Chesterton Tribune



Porter County Drainage Board sets drainage assessments for St Andrews lots

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The Porter County Drainage Board on Monday decided it will create a fund to collect assessments on lots located on St Andrews Developments’ medical campus and senior living subdivisions located north of U.S. 6 next to Porter Regional Hospital between Ind. 49 and Meridian Road.

While the Damon Run stream which crosses through the property is not a regulated county drain, the drainage board in October agreed to be one of the entities involved in the long term maintenance plan.

Representing St. Andrews, attorney Todd Leeth said primary responsibility for drainage maintenance would go to the Damon Run Conservancy District and the property owners association which would perform routine tasks such as keeping drainage paths clear of leaves and other debris. The drainage board would be next in the order for larger problems, should they ever occur, and has access to the easements on the property.

County Surveyor Kevin Breitzke shared with the board his recommendations for what assessment to charge on the residential lots and the commercial lots.

For the 52 residential lots in the senior living area located north of where the Damon Run stream flows, the board agreed in a motion that it would collect $40 per lot for four years in the maintained balance fund. That comes to $2,080 per year and $8,320 for the four year total.

On the other side of Damon Run, 43 lots are located in the area zoned for office and technology, six lots are designated for assisted living facilities and nine of the lots are zoned commercial. Those 58 lots will be assessed at $75 per year for an annual collection of $4,350 and $17,400 for the four years.

As Breitzke explained, the drainage board will maintain that account even after the four years are up and can hold on to the funds for as long as needed.

If there is ever a situation when the board needs to use more than what is in the account, it can borrow from the County’s General Drainage Improvement fund, Breitzke said. It has the authority then to reinstate the assessments to pay back what was borrowed and any interest, he said.

The conservancy district or the property owner’s association may also have access to the fund with authorization from the board, Breitzke added.

The assessments collected from the residential and commercial lots will be used for projects in their respective locations but they do share ponds on the property.

The board then decided that the maintenance assignments will start once St. Andrews gets its final plats approved and recorded. It voted unanimously to change policy reflecting that all developments from now on will have their assessments begin after final plat approval which Drainage Board President Dave Burrus felt would be more agreeable.

“You’re breaking new ground and it’s going to be beneficial for future developments,” Burrus said.

Breitzke said in the past subdivision drainage assessments have been implemented at preliminary plat approval.

Leeth said St. Andrews recently won approval on primary plats from the County Plan Commission and final plans are being worked on.

The Conservancy District and the property owner’s association are in charge of setting their own assessment fees for the lots. Leeth said that the assessments will be exclusive to the 109-acre St. Andrews property.


Posted 6/18/2013