Municipal Facilities Closure (Updated 12/11)

As all of you are well aware, we are dealing with a difficult and fast-changing challenge due to the COVID 19 /Conronavirus. Rest assured we remain committed to the health, safety and welfare of everyone including our residents and employees. Consequently, we have made the decision to close the Forest Park Municipal Building and all city facilities to the general public effective close of business (4:30 PM) on Friday, December 4. Note: The City of Forest Park remains open for business. We simply feel that it is an appropriate action in light of the current crisis.

Forest Park Residents and Businesses 

  1. Residents should be aware that all Forest Park Municipal Facilities including the Forest Park Senior Center and Municipal Building will be closed to the general public effective close of business (4:30 PM) on Friday, December 4. Our facilities will be closed to the general public until further notice.
  2. The tax department will no longer be seeing taxpayers until further notice.  If you need to make a tax payment, please refer to our payment page for online payment options.  For any tax related questions, please call (513)-595-5211 or email tax@forestpark.org
  3. We will monitor the situation and communicate to our residents via radio, television, social media, website and other communication vehicles any news with regards to closings or services.    
  4. Residents and businesses will continue to be served to the best of our ability during this time. Essential services especially police, fire and life safety services will continue to be provided. We ask your understanding that non-essential services have been discontinued for the time being.
  5. Residents can find city service updates on our website (www.forestpark.org) and Facebook page.
  6. Any residents in need of assistance should continue contact us using the following information:
    1. Emergency fire, police, and life safety services – continue to dial 911 (emergences only please)
    2. Non-emergency police services  -  call  (513) 595-5220
    3. Non-emergency fire and life safety - call (513) 595-5243
    4. General City operations – call (513) 595-5200
  7. We ask everyone who lives or works in the City of Forest Park to follow the CDC guidelines for maintaining your health and the health of your neighbors during this emergency. More information can be found at: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/prevention.html

Departmental Updates:

Administration
The Administrative offices are working to ensure that services to residents, businesses and city employees continue without interruption.  All phone calls or emails will be responded to by a member of our team as quickly as possible. Mail is being delivered to the Police Department. Front office personnel will process and open mail, forwarding requests to the appropriate departments. Requests for assistance can be made by calling 513-595-5200 or email to info@forestpark.org.

Building Department
The Building Department Director remains on duty and continues to take and review applications, issue permits, and complete inspections. While the Municipal Building is closed to the public, permits can be applied for online (www.forestpark.org), via the post office or through a drop box in the Police Department lobby.  Building Department inquires can be made by calling (513) 595-5264 or emailing bldgdept@forestpark.org

City Council
During this time, the Clerk of Council's office can be reached at 513-595-5208. All messages will be returned in a timely manner.  For faster assistance, emails can be sent to Council@forestpark.org. Please note that City Council is scheduled to meet virtually on Monday, December 21, 2020. Meeting details can be found on our website. Council will recess from December 22, 2020 through January 10, 2021.

Community Development Department
Community Development staff will be working remotely. However all messages left by voicemail or email will be responded to by the next business day. Below are some helpful updates on key services provided by this Department.

PermitsApplications can be submitted by mail, email to commdev@forestpark.org, or drop-off at the Police Department Lobby. Payment can be made by check, money order or credit card. If using a credit card, please call (513) 595-5215 and we will take the payment information over the phone. Note: at this time, we are not accepting payments in cash.

Code Violations - If you are reporting a code violation or property maintenance issue, follow these instructions. For locations East of Winton Road, call (513) 595-5218. For locations West of Winton Road, call (513) 338-0150. You can also report a complaint by email to commdev@forestpark.org (both east and west of Winton). During this state of emergency, we ask for your patience with regard to code enforcement. Complaints received by us will be investigated within three business days, and depending on the nature of the complaint, final resolution could range from 7 to 60 days. Residents who are sick, unable to leave the house, or financially constrained may require additional time to get a code violation resolved.

Home Repair Grants - Grants (Income-Based) of up to $1,000 are available for low-income homeowners for exterior repairs, exterior painting or repairs to correct code violations. You can call (513) 595-5215 or send an email to commdev@forestpark.org to request that a packet be sent to you. The application packet can also be found online at:

https://www.forestpark.org/government/community_development/home_improvement_loans.php

Animal Traps - Animal trap lending has been suspended until further notice due to the staff working offsite.

