The Chesterton Police Department is switching from Cisco Systems to
Tiburon--the same system now used by the Porter County Sheriff’s Police and
the 911 Dispatch Center--for its computer aided dispatch and mobile
Tiburon will better integrate the CPD with other local law enforcement
agencies and will also do a more seamless job of managing information,
Police Chief Dave Cincoski told the Town Council at its meeting Monday
night, but the switch-over will cost something on the order of $102,000.
The council previously earmarked that amount in county economic development
income tax (CEDIT) moneys at its annual CEDIT meeting in January.
Half of that needs to be up-front money, however, to get on the company’s
installation waiting list, which at the moment is three to six months long,
Members accordingly voted 3-0 to approve an expenditure of $51,000. Members
Jeff Trout, R-2nd, and Sharon Darnell, D-4th, were not in attendance.
In other business, members referred three separate requests for a
fundraising tag day for June 29--at the intersections of 11th Street and
1100N and of Broadway and Eighth Street--to Cincoski for review.
One of those requests was made by CHS varsity cheerleading coach Lisa
Christenson; the others, by a pair of Relay for Life teams.
Cincoski will sort out the competing requests and make his recommendation at
the next council meeting, June 24.
Interim Superintendent’s Salary
Meanwhile, members voted 3-0 to approve on first reading an amendment to the
2013 Salary Ordinance which would establish the position of Interim Utility
Superintendent at an annual salary of $35,000.
Last week, the Utility Service Board unanimously appointed Town Engineer
Mark O’Dell to that position--the fourth time he has been forced to accept
it--after former superintendent Rob Lovell tendered his resignation.
“Thank you for stepping up and keeping the Utility running,” said Member Jim
Town Attorney Chuck Lukmann noted that O’Dell’s appointment will end just as
soon as a successor can be found and hired.
The ordinance will be considered at final reading at the council’s next
What’s the Future of Old Lighthouse Christian Church?
From the floor Rita Nackovic, who lives in the Tamarack subdivision just
east of Chesterton High School and north of the Duneland Trails subdivision,
asked the council whether anyone in town government is aware of any plans
which the new owner of the old Lighthouse Christian Church, at the southwest
coroner of 1100N and Fifth Street, may have for the property.
In particular, Nackovic expressed concerns about what work on the property
might do to the water table in the area. She noted that the construction
first of the new CHS and then of Duneland Trails has made her own
neighborhood much more watery. “We have water all the time at the end of my
driveway,” in the 500 block of Windridge Drive. “I’m on my third sump pump
At the moment, council members and staff indicated that they are unaware of
any plans for the old church facility. But should the owner wish in any way
to pursue a use not permitted by the current zoning--which O’Dell did not
have on the tip of his tongue--at a minimum he will need to petition the
Board of Zoning Appeals for a variance.
Weed and Sign Complaints
Acting Building Commissioner Mike Orlich reported to the council that the
Building Department is actively pursing tall-grass and signage complaints.
“But it’s a process,” Orlich noted. “It takes time.”
From the Streets
Town Manager Bernie Doyle, reporting for Street Commissioner John
Schnadenberg, reported that, by removing a 120-year oak tree in-house, from
the corner of South Calumet Road and Park Ave., the Street Department saved
something like $3,000.
The tree was dead and “definitely a hazard,” Doyle said.