Note: This profile appears in the Wednesday, March 11 newspaper on Page A1.
Note: This story is the final part of a series profiling the mayors of Jackson County. Previous stories featured Randy Evans, Charlie Hudson, and Paul McNeal.
COALTON — The leadership in the Village of Coalton remains the same, as the mayor there began her third term in January.
Kim Milliken, 65, of Coalton, was re-elected during the 2019 General Election. She had no opposition and assumed her seat as mayor once again.
“I felt like I had a lot to offer,” Milliken recalled as to why she decided to originally run for mayor eight years ago.
“I understood the Ohio Revised Code,” explained Milliken. “I realized what an important role the Ohio Revised Code played in the day to day operations of a village, and how smoothly a village could run if you follow the rules properly.”
She is not originally from Coalton, she was born and raised in Delaware County.
“I am a worker and a go-getter,” stated Milliken. “I am one of those people if I come up with an idea I will follow through with it.”
Milliken added, “I won’t ask anybody for help, except for maybe my husband. I might ask people if they are interested in helping because I don’t like to exclude anyone.”
Milliken explained that before she was mayor, she was on Coalton Village Council.
“In the begin, I was on council,” said Milliken. “I thought why not put your money where your mouth is if you want to see these changes come about why not be the person that makes them come about.”
The salary to be Mayor of the Village of Coalton is only one dollar per year.
“I can afford to work for a dollar a year,” explained Milliken. “There are a lot of people that would be fantastic at this job, but when they hear the salary is a dollar a year, no insurance or retirement, they don’t want any part of it. But for me, I like to stay busy.”
The Courier had asked Milliken to share some of the village’s accomplishments, but she isn’t one to brag.
“I just move from one project to another one,” Milliken said.
However, a current project that the village is working on has to do with grant money received from the state.
In 2019, the Village of Coalton applied for and received a $750K Neighborhood Revitalization Grant.
The project to be done includes:
- $155,500 to replace 220 water meters village-wide with new wireless meters and transmission equipment
- $189,300 to install 400 LF of drainage, four catch basins and a new culvert along E. Church Street
- $186,900 to install 550 LF of drainage and eight catch basins along Shook Street
- $61,600 to demolish the old Coalton School Gymnasium
- $47,000 to install a 20-by-20 feet splash pad in the Coalton Village Park
- $48,000 to install an emergency siren in the Village Park
- $11,700 to replace the HCAP ramps at the Village Hall with new, ADA-compliant HCAP ramps
- $50,000 in CDBG NRG funds for program administration
The Village of Coalton will match these projects with locally funded projects:
- $86,675 to clean up the ditches village-wide
- $11,000 to re-grade and re-gravel alleyways village-wide
- $4,400 to install an ADA-compliant drinking fountain at the Village Park
The village has to carry out these projects before Aug. 31, 2021.
Many years ago, Milliken was responsible for getting the playground on the village green next to the village building through a grant.
“The basketball court on the village green is something I am most proud of,” stated Milliken. “It wasn’t supposed to be there but I talked the granters into adding it. That court is played upon 365 days a year. I’d like to add another hoop soon.”
The Courier asked Milliken if she was moving because there is a “For Sale” sign outside her Coalton home. She explained that they own three houses in the village, and if they happen to sell the house they live in, they will move to another one. Her goal is to sell a few places off in order to get a summer or winter getaway in Tennessee.
Milliken stated that her number one goal during her term this time is to get the whole Village of Coalton on the sewer system.
“We are trying to get Coalton on a sewer system,” said Milliken, “Currently, Coalton is on a municipal septic system, it is kind of a unique system.”
Milliken explained, “It was one of those experiments from back in the ‘80s. It’s a system where all the solids collect in a septic tank, and the liquids from each house go to the sewer plant. So, what we would like is that the solids to also go to the sewer plant, and we are asking for 4.2 million dollars again this year to try to make this happen through a grant/loan.”
She said that the village owns each of the resident’s septic tanks, and every three years they pump the tanks at each house or as needed. But, the issue is that some tanks are beginning to age, so she wants to switch the village to a complete sewer system instead of replacing tanks.
“My mom and dad are still alive and well in their own home,” stated Milliken. “I say that’s where my good stock comes from.”
Milliken is married to her husband, Jim. They have three sons, and a daughter along with seven grandchildren. She also has two cats, and one dog named Cesar. Kim also has a sister and two brothers.