Mr. Forbes referenced the ongoing discussion regarding the safety manual for the Department of Public Works. He asked if they wanted to handle this in house or outsource it to have a manual created. Mr. Austgen stated that they did some leg work on this in the late fall of last year and referenced the information gathered as well as reach out to NIRPSC to investigate exactly what was out there. He referenced the continuing process of the in-house training and the suggestion raised was that there be a more formal protocol manual, guides, whatever within the department so that that there is a regular resource available to all employees and new employees that come in. This would be a document that can be built on. Discussion ensued regarding contacting IACT, IOSHA and other agencies, the type of document, organization of information obtained and a timeframe to include a reasonable time for completion within 90 days with a draft in 60 days or March 10, 2011.
Mr. Forbes stated that Mark started the health insurance review last year and this is an ongoing process. Mr. Barenie stated that they requested bids from IACT, as well as talk with the Braman Agency and possibly another broker. Discussion ensued.
Mr. Forbes referenced the request he received from the Police Commission/Police Department to hire a new officer to replace one of the two that retired. He asked for a motion to that affect. Mr. Barenie motioned to hire a new police officer. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed by a vote of 4 – 0.
Mr. Forbes congratulated Officer Demeter on his promotion to sergeant.
Mr. Kil referenced the information in their packets regarding the memorial service on February 20, 2011, at Kohling School for Town Marshal James Larimer and Trooper John J. Streu. Mr. Austgen suggested that Chief Frego attend the parole hearing for the individual convicted of murdering Marshal Larimer and Trooper Streu, as Mr. Tuley has passed away. Mr. Fryzel motioned that Chief Frego attend the parole hearing on February 8th. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed with a vote of 4 – 0. Discussion ensued and Mr. Kil will also compose a letter from the Town Council to be presented to the parole board.
Mr. Adrian Bugariu, 11747 W. 90th Ave – stated that we wants his camera and the key to his house returned.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Volk motioned to adopt Ordinance #1533. Seconded by Mr. Fryzel. Motion passed with a vote of 3 - 0.
Mr. Kil read the Police Departments Monthly Report for Chief Frego who is attending a conference.
Chief Willman read the Fire Department Monthly Report. Mr. Forbes added he received a letter from the Schererville Fire Chief Kruzan thanking Chief Willman and the St. John Fire Department for their assistance with a structure fire on January 19th.
Mr. Sobek stated that the Spring Program Flyer will be going out with the next water bill and they are working on the summer programs.
Mr. Forbes asked Mr. Kil about the electronic recycling program. Mr. Kil stated that will be ready for the February meeting. He said the plan is to have a bin at Public Works for electronic equipment. The vendor will pick up the bin when it is full. Mr. Forbes asked that Mr. Kil get the word out to the residents so they don’t leave their electronics out on the street. Discussion ensued.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Nick Georgiou, 10448 White Water Crossing – stated that he is here on behalf of the St. John Chamber of Commerce regarding the Route 41 banner program. They anticipate having the first batch of banners ready (16-18 banners) and would like to know who and how they would work with the Town to install the banners. The Chamber would also love to see representatives from the Town at the Chamber meetings. Mr. Forbes told him to work with Mr. Kil to coordinate the installation of the banners.
Mr. Jeffrey Bagherpour, 8347 Heron Lake Road – referenced the gate behind the school, it has been left open and there is a lot of traffic going through the neighborhood. He asked who can they talk to. Discussion ensued. Chief Frego will contact the school.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Forbes stated that there was also a request to purchase 8,500 gallons of fuel for the Town in the amount of $23,237.50. Mr. Barenie motioned to approve the request to purchase fuel in the amount of $23,237.50. Seconded by Mr. Fryzel. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
He stated that there was also a request from the Fire Department to upgrade the trucks with the high-pressure system. There was money left over from the grant for the breathing apparatus; a residual of approximately $9,337.00 that could be used to enhance the project that the department chose to use to upgrade the pressure system on the fire trucks from a low-pressure system to a high-pressure system; however, they need an additional $2,334.00. Mr. Gembala motioned to approve the additional $2,334.00. Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion passed 4-0.
Mr. Fryzel stated that there were several complaints regarding the snow removal of R&R Excavating. Mr. Gembala motioned to table the payment of this invoice until the next meeting. Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion passed 4-0. Discussion ensued and Mr. Kil will follow up with R&R Excavating.
Mr. Forbes stated that for informational purposes the latest Lake County Solid Waste Management Meeting discussed the ongoing ethanol plant, the Interlocal Agreement and the anticipated fees. Mr. Austgen stated, as future information, any action would require a resolution and a public meeting.
Mr. Forbes stated that he would like to change the sign that is posted on properties for the public hearings to state “See the Town website” for the time and date rather than change the signs every time. This would be a timesaver for Public Works employees, as they must change the sign for every hearing. He also complimented Chief Frego on the memorial for the two officers; it was very good.
Mr. Kil also stated that almost all of the vendors are registered and ready for the Farmer’s Market.
Chief Willman read the January Monthly Report for the Fire Department.
Chief Frego read the January Monthly Report for the Police Department.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Martin Dzieglowicz of American Legion Post #369 along with Legion First District Commander John Rassbach presented the Town of St. John with a Certificate of Appreciation in recognition of the Town flying the POW flag.
Ms. Sury confirmed that this will be used for utility bills only at first and will expand for other payments in the town. Mr. Gembala asked if this will be used to make credit/debit card payments for utilities and the company takes care of all the paperwork and payments. Ms. Sury explained that residents will be able to pay online, in person, or on the Internet. The company deposits the money every night in a special municipal account that will be set up, and every morning the company will send the Clerk’s office a report with the payments that were made that will include the utility account numbers, and the amounts paid. The payments will be posted to their accounts with the payment splits as to trash, sewer and water. Then the fees collected will be transferred from the municipal holding account as designed to the specified trash, sewer and water accounts. The same process would be done when we would accept payments for park programs, etc. they would all be coded as to the type and not comingled. She stated that we would not be involved with any credit card numbers, so with the Red Flag Regulations, we don’t have to worry about adding any extra security. If they want to pay by phone, they provide their card number directly to the company using the toll free number they handle everything. Ms. Sury stated that all we will have in our office is the machine for the swipe card and we will have no access to their account numbers. She added that in the event of a potential utility shut off, the town can find out within 15 to 20 minutes if a credit card payment made through PayGOV was good to avert the shutting off of the utilities. Mr. Forbes stated that it was a very positive service that we can offer.
