Chesterton Tribune



Burns Harbor firefighters promoted

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Burns Harbor Fire Chief Bill Arney announced three promotions within the BHFD at Wednesday’s Burns Harbor Town Council meeting. Ryan Nowacki was promoted to from Captain to Assistant Fire Chief. Michael Vershay and Shaun O’Neill were promoted from Firefighters to Engineers.

In other Fire Department business, Arney gave an update on the new fire truck: it isn’t finished yet due to a delay in materials for the build. Arney said he now expects it done in early March. Arney reported the addition to the Fire Department is looking good as well--its getting paint and electrical work this week and will be ready for a ribbon cutting after it gets flooring and furnishings.

Arney reported that the Department had some equipment losses when it assisted other local departments with a fire that broke out on the coke battery at ArcelorMittal last week. “We lost about 400 feet of hose and a couple sets of bunker gear.”

Arney said ArcelorMittal will be replacing the equipment.

The Council also approved Arney to begin searching for part-time EMTs to staff the Town’s ambulance for weekday 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. shifts and weekends.


The Burns Harbor Redevelop-ment Commission will foot the bill for some paving in Town.

At the RDC meeting immediately preceding the Council’s, the Board received quotes from Walsh and Kelly and Rieth-Riley, ultimately choosing Rieth-Riley, who quoted the work at $175,000 for the Town hall parking lot, the Lakeland Park west parking lot, the east entrance to Lakeland, and the connecting road in the park.

The RDC’s funds, which are mainly from Tax Increment Financing (TIF) revenue, are required by Indiana law to be used for public works projects that benefit the residents of the TIF district and facilities they use.

Other Approvals

The Council approved a resolution amending the 2019 salary ordinance to reflect raises for the Building Commissioner and two Police Department employees approved at its January meeting.

Current town employee Rob Wesley is the choice for Burns Harbor’s new building commissioner. Half of the Building Commissioner’s pay comes from the Sanitation Department budget and half from the Building Department budget, per the new salary ordinance.

The Board approved Jeff Oltmanns of Global Engineering to go out for bids on 2019 Community Crossing paving projects on March 18. A pre-bid meeting will take place on March 26, bids will be opened April 3, and the projects awarded to bidders April 10.

The Council voted to reschedule its March meeting from Wednesday, March 13 to Tuesday, March 19. The Redevelopment Commission will meet the same night.

Wesley reported the hydraulic lift in the Street Department building has been out of commission since it didn’t pass inspection last month. Wesley contacted three vendors, only one of which returned a quote to replace it.

The Council approved the purchase of a new lift, for $24,625.35, including the hoist, air compressor and installation from Ott Equipment out of Noblesville, Ind. Council member Ray Poparad proposed the purchase be split equally between the four departments who use the lift most: Fire, Police, Street, and Sanitation. The Council approved.

Keep trash cans out of street report potholes

Town of Burns Harbor Street Superintendent Pat Melton reminded residents to keep their trash cans out of the street when it snows so the plows can get through. Cans should be placed in driveways or on grass.

Police Chief Mike Heckman urged residents to call the BHPD non-emergency line, (219) 787-9412, to report potholes. Heckman said the sooner he knows about potholes, the sooner he can send a crew out to patch them.


Posted 2/13/2019




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