Within a month or so, Chesterton residents whose land-line telephone numbers
are on record with the Utility will be automatically in the Global Connect
emergency notification system, under a $2,400 contract approved by the Town
Council late last year.
In the event of an emergency—take your pick, train derailments, evacuations,
large-scale fires, storm events, road closures, missing children, boil
orders—residents in the entire town, or in a specific neighborhood, or just
on a street, or in a particular block of a street, will be automatically
notified by the web-based voice messaging service.
But what about folks in town who don’t have land-line phone service?
Residents who only use cell phones will also have the opportunity to enroll
in the service. Specifically, printed on an upcoming sanitary sewer service
bill will be a web address which they may visit and where they may register
their cell number, Town Manager Bernie Doyle told the council at its meeting
Global Connect is based in Mays Landing, N.J. From its website: “From storms
that threaten the coastline to uncontrollable forest fires, some crises hit
a certain geographical region harder than others. In those cases, you can
take advantage of Global Connect’s mapping capability to create a customized
list of call recipients using your map. Simply select the area affected by
the emergency at hand and the system will develop the list of telephone
numbers in that area.”
Doyle has said that the system will only be used in case of emergency.
In other business, members voted 4-0 to adopt by resolution the Porter
County Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan, in the works for some years now, which
develops response protocols for a wide range of disaster scenarios. Member
Jeff Trout, R-2nd, was not in attendance.
Doyle and Fire Chief Mike Orlich participated in the creation of the county
plan, which will now be submitted to the Indiana Department of Homeland
Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Doyle told the council that the Town of Chesterton must formally adopt the
plan to be eligible for future grant funding and for FEMA reimbursement in
the event of an emergency.
Meanwhile, at Building Commissioner Dave Novak’s request, members voted 4-0
to instruct the owner of Taj restaurant on Roberts Road to remove a sign for
his business on public right-of-way.
Last year, the owner requested and was granted permission to erect the sign,
after he reported a drop in business which he attributed to the construction
of the 24-hour ER department on Indian Boundary Road, owing to confusion
among motorists as to where to turn.
But construction of the ER department is now complete, Novak said, and Taj
appears to be closed.
Re: The Pavilion
Member Jim Ton, R-1st, took a moment at the end of the meeting to note that
Thursday, March 1, is the deadline for the submission to the Indiana
Department of Natural Resources of proposals for the redevelopment of the
Pavilion at the Indiana Dunes State Park (IDSP) beach.
Ton—noting that IDSP with its beach is a “great economic driver”—said that
the Pavilion “has to be a vital part of the process” and added that he’s
hoping “for some very robust proposals for the revitalization of the