Ms. Sury stated that a lot of the municipalities in Indiana are with them, and mentioned the towns that are utilizing this service. She referenced the different options and services that are available. She stated that this service was convenient and only the customers utilizing their credit/debit cards for payments pay the transaction fees. Mr. Forbes stated that with this service the transaction fees would be not spread out to all the customers. He stated that there was also a resolution from the Sanitary Board and the Waterworks Board supporting the use of credit cards as a form of payment for the utilities. Mr. Gembala asked if the normal method of paying by cash or check remains the same, and the use of credit/debit cards is not a requirement, only an option. Mr. Forbes confirmed that yes; any form of payment can be made. Mr. Gembala motioned to consider Ordinance #1535 on first reading. Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Fryzel motioned to adopt Ordinance #1535. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Austgen stated that the agenda is misleading on this item that the Ordinance is providing for Electronic Bill Payments through “Pay Gov”; actually, the Ordinance adopted the alternate method of payment as described here as permitted by the Indiana Code. It also mentions the Town Council President’s authority to enter into a contract; to contract with a vendor the alternate payment methods that have been indicated here. So they have a second act to undertake if they want to commence the contractual relationship with PayGOV but it’s now authorized by ordinance that you do so. He suggests that the Council motion to enter into a contract with PayGOV even though the contract presented needs some work. Discussion ensued. Mr. Fryzel motioned to enter into a contract with the PayGOV Service contingent upon the agreement with the St. John Town Attorney. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Kil asked for authorization to dispose of a Public Works vehicle that has been inoperable for some time due to a broken steering column. He asked the Council to declare the vehicle worthless and authorize him to scrap it. Mr. Barenie motioned to approve the removal and disposal of the pickup truck. Seconded by Mr. Fryzel. Motion unanimously passed
She asked permission to use the Public Works Building on Election Day, as a polling place for Precinct’s #2, #4, and #10. Mr. Fryzel motioned to authorize the use of Public Works Building for the May 3rd Primary. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed. Discussion ensued whether the VFW will also be used as a polling place for the residents of Tiburon and Grouse Pointe.
Mr. Forbes mentioned that the Town Wide Garage Sale will be April 28th through May 1st. No registration is required and does not count against the maximum number of garage sales that they can have in town.
Mr. Adrian Bugariu, 11747 West 90th Ave – Asked for information on who approved the installation of expensive street lights on Wall Street and along 90th and Patterson, replacing the NIPSCO lights with the fancy lights. He stated that this is wasting money. Second, he referenced the $90,000 for the retirements of Officers Kouder and Chapranda and asked where the money came from. Third, he asked who approved over $800 for the toy for Fryzel’s Hummer.
Ms. Vanessa Knutsen, 11745 West 105th Street – Stated that she agrees that the traffic circles are a good idea. She is concerned about the Gates of St. John signage – some of the drivers are confused. She asked if there are plans to bring the signage up to date. Mr. Forbes stated that they will review all of their signs. Mr. Kil added that they have signs and need to wait until the ground is ready. Discussion ensued.Mr. Bugariu – Referenced the triangle (entrance) by Walgreens, and stated that there is a problem with (a/k/a) pork chops the right in and right out directions and would like them eliminated. Mr. Forbes stated that INDOT will not allow an intersection within a certain distance of another intersection, the reason for the right in and right outs. Discussion ensued.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Barenie motioned to adopt Ordinance #1536. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Kil asked the Council to authorize the Public Works Department to begin inspecting the roads in Ravenswood. Mr. Barenie authorized the Public Works Department to begin the review of road projects in Ravenswood for pavement. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Barenie asked Mr. Sobek to look into areas for potential locations for new parks, including the Renaissance area
Mr. Austgen stated that the review of the credit card payment agreement has been drafted; there are still some items to complete. It is in much better form and much better content. His recommendation is that the Town Council authorize the Town Council President to execute and the Clerk-Treasurer to attest entry into the agreement upon Mr. Austgen’s office completing the revisions that are recommended for the benefit the Town and the citizens. Mr. Volk motioned to execute the PayGov contract upon review by Mr. Austgen or his office and authorize the Town Council President to sign. Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0. Mr. Gembala confirmed that this would also be used to pay for EMS service.
Chief Frego gave the March Monthly Report for the Police Department.
Chief Willman gave the March Monthly Report for the Fire Department.
Mr. Forbes stated that Bob Davis of the Public Works Department has been surveying the roads in Town to see where repairs are needed. There is about 200,000 square feet of patching needed. Mr. Kil added that the number may go as high as 225,000 – 230,000 square feet.
Mr. Sobek stated they did have some of the Easter Egg Hunt before the rain. He thanked the Board and Police Department for their help, Standard Bank for their donation and First United for the Easter Bunny. The brochure for the summer programs will go out next week.
Mr. Barenie motioned to authorize payment of the bills to include the previous change order. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Adrian Bugariu, 11747 West 90th – Questioned why he has not received copies of the documents he requested from the Town.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Kil read the Opening Remarks for the CDBG Public Hearing and asked that the Opening Remarks, Affirmative Action Plan Adoption, Section 3 Understanding Form and Resolution #11-05-12 be incorporated into the record.
One of the application requirements is to hold public hearings in the communities where CDBG funding is allocated in order to obtain input from the local citizens on the proposed use(s) of the new funding. For FY2011, the Town of St. John CDBG allocation is $50,010.00.
The most common use of CDBG funds is for infrastructure, including street reconstructions, sanitary sewers, water line extensions, storm drainage improvements, sidewalks, and projects to remove architectural barriers (handicapped access), such as curb cuts and wheelchair ramps. CDBG funds may also be used to eliminate slums and blight through demolition of unsafe buildings or other clearance activities.
CDBG funded infrastructure projects may only be done in areas where the neighborhood is at least 51% low/moderate income according to HUD guidelines. In most cases, an income survey must be done to qualify the area for funding eligibility. The income information taken by the survey is strictly confidential, and is used solely for the purpose of determining the area’s eligibility for CDBG funding.
Handicapped access projects and demolition may be done anywhere in a community, without the need for area income determinations.
The public hearing is just the start of the application process for Lake County. There are a series of legal advertisements and comment periods that take place during the summer, prior to final grant approval from HUD in late August. New CDBG funding is released to the County and its entitlement communities on or around September 1st and needs to be expended by June 18th of the following year.
After public comment tonight, three documents need to be read and adopted: the Affirmative Action Program, Section 3 Understanding, and a Resolution authorizing the City/Town Executive to submit a project proposal for CDBG funding.
Finally, Project Applications, and supporting documentation, need to be submitted no later than May 19, 2011 for review by Lake County.
The floor is open for comments.
SPECIFIC AFFIRMATIVE ACTION STEPS
TOWN OF ST. JOHN agrees to implement the following specific affirmative action steps directed at increasing the utilization of lower income residents and project area businesses.
A. To ascertain from the HUD Area Office, Director the exact boundaries of the Section 3 covered project area and where advantageous, seek the assistance of local officials of the department in preparing and implementing the affirmative action plan.
B. To attempt to recruit from the appropriate areas the necessary number of lower income residents through: local advertising media, signs placed at the proposed site for the project, and community organizations and public or private institutions operating within or serving the project area such as Service Employment and Redevelopment (SER), Opportunities Industrialization Center (OIC), Urban League, Concentrated Employment Program, Hometown Plan or the U.S. Employment Service.
C. To maintain a list of all lower income area residents who have applied either on their own or on referral from any source and to employ such persons, if otherwise eligible and if a vacancy exists.
D. To insert this affirmative action plan in all bid documents, and to require all bidders to submit a Section 3 affirmative action plan including utilization goals and the specific steps planned to accomplish the goals.
E. To insure that contracts which are typically let on a negotiated rather than a bid basis in areas other than Section 3 covered project area, are also let on a negotiated basis, where ever feasible when let in a Section 3 covered project area.
F. To formally contact unions, subcontractors and trade associations, to secure their cooperation for this program.
G. To insure that all appropriate project area business concerns are notified of pending contractual opportunities.
H. To maintain records including copies of correspondence, memoranda, etc., which document that all of the above affirmative action steps have been taken.
I. To appoint or recruit an executive official of the company or agency as Equal Opportunity Officer to coordinate the implementation of this Section 3 affirmative action plan.
