February 11, 2008

 

 

 

The Ellettsville, Indiana, Town Council met in regular session on Monday, February 11, 2008, at the Fire Department Training and Conference Room.  Dan Swafford called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.  David Drake led the Pledge of Allegiance and Phillip Smith led in prayer. 

 

Roll Call:  Members present were Dan Swafford, President; Dianna S. Bastin, Vice-President; David Drake, Brian Mobley and Phillip Smith.  Sandra Hash, Clerk Treasurer; Mike Spencer, Attorney and Rick Coppock, Town Engineer were also present. 

 

Supervisors Present:    Jim Davis, Jim Ragle, Gary Darland and Frank Nierzwicki were present.  

 

Dan Swafford welcomed Boy Scout Troop 119 to the meeting. 

 

Approval of the minutes

 

David Drake made the motion we approve the minutes for both the Regular and Administrative Meetings on January 28, 2008.  Dianna Bastin seconded.  Motion carried.

 

Action to Pay Accounts Payable Vouchers

 

Phillip Smith made a motion that we pay the Accounts Payable Vouchers.  David Drake seconded.   Motion carried.

 

Ordinances on Second Reading

 

Ordinance 08-01 to amend Ordinance 07-14 Fixing of the Salaries for Budget Year 2008 to remove the position of Assistant Deputy from the Police Department

 

Dianna Bastin explained the position titled “Assistant Marshal” and salary are being deleted from Ordinance 07-14. 

 

Brian Mobley moved to amend Ordinance 08-01 Ordinance 07-14.  Dianna Bastin seconded.  Roll call vote:  Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin – yes; David Drake – yes; Brian Mobley – yes; Phillip Smith – yes.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

Appointments

 

Dan Swafford announced the latest appointments:

           

Willis R. Zease:  Planning Commission

            Fred Baugh:        BZA

            Richard Pease:    Parks Board

 

Supervisor Comments

 

Frank Nierzwicki, Director of Planning Services had three items to discuss:

 

The Street Department is making great progress on the office remodeling for the Planning Department located upstairs in the old Fire Department.  The new telephone system should be installed, for the Planning and Street Department, soon.  The cost is over $4,000 but Frank is working on ways to get it lowered. 

 

The Plan Commission met on February 7th and asked, under a Resolution, if the Town Council would consider making progress on the drainage problems in Springs Valley and the Jack and Jill Daycare sign.  The Planning Department has worked on these two issues for over a year and sent a letter to the Town Attorney.  The Town Attorney will need direction from the Town Council on what to do.  The Planning Staff recommends the Town Council meet with Mike Spencer to discuss these issues.  Frank explained the long term drainage problem; CFC developed a new subdivision and improved the drainage problem.  Some lots were sold and a swell was moved from its original position causing a worse drainage problem.  Frank tried working with the contractor to get it addressed but has not made any progress.  Dan suggested he, Frank and Phill (Planning Liaison) meet with Mike Spencer.  Brian Mobley feels the Council is being the “scapegoat” and this should be handled by the Planning Commission.  Frank is requesting legal involvement. 

 

Sandra Hash stated the Plan Commission knows there is a problem but they did not have the authority to go to the attorney.  The Plan Commission is obligated to turn this over to the Council, who should allow Frank to discuss this with the attorney.  The Council should not have to get involved since the sign is a definite violation of Town Code.  Dianna suggested a Town Council representative should be with Frank when speaking with the attorney.  Frank will have Connie set up a meeting and contact everyone. 

 

Frank is making progress on the I-69 $50,000 Planning Grant from INDOT.  The proposed use of the grant would be for the Wells Park, green space protection for future parks and a capital improvement program for the whole Town.  Frank has put together a budget for this, discussed it with his Liaison and it appears, with this grant, he could have another person part-time.  First, Frank would like his Administrative Assistant full-time and then open a position for a Community Development Planner.  He would like to start the process tonight and come back in two weeks with a tentative letter from INDOT stating the grant has been awarded.  He outlined the Community Development Planners duties:  assist in the Rule 13 inspections (the Planning Department and Plan Commission has some responsibilities), assist in the I-69 Community Planning Grant and be a lead staff person on the Redevelopment Commission.  This person will serve as the Planning Department Liaison to the Richland Bean Blossom School District with the “Safe Route to School” program which was recently awarded a $250,000 grant.  This person will assistant with mutual projects between the Town and School Corporation with the Wells Park and programs for the youth.  Frank believes the funding will sustain a part-time position for two years.  Dan requested Frank submit the job description to the Council before the next meeting and asked when the grant approval letter should arrive.  Frank said the grant letter from INDOT should arrive at any time.  Dan asked about the Historical Preservation Commission.  Frank explained the Commission is listed in the Town Code and has not been acted on.  Citizens have inquired about it and would like to see it organized since rezoning is in the near future. 

 

Steve Kain, new Superintendent of RBBCSC, has a history with the Town and knows what Frank is talking about in regards to the “Safe Route to School” project.  This will require a lot of effort between the school and Town; a part-time position would give the School Corporation an immediate contact with the Planning Department.  Mr. Kain pledged they will work with the Town in any way asked. 

 

Gary Darland, Ellettsville Town Marshal had a few items to present. 

 

He would like to make sure the part-time officers receive the pay raises he promised them in January; $12.50 was budgeted and they are receiving $10.50. 

 

He asked for permission to purchase three new Dodge Chargers, using the CCD Fund.  The lowest bid came in at $67,850.  In the past, they would buy the cars and the equipment or strip the old cars and put the equipment in the new cars.  This time, they would like to dispose of the cars to other Police Departments, intact.  The radios will be taken out and any decals identifying the cars as the Town of Ellettsville.  The Town, that is the recipient of the used cars, will make the needed repairs and then buy the Town red lights, sirens and the equipment needed for the new cars.  They will save the time of buying equipment and putting them on the cars.  Ellettsville Police will save the trouble of taking the old equipment off and will end up with better equipment.  This will build a strong alliance with smaller surrounding departments and will eliminate having to surplus the cars and seeing the car in the community making the general public believe it is still a functioning police car. 

