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Newport to Adopt EPAD Ordinance; Southgate School Facade to Be Restored

Newport will be the next Northern Kentucky city to adopt an energy project assessment district (EPAD), following Covington and Bellevue.
"This is a program that would be no cost to taxpayers," said assistant city manager Larisa Sims. "It can cover up to 100 percent of the cost of a project." EPADs offer developers the opportunity to finance energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements through the energy savings.
Newport's district would cover the entire city. Projects would have to be approved by the city and would be open to commercial and industrial buildings, and multi-family residences, that improve energy efficiency in windows, elevators, roofing, insulation, and water.  
Business owners would apply for the loan for the project, and then the cost would be divided into tax payments to the city, and the city would then make the payments on the loan. The City of Newport would act as a pass-through for the funds, but would not be liable. 
Thirty-five states have passed this legislation, and tens of millions of dollars have been invested already across the nation. The Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance is one of the partners in this endeavor. Ivy Knoll in Covington has already taken advantage of energy upgrades.   
Other notes:
Scott Clark, the Newport Historic Preservation Officer, gave a talk about the Southgate Street School, a very old building that housed the first and only school for African American children in Campbell County. In 1955 the transition was made to integration, smoothly and without fanfare, he said.
The Southgate school's facade will be restored to its original beauty, Clark said at Monday night's city commission meeting. After a year, the school would be open for visitors to view.
The building belongs to the Masonic Lodge 120, and they have been stewards of the building for years. Now the organization would like to give it back to the citizens as a museum. Plans are in place to ask residents for artifacts, and if anyone has anything of interest pertaining to the school they can call Clark at 859-655-6347. Northern Kentucky University is working with the city to incorporate the building's history into curriculum.
The Scholar House in Newport received national recognition. Neighborhood Foundations director Tom Guidugli told the commission about the award and the program. Tammy Weidinger, president & CEO of the Brighton Center, which operates the Scholar House, stated that there are 48 apartments with 65 children, all but two of whom are under 12 years of age. The women residents are working and going to school, and two have already gotten associate degrees.
Police Chief Tom Collins told the audience that Halloween hours are 6 to 8 pm on Halloween. He also said people are out with schemes to take advantage of unsuspecting people, as in one scheme where people were scamming others with offers of an alarm system. Police are on top of the alarm scheme, but Collins said the holidays are prime time for crooks to try to scam people out of money, so he warned people to be vigilant.  He also told about a situation where a woman asks to use a person's phone and then as they walk, a couple of men come out and try to rob the person who lent the phone. Collins asked residents to be careful, and to call police if they see anything suspicious.
Last Friday, City Manager Tom Fromme received a plaque from Newport Independent Schools Superintendent Kelly Middleton, inducting him and six others into the Hall of Distinguished Alumni.
Jeff Kohls and Larry Hoppius were promoted to the rank of sergeant in the police department.
Engineer/medic Marcus Muench was promoted to the position of Lieutenant/Medic in the fire department, and firefighter Nicholas Brown was promoted to engineer in the fire department. Phillip Wagner was sworn in as a firefighter/EMT in the fire department. 
Mayor Jerry Peluso recognized Kate Arthur, community and youth services director at Brighton Center and Westside resident Steve Mathisen for coordinating a volunteer day and enlisting over 200 Macy's employees to mulch, plant, paint tables and swing sets, and to cut down overgrown brush. They received the mayor's cannoli award. Tammy Weidinger received the award on behalf of Kate Arthur.
Also recognized were Matt Meyung and Ryan Hill, who organized an art and music festival on October 8. It brought in over 500 attendees, and plans are ongoing for next year's event. Jamie Anton and Molly Meyer were also mentioned for their efforts.
Carabello Coffee and Bello's Bike Pops owners, Emily and Justin Carabello, celebrated  their major expansion project with a special rededication event on September 15th at the corner of East 9th and Monmouth streets. 
Also recognized for their renovation at 846 Saratoga were Toby Moeves and Kate Kugele. They totally renovated the building, adding Industry Salon and rehabbing two second floor apartments for upscale tenants. They added a roof deck, too. Moeves and Kugele were not present to accept the award so neighbor Justin Carabello accepted the plaque and promised to deliver it.
Written by Patricia A. Scheyer, RCN contributor
Top photo: Scott Clark presents on Southgate School
Slideshow Images & Captions: 
Phillip Wagner was sworn in by Mayor Jerry Peluso to the position of firefighter/EMT.