St. John Indiana - Founded 1837
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July 25, 2013 Town Council Minutes

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

CALL TO ORDER:
Mr. Forbes called to order the regular meeting of the Town Council for July 25, 2013, at 8:25 p.m. (The Pledge of Allegiance was said.)

ROLL CALL:
Roll call was taken by Clerk-Treasurer, Sherry Sury, with the following members present: Michael Forbes, Larry Bustamante, Ken Gembala, Gregory Volk and Mark Barenie. Staff members: Steve Kil. Attorney Austgen was present. Chief Frego was absent. Chief Willman was present. Chip Sobek was absent. Recording Secretary, Susan E. Wright, was present.

Mr. Forbes reported that Mr. Gembala had family matters to attend to tonight, and Mr. Bustamante was currently in Indianapolis for job training.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
JUNE 13, 2013 EXECUTIVE SESSION MINUTES,
JUNE 13, 2013, REGULAR MEETING, &
JUNE 27, 2013, REGULAR MEETINGS.

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to approve the meeting minutes from the Executive Session of June 13, 2013, the regular Town Council meeting minutes of June 13, 2013, and the regular meeting minutes of June 27, 2013. Mr. Forbes asked if there was any discussion. There was no discussion.

Mr. Gembala made a motion to approve the regular meeting minutes of June 13, 2013, June 27, 2013, as supplied by Recording Secretary, Susan E. Wright, and also the Executive meeting minutes of June 13, 2013. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was carried by voice vote (5/0).

NEW BUSINESS:
A. RESOLUTION NUMBER 13-07-25, A RESOLUTION DECLARING UNCOLLECTIBLE ACCOUNTS OF THE TOWN AS "BAD DEBT".

Mr. Forbes stated that Resolution Number 13-07-25 was a resolution declaring uncollectible accounts of the Town as bad debt. He noted that the dollar amount is $68,385.14. He asked if there were any questions or comments. Mr. Gembala noted that this was the usual situation after adjustments from Medicare and such. Mr. Forbes concurred.

Mr. Gembala made a motion to approve Resolution Number 13-07-25. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

B. RESOLUTION NUMBER 13-07-25A, A RESOLUTION APPROVING A JOINT INTERLOCAL COOPERATIVE AGREEMENT FOR THE PURPOSE OF A STUDENT RESOURCE OFFICER AT LAKE CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL

Mr. Forbes asked Attorney Austgen to elaborate on the Joint Interlocal Cooperative Agreement. Attorney Austgen stated that he and Mr. Kil are in discussions with Lake Central School Corporation's legal counsel and school superintendent. He stated that the agreement is being finished up after having had some legal items presented to them. Attorney Austgen stated that Chief Frego has responded with documentation regarding job descriptions, et-cetera. He stated that the matter was not finished this week because the school superintendent is out of the office.

Attorney Austgen stated that this matter would be immediately addressed next week and the agreement would be ready for presentation at the August meeting. Mr. Gembala made a motion to defer Resolution Number 13-07-25A. Mr. Bustamante seconded the matter. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

C. CONSIDER Y2013 DISPATCHING SERVICES AGREEMENT WITH TOWN OF ST. JOHN AND LAKE HILLS VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENT

Mr. Forbes stated that the Council would consider the 2013 dispatching service agreement with the Town of St. John and the Lake Hills Volunteer Fire Department. He noted this is a yearly commitment wherein St. John does the dispatching for Lake Hills. Mr. Forbes stated that the amount of the contract is $6,884.02.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Kil informed the Board that this agreement was for the year of 2013, as it had never been approved. Mr. Kil stated that this was a housekeeping item that needed to be addressed. Mr. Gembala made a motion to approve the agreement and authorize the Town Council President to execute his signature on the agreement. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

(General discussion ensued.)

D. CONSIDER APPROVAL OF HAUNTED HOUSE BUDGET FOR 2013

Mr. Forbes stated that the Council would consider approval of the Haunted House Budget for 2013. Mr. Forbes stated that the budget had been sent out to the councilmembers. Mr. Forbes stated that there are a couple of Haunted House items on the docket, but not for a significant amount of money. He stated he advised the consultants to hold off on any further purchases until the approval process is completed.

Mr. Forbes stated that there is an increase in the budget of approximately $5,000. He stated the bulk of this increase will be used for additional advertising. Mr. Forbes stated that the e-mail explains where a majority of this money would go. Mr. Forbes asked the councilmembers for any comments or questions.

Mr. Kil informed the Council that the Haunted House's proposed total budget is $41,100 for the year 2013. Mr. Forbes stated that there was a pretty significant drop in revenue in 2012. He stated that this is his reason for requesting additional funds for advertising, in order to reach a different area and age group.

Mr. Forbes stated that in better years, the Haunted House revenues can range anywhere between $20-40,000 after costs. Mr. Forbes reiterated that revenue was down last year, and he believes that additional advertising will help.

Mr. Kil stated that there is currently a cash balance of $85,439.59 in the Haunted House account. Mr. Kil noted that this money also pays for Christmas in the Park every year.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Forbes informed that Board that two large Haunted Houses in Illinois have closed. He stated if the advertising reaches out to the Chicago market the people who went to the closed Haunted Houses may be potential customers of St. John's Haunted House.

Mr. Forbes asked for a motion to approve the 2013 Haunted House budget of $41,100. "So moved," by Mr. Barenie. The motion was seconded by Mr. Bustamante. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

E. LARIMER PARK DRAINAGE PROJECT – REVIEW OF REQUESTS FOR PROPOSAL.

Mr. Forbes noted that he brought the Larimer Park drainage project up several months ago. He stated that this project starts on the north side of 93rd Avenue and the ditch runs onto Larimer Park. Mr. Forbes noted that the ditch is overgrown and it has turned into a winding, meandering ditch. He stated that the ditch will be straightened out. He stated that the purpose for straightening the ditch is to prevent water from flowing over 93rd Avenue during heavy rain events.

