During its first meeting in its new home, Centerville’s council discussed a longtime flooding concern and approved buying new surveillance cameras to help police.


Councilor Jack Bodiker said his home was affected by recent heavy rains for about the sixth time in 20 years. He raised health concerns about corn stalks and fertilizer in water that came up 6-8 inches to his garage door.

Bodiker also found a car splash guard in his yard from another vehicle and worries about the safety of residents and first responders trying to help prevent tragedies. Flooding destroyed a CPD vehicle in 2019.

Councilors said Centerville has invested about $250,000 toward water issues over the years, but its funds are limited.

Bodiker and Council President Dan Wandersee said county officials need to contribute toward solutions that a previous survey indicated would help.

Bodiker said a previous and a current county commissioner indicated Wayne County would address issues, but help hasn’t come.

“We’ve done about all we can do,” Wandersee said. “If they don’t put retention ponds to the east, there’s not much we can do.”

Bodiker said high water affects Centerville, Center Township and Wayne County residents. He’s concerned flooding could affect Centerville’s future growth. 

“I didn’t move to Centerville to have a waterfront property,” Bodiker said.

New town hall

The council room is now open at the rear entrance of 220 E. Main, which formerly was a bank. Additional renovations are expected over the coming weeks before several town employees move their offices there and the drive-thru opens for utility payments.

Wandersee said it took about four years to negotiate the purchase, but the improvements “are going to be nice for the community.”


Police Chief Ed Buchholz received council’s unanimous permission to fund two years of a new security camera system on main roads for a total of $13,300 through unrestricted opioid settlement funds. Buchholz said the system would “help us tremendously.” 

Councilor Josh Tudor, who works for a nearby law enforcement agency, agreed the cameras would help CPD reduce hours needed for some investigations. After Centerville spent a lot of time looking for the driver who struck Americana Pizza and allegedly fled the scene, Connersville police used its equipment to quickly find the suspect.  

Tudor also noted the cameras’ benefits in providing information nearly instantaneously to assist with Amber Alerts or other missing persons cases.  

Buchholz told WWN that the cameras shouldn’t raise privacy concerns because they won’t be placed anywhere that someone has an expectation of privacy. He said cameras already near the city building and Maplewood Park have been useful and helped with a recent homicide investigation.  

In other business

  • Centerville needs to decide if it will continue its relationship with Economic Development Corp. of Wayne County by the end of June. The discussion was tabled until council’s work session at 7 p.m. June 25 in the new town hall.  
  • Twenty-four code enforcement violations were reported in May. All were resolved by property owners without requiring enforcement.
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A version of this article appeared in the June 19 2024 print edition of the Western Wayne News.

Millicent Martin Emery is a reporter and editor for the Western Wayne News.