TOWN COUNCIL PRESIDENT
CITIZEN PARTICIPATION PLAN
The following is a detailed citizen participation plan which:
1. Provides for and encourages citizen participation, with particular emphasis on participation by persons of low and moderate income who are residents of slum and blighted areas and of areas in which funds are proposed to be used, and provides participation of residents in low and moderate income neighborhoods as defined by the local jurisdiction;
2. Provides citizens with reasonable and timely access to local meetings, information, and records relating to the grantee’s proposed use of funds, as required by the regulations of the Secretary, and relation to the actual use of funds under the Act;
3. Provides for technical assistance to groups representative of persons of low and moderate income that request such assistance to be determined by the grantee;
4. Provides for public hearings to obtain citizen views and to respond to proposals and questions at all stages of the community development program, including at least the development of needs, the review of proposed activities, and review of program performance, which hearings shall be held after adequate notice, at times and locations convenient to potential or actual beneficiaries, and with accommodation for the handicapped;
5. Provides for a timely written answer to written complaints and grievances, within fifteen (15) working days where practicable; and
6. Identifies how the needs of non-English speaking residents will be in the case of public hearings where a significant number of non-English speaking residents can be reasonably expected to participate.
LAKE COUNTY, INDIANA
Section 3 Understanding
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) issued regulation that provide the directive to creative job opportunities for low-income persons when HUD funds are expended on a construction project. These regulations are known as Section 3 policy. The purpose of the Section 3 policy is to ensure that the employment and other economic opportunities generated by Federal financial assistance for housing and community development programs shall, to the greatest extent feasible, be directed toward low and very low-income persons.
Section 3 covered projects are construction, reconstruction, conversion, or rehabilitation of housing, including reduction and abatement of lead based paint hazards, or other public construction which includes building and improvements assisted with HUD housing and community development assistance. Section 3 covered contracts do not include contacts for purchase of supplies and materials. However whenever a contract for materials includes the installation of the materials, the contract constitutes a Section 3 covered contract.
Fund recipients and contractors must show compliance with the numerical goals set forth by the regulations. The numerical goals for new hires apply only to the number of new hires generated because of the financial assistance of the HUD programs. The numerical goals are not absolute numerical requirements. They are goals that each recipient and contractor should try to reach. The goals, if not met, do not trigger sanctions against the recipient or contractor. However, if challenged on the issue of compliance with Section 3, the recipient or contractor should be ready to demonstrate that they tried to reach these goals. The goals are as follows:
30% of all covered new hires for the year FY 2011
In addition, recipients and contractors are required to show compliance with the goal that at least10% of any building trade activity, which is subcontracted, and 3% of non building trade activity (construction management, etc.), is awarded to eligible Section 3 business concerns.
Further information regarding these requirements may be found in the Federal Regulations at 24 CFR 135 and the Lake County Section 3 Plan.
I certify that I Have read the information above and understand the Section 3 requirements and numerical goals.
RESOLUTION NUMBER 11-05-12
A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING AND DIRECTING THE TOWN COUNCIL PRESIDENT OF THE TOWN ST. JOHN TO SUBMIT A PROJECT PROPOSAL FOR COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT FUNDS FOR FEDERAL FISCAL YEAR 2011
WHEREAS, under the provisions of Title 1 of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended to date, Lake County, Indiana is authorized to provide financial assistance to units of general local government for undertaking and carrying out Community Development activities; and
WHEREAS, it is provided in such Act that the unit of general local government shall provide a satisfactory assurance prior to submission of its Application, that it has held one public hearing to obtain the views of citizens of Community Development needs; and
WHEREAS, the Town of St. John is proposing a product for assistance under the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended to date, and proposes to undertake and make available a total project cost of Twenty Nine Thousand and Fifty Dollars ($50,010.00); and
WHEREAS, the Town of St. John has held one formal public hearing on the proposed program and has made available to the general public, through the mass media and other sources, information concerning the program; and
WHEREAS, the Town of St. John has general knowledge of the proposed uses of such funds and is cognizant of the conditions that are imposed in the undertaking and carrying out of Community Development activities and undertaking with Federal financial assistance under Title 1, including those prohibiting discrimination because of race, color, creed, sex or national origin;
NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, by the Town of St. John, Indiana:
Section1: That the Town Council President of the Town of St. John, IN is hereby authorized to file a Project proposal for funds under Title 1 of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended to date, with Lake County, Indiana and provide all information and assurances as may be necessary under the Act.
Town Council President
ST. JOHN TOWN COUNCIL
Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Affirmative Action Plan Adoption – see below
Open to the Floor for Public Comment – Mr. Forbes opened the floor for public comment.
Mr. Austgen stated that Mr. Mitch King from the Lake County Community Economic Development Department was present. He is the County Representative for the program financing the initiative that is before the Council that they are conducting the public hearing on. He is there to answer any questions and to monitor the program.
Mr. Forbes stated that they are doing a drainage project with the CDGB money in the Watt’s subdivision, a flood relief project. It is phase two of a project previously started. Overall, the project will provide flood and drainage relief by installing 333 feet of 12 inch pipe with 4 catch basins, re-grade approximately 450 linear feet of parkway in order to provide proper drainage. The project will also involve minor road patching as a result of placing the pipe through the existing streets – Schneider Court and Bailey Street. This project is a continuation of a CDBG project that took place in 2010.
Closed to the Floor – Mr. Forbes closed the floor for Public Comment.
Affirmative Action Plan Adoption – Mr. Forbes referenced the Affirmative Action Plan Implementing Section 3 of the Housing and Urban Redevelopment Act of 1968. The Affirmative Action Program Lake County Indiana Section 3 Understanding and the Citizen Participation Plan. Mr. Volk motioned to accept the three documents that Mr. Forbes just presented. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 3-0.
Reading of Section 3 Understanding Form – See above
There is a process, by which payment of an annual fee qualifies the Town as a participant in the protections of the Environmental Liability Fund. In the event of a liability exposure, release, unpermitted discharge, or a cleanup, it is an environmental coverage. There was a time period during the construction and/or transition of the Towns Public Works facilities from the former facility, which are now gone to the new facility when these payments did not get made. The consequence of that is there was a gap in coverage has some fatal consequences to it.
At the Council’s direction, Mr. Austgen made a resolution to bridge the gap but that requires notification to IDEM that the site conditions and the tank conditions are acceptable. They are not only sound but there are no issues that would require an Environmental Phase 2 Assessment. That is what is contemplated by this agreement; in the event the Environmental Phase 2 Assessment is completed and accepted the fines or penalties for non-payment are waived and the coverage is bridged. Mr. Volk motioned to authorize entry into proposed settlement with IDOR (Indiana Department of Revenue). Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 3-0.
Mr. Austgen mentioned that this is a single sourced proposal for the remediation environmental services.
Mr. Volk motioned to authorize entry into the agreement with Superior Environmental Remediation for the Phase 2 Assessment not to exceed $19,567.76. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 3-0.
