St. John Indiana - Founded 1837
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November 29, 2012 Town Council Minutes

Michael Forbes, PresidentAttorney David Austgen
Mark Barenie, Vice-PresidentSherry Sury, Clerk-Treasurer
Larry BustamanteSteve Kil, Town Manager
Gregory Volk 
Ken Gembala 

CALL TO ORDER:
Mr. Forbes called to order the Town Council's regular meeting of November 29, 2012, at 7:49 p.m. (The Pledge of Allegiance was said.)

ROLL CALL:
Ms. Sherry Sury, Clerk-Treasurer, took roll call with the following members present: Michael Forbes, Mark Barenie, Gregory Volk, Ken Gembala, and Larry Bustamante. Attorney David Austgen was present. Staff members present: Steve Kil. Police Chief, Fred Frego and Fire Chief, Fred Willman. Chip Sobek, Parks Superintendent, was absent. Recording Secretary, Susan E. Wright was also present.

COMMENDATIONS:

Mr. Forbes noted that the first thing on the agenda were commendations to be presented to firefighter/paramedic(s), Don Strom and Brian Beach. He explained that the two gentlemen traveled to the East Coast in a Town ambulance to assist in emergency services and evacuations for those who were affected by Hurricane Sandy. Mr. Forbes remarked that the gentlemen represented the Town in the finest fashion.

Mr. Forbes and Chief Willman presented a commendation plaque to Mr. Beach thanking him for his gallant, courageous efforts, exceptional dedication and service on the devastated East Coast. Mr. Forbes thanked Mr. Beach on behalf of the Town Council, the Clerk-Treasurer and the Town. Mr. Forbes stated he sleeps better at night knowing these gentlemen are working in the Town.

Mr. Forbes and Chief Willman presented a commendation plaque to Mr. Strom thanking him for his gallant, courageous efforts, exceptional dedication and service on the devastated East Coast. Mr. Forbes thanked Mr. Strom on behalf of the Town, the Town Council and the Clerk-Treasurer.

(Photographs were taken.)

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
MINUTES OF OCTOBER 25, 2012, REGULAR MEETING
MINUTES OF NOVEMBER 1, 2012, SPECIAL MEETING.

Mr. Forbes noted that were several sets of minutes to approve. Attorney Austgen requested that the Board defer all Executive Session minutes until such time as he has reviewed the same. Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to defer the following Executive Session minutes: August 23, 2012, September 13, 2012, September 27, 2012, and October 25, 2012. Mr. Bustamante made a motion to defer the aforementioned Executive Session minutes until reviewed by Attorney Austgen; Mr. Barenie seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion on the meeting minutes of the October 25, 2012, regular meeting and the November 1, 2012, special meeting, supplied by the Town Council's Recording Secretary, Susan Wright. There was no discussion on the minutes. Mr. Barenie made a motion to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of October 25, 2012, and the special meeting of November 1, 2012. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

PUBLIC HEARING:
A. RESOLUTION NUMBER 12-11-29 ‐ A RESOLUTION FOR ADDITIONAL APPROPRIATIONS

Mr. Forbes asked Attorney Austgen if the Notice of Publication was in order. Attorney Austgen stated that the Notice for Additional Appropriations were timely published on November 19, 2012, in both The Times and the Post Tribune. Mr. Forbes asked Ms. Sherry Sury, Clerk-Treasurer if she had any opening remarks.

Ms. Sury stated she could explain the additional appropriations briefly. Ms. Sury stated that the additional appropriations, as listed, had to be done. She stated one of the appropriations is tax-based, the others are revenue funded or from other sources. Ms. Sury stated that there is money in the fund, meaning the bank has money for the particular funds listed. She explained that the appropriation (permission to spend) is not adequate to meet to the end of the year. It can't run with a minus.

Ms. Sury explained that the additional appropriation would give the Town permission to take money from the fund and place it in the appropriation to pay bills that have been received and are due to be paid before the end of the year. She stated that they would have to be very careful because more outstanding bills may come in. Ms. Sury stated that she is pretty sure this additional appropriation would cover the bills. She stated that due to the time constraints with the DLGF there might not be enough time to submit another appropriation for approval. In this case, she stated any unanticipated bills would have to wait to be paid in 2013.

