some had doubt, others had confidence. The meeting was wonderful! Stayrook was patient and methodical with her approach and directions for the man to follow. Kringle appeared to be trusting of the gentleman within minutes. Of course, it also helped Kringle was eating like a king with all the goodies Catarina brought to the party. 

After such a great meeting the man arranged to meet him again two days later, Catarina was methodical in her presentation, and like the previous time, the meeting was very productive. Kringle and the man walked down the road like they’d been doing that for years. The man said he wanted to come back one more time for one last visit and if everything went as well as the last two visits, he would adopt him.

After 521 days at the shelter, Kringle found his forever person and home.

Coroner's Office transporter goes beyond call of duty

Daniel Sepeck brought welcome help to firefighters as they battled a structure fire on Judd Road just outside of Amelia on April 5. Sepeck assisted in many ways, including directing traffic in pouring rain so that Central Joint Fire and EMS cold fight the fire. 

Despite arriving at about 5:40 p.m., he was still on the scene at about 3 a.m., helping the Red Cross pass out water and food to firefighters and EMS staff.

“Daniel was a huge part of the success of fighting this fire,” the crew on the scene wrote in a letter to the Clermont County Coroner’s Office, Sepeck’s employer. “Daniel stood out in the pouring rain directing traffic along with helping our responding engines get to the proper places they needed to be.”

Sepeck, a former fire and EMS worker, serves as a transporter for the Coroner’s Office. However, he helped in this case as a citizen of Clermont County.  

As you can imagine, the Coroner’s Office is glad to have Sepeck as an employee.

Internship spurs women to help others

A six-month internship with the Clermont County Public Defender’s Office helped 37-year-old Jill Constable Greene chart a course beyond her wildest dreams. 

The experience helped the recent Cincinnati State Technical and Community College graduate decide to become an attorney, who helps others with backgrounds similar to hers.

“Interning has opened my heart and mind to my career choice,” Greene wrote in a reflection about the experience. “My true desire in life is to be an attorney. I mean that is really shooting for the moon, yet here I am still.”

Greene’s past includes barely completing ninth grade and having two children at age 19. She went a decade knowing nothing outside of addiction. Her first arrest, a felony possession charge, came in 2010 at age 28. Child Protective Services took her children.

Instead of feeling sorry for herself, she used her six-month jail sentence as an opportunity to study toward a GED. However, after getting out of jail, her struggles continued, with relapses, criminal charges, unhealthy relationships. 

Finally, in 2015, after serving more time, she entered inpatient treatment, then sober living. She got back a job, which she has held for eight years. 

Read more here

Emergency rental assistance program extended

Clermont County residents under 85 percent of the area's median income who have fallen behind on rent and utility payments can get financial help. (Area median income for a family of one is $48,350; family of four is $69,050.)

The Board of County Commissioners has approved a supplemental appropriation for $1.4 million in Emergency Rental Assistance 2 funds. Commissioners approved a Clermont County Job and Family Services’ contact with Clermont County Community Services to administer the Emergency Rental Assistance Fund. An Emergency Rental Assistance program under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which does not require COVID-related reasons, runs through Sept. 30, 2025.

This program covers rental payments that are late and overdue as well as utility payments, including gas, electric, fuel oil, trash removal, and water and sewer.

Applicants must have filed their taxes this year, as their 1040 will be used to verify income eligibility.

Eligible renter households may receive up to 12 months of past-due payment assistance or three months of future rental payments with direct payments made to the landlords and utility providers. Landlords may apply on behalf of the renter with their consent.

Please note: This is an extension of funding for the program, and does not mean that households may receive anything beyond 12 months of assistance.

Read more here

Free nutrition class on final Monday of month

The Clermont County Department of Job and Family Services and OSU Extension - Clermont County Family and Consumer Sciences have joined forces to offer community nutrition classes on the last Monday of the month at 10 a.m.

After class, participants can visit the MyChoice Food Pantry at Job and Family Services. For more information, contact Becky Fiscus at fiscus.22@osu.edu.

Check out these great job opportunities
Clermont County is hiring for a variety of positions in areas such as Water Resources, the Animal Shelter, Job and Family Services and more.

These are great jobs in the public retirement systems with good benefits and the opportunity for growth.

To see what's available, click here

Volunteers help spruce up animal shelter

Earlier this spring, employees at TQL's Eastgate location contacted the Clermont County Animal Shelter, offering to volunteer in any way.

Shelter staff invited the volunteers to do landscaping outside of the shelter.

"They absolutely came through with flying colors," said Tim Pappas, the shelter's manager. "They removed rocks, replaced them with mulch, removed/rebuilt walkways, and one of the volunteers adopted a dog from the shelter."

Schools awarded suicide prevention grants

Clermont County Family & Children First Council approved $15,000 in funding for suicide prevention efforts in the 2023-2024 school year for the following schools:

Goshen Local School District 

West Clermont Local School District 

New Richmond Exempted Village School District 

Williamsburg Local Schools 

Grant Career Center 

Each was awarded $3,000 for their suicide prevention efforts.

Library offers variety of summer programs

The weather is warm, school is out, and vacations are just around the corner. Don't forget that summer is a great time to enjoy some time reading just for fun. You and your family can win prizes just for reading. Sign up at clermontlibrary.org for the 2023 Summer Reading program. 

The Summer Reading program runs from June 1- Aug. 1. All ages are welcome to participate so parents are able to share good reading habits with their children. The program has three reading levels and you and your family can win a prize after completing each. Prizes include books, fidget poppers, mood cups, small stuffed animals, inspirational notepads, etc. Besides winning a prize at the end of each level, you and your family also will be entered to win a grand prize to be given away on Aug. 2. One grand prize will be given away at each branch and include the selection of a zoo family pass, nature center family pass, aquarium pass, Scene 75 gift card, Coney Island gift card, or Apple gift card.

The library also will be giving away prizes every other week throughout the program to encourage everyone to keep reading all summer. By logging in minutes read every two weeks, individuals are eligible to win Kings Island passes, Coney Island passes, Amazon gift cards, and a lighted scooter.

The library also has some wonderful programs designed to encourage everyone to read. Please visit clermontlibrary.org, for a full list of programs. One program is at the Owensville Branch on June 5 at 5:30 p.m. with the Wave Foundation which will bring an African penguin.

Volunteers collect 310 bags of trash

The 2023 spring litter clean-up event was held on Saturday, April 22, with a combination of in-person clean-ups at various sites across Clermont County and the East Fork Little Miami River watershed.

Over 230 volunteers participated and collected a combined 310 bags of trash that morning. The Litter Cleanup event is coordinated each year by the Clermont Soil and Water Conservation District and partially supported with a grant from Ohio EPA, Division of Recycling and Litter Prevention.

Soil and Water truly appreciates the support from the event sponsor, the Southern Ohio Association of Realtors (SOAR). Thank you also to partnering agencies and organizations, including the Adams/Clermont Soil Waste District, Clermont County Park District, Clermont Office of Public Information, Ohio Department of Natural Resources—Divisions of Parks and Watercraft, and the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers.

Recipe of the Month

Clermont County | 101 E. Main Street | Batavia OH 45103 | 513.732.7300 |
Office of Public Information | 513.732.7597 | mboehmer@clermontcountyohio.gov
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