WAPAKONETA — Budgets are up, streets are being repaired and schools are looking to “be better” in Wapakoneta, according to the handful of community leaders who spoke to at an event hosted by the Wapakoneta’s Chamber of Commerce
During the Thursday luncheon, Wapakoneta Mayor Tom Stinebaugh, Auglaize County Commissioner Don Regula and Wapakoneta schools Superintendent Aaron Rex all took a turn at the podium to review the “state of” each of the municipalities they represent, and in summary, the three gave positive reports of the number of projects accomplished in the past year.
Stinebaugh explained the movements of the City of Wapakoneta by commenting on each department’s accomplishments. While Stinebaugh didn’t speak on any major projects, additional funds seen from Wapakoneta’s increase of its income tax has helped the city allocate more dollars to grinding and repaving some of the city’s worse roads. Stinebaugh also mentioned that calls for service in Wapakoneta have also dropped in the last year by about 1,400 although adult arrests have seen a slight uptick.
As for Auglaize County, Regula said the county has seen a 6% increase in total revenue, which has been used to provide a 2.5% cost-of-living adjustment for county employees and hire a few more. Examples include two document imaging specialists to digitize a basement full of past records, an assistant prosecutor and an additional public defendant.
Regula also mentioned a few capital projects the county has been involved in during the past year, such as the construction of a salt storage shed by the county engineer and improvements made to the Auglaize County Airport near New Knoxville.
“If there’s one thing that county commissioners like to do, it’s brag about their county,” Regula said.
Rex’s main talking point was explaining how Wapakoneta schools, including its teachers and students, have embraced the question “How do we be better?” in the past year to guide how the schools operate. Under the slogan, Rex said the school has invested in additional technology for the students, such as interactive smart panels and Chromebooks, to enhance educational opportunities.
To wrap up the event, Deb Zwez, who has been involved in helping the community prepare for the moon landing’s 50th anniversary, reviewed the many events planned for the Summer Moon Festival organized to celebrate Neil Armstrong’s landmark achievement.
“Much like our friends ‘The Avengers,’ we are in the endgame,” Zwez said. “It’s a really good time to be in Wapakoneta.”
Reach Josh Ellerbrock at 567-242-0398.