Mr. Barenie asked when these figures are normally delivered to the Council. Ms. Sury stated an additional appropriation can be done at any time throughout the year. She said that the appropriation requests are usually due in December. She explained that this year's cutoff date is December 17, 2012, and the next Town Council meeting is not until December 20, 2012, thus necessitating the additional appropriation request be addressed at the November 29, 2012, meeting. Mr. Forbes remarked that he was a little disappointed that the additional appropriation request was noticed on November 19th and today was the day that the Council was presented with this information.

Ms. Sury commented that the Council is provided with a Fund, Revenue & Appropriation Report on a monthly basis. She stated that this report contains all of the information that the Council needs to see and if they looked at these reports they would see how much appropriation was left. She said it should not be a surprise if they looked at the aforementioned report that is provided to them monthly.

Mr. Barenie remarked that it is a bit of a stretch to place this burden on the Council. Mr. Forbes concurred. Ms. Sury commented that this is why the Council is provided with the monthly reports. Mr. Forbes remarked that he understood that. He stated that the point he was trying to make was that on November 19th the Clerk-Treasurer knew that the report should have been in the hands of the Council, and the information only just arrived today. Mr. Forbes stated that the same could be said for the information on the tax anticipation warrant. Ms. Sury said the additional was given to Mickey on the 16th. Ms. Sury stated that Pat and Bev had to work diligently to gather the information and have the tax anticipation warrant ready for publication, which must be ten (10) days before the public hearing. There was no further comment from the Board.

Mr. Forbes opened the floor for public comment. There was no public comment. Mr. Forbes closed the floor to public comment and brought the matter back before the Board. There was no comment from the Board.

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to adopt Resolution No. 12-11-29. Mr. Bustamante made a motion to adopt Resolution No. 12-11-29; Mr. Gembala seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

NEW BUSINESS:
A. CONSIDER ORDINANCE NO. 1563 ‐ AN ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING THE ISSUANCE OF TAX ANTICIPATION WARRANTS

Mr. Forbes asked about the tax anticipation warrant. Ms. Sury stated that this is the ordinance that must be signed and is due on February 7th [sic]. Ms. Sury stated that the entire TAW packet was sent out to Steve Kil, Dave Austgen and Mr. Cender via e-mail. She stated she had the proof, if the Council wished to see, that everyone received it. Ms. Sury stated that there were several things that had to be done by herself and Carl Cender, including a participant survey and a cost cash flow analysis in order to prepare for the tax anticipation warrant. She stated she has also had meetings with Steve Kil, Carl Cender and Damien related to the tax anticipation warrant.

Ms. Sury stated that there is no bottom line figure for the tax anticipation warrant at the present time, but it may be around one million dollars. She stated that the ordinance must be in place by the 7th of December to start the process. Ms. Sury stated that she just obtained an ordinance from Mickey this morning. Ms. Sury stated that the ordinance in the TAW packet, provided by Attorney Austgen today, was sent from the Indiana Bond Bank.

Mr. Forbes asked whether the dollar amount was known as of this date. He noted there were a couple of different numbers floating around. Ms. Sury stated that maybe Mr. Kil knows because he was supposed to talk with Damien and Carl.

(General discussion ensued.)

Attorney Austgen stated this was a very confusing initiative. He stated he received a packet from Mr. Kil at the November 1, special meeting. He stated that he also received an e-mail packet from Ms. Sury's office at a later date with no explanation attached. He stated he corresponded with Mr. Kil and Ms. Sury in order to obtain more information.

Attorney Austgen stated he asked for the information a couple of times and Mr. Kil referred him to Ms. Sury's office. He stated he presumed that Ms. Sury's office would provide him with the information he requested. Ms. Sury stated that she did not receive Attorney Austgen's letters until the 29th. Attorney Austgen stated he has letters and confirms commencing on the 5th.

Attorney Austgen stated that the amount to be borrowed is a not to exceed amount from the general fund budget, he presumed, of $3,275,566 at an interest rate not to exceed 6.5%. He stated that this is the pro forma. He stated that the Council is dealing with an authorization ordinance. He stated that the ordinance is necessary to process the Indiana Bond Bank advance funding in anticipation of revenues to be collected and deposited.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Forbes stated that he does not want it to become a common practice to do a TAW at the end of the year. Attorney Austgen stated that the interest rate on the TAW would probably be between two and three percent.

