Chesterton Tribune



Addition to Burns Harbor fire station proposed

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The Burns Harbor Fire Department is looking to expand its facility.

At the end of the Town Council’s meeting Wednesday night, Member Mike Perrine distributed to his colleagues drawings for a proposed addition to the fire station and asked them to review the sketches in advance of their next meeting.

Fire Chief Bill Arney noted that the BHFD has outgrown the station and needs more space. Ninety percent of the proposed addition, he added, would be comprised of restrooms and a training room which would be available to the PD as well.

Perrine, for his part, said that some funds would be available for the expansion, for instance the revenue from the fire-hydrant rental fees.


In other business, members discussed possible paving projects--noting some needful stretches of Old Porter Road, Verplank Road, Haglund Road, and North Babcock Road--but reached no conclusions.

At the moment, Member Greg Miller said, something like $73,000 is available in CEDIT, some of which could be earmarked for paving.

Member Gene Weibl, however, made this cautionary observation: pavers may be reluctant to make the effort of bidding on specific road projects, since in the past the town has invited bids and then not followed up on them. “We will need to commit to some dollar figure to interest people in coming out to give bids,” Weibl said.

From the floor Ray Poparad suggested that, rather than seeking bids for specific road projects, the council do so for a per-unit price of installed asphalt.

In any case, as Weibl said, nothing’s going to happen until the spring. “Your patience will be appreciated. It’s going to be a while before everything thaws and settles down.”

Town Hall Flood Debrief

Meanwhile, Town Marshall Mike Heckman reported that cleanup from the flood in the town hall two weeks ago is about three-quarters complete.

That flood was caused by the snow melt in combination with heavy rain and left two inches of water in places.

The cost to replace carpet, tile, drywall, and wall trim totaled just under $3,000, Clerk-Treasurer Jane Jordan said.

Naturally, the town’s insurance company has denied the claim on the ground that flood is not covered under the policy.

Heckman has been doing a lot of the repair work himself, on his own time, prompting expressions of gratitude from the council.

Engineering Contract

Members voted 5-0 to approve a contract with Global Engineering, under which the firm will provide engineering counsel at all meetings of the Plan Commission and Sanitary Board for $4,000 per year, with specific projects billed at an hourly rate which Miller called “very reasonable.”

NiSource Pledges

Weibl took a moment to thank NiSource Inc. for its pledge of $5,000 toward any match which the town would need to provide for a Lake Michigan Coastal Program grant, currently under review.

BHPD in February

Last month the BHPD responded to 209 incidents, including two crashes, made five misdemeanor arrests and one felony, and issued 23 citations and 34 written warnings, Heckman reported.

BHFD in February

Last month the BHFD responded to 18 calls, spent 10 hours on scene, worked 81 man-hours, and put 86 miles on vehicles, Arney reported.


Posted 3/13/2014