Chief Frego stated that he received correspondence from Attorney Austgen suggesting a joint meeting of the Town Council and Police Commission regarding the proposed 911 Consolidation Dispatch Ordinance. The Police Commissioners agree a meeting should be held. Discussion ensued. Mr. Austgen added that this is not a Joint Interlocal Cooperation Agreement. The Town Council will work with them to schedule a meeting.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Chief Frego stated that he has been keeping Mr. Austgen up to date with what has been done with the consolidated dispatch and they agreed a consolidated meeting should be held so everyone knows what has been done so far. They have had three meetings where they were part of establishing the Ordinance creating the commission establishing the consolidated dispatch. The commission consists of 21 members; 17 are police chiefs; the member must be a police chief or fire chief selected by their respective council. That has not been done yet. When the Ordinance is passed they will create an Interlocal Agreement that each town must sign.
Currently, there are 17 separate dispatch centers in Lake County; in 2014 there will be two, the main one and a backup center located somewhere in the county as provided by law.
He stated that there are advantages and disadvantages. An advantage to the town is the cost savings of about $254,000 a year to run the dispatch center. The State legislature will convene in October and for consideration is the 911 line charge that would be increased on the resident’s phone bills that will fund the consolidated dispatch centers. The towns will no longer have to pay for that service; it will be totally funded by the line charges. A disadvantage would be the loss of a personal touch – the familiarity with the Town and who the “frequent flyers” are. The town would still have to man the record center, a location to pay tickets, and people in the lock up need to be monitored 24 hours. They are currently monitored via camera from the dispatch center. SCADA is also monitored at the dispatch center. He does not know what will be done with the municipal alarms: store alarms, water alarms. Mr. Kil stated that he anticipates those items would be moved to someone internally, monitored with a laptop computer. Chief Frego stated that they also have people calling the police administration line asking about events in town. Some of the $254,000 savings would be used to man the remaining clerical work.
Chief Frego stated that the Commission discussed the hiring of people for the consolidated center. The Commission will be doing the hiring. The will hire the Director of the Center, setting the salaries, discipline, rules, procedures, etc. He also mentioned that the majority of the commission is required to have a criminal justice background.
He stated that they are still working on where the center will be located; will it be in an existing building or will they build a new building. Chief Frego also stated that until recently the 911 money has been used for 911 equipment in some of the communities. St. John received 911 money when the new station was built. The money will no longer be used for that.
Discussion ensued regarding Porter County, which has already consolidated and they are in debt. However, they consolidated prior to the 911 surcharge increase. A question was asked about whether the towns have to pay to get into the consolidated center. Chief Frego’s understanding is that it must be funded by the County, they have been mandated to execute this, and it is the Executive Officer of the County that must make this happen. Attorney Austgen mentioned he does not interpret the Statute that way; the county took the lead and is in that position which is a home rule ordinance.
Chief Frego stated that all but two counties have not consolidated. It has been recommended that the dispatch centers go on 800 MHz; no one in Lake County is 800 MHz they are currently on UHF; 800 MHz is expensive, walkies are $2,500 and car radios are $4,000. And they are not compatible with what the town has now. The equipment they have now does not match what they have planned. A rough estimate for St. John is 25 walkies times $2,500 plus 25 car radios times $3,700 plus the peripherals needed for the change. There may be grants available.
Discussion ensued as to who is going to run the dispatch center. Chief Frego stated that the current Sheriff changed the language of the ordinance to give the Commission the right to hire the director, to do the discipline, and to do the rules and regulations for running the center.
Discussion ensued regarding the cost to run the center. The sheriff’s department is sending out questionnaires to determine the current needs of the police. If the money falls short are they going to come to the Town’s for additional money? Is there a business plan, is it being developed, will the individual communities review the business plan.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
He added that the bid opening was to have happened at the cancelled meeting last week but due to the lack of quorum by the Council and a rescheduling, the meeting was cancelled. The sealed bids were received, they were retained, they were unopened and communication was made by Mr. Kil last Friday to each of the bidders that the bids were received, not opened because the meeting was not held and saying it would be held unopened until this special meeting tonight. Mr. Kil stated that he called each bidder personally and then followed up with written communication to them.
Proof of Fax notice regarding delay of opening until 6/2/11 – See above
Bid Opening by Attorney David Austgen – Exhibit A.
Mr. Barenie motioned to take the bids under advisement, have staff review them and upon that review, authorize the bid award. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Austgen stated that the two Letters of Credit on tonight’s agenda are really good items and are evidence of the revisions to procedures here in the Town Hall and the Planning & Building Department related to monitoring projects, deadlines, expiration dates, etc. Both of these are part of the system that Mr. Kil implemented and they have a backup for the monitoring. The second of these two items, they were within two days of actually collecting a check for deposit to ensure the division infrastructure would be constructed. The renewal came on the eve of expiration.
Mr. Gembala stated that he has received feedback that people are going through resident’s yards and measuring things. He found out that the assessor’s office is doing a State mandated reassessment of St. John Township properties for both residential and commercial properties and it will be completed by March 2012.
Mr. Austgen stated that Chief Frego has a Memorandum of Understanding for the SWAT agreement which must be executed and attached to the Resolution adopted by the Council in April. Discussion ensued regarding the donations received and the need for an ordinance to establish the fund. Ms. Sury stated that the fund would be established by Ordinance as the PD Special Revenue SWAT Fund, whereas donations would be deposited and bills paid from this fund.
Mr. Kil asked that the Council formally accept the resignation of Janet Brennan from the Park Board. Mr. Barenie motioned to accept the resignation of Janet Brennan from the Park Board. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Kil referenced an item from the Plan Commission meeting; it was regarding the small annexation and subsequent development in Maple Ridge. It was the three homes connected to Bramblewood immediately to the east right off of 93rd. The building is near completion and the final item is to install a sidewalk and an access road, it is a private road. They have requested a reduction of, not a Letter of Credit; in this instance they wrote the Town a check for $12,056.00 that the Town cashed and put in escrow. They are asking for some of that back. The Town inspected the properties and the Plan Commission last night authorized the release of all money less $2,500.00 for the installation of the sidewalk. They want to use this money to pay the contractor that put their road in. Mr. Kil asked the Town Council to authorize the release of the money from P&P Property Development less $2,500.00 that will be held until the sidewalk is installed and at that time he will ask the Council to release that money. Mr. Volk motioned to release the $9,556.00 as specified by Mr. Kil. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Chief Frego thanked the Council for their time this evening reviewing the dispatch consolidation.
Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Proofs of Publication – Mr. Austgen stated that the Publisher’s Affidavits are in evidence and they indicate timely publication of the Notice of this Public Hearing. Please note this is a special publication and that the publication was made 20 or more days before this hearing was held. It is a specialty notice that is in order. (The notices were published in The Times on 5/24 and in the Post on 5/26).
Opening Remarks – Mr. Jim Wieser, Attorney for Cline Partners LLC stated that the property is located on the east side of Cline Avenue, the north side of 231, south of The Gates development off of 101st. They believe it would be logical to be part of St. John, all the documents are in order, and the zoning is R-1. Mr. Volk added that it is approximately 100 acres and there are four parcels.
Town Council Comments – None
Open to the Floor – None
Closed to the Floor
Mr. Kil stated that Resolution #11-06-16, Introduction to the Fiscal Plan does not require action tonight. It is for the Council members’ review and will be voted on prior to the Ordinance adoption.
Mr. Austgen stated that the Ordinance is for introduction only. At least 14 days must elapse between introduction, approval, and adoption.
Mr. Gembala motioned to consider Ordinance #1537 on first reading. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Proofs of Publication – Mr. Austgen stated that he has reviewed the Proofs of Publication and they are in order, the notice has been properly made. (Published twice in The Times on 5/27 & 6/3 and the Post on 5/27 & 6/3.)