Temporary Signs - Since there is a greater need for temporary signs and banners to communicate with the public, the permit requirement has been suspended indefinitely. Please note, however, that signs in violation (between the sidewalk and the street, attached to telephone poles) will still be removed by City staff. When the state of emergency passes and the permit requirement is reinstated, we will provide a notice of at least two weeks to the business community.

Planning Commission - The Planning Commission is holding all meetings online on the Zoom Platform (meeting ID: 871-6742-5730, password: FPPC). Meeting links are also on the City’s web calendar. Planning Commission meetings are also broadcast live on Spectrum Channel 17 and Fioptics Channel 855. If none of these options are available to you, please call Chris Anderson at (513) 595-5215.

There are a variety of online resources available including property maintenance and quality of life responsibilities, online complaint forms, zoning information, and geographic mapping information Online Resources at:

https://www.forestpark.org/government/community_development/index.php

Economic Development
The economic development department remains open and continues to serve the needs of our business community. City staff is working closely with county, regional and state officials to identify and secure assistance for local businesses. The City of Forest Park Small Business COVID Relief Initiative has already provided a dozen Forest Park businesses with grants ranging anywhere from $1,000 to $2,000. Applications must be submitted no later than 4:30 PM on Wednesday, December 16.

Information regarding the Forest Park Small Business Initiative or any other economic development program can be secured by contacting the Economic Development Director at pbrehm@forestpark.org or 513-595-5207. Businesses are also encouraged to visit the following websites for information on other COVID-related assistance programs: www.hcdc.com, www.business.ohio.gov, & www.sba.gov. Residents seeking help with unemployment or disaster relief can go to https://unemployment.ohio.gov.

Work continues on several projects including major expansions at Faxon Machining, Ameritas, and Magna Machine. Work on the Liberty Mutual project continues, and Kroger has completed a multi-million renovation of its Forest Park store. We are nearing an agreement for the redevelopment of Promenade Shopping Center, and Kidd Coffee is close to securing financing for its new headquarters and retail store. City staff recently submitted an application to secure grant dollars for a minority business development center from the State of Ohio. 

Please note: the December meeting of the Economic Development Commission has been canceled. Our next EDC meeting will be at 7 PM on January 27, 2021.

Environmental Awareness
The Environmental Awareness Director will remain in the office and continue to answer calls and emails. Current programming continues without interruption. More information can be found on the city’s website or by contacting the Environmental Awareness Program Manager at 513-595-5263 or environment@forestpark.org.

Finance/Tax Department
The Finance/Tax Department has set-up alternative procedures for residents to file and pay their taxes during the Municipal Building closure. We have been encouraging the public to communicate with the office through phone and email, and to utilize the drop-boxes located at the Municipal Building Complex. As most of the department transitions to a mostly work-from-home structure, the tax department is making efforts to remain staffed in order to answer resident questions.  However, if a call isn't answered the department will make every effort to respond to voicemails within one business day.

Fire Department
All fire and emergency medical responses continue as expected, with our residents receiving the highest possible level of service and as always prompt responses to any inquiries. Please call 911 for any emergencies. Non-emergency calls should be made to 513-595-5243.

Our Fire and Life Safety employees are outfitted to the highest respiratory protection level (P100), outside of self-contained breathing apparatus, when making medical response calls. Medical and disinfecting supplies, while slow to replenish, are still readily available, and our inventories are good. We expect to receive our allotment of the Moderna vaccine on or about December 23, 2020 for our safety personnel. As vaccines become available for the general public, plans are being made that our paramedic staff could be utilized to inoculate citizens. Just a reminder to pass on to your friends and family members that they should continue practices to stop the spread including: using masks, washing and sanitizing hands, and maintaining a minimum of 6 feet separation distance. Prevent the spread of the virus. #BeTheExample

Human Resources
Human Resources Director/Assistant City Manager will be splitting time between working in the office and from home while the building remains closed.  The Executive Secretary is also working from home most of the time.  We continue to follow-up on all internal and external issues with minimal delay.  We also continue to keep employees informed of any changes.  I am available by email (ALevandusky@forestpark.org) or my direct line of 513-595-5204 for any questions. 

