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Porter users get full summer sewer break; council donates for July 2 lakefront fireworks display

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By PAULENE POPARAD

The Porter Town Council enacted an ordinance change Tuesday that will give residents an extended break on their summer sewer bills despite typically higher-than-normal water usage for outdoor activities.

Porter sewer bills are based on water consumption as recorded by Indiana American Water Co.

Single-family domestic and residential bills used to get the break based on sewer billing from April through August, but council president Greg Stinson said that didn’t take into account increased water usage during the full summer.

On a 5-0 vote the new billing periods affected are June 16 through October 15. Clerk-treasurer Carol Pomeroy warned residents not to fill swimming pools before June 16 or that additional water will be computed as part of the actual sewer bill. Discounted summer bills are based on average monthly usage in preceding months.

During public comment Chad Fitzmaurice of Wagner Road said a water line broke at his home but a large percentage of the water wasn’t sanitary waste. Pomeroy said once IAWC makes its usage adjustment the town can, too.

In other summer news, Duneland Chamber of Commerce president Maura Durham requested and the Town Council unanimously approved a $3,000 donation for the July 2 Fireworks on the Lakefront co-sponsored by the chamber and the town. Rain date is July 9. The event takes place at the Indiana Dunes State Park and Durham said 13,000 persons attended last year.

Porter also agreed to sign the contract with Melrose Pyrotechnics to mount the fireworks display from a barge in Lake Michigan. Porter’s donation comes from the CEDIT fund.

Councilman Dave Wodrich welcomed Durham as the chamber’s new president, a change from the former executive director title.

Brush pick-up to begin

Porter Public Works director Brenda Brueckheimer said summer leaf/brush clean-up begins April 14 with crews working from the south end of town to the north. Due to the large amount of winter debris, a second collection round will be scheduled.

Details of the yard waste eligible for collection are on the town website at www.townofporter.com, and questions may be addressed to Public Works at 926-4212. Brueckheimer noted Able Disposal will take bundled sticked and limbs no longer than 4 feet in length on regular garbage days. “This saves Public Works many, many, many hours of pick-up,” she advised.

The director also invited residents to call Public Works to get on the list for ground mulch, especially if they want it delivered in 5 to 7 cubic-yard loads. Smaller amounts can be picked up at the Beam Street street department.

Brueckheimer announced April 19 is a free Earth Day celebration at the Porter County Expo Center from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Various partners, vendors and exhibitors will be on hand with informational programs scheduled.

Easter hunt Saturday

Park director Brian Bugajski announced several upcoming events.

Saturday at 1 p.m. the popular Easter Egg Hunt for all children 9 years and younger takes place at Hawthorne Park’s community center. Children will be divided into age groups including those with special needs. Bugajski thanked the many vendors and volunteers. “We’ve had a great response from the community.”

May 10 the park is planning a 5 to 7 p.m. fundraiser at the community building in cooperation with Fazoli’s to raise money for future purchase of Porter playground equipment. Tickets are available at the door and carry-outs are optional. Call 921-1687 for more information.

At Bugajski’s request the council unanimously OK’d not to exceed $1,000 from the CEDIT fund for materials needed for the April 26 Rebuilding Together Duneland work day at Hawthorne Park.

The director also thanked the Porter Police and Fire departments for their assistance during a March 29 5K run and kids’ run at Hawthorne Park, and Brueckheimer and Carl Copollo for helping take down holiday lights at the park.

In other business, town development director Mike Barry reported that work to complete final details on the Brickyard and Orchard Pedestrian Way hike/bike trails soon will begin and both should open shortly. “I’m looking forward to our cutting some ribbons,” he said.

Brueckheimer and council member Elka Nelson said the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is cooperating to help evict some persistent beavers who have built a dam on INDL property near Waverly Road. So far, the beavers are winning.

 

 

Posted 4/9/2014