Running Aces Casino and Hotel has liquor license renewed

The Columbus City Council approved the hiring for a new position with the city. The personnel committee recommended Lorie Bochenski for the position of recording secretary and the council approved the recommendation during its Feb. 10 meeting. 

Working under City Administrator Elizabeth Mursko, the recording secretary will help public communications coordinator Jessica Hughes record city meeting minutes and make them available to the public. The position is for up to 15 hours per month and will cost the city $3,600 annually. 

According to the job description: “The Recording Secretary is responsible for recording the legal minutes of the City Council and Planning Commission meetings, verbatim transcription of Public Hearings and drafting notes for the City Council and Joint Planning Commission/City Council Workshops and other informational meetings.”

Council member Janet Hegland shared more on the position and the personnel committee’s recommendation before approving it. 

“The job description was written more broadly than just for the council it was written for, whichever staff person would be recording minutes for the council, the planning commission, public hearing, information hearings, etc.,” Hegland said. “The purpose of creating the position ... will remedy the problem that we had with getting our meeting minutes posted in a reasonable amount of time after the meeting.” 

Liquor license renewal

The Columbus City Council has approved the renewal of the liquor license for Running Aces Casino and Hotel. 

There was little to no discussion about the topic before the council decided to vote unanimously to renew the license for the Columbus casino. 

Columbus City Attorney Bill Griffith shared his opinions on the renewal, stating that after reviewing the license renewal request he sees no issues with the request and advised the council to approve it. 

Taro Ito, president and CEO of Running Aces Casino and hotel, shared his thanks with the council. 

“Unfortunately this year we were disrupted by COVID,” Ito said. “As COVID has put a strain on all of us, we weren’t able to fully utilize the benefits of the license, so hopefully moving forward we will be able to see how that works out.”

Ito went on to say that they are adhering to all state and federal regulations that have been given to them. The council then voted to approve the license after no public comment. 

Special meeting 

The City Council will now hold special meetings on Monday, March 1 in order to hear public comment for the work on Hornsby and Furman Street and April 1 to award the bid, if there is no one who opposes the project. 

Mursko said the city must give public notice for a hearing for the projects to allow public comment.

“If a group of people, according to the criteria, came together and opposed the project, they could oppose the project, and then the project wouldn’t go forward,” Mursko said. 

Mursko shared that this rarely happens on a street construction project, but they must still allow for public comment. 

When the city engineer gave his report on the projects during the council’s second meeting of January, he stated that the project will begin sometime in either late May or early June. With the additional meetings the council has scheduled, this should continue to be the estimated start date, as long as there are no arguments against the projects. 

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