Mr. Forbes stated that the Council will have to act on the TAW because all of the work has been done. He stated that it will be approved because if the Town cannot borrow internally they will have to have the tax anticipation warrant in place. Mr. Forbes stated that even if the tax anticipation warrant is potentially approved they will still have to look internally to see if they can borrow their own money (Town) and pay themselves back when they receive the draw.

Mr. Forbes stated the Town is in a good position, but they must still be careful. Attorney Austgen commented that statute allows inter-fund borrowings, and the Town could take advantage of the miscellaneous revenue stream that has come in from the increase in building permits.

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to consider Ordinance No. 1563 on first reading. Mr. Barenie made a motion to consider Ordinance No. 1563 on first reading. Mr. Gembala seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously passed by voice vote (5/0).

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to adopt Ordinance No. 1563. Mr. Barenie made a motion to adopt Ordinance No. 1563. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

B. CONSIDER ORDINANCE NO. 1564 ‐ 2013 SALARY ORDINANCE
Mr. Forbes remarked that he believed that everyone has had conversations with Mr. Cender on Ordinance No. 1564. Mr. Kil stated that the salary ordinance contains a two percent (2%) increase for employees. He commented that discussion was had with Mr. Cender during the budget process to ascertain whether a salary increase could be sustained at the current budget. He said the salary ordinance excludes board and commission members and elected officials, it only deals with the full and part-time employees.

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to consider Ordinance No. 1564 at first reading. Mr. Gembala made a motion to consider Ordinance No. 1564. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to adopt Ordinance No. 1564. Mr. Barenie made a motion to adopt Ordinance No. 1564. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

C. CONSIDER AUTHORIZATION OF CHRISTMAS EVE AS A HOLIDAY
Mr. Forbes stated that the next ordinance was to consider authorization of Christmas Eve as a holiday. He asked the Council for any comments. Mr. Barenie stated that it is a great idea.

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to authorize Christmas Eve as a holiday for employees of the Town of St. John. Mr. Volk made a motion to authorize Christmas Eve as a holiday. Mr. Barenie seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

D. CONSIDER ORDINANCE NO. 1565 ‐ AN ORDINANCE AMENDING DEFINITIONS IN ORDINANCE NO. 1444 PERTAINING TO AMBULANCE SERVICES AND FEES
Mr. Forbes stated the next item on the agenda was consideration of Ordinance No. 1565, an ordinance amending definitions in Ordinance No. 1444. Mr. Forbes asked Attorney Austgen for his comments. Attorney Austgen stated that the amendment to Ordinance No. 1444 was made at the request of the Town Manager and the Fire Department. The definition of ALS-II was clarified and made more current for the service provider and billing. Mr. Kil added that the amendment was a minor change made to the definition just to make the ordinance current with no fee changes. There was no further discussion.

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to consider Ordinance No. 1565 at first reading. Mr. Bustamante made a motion to consider Ordinance No. 1565. Mr. Gembala seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to adopt Ordinance No. 1565. Mr. Bustamante made a motion to adopt Ordinance No. 1565. Mr. Barenie seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

REPORTS AND CORRESPONDENCE:
A. TOWN COUNCIL:

Mr. Forbes gave his annual report on the Haunted House. He stated that there were 3,048 visitors to the Haunted House with 308 of those visits on the two kids' days. Mr. Forbes stated that a net profit of $18,124.49 was made. Mr. Forbes thanked the council members for their participation. He also thanked Chief Frego and Chief Willman.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Forbes thanked Standard Bank for manning the door. He gave a special thanks to the St. John Lion's Club for helping at the kids' event. Mr. Forbes also thanked the 93 volunteers who participated in the Haunted House event. Mr. Barenie thanked Mr. Forbes for running the Haunted House and added that it is a great community event.

Mr. Gembala had nothing to report.

Mr. Volk stated that he and several other Town officials attended a meeting of the Lake County Consolidated 911. He stated that he now has a much clearer idea of what is being done. Mr. Volk stated that it is probably for the better although he's not sure about the costs. He stated that with the information that was presented at last night's meeting he is convinced that it is a good concept. Mr. Volk stated that participation in the project will be mandatory.

