St. John Indiana - Founded 1837
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August 14th, 2014 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 for the Town Council on August 14, 2014, at 7:08 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, Gregory Volk, Mark Barenie, Larry Bustamante and Ken Gembala. Attorney David Austgen was present. Staff members present: Chief Willman and Chief Frego. Steve Kil was present. Chip Sobek was absent. Recording Secretary, Susan E. Wright, was also present.

PROCLAMATION:
NORTHWEST INDIANA CANCER KIDS FOUNDATION
Mr. Forbes read the Northwest Indiana Cancer Kids Foundation Proclamation, into the record. Mr. Forbes proclaimed the month of September as Childhood Cancer Awareness month. He asked for a motion to accept the proclamation as read. "So moved," by Mr. Greg Volk. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

PUBLIC HEARING:
A. RESOLUTION #14-08 -14A, A RESOLUTION PROVIDING FOR ADDITIOINAL APPROPRIATIONS

Mr. Forbes noted Resolution #14-08-14A, a resolution providing for additional appropriations was scheduled for a public hearing. He asked Attorney Austgen if the Proofs of Publication for the public hearing were in order. Attorney Austgen noted that timely publication was made in both The Times and the Post Tribune on August 1, 2014, and the public hearing could be properly conducted.

Mr. Kil made opening remarks. He stated that two of the appropriations are for the Police Department, (LECE and PD Special Motor Equipment) Mr. Kil stated that the EDC appropriation would be used to pay for the Town's demographic analysis, marketing brochures, etc.

Mr. Forbes asked the councilmen if they had any questions. There were no questions from the Council. Mr. Forbes asked Ms. Sury if she had anything to add. Ms. Sury had nothing to add.

Mr. Forbes opened the Public Hearing. He called for public comment on the appropriations and Resolution #14-08-14A. There was no public comment. Mr. Forbes closed the public hearing.

Mr. Forbes asked if there was a motion regarding the adoption of Resolution #14-08-14A. "So moved," by Mr. Gembala. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

NEW BUSINESS:
A. AWARD OF 2014 ROAD PROJECT BID.

Mr. Forbes noted that the first item under New Business was the awarding of the 2014 road project bid.

Mr. Kil acknowledged that the staff has reviewed the bids. He noted that Mr. Kenn Kraus, Town engineer, was in attendance at tonight's meeting. Mr. Kil stated that Mr. Kraus recommended that the road project be awarded to Walsh & Kelly the lowest and most responsible bidder with a base bid of $4,767,666.80.

Mr. Kraus informed the Council that he reviewed both bids. He stated in reviewing the Reith Riley bid, he found anomalies on the spreadsheet (decimal places). Mr. Kraus noted the errors totaled less than $100, but it would have been a deduction.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion. Mr. Barenie made a motion to award the 2014 road project to Walsh & Kelly as the lowest and most responsible bidder in the amount of $4,767,666.80, subject to project financing. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

B. RESOLUTION #14-08-14, A RESOLUTION ADOPTING FISCAL PLAN FOR PARRISH LAND, INC.

Mr. Forbes noted the next item on the agenda was Resolution #14-08-14, a resolution adopting the fiscal plan for Parrish Land, Incorporated, a petition for annexation of property commonly known as 10911 Parrish Avenue.

Mr. Forbes asked the councilmen if they had any questions. There were no questions or comments from the Council. Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to adopt Resolution #14-08-14. "So moved," by Mr. Gembala. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion.

Mr. Gembala asked if the annexation was taking the property in as R-1. Mr. Forbes stated that the property is being annexed in as R-1, but most likely the Petitioner would go to the Plan Commission.

Mr. Kil noted that the property along Route 231 is being annexed in as C-2. He stated that any commercial property along Route 231, to a distance of 600' is coming in as C-2, and the remainder of the residential property is all R-1.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Gembala stated that his motion stands. Mr. Forbes noted that Mr. Bustamante had seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

C. CONSIDER ORDINANCE #1588, AN ORDINANCE ANNEXING ADJACENT AND CONTIGUOUS TERRITORY – OLTHOF HOMES.

Mr. Forbes noted Ordinance #1588, an ordinance annexing adjacent and contiguous territory, by Petitioner, Olthof Homes was before the Council for their consideration and review. Mr. Forbes stated the annexation ordinance was the follow-up to the fiscal plan just previously approved.

