City manager gives Greenfield updates amid pandemic

By Angela Shepherd
Village of Greenfield

There is a lot of uncertainty for everyone right now as we all learn to adapt to a new normal for the time being. This is not just true for the individual and the family and the business, but for the village administration, too.
Greenfield City Manager Todd Wilkin said the role of the city manager during an unprecedented time such as the current situation spurred by the Covid-19 pandemic is to ensure that the village continues to have clean drinking water, to ensure that waste water continues to be treated, and to ensure the safety of the citizenry with a police department operating at full capacity.
Additionally, Wilkin is part of a conference call meeting with the Highland County Emergency Management Agengy (EMA) each and every morning. That daily meeting includes all county entities and this is their opportunity to recieve updates and to ask questions.
The city manger is also part of a daily call each afternoon with Adena Greenfield Medical Center and is working alongside the hospital as it develops a local “surge plan” for the anticipated rise in coronovirus illnesses.
Wilkin said he has also become part of a weekly conference call meeting with other city managers and mayors in southern Ohio. Each Thursday they discuss how each are handling things under the current circumstances.
On Thursday April 2, the group also had a call with Sen. Sherrod Brown and a conference call with this group on Friday included Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted. With the governor’s office, Wilkin said there was a question asked about guidance on health departments being able to provide the zip code of those confirmed to have coronavirus. He is awaiting an answer from the governor’s office.
The city building remains closed to the public, with the exception of the first and third floor lobbies. The court on the second floor is operating, but on a limited basis. If anyone has questions about court dates and current procedures, call the court office at 937-981-2139. If anyone has questions about probation reporting, contact your probation office.

Different format for council meetings
The regularly-scheduled village council meeting on April 7 will go on as planned, but in a different format that Wilkin said will only be permissible during the pandemic that has forced a change in how things are safely carried out.
For the Tuesday, April 7 meeting, a limited amount of council members will be in the council chambers, while all other council members, the city manager, and the council clerk join in from their respective homes via a virtual meeting system. The meeting will be aired on G3-TV, as is typical.
Earlier this year Wilkin launched Lunch with the City Manager, where once a month the public is invited to join him at a local establishment and ask him questions and get updates on village matters. As that type of meeting is not possible at the present time, Wilkin held March’s via Facebook Live and there was a good turnout with a lot of good questions asked. While this interaction was previously meant to be once a month, the current situation may warrant more opportunities for the public to ask Wilkin questions. He said he is considering doing another one in the coming week to answer any questions from the public. The meetings may even be held more frequently if needed. Watch the village’s Facebook page for updates on this.

Special ‘drive-in’ Palm Sunday service at Mitchell Park
As a reminder, all parks and playgrounds are closed. However, a “drive-in” Palm Sunday service is planned for Sunday April 5 at 5 p.m. at Mitchell Park and is being put on my a group of local churches. Wilkin said the group of churches approached the village about doing this and the group has proceeded with its plans under the guidance of the county health department.
Wilkin said the event “is a good opportunity for people to get out and hear a message,” but it is imperative that people follow the rules to keep themselves and everyone safe. He said everyone is to remain in their cars and the car windows are to be rolled up. No one is to be out of their cars. The restroom facilities are closed. The playground is closed. Those putting on the service will be exiting their own vehicle only to participate, and then returning to their vehicle. The service will be made available on a radio station that attendees can tune to.

Bill payment and contact information
As village offices are closed to the public, please remember that residents can pay their water and sewer bills by phone by calling 937-981-2082, online through a link on the village’s website at, by dropping off your payment in either the drop box on the first floor of the city building or in the drop box in the alley behind the city building, or by setting up a recurring payment from a bank account with the Water Department. If there is other business to be handled with the village offices, call at 937-981-3500. For building department correspondence, email Holly Ellinger at For questions about council meetings and/or committee meetings, email Roberta Karnes at To contact City Manager Todd Wilkin, email him at

Youth league status still unknown
Even though the status of the youth league is still unknown, registration forms are still being accepted and are located in the third floor lobby. Forms and payments may be dropped in the Water/Sewer Department drop boxes mentioned above.

All city employees typically working in the city offices are now working remotely. Voice messages are checked often. Please do not hesitate to call the city offices or to send an email.
If you must leave your home, please be responsible and practice social distancing, cover any cough or sneeze with your arm, do not touch your face, and wash your hands often and for at least 20 seconds. Also, please do not go out unless it is necessary to do so.
If someone has concerns about their health, they should call their healthcare provider and explain the situation. If people go to the emergency room, they could be exposing others to illness and the hospital will not test a person without them meeting the COVID-19 criteria. There are numbers available for people to contact to ask questions and seek out guidance if they are sick. Those are: the Ohio Department of Health, 833-427-5634; the Highland County Health Department, 937-393-1941; and the Adena COVID-19 hotline, 740-542-7233.
For Greenfield updates and information, visit this website or the Village of Greenfield, Ohio Facebook page.