Chesterton Tribune

Cell phone users can register numbers with town's emergency contact system

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By KEVIN NEVERS

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 Monday night.

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.

Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan

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.

Taj Sign

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 at IDSP

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 Pavilion.”

 

Posted 2/28/2012