Mr. Forbes asked the councilmen if they had any questions. The Council had no questions. Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion on Ordinance #1588. Mr. Barenie made a motion to adopt Ordinance #1588. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

D. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT AND ACCEPTANCE OF UNIFORM CONFLICT OF INTEREST DISCLOSURE.

Mr. Forbes noted that the acknowledgement and acceptance of the Uniform Conflict of Interest Disclosure was before the Council. Attorney Austgen informed the Board that this item encompasses the statutory disclosure for an elected official, in this case, Councilman Ken Gembala. Attorney Austgen explained that this disclosure is related to Mr. Gembala's professional capacity.

Attorney Austgen informed the Council that Mr. Gembala and his firm are working on a project in Town and they wanted simply to disclose and declare that this activity is taking place and disclose it on the public record.

Mr. Gembala informed the Council that the firm he works for is preparing a survey plat that will have to come before the Council. He stated it this was not anticipated. Mr. Gembala explained that due to a change in rules, the survey plat that was going to go to the county is now going to come before the Town of St. John, Town Council.

Attorney Austgen informed the Council that he has reviewed the disclosure and it meets the requirements of law. Mr. Forbes asked the councilmen if they had any questions. There were no questions from the Council.

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion. "So moved," by Mr. Bustamante. Mr. Forbes noted there was a motion by Mr. Bustamante to accept the disclosure. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was carried by voice vote (4/0/1). Mr. Gembala abstained. Ayes --- four. Nays --- none. Abstention --- one.

E. CONSIDER PURUCHASE OF 700 MEGAHERTZ RADIOES FOR THE POLICE AND FIRE DEPARTMENT AND APPROVAL OF THE LEASE AGREEMENT WITH FIRST FINANCIAL BANK.

Mr. Forbes noted that considering purchase of 700 megahertz radios for the Police and Fire Departments and approval of the lease agreement with First Financial Bank was the next item for the Council's consideration.

Mr. Forbes asked the councilmen if they had any questions or comments. The Council had no questions or comments. Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to approve the radio purchase and the lease agreement with First Financial Bank in the amount of $367,803.92. "So moved," by Mr. Bustamante. Mr. Gembala seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

Attorney Austgen informed the Council that an upcoming agenda will contain a resolution that will be related to formalizing the financing package for the lease agreement with First Financial Bank.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Kil stated that it is anticipated that Public Safety income tax will be used to repay the lease.

F. RESOLUTION #14-08-14B, A RESOLUTION FOR THE TRANSFER OF APPROPRIATIONS FROM VARIOUS FUNDS.

Mr. Forbes noted Resolution #14-08-14B, a resolution for the transfer of appropriations from various funds was before the Council for their consideration. Mr. Forbes asked Ms. Sury to elaborate on this matter.

Ms. Sury informed the Council that this appropriation was simply moving money for things that were needed. She stated the first appropriation was from CEDIT Fund 1209 for the road rehabilitation project, the second appropriation is for equipment repairs for the ambulance cap, and the third appropriation was for Solid Waste/garbage.

Mr. Forbes asked the councilmen if they had any questions. There were no questions from the Council. Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to adopt Resolution #14-08-14B. "So moved," by Mr. Gembala. Mr. Barenie seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

REPORTS AND CORRESPONDENCE:
A. TOWN COUNCIL:

Mr. Forbes noted he has two Requests to Purchase for Civic Park. He stated that all of the equipment will be replaced and a PlayBound poured surface will be installed for safety measures.

Mr. Forbes stated that the first Request to Purchase is to authorize the purchase of the equipment in the amount of $51,139.00. "So moved," by Mr. Barenie. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

Mr. Forbes moved on to a Request to Purchase in the amount of $7,155.00 for the equipment installation. Mr. Forbes asked for a motion to approve the Request to Purchase in the amount of $7,155.00 for the installation of the equipment at Civic Park. "So moved," by Mr. Barenie. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

Mr. Forbes stated the last Request to Purchase is from the Fire Department in the amount of $34,711.79 for the purchase of a 2015 Chevy Tahoe from Christenson Chevrolet. He noted that the Tahoe will replace the Explorer.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to authorize the purchase of the 2015 Chevy Tahoe in the amount of $32,711.79. "So moved," by Mr. Bustamante. Mr. Volk seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

Mr. Volk moved on to reports from the councilman.

