The Porter Town
Council voted 3-0 to adopt its 2017 budgets during its regular meeting
Voting to approve
were members William Lopez and Erik Wagner, along with Council President
Greg Stinson. Absent was member Ross LeBleu.
“The budgets are
approved. We can keep the doors open on January 2. We will be closed however
on January 1 (for New Year’s Day),” Stinson said.
The Town’s budget
was advertised at $4.3 million with $2.3 million in the General Fund. It
will be submitted to the Indiana Department of Local Government Finance
which will issue a budget order and tax rate closer to February.
In other business,
the Council approved an additional appropriation of $46,000 to the Parks
Donations fund which required a public hearing. No one from the audience
spoke during the hearing.
Brian Bugajski also told the Council he received quotes for playground
equipment at Hawthorne Park and recommended the lowest bid submitted by
Sinclair Recreation at $45,557. The Council approved the recommendation 3-0.
Bugajski told the
Chesterton Tribune the equipment will be purchased with a GameTime
playground equipment grant rather than the donations. The park will be
getting six new slides, a rock climbing wall and platforms, one for older
kids and one for younger. The equipment at the park now ranges from 19 to 28
years old, Bugajski said.
Hawthorne Park will
be the site for Sunday’s Boo Bash from 12-2 p.m. featuring games, crafts, a
costume contest and the haunted kitchen. The costume contest will be at 1
p.m. in the divisions of ages 0-3, ages 4-6, ages 7-9, ages 10-13 and a
On Nov. 20,
Bugajski said there will be a dedication ceremony for the two new benches
made from the bottle caps collected this past year by Brownie Girl Scout
Troop 30352. Two plaques have arrived this week that will be part of the
dedication, he said.
Council voted 3-0 to choose U.S. Specialty Insurance as the Town’s new
provider of liability and auto insurance, as recommended by Jim Anton of
quote for its premium was $80,641 which was about $17,000 less than what the
Town would pay to renew its policy with its current provider Argonaut.
The reduction in
premium costs can be credited to the lower number of claims this past year
by employees, Anton said. “We saw a 16 percent decrease on the premiums
because the (employees) are staying safe.”
Stinson also asked
if cyber liability was included in the package. “Everything going on with
hacking these days, it’s something worth looking into,” he said.
Anton said that the
Council could purchase the cyber liability insurance at a premium of $2,246
for $1 million of coverage or $3,050 for $2 million in coverage.
Lopez made the
motion for $3,050, saying that $700 extra for twice the coverage is probably
worth it. The Council agreed 3-0 on the motion.
this is the first time the Town will have insurance for cyber liability.
Later in the
meeting, Stinson announced the Christmas party for Town employees will be
held at The Spa on Dec. 9 from 6 to 9 p.m. The employees have earned it for
“working harder and safer,” Stinson said.
Police Chief Jamie
Spanier said that hours for Trick-or-Treat this year will be 5:30 to 7:30 on
Halloween -- Monday, Oct. 31. He asked that drivers keep a close watch out
“There will be kids
darting out into the street. We ask that everyone be real careful,” Spanier
Leaf pick up
Director Brenda Brueckheimer said her department will start leaf pickup
service and residents wanting to know their pickup day can call 926-4212.
shared that through NIPSCO’s tree grant program, the Town will receive 15
sugar maple trees. The trees will be planted along Franklin St. and Waverly
The grant was
achieved with the help of Bugajski and Director of Development/Building
Commissioner Michael Barry, Brueckheimer said.
and comments from the floor, Joan Burke asked if the Town owned a lawn mower
that works. Her request is to have gravel picked up at Porter Beach and then
have the grass cut.
“The weeds are
bending over and hitting the cars,” Burke said.
the Town does have an operable John Deer Bush Hog mower. Stinson told Burke
the Town will look into her request.
Due to conflicts
with Election Day on Nov. 8 and the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, the Council
will not meet on either of those dates and instead will meet on Tuesday,
Nov. 15, at 7 p.m.
Stinson said other
meetings will be moved to Nov. 15 as well. The Stormwater Board will meet at
5 p.m., the Police Commission will meet at 6 p.m., and the Redevelopment
Commission will meet at 6:30 p.m. before the Council.
The Plan Commission
and BZA will meet at their regular times on Wednesday, Nov. 16.