Bid Opening by Mr. Austgen – Exhibit A
Mr. Barenie motioned to take the bids under advisement. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Mr. Forbes stated that he would also like to entertain a motion that upon review with staff and legal, award the bid to the lowest most responsible bidder. He stated that we will probably not meet for six weeks and does not want to lose that time to potentially get this project going. He stated that we don’t know where we will be at with the strike and doesn’t want to wait six weeks to award the bid to possibly get this done – it would be too late in the season again. Mr. Forbes stated that it is in our best interest to do it this way, to allow the bid to be awarded once it has been reviewed, staff and legal.
Mr. Volk motioned to upon review of the bids by staff and legal award the bid to the lowest and most responsible bidder. Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0. Mr. Austgen added that if it is the recommendation of staff and it meets the requirements of law if you so authorize by saying at a public meeting.
Mr. Van Til introduced the individuals attending the meeting with him, a member of his office, and an attorney for the proposed district (Mr. Ethan Lowe) and an engineer who is helping out. He stated that in answer to Mr. Forbes’ question, because things got significantly changed, the best-case scenario for the Little Calumet River is 3-5 years from the project completion. There are four major areas that still need to be addressed; there is no quick answer on how they are going to be addressed.
He stated that a bill was sponsored downstate, #1574, which proposed to make about $3 million from fees from part of the watershed. This would be the only place in the state where the locals paid but the locals have no say. There are five river commissions that are funded by the State to a greater or less degree and Calumet River has long been one of them. One of the problems has always been that it has been at the mercy of state funding. This fee was presented to the legislature with no local representation.
Mr. Van Til stated that he looked at what an alternative to bill #1574 would be and that would be a Conservancy District where the locals can band together and decide what needs to be done and how much money needs to be raised. And that is what they are proposing. In response to the concern of creating two layers of government; when the current commission is done with what they are charged with presumably they will be done. The Conservancy District is for the next 100 years. A key thing about a Conservancy District is its flexibility; it can decide what needs to be done.
Mr. Ethan Lowe gave a summary of how the Conservancy District be formed. One way is by going door to door for signatures or go to each municipality and ask the Town Council to approve an Ordinance joining in and agreeing with the creation of the proposed Conservancy District. They are proposing the Conservancy District be established for two purposes: flood control along the Little Calumet River itself; and to improve drainage within the entire Little Calumet watershed.
Mr. Volk asked why the northern communities that take the brunt of the flooding and damage and receive a large amount of casino money; why don’t they use some of the casino money to repair the dikes, etc. to repair those problems. Mr. Van Tils’ response was to consider St. John a new, younger company and Hammond or Gary as an older company that has legacy costs, the cost to provide services are significant. And the people outside of those areas send water to those areas and contribute to the problem.
Mr. Volk asked Mr. Van Til to clarify that the part of the Town involved are the ones on the map Mr. Van Til referenced the map indicating that they are in the watershed and not the entire Town.
Mr. Joe Hero – 11723 S. Oakridge - asked who is paying for the attorney fees and other personnel that are working on this now. Mr. Van Til stated no one. Mr. Hero asked if they were donating their time and Mr. Van Til replied yes. Discussion ensued.
Mr. Forbes stated that they are going to take all the information they were given, assess where they are from that information and will take action based on that information.
Mr. Barenie motioned to adopt Ordinance #1538. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Volk motioned to adopt Ordinance #1539. Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Barenie motioned to adopt Resolution #11-06-16A. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Volk motioned to appoint Mr. Steve Hastings to the Town Council Ward 1 Seat. No Second. Hearing no second to the motion Mr. Forbes passed the gavel to Mr. Barenie to second the motion to appoint Mr. Hastings.
Mr. Barenie asked if there was any discussion. Mr. Gembala stated that he has no comment; and understands what Mr. Forbes is saying; one has served on the Plan Commission and has been involved in the Town; and one has very little experience.
Mr. Barenie called for a roll call vote: Mr. Volk: yes, Mr. Gembala, yes; Mr. Barenie, yes; Mr. Forbes, yes. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Barenie passed the gavel back to Mr. Forbes.
Mr. Gembala stated that they had to hire an outside contractor to help with the amount of work they have to do.
Mr. Forbes stated that they are going into Haunted House season, they need to approve a budget and to approve the contract which remains the same at $6,000; the budget is $30,000 which does not include correcting safety concerns. Whatever money comes out of the Haunted House fund is not taxpayer money; the fund has been built up by money from admissions to the Haunted House. Mr. Barenie motioned to approve of the 2011 Haunted House and the consultant agreement (although it is not in front of them it is the same as last year, they just need to change the dates). Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Bill Dravesky, 9038 Howard - asked Mr. Forbes about a flyer he received and that part of 93rd west of US 41 is cracked down the middle. Mr. Forbes stated that the flyer references the standards and specifications at the Plan Commission level. They increased the makeup of the roads at the Plan Commission. They do their best to maintain the roads; they have purchased a piece of equipment to permanently fix pot holes. Mr. Dravesky stated that overweight trucks are tearing up their roads. Mr. Barenie stated that Reith Riley has repairs that must be done from last year’s road project. They knew when the pavement was put down that there were problems and are holding $100,000 until the repairs are made.
Mr. Adrian Bugariu, 11747 West 90th - asked if the Town Council members received his letters. He has asked for information from Mr. Frego and Mr. Austgen and has not received it. He wants the matter to be solved and his request to be honored.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Gembala motioned to adopt Ordinance #1540. Seconded by Mr. Hastings. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Austgen stated that he has two business items. On the Redevelopment Commission appointment which was sparked when Mr. Hastings sent a note of resignation from the Plan Commission and the BZA as a consequence of his selection to the Town Council. That begged a question raised by Mr. Dan Botich, the financial advisor, related to the appointments of the Town Council Members to the Redevelopment Commission and the propriety of doing that. Mr. Austgen stated that he would like to recommend the Council consider ratification of the Council Members as the Members of the Redevelopment Commission and appoint Mr. Hastings to join them so there is a public record of having done that for purposes of the TIF Increment Capture Resolution that was adopted at the last Redevelopment meeting. The notices to the various governmental bodies of that increment capture would be on the record and would satisfy the financial advisor’s query. Mr. Gembala motioned to ratify the existing members of the Redevelopment Commission and to add Mr. Hastings to that body. Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Austgen referenced the motion at the last public meeting to award the road project to the lowest bidder subject to verification of compliance of all legal requirements for lowest responsible bidder. They rendered that opinion today and recommend the lowest bidder Walsh & Kelly. Both bidders were responsive and responsible. The lowest responsive and responsible bidder was Walsh & Kelly. Mr. Kil stated that he instructed Mr. Faberbock to get the contract documents prepared and get them to Mr. Austgen.
Mr. Gembala complimented Public Works on the good job they have done cleaning up the leaves. Mr. Kil stated that they are going to go around town again and pick up branches.
Chief Frego thanked the Council for the bonuses and mentioned that the Nite Out Against Crime will be on August 2nd in Civic Park.
Chief Willman thanked the Council for the bonus on behalf of himself and the entire fire department.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Barenie asked Mr. Kil and Ms. Sury to provide for the next meeting the number of permits that have been budgeted and how much money has been brought in so far. Discussion ensued. He also asked the status of the direct payroll deposit.
