Highway Superintendent Al Hoagland’s 34-year career culminated with praise
from Indiana Governor Mike Pence’s office.
Representative Ed Soldiay, R-Valparaiso, and State Senator Ed Charbonneau,
R-Valparaiso, were on hand at Tuesday’s Porter County Commissioner meeting
to present Hoagland with the governor’s Distinguished Hoosier Award
recognizing him as a type of individual that “distinguishes themselves
thtrough significant contributions to their communities.”
retires on Aug. 14, received a standing ovation in the Commissioners’
Chambers. He has served as superintendent since 2003 and started as a driver
President John Evans, R-North, cited Hoagland’s service to his country with
honor in Vietnam while enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corp. Evans said the
demands of a highway superintendent required being on call 24/7 for 365 days
a year. He thanked Hoagland’s wife Sue and family for their “bountiful
patience, understanding and support” throughout his days as a county
also commended Hoagland’s strategic ability to keep costs down when the
state slashed road budgets.
“Al has worked
miracles in assuring that the nearly 800 miles of county roads and 126
bridges remain safe and properly maintained,” Evans said.
After accepting the
award, Hoagland said a few words about the demands of the job.
“It’s always been
challenging and no matter who does it, it’s never going to end. I just tried
to do a good job. Thank you all for this award,” he said.
Hoagland resides in
Hebron and is a 1966 graduate of Hebron High School.
have yet to announce who will succeed Hoagland as the next highway
Later in the
meeting, the Commissioners also recognized its ITS Support Technician
Deborah Butterfield who is also retiring this year after 23 years of
Evans said local
governments around the state are seeing a large number of retirements due to
state lawmakers’ changes to the Public Employee Retirement Fund. Annuity
interest rates for PERF are expected to drop to 7.5 percent in October and
dip to five percent next year, Evans said, until they reach the regular
market rate in 2016.
losing a wealth of knowledge because of this and it really is too bad,”