Police Department
All police operations are continuing as normal with the exception of Mayor's Court. Due to the closure of the city building, meetings of the Mayor's Court originally scheduled for December & January have been postponed. The next regular court date is Thursday, February 4th, 2021 at 6:00 pm. The next Tax Court is Thursday, February 18th, 2021 at 6:00 pm. Payments can still be made at the Police Department during this time. Simply stop by 1203 West Kemper Road to make your payment in person with cash, check, money order, or credit card.

Payments can also be made via credit card over the phone by contacting the Mayor's Court office at 513-595-5224 during the hours of 8 am - 4 pm Monday-Friday. Outside of those normal business hours, payments can be made by calling the Police Department at 513-595-5220. For any other questions or concerns, please contact Court Clerk Julie Sheets at 513-595-5224.

Public Works and Stormwater
The Forest Park Ohio Municipal Building and Public Works/Stormwater Offices located at 1201 West Kemper Road and 1970 Waycross Road (45240) are now closed to the general public. However all city operations continue albeit with some modifications. Essential city services continue without interruption. 

As of December 9, the Public Works and Stormwater employees remain on-duty. Services will continue without interruption. You may see employees in the field performing inspections, providing right of way maintenance or snow removal etc.  Inquiries or questions can be sent to rbrown@forestpark.org. Or, you can call the Public Works/Stormwater Office (513) 595-5258.

Public Works and Stormwater are reciprocal functions, with one backing up the other in the event that a staff member is quarantined or becomes incapacitated. If this were to occur, appropriate notice will be given to the public. Meetings of the Stormwater Board will be postponed until further notice.

Applications and Fees

  • Right of Way Permits/Stormwater Permits: Drop offs can be made in the lobby of the Forest Park Police Department (1203 W. Kemper).  Insert the right of way permit or stormwater permit application in an envelope and make check payable to the City of Forest Park. Insert envelope in the drop box located in the lobby. If you do not leave a check, the department will call you for a credit card payment over the phone. There is a minimum fee of $3.00 or 2.65%, whichever is greater.
  • ONLINE INSTRUCTIONS: The right of way permit application can be found at www.forestpark.org on the Public Works Department page.  The stormwater permit application can also be found at www.forestpark.org on the Stormwater Department page under forms and applications.  Fill in the paperwork and email it to rbrown@forestpark.org.  We will call you for a credit card payment over the phone.
  • The Public Works or Stormwater Department will process the permit and email you the approval.

Contact Information

Public Works Department Main Line: (513) 595-5258
E-mail: rbrown@forestpark.org
Website: www.forestpark.org

Recreation & Seniors
All recreation programs and events have been cancelled or postponed indefinitely due to Covid-19. All senior programs and events have also been cancelled or postponed indefinitely due to the pandemic as well. However, seniors are being contacted every week by City staff. They receive weekly emails and monthly phone calls from a Senior Advisory Board Member or the Parks & Recreation Coordinator. Our Recreation Coordinator has also been delivering food to some of our seniors with items from the local food drives at churches and the Reds organization. 

The Senior Center is closed until further notice to all seniors, any exercise or dance classes, and any civic groups as well. All events and rentals have been cancelled or postponed indefinitely due to COVID-19. We have instructed our janitorial crew to do extensive deep cleaning while the building is not open to the public. The building is still being used for Tax and Finance offices during the remodel at our Municipal Building.

All rentals have been cancelled through April 19th. Refund requests have been sent to Finance for these rentals. 

Spring soccer program has been suspended, and we are awaiting word from SAY Soccer to see when or if it will be cancelled. Baseball is also suspended at this time, and we are awaiting word to see if this too will also be cancelled. Once this has been determined, we can issue refunds. Breakfast with the Easter Bunny is cancelled, and Gospel Fest is pushed back indefinitely.

The senior trip to LaComedia has been delayed. We will either pick a different date to attend or give refunds once LaComedia responds to our email. The Recreation Coordinator is working from home this week and will be available by phone or email. His email is jdennis@forestpark.org and phone 513-595-5252.