Mr. Forbes, who also attended, stated that the purpose of the meeting was to introduce the new draft of the inter-local agreement and get community feedback. Mr. Forbes stated that previous drafts had received minimal response.

Mr. Forbes stated that it is mandatory for the Town to enter into the inter-local agreement. He stated that the Town will be required to pay operational funds into the program, but the money will be taken at a declining rate annually. Mr. Kil stated that a worksheet must be filled out that identifies the costs of running the Town's dispatch operation center, along with comments.

(General discussion ensued.)

Chief Frego stated that Lake County was one of the few counties in the state that has not achieved consolidation.

Mr. Barenie asked if a luncheon had been planned. Mr. Kil stated if everyone was on board, he would schedule an employee Christmas lunch.

Mr. Bustamante had nothing to report.

B. CLERK-TREASURER:
Ms. Sury commented that the Clerk Treasurer's office will be closed to the public on December 31, 2012. She stated it has been a ritual for her office to work inside on December 31st to close out all of the books. She stated that she has notified the town's residents via a message on the water bill. She stated she was just reminding the Council so that they would not be taken by surprise.

Mr. Forbes noted that this was past practice. He asked if there were any objections. There were no objections.

Mr. Forbes stated that he would entertain a motion, at the request of the Clerk Treasurer, to close the Clerk Treasurer's office to the public on December 31, 2012. Mr. Gembala made a motion to authorize the Clerk Treasurer's request to close the Clerk Treasurer's office to the public on December 31, 2012. Mr. Barenie seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

C. ATTORNEY'S REPORT
Attorney Austgen had nothing to report.

D. STAFF:
Mr. Kil reported that as of November 29, 2012, the Town has issued 150 residential permits. He stated at this time last year there were only 78 residential permits issued. Mr. Kil stated hopefully things will improve even more in 2013.

Chief Willman presented the Fire Department's activity report for the month of October, 2012. Chief Willman thanked everyone who participated in the October 7, 2012, annual Public Safety Open House with the best attendance ever.

Chief Frego presented the Police Department's activity report for the month October, 31, 2012. He stated that the Police Department is full swing with their CALEA accreditation process.

Discussion was had on the fatality accident that occurred with a young man being hit at west side of Parrish Avenue and south of 85th. Chief Frego stated that the accident is being investigated by the Lake County Sheriff.

PAYMENT OF BILLS:
Mr. Forbes stated that the general APVs Nos. 8942 through 9166 amounted to $1,179,634.24. He asked the Council members if they had any questions on these bills. There were no questions or comments from the Council. Mr. Barenie made a motion to approve the general APVs, Nos. 8942 through 9166 in the amount of $1,179.634.24. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. APVs 8942 through 9166 were approved by voice vote (5/0).

PUBLIC COMMENT:
Mr. Forbes called for public comment.

Steve Agner, 10192 Ellsburg Court
Mr. Agner mentioned his concerns about the empty car wash and the empty K-Mart in Town. He stated that he moved to St. John because it was a nice community. He wanted to know the status of these two developments. He stated that these two sites, located and visible on Route 41, are an advertisement for the Town. He stated that St. John is a very nice town and he does not like how these vacant building detract from the atmosphere of St. John.

Mr. Forbes concurred. He deferred to Mr. Barenie. Mr. Barenie stated that he is a member of the Economic Development Committee that was formed in St. John approximately last November. He stated that issues such as vacant buildings are specifically addressed at EDC meetings.

Mr. Barenie stated that a consulting company has been hired to help the Town develop a marketing strategy to promote St. John. He stated that the plan is almost ready to be submitted to the Town Council for review.

Mr. Barenie stated that it took a month to find out who owned the K-Mart property. He stated that the Town is aware of these issues and they are going to attempt to attract a quality businesses into town to fill the vacant buildings.

Mr. Agner stated that the Town consider purchasing the K-Mart property, convert it into a community center with a park to promote the Town of St. John.

Mr. Forbes called for additional public comment. There was no further public comment.

ADJOURNMENT:
Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to adjourn. Mr. Gembala made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously passed by voice vote (5/0). (The meeting was adjourned at 8:46 p.m.)

A TRUE COPY

_______________________________________________Susan E. Wright
Recording Secretary St. John Town Council