January 3, 2013





The Ellettsville, Indiana Plan Commission met in regular session on Thursday, January 3, 2013, in the Fire Department Training and Conference Room located at 5080 West State Road 46.  Dan Swafford called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m.  Phillip Smith led the Pledge of Allegiance.


Roll Call:   Members present were:  Dan Swafford, President; Terry Baker, Vice President; Don Calvert, Russ Ryle, Phillip Smith and Sandra Hash.  Phillip Rogers was absent.  Connie Griffin, Director of Planning, and Darla Brown, Town Attorney, were also present. 


Approval of the Minutes –November 21, 2012 and December 6, 2012


Dan Swafford entertained a motion for approval of the minutes for the special meeting on November 21, 2012 and the regular meeting on December 6, 2012.  Don Calvert so moved.  Russ Ryle seconded.  Motion carried. 


Election of Officers


Sandra Hash nominated Terry Baker for President.  Don Calvert seconded.  Roll Call Vote:  Dan Swafford – yes; Terry Baker – yes; Don Calvert – yes; Russ Ryle - yes; Phillip Smith - yes and Sandra Hash – yes.  Motion carried 6-0.


Terry Baker asked for nominations for Vice President.  Phillip Smith nominated Russ Ryle.  Dan Swafford seconded.  Motion carried.


Dan Swafford nominated Sandra Hash for secretary.  Phillip Smith seconded.  Motion carried. 


New Business


Rules of Procedure Area Plan Commission Town of Ellettsville, Indiana, Amendment to January 6, 2011 Resolution


Connie Griffin, Director of Planning, explained the following proposed changes to the Rules of Procedure:


§ Page 2, title changed to “Advisory Plan Commission” throughout the document.

§ Page 4(1.4), first sentence changed to The Plan Commission shall appoint and determine the duties of the secretary.

§ Page 4(1.4)(d), first sentenced changed to The minutes shall be available in draft form no later than fifteen (15) business days after the regular Plan Commission meeting.”


Sandra Hash commented as Clerk-Treasurer she publishes the ordinances but she doesn’t do so as secretary of the Plan Commission and she doesn’t post the upcoming legislation.  She requested that Section (a) be removed from the duties of the secretary.  Also, she doesn’t always get the minutes done in 15 days.  She suggested adding the words “The secretary shall strive to have the minutes available in draft form no later than fifteen (15) business days after the regular Plan Commission meetingin Section 1.4(d).


§ Page 4(1.5)(b), changed to The items shall be listed on the agenda in the order in which the petition or other document was filed with the Director of Planning.

§ Page 5(1.5)(g), changed to “The agenda shall be available by the Director of Planning for public inspection at the Department of Planning, the Ellettsville Fire Station No. 7 and the Office of the Town Clerk no less than three (3) business days prior to the scheduled meeting.


Sandra Hash suggested adding the Monroe County Library.  Ms. Griffin said she will add the “Ellettsville Branch of the Monroe County Library”.


§ Page 5(1.5)(l), changed to The Plan Commission President, Town’s Attorney and/or Planning Director shall provide all relevant information concerning the recommendation to the Town Council members which may include: case file information, minutes and findings of fact.”

§ Page 5(1.6)(b), second sentence changed to “Standing committees shall consist of less than three (3) Commission members.”

§ Page 6(1.8)(b), second sentence changed to The purpose of the Ellettsville Plan Review Committee/Technical Advisory Committee shall be to promote and conduct a continuing review of the zoning ordinance, development site reviews, the rural area plan, and the Comprehensive Plan, as well as zoning requests, Planned Unit Developments, Tax Increment Financing Districts to the related ends of recognizing and addressing land use trends, municipal code and Town goals.

§ Page 6(1.8)(c), the second sentence was removed.

§ Page 6(1.8)(e), is a new section which states The Planning Commission requires, as part of the technical review process, for the Town supervisors of the Planning, Street, Fire, Police and Utilities to review the proposed development plans and submit findings prior to the plan review conducted by the commission and Town Engineer.  The supervisors review will be regarding services in which the Town can or cannot provide, as well other information as deemed pertinent to the case being reviewed.  Additional information may be required of the petitioner to complete the review process.  If additional information is needed from the petitioner, a written request will be issued.”


Darla Brown, Town Attorney, thinks it would be helpful for the Plan Commissioners if Fire, Police, Utilities and so forth would submit short letters expressing their opinion.  Phillip Smith asked if it could be an email.  Ms. Brown replied that would be fine as long as there is something in writing.


§ Page 7(2.1)(d), first sentence changed to “Each case to be publicly heard before the Plan Commission shall be filed in proper form; shall be numbered and placed on the docket of the Plan Commission.”

§ Page 7(2.2)(a), first sentence changed to “Each case to be publicly heard before the Commissioners, which is filed in proper form as determined by the Director of Planning or designee, shall be numbered and placed on the docket of the Commission.”

§ Page 7(2.2)(b), changed to “As soon as the case receives a docket number it shall be placed on the agenda of the Commission as determined by the Planning Director or Plan Commission President. Cases shall come before the Commission in agenda order unless otherwise ordered by the President or requested by the Director of Planning.” 

§ Page 7(2.3), the “Pledge of Allegiance” was added as item b.

§ Page 8(2.4)(c), changed to “The meeting agenda shall be posted three (3) business days prior to the Plan Commission meeting.”


Sandra Hash asked why the agenda has to be posted three business days when the law requires two.  Ms. Griffin replied that’s typically what she has been trying to do because if there are any changes then she still has 48 hours to get the correct agenda distributed.  Ms. Hash explained an agenda is not a requirement.  It only has to be posted at the door before the meeting starts.  All they need to do is tell the public they’re having a meeting on a certain date which is done with the annual meeting notice.  They should stick to what Indiana Code dictates to avoid confusion.