Ms. Sury stated that direct deposit is on their list; they need to purchase the software program, and summarized the preliminary work (including training) that needs to be completed first before implementation. She explained that the deadline will be Monday mornings for submission by all the departments for the employee payroll time sheets and the processing timing needs of the bank. Discussion ensued and Ms. Sury referenced the higher priority items her office is presently handling at this time such as the budget, loan and bond payments, the TAW payment and balancing the newly enacted PayGOV activity. She stated that she hopes to have direct payroll deposit in place by year end. Discussion ensued. Mr. Barenie motioned to authorize the purchase of the direct deposit software from Keystone. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Hastings complimented the Town’s emergency services; he witnessed them in action when his neighbor’s son received lifesaving aid.
Mr. Forbes mentioned the Haunted House and asked Ms. Sury if she contacted Standard Bank about their participation. She stated that she had earlier confirmation that they would assist but needs to reconfirm. Ms. Sury stated that her staff does not want to participate this year because it is really hard on them. Last year they had to add comp time that they have not been able to take, they lost vacation time, and the schedule was hard on them due to working night hours and having to return the next morning to work in the office.
Mr. Forbes stated that he does not know where that leaves them as they need competent people to count the money. Ms. Sury suggested that they get commission members or family members to volunteer. Discussion ensued and Ms. Sury stated that the work flow in the Clerk’s office necessitates the employees to be in the office performing their assigned duties and not alternate their work time at the Haunted House.
Mr. Barenie stated that he has a couple of suggestions he wants to discuss offline. Mr. Gembala asked if the volunteers must be bonded. Ms. Sury stated that there are two people collecting the money every night per shift, a bank volunteer and a clerk from her office. Mr. Austgen stated that it is advisable the person collecting the money be bonded. Mr. Barenie suggested doing it through a team approach or bonding. Mr. Austgen stated that as long as there is supervisory bonded personnel or official designee overseeing they are okay. Mr. Barenie asked Ms. Sury how the workload in her office from last year at this point is different from this year. Ms. Sury provided an overview of the ongoing activity in her office including the loss of staff that handled the majority of the Haunted House shifts. Mr. Forbes stated that they need people out there they can trust and that are accountable. He asked that if anyone has any ideas to let him know and stated that the first meeting of the actors will be held on August 15th.
Mr. Adrian Bugariu, 11747 West 90th – stated that he is upset with the work of some members of the police department.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Gembala asked if there are additional costs that they will need to incur in addition to the software. Mr. Kil stated that as far as he knows, and what he has been told from Jason, this software is what they need and compatible with the units that they have. He has been informed that there is not any other licensing that will be coming up. This is the last piece of the puzzle where they can start mapping. Mr. Forbes added that they have the hardware; this is the software that is needed to use the hardware. Discussion ensued and Jason was invited to join the discussion for clarification of the licensing fees. (Mr. Forbes moved to Reports & Correspondence while waiting for Jason’s arrival, see below for Jason’s input and motion.)
Mr. Forbes asked Jason if the Cartegraph software has an annual licensing fee. Jason stated that it would be about $2,000 per year. Discussion ensued. Mr. Forbes stated that for future reference they should have purchased a packaged deal – both hardware and software. Jason stated that part of the problem was Robinson Engineering, they gave him the specifications for the hardware, and they were working with Trimball to get that going first. The Cartegraph software quote was much later; he does not know why it came that much later. Discussion ensued. Mr. Barenie motioned to approve the software purchase in the amount of $9,950.00 for Cartegraph Computer Software. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Forbes stated that they were back to Reports and Correspondence and asked to do a follow up ratification of the appointment of Chief Fred Frego to the 911 Board which is known as the Lake County Public Safety Communication Committee. Mr. Hastings motioned to ratify the appointment of Chief Fred Frego to the Lake County Public Safety Communication Committee. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
Mr. Forbes stated that he went to the Schererville Council meeting last night. There was discussion on including the Fire Department in the discussions at the Board meeting. He added that the rapport between the two chiefs is very good in both Schererville and St. John and asked Chief Frego to ensure that Chief Willman’s concerns are addressed. Chief Frego stated that three fire personnel members are on the commission now. Discussion ensued.
Mr. Forbes referenced the Conservancy District proposal and stated that it appears the Council is opposed to it. Discussion ensued. He stated that in light of that he would like a resolution that can be approved at the next meeting that can be sent to Mr. Van Til informing him that they are not in favor of the formation of a Conservancy District. He added the River Basin District is doing a great job, they are addressing all of the issues and there is no sense upsetting the applecart.
Mr. Forbes stated that he has had conversations with people who live in the Fairway Subdivision and he drives that way to work every day. He constantly sees kids trying to cross the railroad tracks on that turn of Bingo Lake Road and 85th. It is a very bad intersection. There is sidewalk in front of Fairway Subdivision along 85th and there is sidewalk in front of the Meadows of St. John. There is no connection between those two subdivisions.
Mr. Forbes stated that he has discussed this with Mr. Kil and he has some rough numbers. He would like to propose installing the interconnecting piece of sidewalk from 85th from around behind the Town sign across the railroad easement and connect to the other side. The main goal is to offer a safe way for kids and pedestrians to cross the railroad track. It will also serve as a safe route to school. Unfortunately, when dealing with the railroad you must deal with their contractors, so the effect on the cost is significant. A design must be submitted to Atlanta. The rough numbers are $12,000.
Mr. Kil added that it would cost almost $9,000 just to put in the walk across the tracks; and another $4,000 to $5,000 for the rest. He stated that it depends upon the requirements of the railroad. The railroad’s company is developing a set of plans that will be inserted into the Town’s overall sidewalk plan which will be submitted to their corporate office in Atlanta for approval. The Town must also pay for a flag man for the railroad because the trains must be stopped when the sidewalk is being installed. He added there is money in the cable TV, in Cum Cap Development and in casino game, there is plenty of cash to do the project. Discussion ensued regarding the potential cost and approval of the project, information will be forthcoming.
Mr. Forbes asked Chief Willman to do a preliminary walk through of the Haunted House and look at what they are building safety-wise. Chief Willman stated that he will check that the permit has been applied for. Discussion ensued regarding a pre-safety inspection because of the significant changes that were made in the downstairs. Mr. Forbes stated that he is in the process of doing a new drawing.
Mr. Kil stated that Parrish will be repaved along with the various areas in the Gates. Walsh & Kelly will be back in town to finish the subdivision patching, they are using a different mix – the Illinois mix – it’s a lot tighter, not as coarse, it’s a much better product.
Mr. Kil stated that as part of the Safety Training the Workers Comp carrier will be in next week to conduct a seminar for the employees.
Mr. Forbes referenced the construction summary provided by Mr. Kil. Mr. Kil stated that he included every permit that comes through the office. Mr. Forbes stated that he just handed out the Haunted House Budget to the Council Members as to where they are to date.
Chief Willman read the July Activity Report for the Fire Department. He added that June 2011 was the busiest month ever for the St. John Fire Department and July was even busier.
Chief Frego read the July Activity Report for the Police Department. The department also has an intern from Lake Central High School, Aaron, who is a senior at Lake Central; a St. John resident has expressed interest in law enforcement. Chief Frego added that the new squad car is on the road and able to equip the vehicle in house.
