August 27, 2007




The Ellettsville, Indiana, Town Council met in regular session on Monday, August 27, 2007, at the Fire Department Training and Conference Room.  Dan Swafford called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.  Dianna Bastin led the Pledge of Allegiance and Sandra Hash led in prayer. 


Roll Call:  Members present were Dan Swafford, President; Dianna Bastin, Vice-President; Ted Robertson, Phillip Rogers and Phill Smith.  Sandra Hash, Clerk Treasurer; Mike Spencer, Attorney and Rick Coppock, Town Engineer were also present. 


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


Approval of the minutes


Dianna Bastin made a motion for the approval of the Minutes for the Regular Meeting August 13, 2007.  Phillip Rogers seconded.  Motion carried.


Action to Pay Accounts Payable Vouchers


Dan Swafford entertained a motion to pay Accounts Payable vouchers.  Phill Smith made a motion.  Dianna Bastin seconded.   Motion carried.


Pre-adoption public hearing of the 2008 budget


Sherry Hayes, local resident, requested adding goals to the budget.  Adding goals to a budget will help determine what items are necessary.  Dan Swafford and Council members verbally discussed goals with each supervisor while the budgets were being planned but nothing was formally written down.  Sherry Hayes suggested if the goals were written down, they could be shown to the tax payers; the goals they hope to achieve.  Dan will take it under advisement. 


Public Hearing concerning vacating 25 feet right of way adjacent to 5353 W. McNeely Street, 889 N. Clover and 885 N. Clover


Rick Coppock, Bynum Fanyo is representing his clients and requesting the Town vacate 25 feet of right of way.  This section of Clover Drive was built a few years ago and there are still two acres of life estate for the property on the south west corner of the intersection.  After review, there was a 100 foot strip when the road was added.  The clients are requesting 25 feet of the 100 foot right of way on the west side of Clover Drive be vacated and become part of those properties.   The property owners are willing to attach a 15 foot easement for any utilities behind the new right of way line.  Dan Swafford asked if the size of the roads would still be adequate.  Rick said there will be a total of 75 foot from the center line of Clover Drive to the new west property line.  There would be an adequate right of way with the sidewalk on the backside. 


Frank Nierzwicki announced the Plan Commission recommended this for approval with stipulations for the adjacent property owners; install sidewalks and plant street trees per Town Code, have written approval from Town Engineer before structures are built on the corner of McNeely and Clover to insure sight distance issues are taken care of and to work with the Overbrook developer to coordinate the landscaping of the area.   


Dan Swafford clarified “adjacent property owners” is actually one person who owns the area with many addresses. 


Sherry Hayes asked if the sidewalks will be put in “per Town Code” and not next to the street.  Frank Nierzwicki explained there will be a tree plot between the sidewalk and street. 


Art Hayes asked “how wide is the street right of way in the new section 7”.   After reviewing the map, Dan stated it looks like a 50 foot dedication.  Rick Coppock added there was a total of 100 feet and they would like to vacate 25 feet leaving 75 feet.  Dan gave Art a map showing the request.   Rick Coppock stated there is 28 feet from outside curb to outside curb.


Ordinances on First Reading


Ordinance 07-09 vacating 25 feet of right of way adjacent to 5353 W. McNeely Street, 889 N. Clover Drive and 885 N. Clover Drive


Dan Swafford stated this is the first reading of the ordinance that goes along with what was just discussed. 


Ordinances on Second Reading


Ordinance 07-08 to annex the area known as the Romine-Cole-Sykora Annexation, 4011 W. Lost Mans Lane consisting of approximately 32 acres


Frank Nierzwicki explained this is 32 acres north of Centennial Drive.  This was brought up and recommend for approval by the Plan Commission.  Presently there are no structures on the property. 


Tim Sanford asked about the contiguity of the property.  The annexation is relying on a 20 foot wide, 1500 foot long strip of land for the contiguity and he quoted State statue as saying a strip of land with a width of less that 150 feet can not be used as part of the property to meet that contiguity requirement.   He does not understand how this can meet Indiana Code.  Frank said this has been reviewed and the width is over 1,000 feet making it a consideration.  The Town Attorney and Engineer met, reviewed and discussed this annexation.  Rick Coppock said during the discussion they reviewed Indiana Code that now prevents shoestring annexations like what was done with Springs Valley.  This property is a “flag lot” where there is a small area and then a large one.  Tim Sanford feels the intent of the Indiana Code is to prevent something like this from happening.  He does not know the owner of the property and has nothing against development but feels the Town should follow the statute.  In this case, the statute states there should be 150 foot minimum width and this property is 20 feet.  Mike Spencer agrees with Rick Coppock that the idea to a shoestring annexation was having a thin strip of land contiguous on one end of the town and then using the thin strip to pick up a larger area.  This is not the case in this situation; there is a piece 1,000 feet long adjacent to Town property and the width of the property is irrelevant. 


Dianna Bastin made a motion that we accept Ordinance 07-08 to annex the area known as Romine-Cole-Sykora Annexation, 4011 W. Lost Mans Lane consisting of approximately 32 acres.  Phillip Rogers seconded.  Roll call vote:  Ted Robertson – nay; Phillip Rogers – yes; Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin – yes; Phill Smith – yes.  Motion carried 4-1.


Supervisor’s Comments


Jim Davis, Fire Chief explained when the new aerial truck was purchased the existing aerial truck would be sold.  The existing aerial truck has been in service with Ellettsville since 1969 and only reaches 55 feet.  The last Council approved this to be declared surplus and sold.  Jim felt he should bring it before this Council.  The value of the 1969 Snorkel Squirt truck is less than $3,000 to $4,000.  Mike Spencer said it was okay to surplus the truck if the Council agrees. 


Council Comments


Sandra Hash shared a thank you note from Jean Ramsey, whose sister passed away. 


Public Comment


Sherry Hayes asked what is the status of the proper markings and installation of the speed humps.  When will subdivision ordinances be corrected to insure proper ordinances for development so we make sure that the tax payers do not end up losing where the developers win?  When will street easements be cleared of plantings that obstruct the drivers’ view, particularly in Kelli Heights?  When will the developer of the Meadowlands be finishing the sidewalk installation at the new house?  There is a strip that has no sidewalk.  Will the sidewalk, facing Daisy; be moved to the correct location, as set by ordinance, so the rest of the sidewalks in the development can be installed correctly?  Is there a time line to reassess and overhaul the utility hook on fees?  Is it really wise to build a second water line?  There is talk about the possibility we may be in a water crisis by 2025.  Does this mean the Town will spend a lot of money for a water line that will soon have no water coming through? 


Art Hayes stated the Town Ordinances do not specify the type of trees to be planted between the sidewalks and road.  They need a tree that will not ruin the sidewalks.  The Street Department will be responsible for the trimming and brush removal of the trees.  This will all need to be budgeted in. 


Board Comments


Dan Swafford announced the Fall Festival will be coming up soon and commended Ron Wayt for his time and effort.. 




Dianna Bastin made a motion to adjourn.  Phillip Rogers seconded.  Motion carried. Dan Swafford adjourned the meeting at 7:54 p.m.