is, by title, the Chesterton MS4 Operator, which is to say that under her
primary job description she’s responsible for administering the Municipal
Separate Storm Sewer System program, a federally mandated initiative aimed
at reducing the release of pollution--like construction-site sediment, dog
waste, and fertilizer and herbicides--into receiving waters.
But Gadzala is also
the town’s GIS guru, who over the years has painstakingly digitized and
mapped nearly every storm and sanitary sewer in Chesterton, every manhole,
every piece of identifiable and locatable infrastructure under the ground
and on top it.
to detail was instrumental in the town’s successful application--two years
in a row--for a Community Crossings state infrastructure grant.
And more recently
Gadzala was the brains behind the enormously successful crowdfunding
campaign which raised more than $70,000 in additional funding for the boxcar
restroom project in Thomas Centennial Park.
So yeah, Gadzala
proves her value-added worth to the town pretty much every day she walks
into the office.
Which is why, at
its meeting Monday night, the Stormwater Management Board voted unanimously
to recommend that the Town Council award Gadzala a one-time only bonus of
$2,500, in recognition of superior service.
continually gone over and above what I have expected from someone in her
position,” President Tom Kopko said. “She has showed herself to be a
conscientious and exemplary employee as long as I have worked with her. From
her work with the educational portion of our stormwater commitment to the
housekeeping and audit functions, she has always gone the extra mile to
ensure that the Town of Chesterton surpasses state requirements and
consistently gets commendations from the state governing body.”
Gadzala, for her
part, expressed her gratitude to the board. “I love working for the town and
I like making everything go as smoothly and best as I can,” she said.
In other business,
Town Council Member Emerson DeLaney, R-5th, speaking on behalf of Bob and
Heidi Meyer, residents of Woodlawn Ave. across the street from State Park
Little League, urged the board to consider a longstanding drainage problem
in the neighborhood.
The issue, DeLaney
said: the homes in the 700 and 800 blocks of Woodlawn, south of the roadway,
were built in the bottom of a natural bowl with nowhere for runoff to go. In
heavy rains--like the four-incher in February, on top of a rapid
snowmelt--the pooling in the backyards of these homes is considerable.
The Meyers long ago
installed a dry well in their front yard but it hasn’t proved especially
effective, DeLaney said. “They’ve gone through a lot of sump pumps.”
Yet there may be a
solution, DeLaney suggested. While installing a new water line, Indiana
American Water Company discovered what appears to be an abandoned 12-inch
storm sewer pipe. If an inlet were installed connecting to that pipe, the
pooling problem could be remedied, he said.
Town Engineer Mark
O’Dell promised to look at the issue but warned there are complications. For
one thing, gravity is working against the homeowners: a lift station would
likely need to be installed to pump the water uphill to any inlet. But even
then there's no good place to flow the water to. There’s no stormwater sewer
system in the area and the runoff can't go north, O’Dell said, “because
State Park Little League has its own water problem.”
reported that he’s working with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources
and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to extend the 30-day permit for working
in a salmonid stream issued in connection with the replacement of the bridge
on East Porter Ave. over Sand Creek.
The issue: the
actual manufacture of the box culvert which will replace the bridge is
taking longer than expected, O’Dell said.
East Porter Ave.
between Dickinson Road and 250E is closed for the duration of the project.
May in Review
In May the
Stormwater Utility ran a surplus of $14,157 and in the year-to-date is
running a surplus of $91,088.