Mr. Barenie motioned to approve APV’s #8438 - #8604 in the amount of $803,417.63 for the Corporation. Seconded by Mr. Hastings. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Proofs of Publication – Mr. Austgen stated that he has been provided with the Proofs of Publication of the Notice to the Taxpayers. He has the affidavits of the newspaper publications at hand, they are in proper order and the hearing may be conducted. The notices were published in The Times on September 1st and September 8th and in the Post Tribune on September 1st and September 8th.
Opening Remarks – The Town’s Financial Advisor Mr. Karl Cender stated that the town’s budget is pretty much on target. Mr. Barenie asked if they looked at and made adjustments for actual revenue. Mr. Cender stated that they looked at June of this year and compared it to June of last year. Ms. Sury stated that they made an adjustment for building permits and EMS fees. Mr. Barenie asked to get the actual results of last year and compare them to the projections of 2010. Discussion ensued. Ms. Sury explained the system changes that take place after the first reading of the Ordinance and additional system changes after the adoption of the Ordinance. She added that the automated system does not address all the budget changes, some are still made based on hard copy documents.
Town Council Comments – None
Open to the Floor – No public comment
Closed to the Floor
Mr. Gembala motioned to consider Ordinance #1541 on first reading. Seconded by Mr. Hastings. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Austgen asked how the program of sharing Inspectors with Schererville is working. Mr. Kil stated that he did not have a report but has received positive feedback from the St. John Inspector.
Chief Willman gave the August Activity Report for the Fire Department.
Chief Frego gave the August Activity Report for the Police Department. He mentioned that the 2010 Crime Rates were released by the FBI earlier this week; St. John has the lowest overall crime rate in Northwest Indiana 12.4 per 1,000 residents, they also have the lowest violent crime rate in Northwest Indiana 0.07 per 1,000 residents. He thanked and commended the members of the Police Department for making this possible.
Mr. Forbes added his congratulations and complimented both the Police and Fire Departments and added that the Fire Department open house will be October 2nd.
Mr. Adrian Bugariu, 11747 West 90th – thanked the Council for their support. He stated that the charges against him were proven false, were dropped and he thanked the Council if they had anything to do with that happening. Mr. Bugariu stated that he would like to get his camera and house key which was taken in 2006. Mr. Forbes stated that he has been trying to contact him; his personal belongings are in the police department, Bernie Johnson has them, all he has to do is sign for them.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Gembala motioned to adopt Ordinance #1544. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Hastings thanked Mr. Kil and the town for addressing a problem one of the residents had in Tiburon, there was a lack of 20 mph speed limit signs.
Mr. Forbes stated that they need to put a notice in the newspaper for applications for Boards and Commission Members for next year with a deadline of December 31st so the appointments can be made by the new Council. He also stated that he received a letter from Operation SOS (Support Our Service members) seeking donations of products and/or monetary donations. They are sending 600 care packages to the soldiers. A wish list was attached. Mr. Forbes asked that the letter be posted on the town’s website and posted in the Clerk’s office.
Mr. Forbes stated that he also has a Request to Purchase for MS4 from HACH Company. The MS4 are materials (a spectrophotometer and ammonia) which are used to track the outfalls in the ditches throughout town. The materials cost $3,768.95. Mr. Barenie motioned to authorize this request to purchase. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Forbes stated that he has a request to purchase a 2012 Chevy Tahoe in the amount of $32,899.00; the Fire Department has the opportunity to purchase this vehicle at a very reasonable cost by working with other communities. This is to replace Unit #1 which is 10 years old and has over 100,000 miles on it. This vehicle is the one that accompanies the ambulance. Chief Willman stated that they are going to pull the radio unit out of Unit #1 and put it in the new vehicle. He added this is a special service vehicle which already has a lot of things pre-wired. Mr. Barenie motioned to authorize the purchase of the 2012 Chevy Tahoe for the Fire Department in the amount of $32,899.00. Seconded by Mr. Hastings. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Kil stated that Public Works will be used as a polling place and asked that the Council entertain that motion. Mr. Barenie motioned to utilize the Public Works Building as a Polling Place for the upcoming election. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed. Mr. Kil confirmed that Clark Middle School will now be used as a polling place instead of the VFW. Both Mr. Forbes and Mr. Volk stated that they believe that postcards have been sent out advising residents of their polling place.
Chief Frego gave the September Activity Report. He stated that they added six Reserve Officers the beginning of September, they have been equipped, completed their 40 hours of class training and are currently with FTO’s for about eight weeks after which they will be evaluated again. He mentioned they received a grant to have a drug box in the lobby for prescription drugs that people want to discard and they can safely deposit them, it is a locked box, the drugs are placed into evidence and the DEA will pick then pick up the drugs. This Saturday the drug box will be attended from 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.; the drop box will be in the lobby of the police station 24/7.
Chief Willman gave the September Activity Report. The members of the Fire Department thanked TransCanada formerly ANR Pipeline of St. John for the 2002 pick-up truck that was recently donated to the department.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
The petitioner Mr. Phil Mulder of Lagestee Mulder Construction was there to represent the Casboni’s in the annexation of their 23.4 acre parcel into the Town of St. John. The front ten acres (the south ten acres) which fronts 109th Street, 256 feet on 109th Street and then 2,042 feet deep; on the north property line it touches the Olcott property development; to the east is the Landheim Training & Boarding Center. The entire acreage will be going to St. John and the front 10 acres is under contract to Pathway Church which has been in existence for about six years and they are raising funds to purchase the property first with a goal of building a church in the next three to five years.
Town Council Comments
Mr. Volk stated that he is concerned with the zoning; the annexation ordinance shows the ten acres coming in as C2 immediately upon annexation. The town’s comprehensive plan requires everything to come in as R1. Any approval would be contingent on them building there and no one else; it will revert back to R1 if they do not use it as a church building. Mr. Mulder stated that the reason for the C2 zoning is related to the financial reasons; the church wants to make sure they can build a church there.
Mr. Forbes stated that the town’s ordinance requires R1; what is laid out on the annexation plan is consistent with the town’s comprehensive master plan. The council is basing the annexation on the church being built there so they are requesting a written agreement. Mr. Kil added that the town would like an annexation commitment stating that the petitioner understands the C2 zoning is proprietary to the construction of a church; should the church not be built or they choose to sell the land that property would revert to a R1 zoning designation. Mr. Mulder stated that he does not believe there would be a problem with that. Mr. Austgen stated that they would consider the letter coming from Mr. Mulder to be a supplement to the petition for annexation and would incorporate the language into the annexation ordinance to protect the town’s position on its annexation policy while preserving the benefit that Mr. Mulder seeks.
Open to the Floor – Mr. Forbes opened the floor to public comment. There were no comments.
Closed to the Floor – Mr. Forbes closed the floor to public comment.
Public Hearing & Proofs of Publication - Mr. Austgen stated that this procedure and this resolution require a public hearing. The public hearing was noticed and he reviewed the Proofs of Publication from The Times and the Post-Tribune. He stated that timely notice of the public hearing has been given so the council may conduct the public hearing on this matter and proceed on the additional appropriations.
Town Council Comments – None
Open to the Floor – Mr. Forbes opened the floor to public comment. There were no comments
Closed to the Floor – Mr. Forbes closed the floor to public comment
Mr. Gembala motioned to adopt Resolution #11-11-17B. Seconded by Mr. Hastings. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Cender stated that they have two scenarios detailed in a memorandum that he distributed to the council members and summarized their approaches to the refinancing by Fifth Third Securities and City Securities Corporation. Based on the projected savings he recommends the council proceed. He stated that he expects to hear back from the underwriter after Thanksgiving. Mr. Austgen stated that Ordinance #1546 has been drafted consistent with Mr. Cender’s presentation, both he and Mr. Kil reviewed it and they recommend the council consider the ordinance tonight. If approved tonight the timetable to close these bonds would be December 28th.