Mr. Barenie had nothing to report.

Mr. Bustamante had nothing to report.

Mr. Volk stated that he had asked Mr. Kil to gather some information together on an employee wellness program. Mr. Volk noted that the first year of the program would be "pretty much free," but after the first year there are costs associated with an employee wellness program.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Volk stated he would like to review information on the costs, incentives, etc., for an employee wellness program. Mr. Kil stated he would consult with the insurance company representative, gather additional information and work on creating an employee wellness program for the Town.

The councilmen concurred that Mr. Kil should investigate this matter more thoroughly.

Mr. Gembala asked if the Town's disaster plan has been updated. Chief Frego stated that the Police Department will adopt updated policies related to the disaster plan on Monday.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Gembala reiterated that the Town's disaster plan should be updated. Chief Frego stated he would consult with Chief Willman, Steve Kil and the Public Works Department on revamping/updating the Town's disaster plan.

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

B. STAFF:

Attorney Austgen had nothing to report.

Mr. Kil informed the Board that the Town has obtained a very favorable 2.9% interest rate on the road bonds. Mr. Kil stated that a Notice of Award and a Notice to Proceed will go out, and a pre-construction meeting was tentatively scheduled for tomorrow at 9:00 a.m. (incumbent upon the Council awarding the bid). Mr. Kil thanked the Council.

Mr. Kil stated that he received notification today from the engineering firm of Beam Longest & Neff on behalf of INDOT. Mr. Kil informed the Council that INDOT intends to start a road paving project of approximately 16 miles on U.S. Route 41 from 135th Place in Cedar Lake to .27 miles north of U.S. Route 30 in Schererville. Construction will commence August/September of 2015. Mr. Kil stated that the road will not be widened only repaved.

Chief Willman had no report. He thanked the Council for authorizing the Request to Purchase the 2015 Chevy Tahoe.

Chief Frego informed the Council that the Police Department's K9 dog passed away two years ago, prematurely. He said since that time, they have not had a K9 dog. Chief Frego said he has been approached by several officers who wish to initiate a campaign to solicit funds from the businesses of St. John to help defray the costs of acquiring a new K9 dog.

Chief Frego informed the Council that the cost of a new K9 dog through Landheim is approximately $12,000, which would include six weeks of training, and approximately $4,000 for equipment needed for the K9 dog and to equip a vehicle for the K9.

Chief Frego opined that this is a worthy cause. He stated the department used their previous K9 in many ways, in schools, parking lot sweeps, school sweeps and open houses. Chief Frego stated a K9 is also an added tool as an officer's partner when on patrol.

Chief Frego stated that he is seeking permission to approve the purchase of the K9, and then to solicit donations through businesses in Town. Chief Frego informed the Council that the dog would come from Germany. From Germany the animal would go to Landheim and receive six weeks of training with its handler. Chief Frego stated that the owner at Landheim is going to give the Police Department a good deal and is willing to work with the department on acquiring the dog.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion. Mr. Barenie made a motion to authorize the purchase of a K9 dog. Mr. Bustamante seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none.

Chief Frego thanked the Council.

PUBLIC COMMENT:
Mr. Forbes opened the floor to public comment. He called for public comment.

Al Konieczka, 12548 West 101st Place:
Mr. Konieczka informed the Council that he was representing the NICK Foundation, where he serves as a board member. He thanked the Council on behalf of the children and the foundation for issuing the proclamation. Mr. Konieczka stated, sadly, since last month one young boy has been lost and four new four new families have been added to the NICK Foundation; he stated that these numbers are equivalent to one new cancer family per week.

Mr. Konieczka asked the Town to consider becoming a sponsor for the Second Annual Childhood Cancer Awareness Walk which will take place at Lemon Lake on September 7, 2014. He asked the Council to keep in mind the children, their families and the struggles they go through.

(General discussion ensued.)

Mr. Forbes called for additional public comment. There was no further public comment. Mr. Forbes closed the floor to public comment.

ADJOURNMENT:
Mr. Forbes stated he would entertain a motion to adjourn the meeting. "So moved," by Mr. Gembala. Mr. Barenie seconded the motion. The motion was carried by voice vote (5/0). Ayes --- all. Nays --- none. (The meeting was adjourned at 7:42 p.m.)

A TRUE COPY

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