Russ Ryle would like to see a tentative agenda provided to the newspaper so it can be published the week before the meeting.  Ms. Hash commented it’s difficult to have a completed agenda one week before the meeting.  The Herald-Times and the Journal won’t publish the agendas.  Mr. Baker doesn’t agree that a tentative agenda should be published.  It was decided to change the agenda to being posted 48 hours before the meeting.  Ms. Brown noted Section 1.5(g) should also be changed to 48 hours.  Ms. Griffin noted she will make the appropriate revisions throughout the document.


§ Page 8(2.4)(d), changed to “Items, which come before the Plan Commission, which were not on the posted agenda, may by a motion and majority vote of the Commission members, be placed on the agenda after the 48 hour deadline has passed, unless a review is required.”

§ Page 8(2.5)(c), changed to “The agenda item is presented by the petitioner, their sponsor or representative (10 minute time limit).”

§ Page 8(2.5)(f) is a new section which states, “Public Comment will be heard for thirty (30) minutes.”


Don Calvert suggested adding speakers cannot give their three minutes for speaking to someone else. 


§ Page 9(2.7), changed to “A majority of the members of the Plan Commission constitutes a quorum; four (4) members.”

§ Page 9(2.8), sections (b) and (c) have been omitted.

§ Page 9(2.8)(d) will become section (b).

§ Page 9(2.9)(d), “Members should vote on all questions before the Plan Commission except in situations where there is a conflict of interest, the member has abstained or for other good cause.”


Russ Ryle initiated a discussion on changing the wording in § 2.9(d) to “Members vote on all questions before the Plan Commission except in situations where there is a conflict of interest or the member has abstained for other good cause.”  He asked Ms. Brown to research conflict of interest.


§ Page 9(2.9)(f), second sentence changed to “The Plan Commission member shall take no part in the discussion or decision.”

§ Page 9(2.9)(g), changed to “The Commission shall keep minutes of its proceedings showing the vote of each member on each question presented, or indicating that the member was absent or abstained..”

§ Page 11(2.13)(f), the following is added at the end “(The costs may include:  Plan Commission stipend, Planning Director’s overtime pay, attorney fees, meeting place and other incidental costs.)”

§ Page 11(3.2)(c) and (d), the sentence in each section stating “The presentation is limited to ten (10) minutes or at the discretion of the Commission by majority vote of the members”  is removed.

§ Page 11(3.2)(e), first sentence changed to “The Commission members direct questions to the petitioner and Director of Planning.”


Darla Brown suggest switching §§ 3.2(d) and 3.2(e). 


§ Page 12(3.2)(m), fifth and sixth sentences changed to “Public comment may be extended by the Commission through a favorable vote of the majority of the members.  The President may provide citizens wishing to speak in favor of a petition with the opportunity to speak first.”

§ Page 12(3.2)(p), the last sentence is changed to “If any person persists in this conduct following the warning, the President may order that person to be expelled from the meeting by a deputized officer.”


Phillip Smith suggested adding in § 3.2(p), after “If any person persists in this conduct following the warning, the President or presiding officer  may order that person to be expelled from the meeting by a deputized officer.”


§ Page 12(3.2)(t), changed to “The President and the Town’s Attorney determine the admissibility of any evidence before the Commission.”


Sandra Hash suggested changing § 3.2(t) to “The President or presiding officer and the Town’s Attorney determine the admissibility of any evidence before the Commission.”   Mr. Ryle suggested changing the wording “the President” to the “the President or presiding officer” as it refers to meetings throughout the document.  After a discussion on the phrase “admissibility of any evidence” in § 3.2(t), Ms. Brown suggested if evidence is brought to the meeting they need to leave it with Ms. Hash, she can make a copy and return the original to them but it has to be part of the record.


§ Page 13, Rule 4 title is changed to “Petitions Notice and Procedure”.

§ Page 13(4.1)(c), changed to “Nine (9) copies of the application, or plats must be made available by the petitioner to the Director of Planning at least ten (10) calendar days prior to the next regular Plan Commission meeting, at which it is to be considered.”


Terry Baker suggested changing §4.1(c) to ten (10) business days instead of calendar days.


§ Page 13(4.1)(f) is removed.

§ Page 14(4.1)(j), added last sentence, “Copies of the return receipts (green cards) must be provided to the Director of Planning two (2) business days prior to the scheduled meeting.”

§ Page 14(4.1)(l), has been added, “If additional information is required of the petitioner it shall be provided in a written request by the Director of Planning.”

§ Page 15(4.4)(e), first sentence changed to “Certified mail receipts shall be  considered evidence that notice has been given.”

§ Page 15(4.4)(g), has been removed.

§ Page 17(7.2)(c), changed to “The Director of Planning/Zoning Administrator, Town Council and the Town’s Attorney enforce commitments.”

§ Page 20(9.2)(c), changed to “The hearing date shall be the date of the first Commission meeting at which the petition approval could be considered based on the Commission docket and the submittal of required documentation.

§ Page 20(9.3)(b), was discussed and it was determined the affecting properties should be one property deep.


Privilege of the Floor


Phillip Smith advised he was still working on the poultry and natural habitat ordinances.


Don Calvert thanked the Street Department for removing the snow.



Terry Baker entertained a motion to adjourn.  Phillip Smith made a motion to adjourn.  Dan Swafford seconded.  Terry Baker adjourned the meeting at 7:22 p.m.