Mr. Hastings motioned to consider Ordinance #1546 on first reading. Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Barenie motioned to adopt Ordinance #1546. Seconded by Mr. Hastings. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Forbes stated that along with this, they have Letters of Engagement for Barnes & Thornburg as bond counsel and Cender & Company for the refinancing work. Mr. Barenie motioned to authorize Cender & Company as well as Barnes & Thornburg to continue their work on Ordinance #1546 as previously discussed, to move forward with all paperwork and necessities to complete the process. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Barenie motioned to uphold the recommendation of the BZA and deny the request for a variance of use. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Forbes gave a closing report for the Haunted House. He stated that it was open for 13 days, they had 103 volunteer “scare” actors all from local high schools, some have been with the Haunted House since it began, are now in college and came back to participate; 4,192 individuals passed through which includes 394 on kids days. A total of $47,560.00 was collected at the door with a total profit $16,572.95.
Mr. Forbes stated that they were reviewed by a group called “Haunted House Chicago” which is a web based group that is used as a locater and advertises haunted houses within 180 miles of Chicago; 91 haunted houses were listed on this site of those 48 were officially visited by their review team. The Lake Hills Haunted House was listed as one of the top 13 scariest haunted houses; they were #8 on the list.
Mr. Forbes thanked Standard Bank who had their workers there every night collecting money. He also thanked the backup people Mark Barenie, Steve Hastings, Ken Gembala, John Rainwater, Chip Sobek, Chief Frego and Steve Kil who also assisted at the door with collections. He thanked the Officers of the St. John Police Department, the Barenie family, Ken Gembala, Steve Hastings, Mr. Volk, and his wife and daughter for donating and serving meals to the volunteers every night. Mr. Gembala also stated that the Clerk-Treasurer was also involved in the process of the admission collections.
He confirmed that the new plow truck will be delayed until January 2012, and stated that he has had feedback from residents that some of the parks are very dark and would like lights installed. Mr. Forbes asked for approval to install streetlights in Schillton Hills Park for $6,225.00; Lancer Park for $6,675.00; and at the end of Schaeffer Drive for $2,750.00 for a total of approximately $16,000.00. Mr. Volk motioned to approve the above purchase. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Forbes stated that he had another request for a purchase for $24,106.00 for octane fuel. Mr. Barenie motioned to approve the request. Seconded by Mr. Hastings. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Forbes also stated that he had a request for a purchase to renew the software licenses for town uses. The amount requested is for $28,649.70 which will be split among various departments. Mr. Hastings motioned to approve the request for purchase. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Kil also referenced a letter from Project Love that was in the council member’s packets. Through the Farmers Market they have made an incredible contribution to this project which feeds 60 families every single week. They have taken truckloads of items donated by the vendors at farmers market every week.
Chief Willman gave the October Activity Report for the Fire Department.
Chief Frego gave the October Activity Report for the Police Department.
Mr. Forbes suggested that the council give the town employees bonuses; $800.00 for full-time employees and $400.00 for part time employees. Mr. Gembala motioned to authorize the bonuses for the employees. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Mr. Austgen clarified that full-time employees are those working more than 1,040 hours and part time employees are those working less than 1,040 hours. Mr. Gembala amended his motion to include the definition of full-time and part-time employees by hours worked as stated by Mr. Austgen. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed. Mr. Forbes stated that this is not for elected officials; it is for full-time and part-time employees of the town only.
The employee luncheon will be on Friday, December 16th. No action is needed by the council.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Roll call was taken with the following members present: Michael Forbes, President; Mark Barenie, Vice-President; Gregory Volk, Member; Ken Gembala, Member; Stephen Hastings, Member; David Austgen, Attorney; Steve Kil, Town Member; and Sherry Sury, Clerk-Treasurer. Also in attendance was Fred Frego, Police Chief; and Fred Willman, Fire Chief. Absent was Chip Sobek, Parks Superintendent.
Mr. Volk thanked Mr. Kil, public works and a couple of employees in the audience for the leaf collection this year; it seemed to go pretty smooth.
Mr. Forbes stated that they are now facing the deadline to advise the Lake County Solid Waste Commission whether the Town is going to commit to sending their trash to the proposed Powers ethanol plant. Mr. Austgen stated that the specifics of the agreement (if the town will be charged if they don’t commit) may have changed due to a variety of circumstances such as public meetings, etc.; he will confirm the details for the next council meeting. Mr. Forbes added that sending their trash to the ethanol plant would save the town money for the dumping of the trash; the town would still pay for trash pickup.
Mr. Forbes stated that he has been contacted by residents regarding smoking inside the town office buildings. The request is to make all the buildings smoke free; discussion ensued regarding how the various buildings handle smoking in their facilities.
Mr. Kil referenced the new construction summary, he stated that they are catching up slowly; they still have new permits coming in.
Mr. John Rainwater, 8737 N. Oakwood - stated that he has lived in St. John for 46 years and is starting a campaign against NIPSCO so they can get safe and reliable service in downtown St. John. The last two summers his voltage goes down when everyone turns on their air conditioning. He would like to know what can be done to have NIPSCO come out and look at the problem. Mr. Forbes stated that he has a contact at NIPSCO and will advise them of their concerns. Discussion ensued.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Mr. Barenie motioned to adopt Ordinance #1547. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Volk motioned to adopt Ordinance #1549. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Volk also thanked the council for a good year and thanked Mr. Hastings for his services the past six months.
Mr. Barenie said ditto to Mr. Volk’s comments.
Mr. Hastings thanked the council, Mr. Kil, Chief’s Frego and Willman, Ms. Sury for all the help they have given him. He stated that they all work very hard and as a private citizen, he is confident the Town is in good hands.
Mr. Forbes referenced the NIPSCO problem brought up by Mr. Rainwater at the last meeting. They were advised of several improvements that have been made; Mr. Rainwater was contacted by NIPSCO as well. There are a few things NIPSCO is going to address. A voltage regulator was installed. Mr. Kil added that their new friend at the NIPSCO electric side; is a resident of St. John.
Mr. Rainwater stated that NIPSCO may do the inspections but they don’t do anything about them. The reliability of service has not changed. Discussion ensued. Mr. Kil stated that he is confident the NIPSCO employee that lives in town will follow up with their concerns.
Mr. Kil asked to dispose of a copier from 1999 that is located in the Police Department. Mr. Gembala motioned to deem the Canon 330S copier in the police department worthless and to dispose of it. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion unanimously passed.
Mr. Austgen stated that the town has a four year loan that is at its term and will require a motion for its extension at this meeting and ultimately a resolution to comply with statute. Mr. Kil stated that the outstanding balance is approximately $600,000. Mr. Gembala motioned to extend the Sanitary District Loan (WWTP). Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion unanimously passed.
Chief Willman read the November Activity Report for the Fire Department.
Chief Frego read the Activity Report for the Police Department. He also thanked the council for the salary increase on behalf of all the members of the police department. He also thanked them for their support in 2011 and looks forward to their continued support in 2012.
/s/ Sherry P. Sury, Clerk-Treasurer