Maumee to establish commission to address environmental concerns

Nov. 24—Maumee is launching a commission to address environmental issues within the city.

Mayor Richard Carr said the commission will be a long-term, ongoing committee and will be staffed by two members of City Council, the city administrator, and six local residents.

While the city has been working to fix its illegal sewage discharges into the Maumee River, Mr. Carr said the new commission will not only focus on the river situation but on all environmental issues affecting the city, such as littering, recycling, and climate change.

"It's wider in scope," he said. "It's far more encompassing than [the river]."

This commission, Mr. Carr said, has nothing to do with Lucas County's new Maumee River Commission, which is designed to investigate how the city's illegal sewage discharges went undetected for so many years. Nor, he said, is the city's commission in response to the county's.

Rather, the idea has been a goal of Mr. Carr's for the past two years.

The commission, which was approved on Monday by Maumee City Council during a special meeting, was sparked by concerns and questions from residents during the previous mayoral election in 2019, Mr. Carr said. He wanted to start the process to establish the commission soon after, but when the pandemic hit, officials weren't able to have meetings about it.

Now, he said, it can move forward.

The plan is to open up an application process for residents who are interested in serving on the commission. The terms will be staggered, Mr. Carr said, so the commission wouldn't immediately be revamped under an administration change.

Council will approve the members of the commission.

"My goal is to kick it off in January with appointments made when new council members come in," Mr. Carr said.

First Published November 24, 2021, 1:16pm