St. John Indiana - Founded 1837
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July 26, 2012 Town Council Minutes

Mr. Forbes called the meeting to order at 7:23 P.M. and led the Pledge of Allegiance. Roll call was taken with the following members present: Michael Forbes, President; Mark Barenie, Vice- President; Gregory Volk, Member; Ken Gembala, Member; David Austgen, Attorney; Steve Kil, Town Manager and Sherry Sury, Clerk-Treasurer. Also in attendance was Fred Frego, Police Chief and Fred Willman, Fire Chief. Absent was Larry Bustamante, Member and Chip Sobek, Parks Superintendent.

Approval of minutes: June 28, 2012, Regular Meeting minutes - Mr. Gembala motioned to approve the minutes of the June 28, 2012 meeting. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed with a vote of 3-0 and one abstention by Mr. Barenie.

New Business

Consider special exception request for a sport court at 10119 South Branch (Hunter Atkins) ‐ (Consider recommendation from Board of Zoning Appeals) ‐ Mr. Forbes summarized the previous circumstances and the reason the matter came back before the Town Council because of no recommendation from BZA. Mr. Barenie motioned to support this variance; the court would not provide any drainage issues, there would be no lights. Mr. Forbes asked for discussion before they took action on that and Mr. Austgen stated that if a motion is made, there needs to be a second before the discussion. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Mr. Forbes asked for some discussion. Mr. Gembala stated that they have been provided with more information this time and Mr. Forbes wanted clarifications on what if any exceptions there are and asked if this could be attached into the approval. Mr. Austgen stated that they have to authority to do so. Discussion ensued. Mr. Kil summarized the recent BZA meeting when this item was discussed and the reason for not receiving any recommendation. He stated that he sat with the builder and went through the issues the homeowners would need to address (drainage, landscaping, grading, lighting, etc.). Additional discussion ensued regarding the contingencies.

Mr. Todd Leeth, representing Steiner Homes stated that he was there to answer to any questions they may have. Mr. Forbes asked if Mr. Atkins was ok with the contingencies that they were placing on approval. Mr. and Ms. Atkins answered yes. Mr. Forbes then asked Mr. and Mrs. Atkins to acknowledge their discussion. Mr. Attkins stated that they would follow those rules. Mr. Barenie motioned to add a contingency that there would be no net, have the landscaping plan with arbor vitae and no lights around the sports court. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.

Award of Bids for Town Vehicles / Equipment - Mr. Volk motioned to award the bids to the highest bidder on the bid tabulation sheet in the packet. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.

Corporate property tax reimbursement for Neil Florek / Phyllis Bergiel ‐ Mr. Kil stated that this is part of the west side annexation when St. John was in a dispute with the Town of Dyer. These individuals have at least 5 acres or more, Phyllis and Neil had ten. The agreement was that they would receive corporate property taxes for a term of 10 years. This is to authorize the reimbursement of that money as soon as the Clerk-Treasurer receives the paperwork from the County Auditor. Ms. Sury stated that the estimated amount of reimbursement will be around $700.00 but she had to re-verity the figures before issuing the reimbursement and explained the items non-reimbursable. Discussion ensued regarding the county code change, the time period of ten years and the efforts to work this out with county. Mr. Volk motioned to reimburse the property taxes to Neil Florek and Phyllis Bergiel. Seconded by Mr. Barenie. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.

Consider special exception request for sale of automobiles at 10749 Wicker Avenue (Joseph Kubiak) ‐ (Favorable recommendation from the Board of Zoning Appeals) ‐ Mr. Forbes stated that there are contingencies of selling a maximum of two cars at any given time, the cars can only be placed in the northwest corner of the property. Mr. Forbes asked that they not be in the road right-of-way. Mr. Kubiak stated that they are way off the shoulder. Mr. Forbes stated that sometimes the cars look like they are ready to pull out onto Route 41. Mr. Gembala motioned to approve the special exception request incorporating the findings and facts and contingencies from the BZA. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.

Reports & Correspondence

Town Council

Mr. Gembala stated that Public Works has extra brush to pick up due to the recent storms and they may be off their regular schedule.

Mr. Forbes distributed the Haunted House budget which will be $36,100.00. Mr. Barenie asked about the cash collections and Mr. Forbes stated that it would be discussed in the next week or two. Mr. Gembala mentioned that this money does not come from the Town's budget and funds the Christmas in the Park. Discussion ensued. Mr. Barenie motioned to approve the Haunted House budget. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.


Ms. Sury stated that the docket approval is going to be less by $260.00 because of the reissuance of Check #18291 in the amount of $1,950.00 (APV #8242) that was voided and reissued by Check #18351 on July 26, 2012, in the amount of $1,690.00 due to an insurance adjustment. The amount for docket approval will be $1,588,886.14 representing a savings of $260.00.


Mr. Kil stated that the 175th is coming up the first week of October. Chief Willman read the Activity Report for the month of June.

Chief Frego read the Activity Report for the month of June. He mentioned that the Nite Out that is usually held in August was postponed due to the planning of the 175th anniversary.

Payment of Bills for the Corporation APV's #8137 - #8301 for $1,588,886.14 ‐ Mr. Barenie motioned to approve payment of the bills for the Corporation in the amount of $1,588,886.14. Seconded by Mr. Volk. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0.

Public Comment

Mr. Joe Storiz, 8922 Parkside Lane ‐ stated that believes the BZA should have given a recommendation on the sports court. He stated that he filed a remonstrance on this and asked why there is an ordinance. Mr. Forbes stated that there is an ordinance so they can review every request, which is a special request. Mr. Storiz mentioned that they (the Atkins) have lived there since May and the police have been called to their house, there is a police report. He asked them to reconsider their earlier approval.

Ann Crabtree, 9451 West 89th Avenue ‐ stated that Mr. Atkins is a coach and he will be coaching other kids; and that regardless of whether there are lights or not there will be kids out there all hours of the night. Mr. Forbes stated that this approval does not negate the noise ordinance or other ordinances that may apply.

Mr. Julian Robinson, 13301 James Drive, (Schillton Hills) ‐ stated that he feels that basketball courts are generally bad for property values. If he was looking at a lot it would be a deterrent. The Council's action shows their inconsistency. Mr. Gembala stated that part of the zoning process is if you want to do something special you can go before the Zoning Board Appeals and request a variance. Discussion ensued.

Ms. Lori Robinson, 13301 James Drive ‐ stated that she is against the basketball court and asked that the Council reconsider and send it back to the BZA for their recommendation.

Mr. Storiz spoke again saying he has lived their 6-7 years and does not want a sports court there. And now he is the bad guy. This has created spite. Mr. Forbes stated they did not create the situation; they did take his letter, they read it and took his opinion into account.

Adjournment ‐ Mr. Volk motioned to adjourn the meeting. Seconded by Mr. Gembala. Motion passed with a vote of 4-0. Meeting adjourned at 8:10 P.M.


/s/ Sherry P. Sury Clerk-Treasurer