Chesterton Tribune



Burns Harbor Council equalizes Park Board members pay; ups travel allowance

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The Burns Harbor Town Council discussed compensation and reimbursement for municipal employees and officials at its meeting Wednesday night.

Members of Burns Harbor boards receive a $500 stipend for a year of service, except the Park Board, whose members receive a $400 stipend. The council approved on first reading an ordinance that will raise the Park Board stipend to $500 a year.

Fire Chief Bill Arney also brought travel reimbursement to the council’s attention. Arney said that travel typically exceeds the current allowance, once fees and taxes are included. Expenses for traveling on municipal business are supposed to be tax exempt, but businesses are not required by law to grant the exemption.

Council Vice-president Eric Hull recommended that the allowance for accommodations should be raised to $250. The per diem allowance for meals, previously capped at $37.50, was also raised to $50. From now on, these allowances apply for any town employee or official traveling on official business.

Department Reports

Building Commissioner Randall Lopez briefed the council on his end-of year report. The town issued citizens and businesses 113 permits and 433 licenses, conducted 530 inspections, and collected $68,197 in fees. “We had a good year, a busy year,” he added.

Arney also read facts from his report. Last month, the Fire Department responded to 63 calls and was on scene a total of 34 hours and 58 minutes. The Department used $4,628 in 2017 donations for honor guard uniforms. And Arney reported that Shop with a Firefighter was a success. “We made some families happy and I think it was much appreciated.”

Street Superintendent Pat Melton reported that the Street Department is well prepared for more snow. One issue drivers have been having, however, is difficulty plowing due to garbage cans being put in the street. Residents are reminded that the cans should be on the curb. Melton also urged residents strongly not to clear snow into roadways “I want to remind people that it is against our snow ordinance to blow snow into the street or shovel into the street,” he said.

Kylane Tumblin reported that she is the new president of the Park Board. Vice-president is Angie Scott while Kim Burton remains Park Director. The new shelters at Lakeland Park are still set to be completed with concrete work in spring, and the Arts and Crafts Building will be getting new indoor/outdoor carpeting. $12,297 in 2017 donations for the Parks were used mostly for events.

Join A Board

There is still one spot on each of the following boards and commissions: Board of Zoning Appeals, Redevelopment Commission, and Park Board. The application for board and commission seats can be found on the municipal website. Those interested can either submit the application or a letter of interest to Clerk Treasurer Jane Jordan. Submit either by email to or by mail to 1240 N. Boo Rd. Applications must be in by the next council meeting, Feb. 14.

Other Business

The Council voted to renew its membership with AIM, formerly the Indiana Association of Cities and Towns, for $3,600.

Jordan reported that the 2018 budget has received state approval. The town’s assessed value has increased, and with it, the tax levy.

The next park event is Movie Night at Lakeland Park. Despicable Me 3 will be screened at 6 p.m. Friday Jan. 19. The event is free and for all ages.





Posted 1/11/2018




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