Meeting Release

Post-meeting release 2/14/23

Commissioners hear updates from SCAT, EMA directors Tuesday morning

[Tiffin, OH – Feb. 14, 2023] — The Seneca County Board of Commissioners heard from Seneca Crawford Area Transportation Executive Director Mary Habig Tuesday morning about her plans to seek grant funding for a large bus garage structure for her agency and the Seneca County Opportunity Center.
Habig visited the commissioners to ask for approval to move forward in attempting to land grant money from several sources to help pay for the project, which is estimated to cost about $4 million.
She did not request funding, but because the area where the garage would be built is owned by the county, she said she wanted to communicate the idea to the board. The plan is for the garage to be constructed on the county’s southern campus behind the SCAT office and near the Opportunity Center.
The commissioners green-lit Habig’s plan to seek 100-percent grant funding for the garage and asked her to keep them updated throughout the process. Habig said her goal is for the garage to be built in 2024, meaning Requests for Proposals and other preliminary steps need to be taken this year.
In other action, Seneca County Emergency Management Agency Administrator John Spahr spoke to the commissioners about work being done to prepare for the April 8, 2024, Solar Eclipse.
Spahr said the centerline of a total solar eclipse is to pass through Seneca County next year. This event is the first in Ohio Since 1806, and another won’t occur until 2099.
According to, the partial phase of the Eclipse is to begin at about 1:56 p.m. At about 3:11 p.m., totality is to begin.
Totality, as defined by the American Astronomical Society, is the maximum phase of a total solar eclipse, during which the Moon’s disk completely covers the Sun’s bright face. Totality can last from a fraction of a second to a maximum of 7 minutes and 31 seconds. In Seneca County, the phase is expected to last nearly 4 minutes.
Spahr said community leaders are gathering in two weeks to discuss plans for logistics and safety surrounding the event in which the population of the county could triple, due to visitors from across the nation and world.
Spahr said Tuesday morning that a community meeting is to be scheduled for a later date to inform the community of the event and update citizens on the efforts being taken to deal with the unique challenges of this rare event.
During Commissioner Tyler Shuff’s report, he congratulated Donna Gross for being hired as the newest member of the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership. Gross is to take on the Downtown Tiffin Main Street Manager role.
Gross will be the second Main Street Manager in Downtown Tiffin’s history, following the departure of long-time manager Amy Reinhart.
Gross is a successful entrepreneur, owning her own small business, Relevé Barre Studio, with locations in Downtown Tiffin and Birmingham, Michigan. Gross is a graduate of Heidelberg University with degrees in Business Administration and Public Relations and currently teaches there as an adjunct professor.
In new business, the board approved all new business from the meeting agenda.