Mr. Forbes stated that the Town Council has done a good job of addressing other issues on 93rd Avenue. He stated Prairie West Park is one of the only remaining significant projects left to do, but it will be a developer related, cooperative job. Mr. Forbes asked if anyone had any questions.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Kil stated that he discussed this matter with Kenn Kraus. Mr. Kil stated that Mr. Kraus wrote a letter with a formal recommendation that the project be awarded to Metro Excavating. Mr. Kil stated that Metro is ready to go on the project. Mr. Kil concurred that there is a giant difference in the amount of the quotes. Mr. Kil stated that Metro Excavating stands by their numbers.

Mr. Forbes noted that the amount of Metro Excavating's quote was $38,222.10.

Mr. Gembala made a motion to approve the recommendation of Mr. Kraus to accept the Metro Excavating quote of $38,222.10 for the Larimer Park drainage project. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

REPORTS AND CORRESPONDENCE:
TOWN COUNCIL:

Mr. Barenie stated he would like to make a motion regarding the discussion had earlier during the study session regarding most of the reports submitted by Department Heads on recommended promotions, as well asking to ratify the actions by the Police Commission regarding the Police Department's two recommended position changes, one being a Commander and an additional Sergeant.

Mr. Barenie included the Fire Department in the motion, to include three Battalion Chiefs to receive $1.00 an hour, Public Works Department, six promotions, three to take place at the one year anniversary date of the employee and the other three positions that were recorded in the Public Works letter of recommendation, with the appropriate new title positions.

Mr. Forbes asked if everyone understood the motion set forth by Mr. Barenie. There were no questions. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion.

Mr. Forbes requested a roll call vote. Ms. Sury conducted a roll call vote. Gregory Volk – no. Ken Gembala – no. Mark Barenie – yes. Larry Bustamante – yes. Michael Forbes – no. The motion failed (3/2).

Mr. Forbes stated he voted no to Mr. Barenie's motion at this time pending further review.

Mr. Gembala, for the record, stated he would like to revisit the promotion/raises after seeing numbers for the third quarter. Mr. Volk stated he is not opposed to the motion; he opined that the Council should wait a little while to see what the third quarter looks like.

Mr. Barenie asked how this would change things. Mr. Volk stated he would like to see that the Town's expenditures don't exceed any further than what Mr. Barenie was thinking. Mr. Volk opined that he has a feeling that building permits are going to drop off dramatically.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Barenie asked if Mr. Volk was referring to something that would be paid out for this year. Mr. Volk concurred. Mr. Barenie stated that the basis of the recommendation for is the increased revenues moving forward with the Town's tax levy.

Mr. Bustamante gave kudos to the Fire Department, Public Works Department, Cedar Lake, Schererville and Lake Hills for the phenomenal job they did with Derwin Nietzel's rescue. Mr. Gembala concurred. Chief Willman was commended for the Fire Department's excellent work.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Gembala made a motion to declare the items listed as old, broken or no cash value to be disposed of in a letter submitted by Mr. Jason Dravet. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

Mr. Volk had nothing to report.

CLERK-TREASURER:
Ms. Sury had nothing to report.

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

TOWN MANAGER:
Mr. Kil had nothing to report.

STAFF:
Chief Willman delivered the June, 2013, monthly activity report from the Fire Department.

Mr. Forbes stated that he had before him a Request to Purchase two Ford Utility Police Interceptors. He stated that these vehicles are SUVs. Mr. Kil stated that these vehicles will be able to have hitches affixed to them, but the vehicles are not heavy enough for a plow. Mr. Kil stated that these vehicles are pursuit-rated.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to authorize purchase of two Police Interceptor vehicles, each $26,410.95 for a total of $52,821.90. Mr. Bustamante made a motion to authorize the request to purchase the two police vehicles in the amount of $52,821.90. Mr. Gembala seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0)

PAYMENT OF BILLS:
Mr. Forbes noted that next item was payment of the bills, APVs 8090 through 8266 in the amount of $1,361,821.77. He asked if there was any discussion on payment of the bills. There was no discussion.

Mr. Gembala made a motion to pay APVs 8090 through 8266 in the amount of $1,361,821.77. Mr. Forbes noted that the bills from Ms. Haralovich are still on the docket. Mr. Forbes asked if there was a second to Mr. Gembala's motion. There was no second to Mr. Gembala's motion. Mr. Forbes asked if there would be acceptance to pay the bills if the following bills were removed, Docket Number 8201, four of them in the amount of $280. Mr. Gembala made a motion to approve payment of the bills including the removal of Docket Number 8201, four times in the amount of $280. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0).

PUBLIC COMMENT:

Attorney Jeffrey Gunning, PO Box 3305, Munster, Indiana
Mr. Gunning stated he was an attorney practicing out of Munster, Indiana. Mr. Gunning asked the Council if there was any explanation for the removal of the accounts payable docket item 8201. Mr. Forbes stated his speculation is that it is duplication of services and the Council has concerns about that.

ADJOURNMENT:
Mr. Forbes asked for a motion to adjourn the meeting. Mr. Bustamante made a motion to adjourn the meeting. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). (The meeting was adjourned at 8:58 p.m.)

A TRUE COPY

_______________________________________________
Susan E. Wright
Recording Secretary St. John Town Council