Chesterton Tribune



Town Council OKs County Animal Control contract

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The Chesterton Town Council has voted formally--and unanimously--to enter a three-year contract with Porter County Animal Control.

Members did so at their meeting Monday night, without balking, without squeaking, without really any comment at all, two weeks after seeking a meeting with Animal Control officials and a Porter County Commissioner in the hope of having explained to them why Chesterton residents aren’t actually being double-billed for Animal Control services, first in their property taxes and second in the $27,347 annual contractual fee.

The only change to the contract as presented by Animal Control: it includes a termination clause, under which either party may choose not to renew the contract if notice is given at least 60 days prior to the renewal date.

As Member Jim Ton, R-1st, noted, previous attempts by the Chesterton Police Department to provide animal control services in town have not succeeded particularly well. “We need this (contract), so our police officers don’t have to chase four-legged offenders, only two-legged ones,” he said.

Indian Oak Mall Sign Rejected

In other business, members voted unanimously to reject a proposed amendment to the Indian Oak Mall planned unit development ordinance which would have permitted the erection of a 25-foot pylon sign--seven feet higher than the Zoning Ordinance permits--along Ind. 49.

Requesting the PUD amendment was Lake County Trust Company, the owner of a parcel at the Indian Oak Mall whose tenants feel their businesses are currently under-advertised. Speaking on behalf of the parcel owner was attorney Greg Bouer, who told the council that “economic forces are dictating that we do our best for our tenants.”

The proposed PUD amendment came to the council, however, with an unanimous unfavorable recommendation from the Advisory Plan Commission, and though Bouer said that his client would be willing to make changes to the “type of sign”--including, perhaps, reducing its size or electrifying it--he offered no specific suggestions at Monday’s meeting.

“We would need to see a solution that worked,” said Member Nate Cobbs, R-4th, who sits on the Plan Commission and who already voted once against the proposed amendment. “Location. Size. Any number of things. But this is the right decision for this, as it’s written now.”

“A simple sign does not make or break a business,” Member Emerson DeLaney, R-5th, said for his own part.

Practically speaking, Town Engineer Mark O’Dell remarked, because the proposed sign would be located on Ind. 49 south of the intersection of Indian Boundary Road, “by the time you’d see it, you’d already be past Indian Oak Mall.”

Associate Town Attorney Julie Paulson did say that Lake County Trust Company may, if it chooses, re-file the petition at a future date “in a slightly different form.”



Posted 12/11/2018




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