Mayor Dave Retterer and Councilor Don Fleming take the newly operational elevator. Though not the first trip for either man, it was one of Mr. Fleming's first legal rides - Ada Herald
Mayor Dave Retterer and Councilor Don Fleming take the newly operational elevator. Though not the first trip for either man, it was one of Mr. Fleming's first legal rides. (Ada Herald/Joe Schriner)

ADA — Ada Village Council discussed trees, tornadoes and traveling Tuesday during their meeting.

Mayor Dave Retterer noted the “great work” the village Tree Commission has done over the years. And in doing so, he gave a nod to the long-standing Tree Commission members, including Councilor Terry Keiser.

Keiser helped start the Tree Commission some 40 years ago. He has been a linchpin in helping Ada get a “Tree City USA” status. (It was the second municipality to get such a status in all of Northwest, Ohio.) And Keiser helped ONU get the first “Tree Campus” status in Ohio.

The mayor, while acknowledging the seasoned expertise of the older Tree Commission members, nonetheless also said it’s time for new blood as well on the Commission.

“We also need younger people who could fall off a ladder without breaking their neck,” he smiled. And he added that ONU students, for instance over the years, have been quite helpful with volunteer tree pruning, intimating, perhaps, that a student or two might do well on the Commission.

ONU has also been helpful providing, currently, the only tornado siren in the village. But after it remained silent during a spat of area tornado activity one day last year, Councilor (and now new Council President Bob Simmons) was swamped with calls.

At the meeting, he said one of his 2020 priorities was working toward getting a village tornado siren as well. (For more on Mr. Simmons 2020 priorities, see related article, this page.)

And while not dealing with sirens on the front end, some of the 1,800 calls that came into the Ada Police Department last year led to sirens … squad car sirens.

Police Chief Michael Harnishfeger said that end of the year data showed that of those 1,800 calls, 225 were “report worthy.” That is, they were serious enough — domestic violence, counterfeiting, break-ins, etc. — that they necessitated filing a report.

One of those reports — and this is the “traveling” part — for this new year could well have been filed about Councilor Don Fleming. During the meeting, Mayor Retterer, in “Perry Mason” fashion, elicited a hesitant ‘confession’ from Mr. Fleming.

Through some back-channel sources, it seems Mr. Fleming got information last week that the long-anticipated elevator in the municipal building was now “ready to ride.” Wanting to be the first to “travel” on it, Mr. Fleming and his wife Connie sped over.

Upon entering the main floor, Mr. Fleming said he saw the elevator was open and waiting. He and Connie rushed on, pushed a button, the door closed and the elevator ascended.

“Smoothest elevator ride I’ve ever taken,” he smiled.

That is, it was all ‘smooth’ until the door opened: and he saw four men in elevator inspecting garb staring crossly at him.

“Hey, you can’t ride this!” One man admonished. “It hasn’t passed inspection yet.”

That’s right, the first Ada villager(s) to ride the elevator had done it illegally.