 

The Police Department was able to trade up their firearms from Glock 9mm to 40mm guns.  The newer bullets are slower, will not ricochet as much and have more “knock down” power.  The officers shot the new guns at the range and they had the highest scores ever. 

 

Gary Darland hired three part-time officers to cover Officer Craig Davis’ shifts, while he is serving in Iraq.  One of the officers hired, Brian Taylor, will be presented with a Certificate of Appreciation for his outstanding performance.  Gary Darland gave a summary of the situation Officer Taylor is receiving the certificate for and read it in its entirety. 

 

Dan Swafford clarified the other Towns purchasing our vehicles will be purchasing us lights and radios.  Gary agreed and spoke with the Marshal in one of the towns and that is the agreement.  Dan asked how this will be done.  Gary said they will need an ordinance too.  One of the towns knows the condition of the cars. 

 

Dan Swafford asked about the pay raises; what are the ranges?  Gary stated he would like for the officers to go from the $10.50 they started with in December and brought up to $12.50 they were promised in January.  The money was already budgeted.  Brian Mobley asked if this includes the secretary too.  Gary stated she has already gone from $8.50 to $10.50.  Dan Swafford called for a motion for the pay raises for the part-time officers.

 

Brian Mobley made a motion to raise the part-time up to $12.50 and make it retroactive to January 1.  Dianna Bastin seconded it.  Roll call vote:  Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin – yes; David Drake – yes; Brian Mobley – yes; Phillip Smith – yes.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

Brian Mobley made a motion to go ahead and take it out of the CCD Fund for three police squad cars.  Phill Smith seconded.  Roll call vote:  Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin – yes; David Drake – yes; Brian Mobley – yes; Phillip Smith – yes.  Motion carried 5-0.

 

The following discussion took place before the vote

 

Dianna clarified the money is already in the fund, General Fund did not pay anything and no money was taken out of the budget.  Dan asked what will happen if the other town does not agree to pay the “light fund”.  Gary said the value of the car is there if we need to dispose of them.  Dianna stated the Town is saving the labor of taking the radios out of the car and the light bar off the car and putting them into a new one.  The other Town will get the car with the equipment already on it and buy new to give to us to put on our new cars.  Sandra clarified the radios will be taken out. 

 

Sandra is preparing a Resolution, sent an outline to Mike Spencer to review and will be ready for the next Council meeting. 

 

Council Comments

 

Brian Mobley spoke with the Marshal and there will be security at all Public Town Meetings. 

 

Sandra Hash encouraged all the Town Council members to attend the Chamber of Commerce annual meeting Monday, January 18 at 7:00 p.m. at Terry’s. 

 

Privilege of the Floor

 

Richard Sanders, Ellettsville Water Company user and President of Northern Richland Sewer Corporation spoke about unfair billing practices with respect to water.  It appears the meter reading interval was from December 12 until January 23 (42 calendar days) which made the “minimum” water users “look” as though they went over their minimum and were charged accordingly.  Mr. Sanders is requesting the water bills be recalculated for the Northern Richland Sewer users who are Ellettsville water users also; prorate the six weeks and only use four weeks of usage.  The overage resulted in an overcharge of the sewer also.  He does not know why the reading interval was extended; you can not apply a monthly standard and read the meter in six week intervals.  Dan Swafford will take this under advisement and check into it.  Mr. Sanders is requesting the bills be recalculated and credit those who did not exceed. 

 

Stuart York, Ellettsville.us, had a few questions regarding occurrences during the December meeting.  He attended the December 10 and 26, 2007 meetings and compared his notes to the minutes.  There are some discrepancies.  He did not attend the December 11th Administrative Meeting and there were no minutes since no decisions were made or votes taken.  He is questioning Town Council procedure not the item. He presented “on December 10th, Sam Baker asked the Town for a Christmas tree and Dan Swafford stated he would take it under advisement since it was late in the year.  At the 26th meeting, Ms. Bastin stated Mr. Baker will get to throw the switch at a lighting ceremony next year.” Dianna Bastin stated she is going to research it and bring it before the Council in a public meeting Monday night because she thought his request was reasonable and she would like to have a Christmas tree in Ellettsville.  Stuart York understood this to mean a decision had been made.  Dianna replied by stating a decision was not made and it was her way of letting Mr. Baker know that she was going to work on it.  Dianna stated she followed up with Mr. Baker to let him know this is a government procedure and it must go through the steps.  Stuart York did not think this was clear at the December 26th meeting.  Dianna apologized and stated no decision was made.  Dianna does not want to discuss this until she has answers to the questions from the rest of the Council. 

 

Carl Longardner is a local business owner in Ellettsville.  He purchased a barber shop salon on 5th Street behind the fitness island and gas station.  What steps does he need to take to get speed bumps or stop signs on his road to slow the traffic down?  His concern is with pedestrians crossing from the church or behind the fitness island.  There have been cars speeding through at least 35-40 mph on 5th Street.  Mr. Longardner clarified the exact location was 5th Street, beside the Baptist Church, between the fitness island and Stop and Go Muffler, between Temperance and Association.  Dan asked Gary Darland to beef up the patrol in that area for a while and see what they observe.  Brian Mobley stated no speed bumps could be put in.

 

Adjournment

 

Phill Smith made a motion to adjourn.  Brian Mobley seconded.  Motion carried.  Dan Swafford adjourned the meeting at 8:15 p.m.