Sardinia Merchants Assn. looking to promote growth

By Martha Jacob – 

The Sardinia Merchants Association met on January 18 in hopes of organizing an active group of concerned citizens who want to promote the Village of Sardinia and encourage more businesses to move into the area.
Several months ago Mayor Greg Cassidy, contacted over 35 business owners, managers, community leaders and local residents, inviting them to help move the Merchants Association forward.
At least 10 people attended the Jan. 18 meeting, exceeding the expectations of Cassidy who said he was hoping to get at least four or five people to attend.
“It was a great first meeting and I was very happywith the turnout,” Cassidy said.
“I’ve already sent out more invitations to our next meeting set for Feb. 22 at 7 p.m. at the city building. We had planned on having meetings quarterly, but everyone wants to have it monthly. I have been so pleased with all the interest in the association.”
Cassidy said there has been a great deal of interest in the Merchant’s Association and he said he is hoping to get all the local churches involved. He added that Kelly Cole, Brown County Economic Development Director will be the guest speaker at the February meeting.
“Kelly will be talking a lot about how we can qualify for grant funds,” Cassidy said.
“We all have the same interest when it comes to our village, we want the very best village it can be and get back on the county map in a meaningful way.
“The zoning was passed through council in September and Sardinia has now adopted the same zoning plan as the Village of Georgetown so now we have a planning commission which includes me, Councilman Bill Northand resident Tina Townes.”
Also at the first Merchants Association meeting, Cassidy talked briefly about the new 3 mill fire levy that will be on the May ballot. He explained that on a $100,000 home, taxes would only go up about $35 annually. The additional funds would enable the fire district to employ 2 full time EMS people, 12 hours a day.
Other suggestions made at the meeting included:
• Encouraging residents to live in Sardinia instead of having so many empty houses;
• Cleaning up and making Sardinia’s Main Street and Winchester Street look attractive, possibly placing a nice sign out by Rt. 32;
• Try to bring better cable and internet for the village;
• Get investors to invest in Sardinia and possibly creating a TIF District.
By the next meeting, Cassidy hopes to have a set of by-laws ready to be voted on.