In June 2019, the
Chesterton Stormwater Management Board authorized Street Commissioner John
Schnadenberg and Town Engineer Mark O’Dell to scope the cost of piping and
in-filling the ditches along 1050N from approximately Westwood Lane to Ind.
The reason: the
ditches are deep, way deep, and in places underground utility infrastructure
has been exposed through erosion.
At Monday night’s
Town Council meeting, Member Sharon Darnell, D-4th, wondered whether the
town is in the position now to pursue that project. “Can we figure out how
to fill in those ditches?” she asked. “There are exposed gas lines there.”
It’s an important
project, Schnadenberg agreed, but the infrastructure work being done last
year for the Springdale subdivision complicated things. “We needed to see
where Springdale was going with their tie-ins,” he said. “But yes, the soil
in those ditches is being eroded and it’s been hard to keep them
As O’Dell observed,
Crocker was originally platted in 1982--“It’s almost ancient out
there”--while Member Jim Ton, R-1st, added that for most of its existence
Crocker was an unincorporated community separate from Chesterton, until
annexed in the late 1960s.
A similar project
was completed in 2017 along the north side of West Porter Ave. between 18th
and 23rd streets, when that ditch was piped and in-filled.
In other business,
Schnadenberg reported that the Street Department is in the market for a new
leaf vac, now that it’s paid off a five-year lease-purchase agreement on a
previously acquired one.
that he’s hopeful of obtaining the leaf vac through an interlocal contract
for cooperative purchasing made available by HGACBuy, a government
procurement service. Estimated cost: $85,000 to $87,000.
Salty, yes, but
Schnadenberg noted two things: first, the Street Department would save
between $5,000 and $10,000 on the price of the leaf vac if purchased through
HGACBuy; and second, the Spartan brand leaf vac is equipped with a
remote-control hose, which will eliminate the need for a laborer to work
outside the vehicle raking and vacuuming.
that funding is available for a new leaf vac in the Refuse Account.
recommendation, and by unanimous votes, the council approved two banner
requests: one from the Duneland Chamber of Commerce promoting its Corkscrew
& Brew event on March 14 (banner period March 7-16); the other, from the
Chesterton Art Center promoting the annual Chesterton Art Fair on Aug. 1-2
(banner period July 20-Aug. 3).
The banners will be
placed on East Porter Ave. and at the intersection of Indian Boundary Road
and North Calumet Road.
Permit Fee Waivers
voted unanimously to waive building permit fees for several projects in the
Duneland Schools, which will be undertaken prior to the start of the 2020-21
The projects: new
chillers at WIS and CHS; a new domestic hot-water system at CMS; new doors
at Bailly and CMS; a new HVAC in the server room in the Administration
Building; and roof repairs at CMS.
Early voting will
once again be held in the meeting room of the town hall this spring--from
April 7 through May 4--from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
This year, however,
a request has been made to extend voting hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays to
8:30 p.m. Those extended Thursday hours would conflict with three separate
municipal meetings: Police Commission, Advisory Plan Commission, and Board
of Zoning Appeals.
accordingly instructed Clerk-Treasurer Courtney Udvare to see if extended
hours could be scheduled for a different weekday.
New Building Code
O’Dell, wearing his
Building Commissioner’s hat, reported that the State of Indiana is now
adopting the 2018 International Building Code, which will supersede the
current 2012 version. O’Dell said that he and staff are currently working
their way through about a hundred pages of changes.
The upshot, though,
is that the Building Department will be enforcing these changes, and it’s
conceivable that Town Council members will be hearing from builders not
altogether happy about them.
Just a head’s up,
reported that MS4 Operator and Special Projects Coordinator Jennifer Gadzala
recently completed a 2020 Indiana Economic Development course at Ball State
“Jennifer said that
it was an excellent course and she came back full of ideas,” O’Dell said.
Gadzala’s brief, as
Special Projects Coordinator, is the implementation of projects to enhance
Chesterton’s economic, beautification, and vitalization goals.
“Will you extend
our congratulations to Jennifer on completing that course?” asked Ton.
West Indiana Ave.
reported that quotes for the West Indiana Ave. sidewalk project will be
opened at the council’s Feb. 24 meeting.
The sidewalk along
the north side of West Indiana Ave. will be replaced roughly from Sixth
Street to South 15th Street. The project is being funded through the
$1.8-million general obligation bond issued in 2018 for infrastructure work.