Council agrees to benefits of sharing services with school district

Council members had a brief discussion at the beginning of the week about its joint work session with the school board about sharing services, which Journal staff writer Hannah Poturalski reported it could be anything from sharing information technology staff to storing city vehicles at the school district’s bus compound.

Monday, City Manager Bill Brock laid out a possible agreement between the school district, the city and Butler County Educational Service Center for technology-related services from a pool of five employees, according to Poturalski’s story.

Councilwoman Lora Stillman said at Tuesday’s city council meeting she sees “a lot of benefit” in sharing services, thought it would be a long process.

“I don’t see us being able to jump in right away necessarily in a lot of areas,” she said.

One area she does not want to jump into is sharing staff, with the exception of IT staff. The city’s IT manager resigned in January, leaving Brock to take over those responsibilities.

“There are so many place that we can investigate to try to share services and save money and get better performances,” Stillman said. “So why not start with contracted services and then see how that develops.”

Councilman Steve Black, who was not at the joint work session, said the city “should look at everything.”

Stained set for spring

With much anticipation, Stained 1054 Bistro will open this spring.

The restaurant will be managed by Red Onion owner Mark Bursley and will open in April on the ground floor at BeauVerre at the Square at the corner of Central Avenue and Broad Street, said Jay Moorman, co-owner with his wife, Linda of BeauVerre.

It was announced this past May that the restaurant, backed by 15 local investors, would open in the fall of 2012.

Stained will seat about three times as many as The Red Onion on South Main Street in Monroe.

“Everybody I’ve asked has been there, and everybody I’ve ask has one knock against it,” said Moorman. “The food’s great, the service is great, but you can never get a table. We’re going to seat three times as many (people).”

The restaurant will be one of several downtown restaurants that will be in downtown Middletown. The downtown already has Mockingbird’s Cafe inside the Pendleton Art Center, @ the Square across Central Avenue from BeauVerre and Sally’s Liberty Restaurant.

One restaurant that’s still in the planning stages is Outside the Lines, which would be owned by Roger Conner, owner of Flowers by Roger. It’s slated to be near his flower shop on Manchester Avenue.