It’s now a
violation of Chesterton Town Code for tree services to chop down trees on
private property but leave behind the limbs and trunk chunks for property
owners to dispose of themselves.
The fine for a
first offense: $100.
The fine for a
second: up to $2,500.
Commissioner John Schnadenberg told the Town Council at its meeting Monday
night, all reputable tree services doing business in town calculate the cost
of chipping tree debris and removing it off site in their contract price.
A few services,
however, have been low-balling the competition by leaving the tree debris
for the property owners to remove themselves. What that really means,
Schnadenberg said, is that it’s fallen to the Street Department--after the
property owners have hauled the debris to the brush site off 15th Street--to
dispose of it. And the Street Department simply doesn’t have the resources,
the space, or the man-hours to be doing that.
“Brush pickup is
one of many services we provide for normal trimming and pruning,”
Schnadenberg said. “But when you start talking about large-scale tree
removal, we’re just not equipped to handle that.”
Schnadenberg added, it’s been the Street Department’s official policy not to
dispose of tree debris left by tree services. But that policy was never
actually incorporated into Town Code, so there’s been no way to enforce it.
Now there is:
members voted unanimously to amend Sec. 10-9 of the Town Code to prohibit
tree services from leaving tree debris behind. As Town Attorney Chuck
Lukmann observed, with fines for multiple violations going at up to $2,500 a
pop “it will pay to follow these rules.”
2017 Paving List
In other business,
members voted unanimously to approve Schnadenberg’s paving list for the 2017
* Beverly Drive and
* South 20th
Street, from West Porter Ave. to a point approximately 400 feet south.
* Union Ave.
between 21st and 23rd streets.
* Iowa Street.
* And 24th Place.
estimated cost for the five paving jobs: between $100,000 and $120,000. The
balance of $150,000 in CEDIT funds earmarked for roadwork this year will go
to crack-sealing and striping, Schnadenberg said.
Also on the docket
for re-paving: South Calumet Road from Porter Ave. to the Chesterton Post
Office. That job will be funded with tax increment financing revenues.
Permit Fees Waived
for Duneland Schools
Members also voted
unanimously to waive the building permit fees for six projects in town which
the Duneland School Corporation is scheduled to pursue this summer.
The work includes
parking lot re-paving, roof work, and swimming pool repairs. The total
amount of the fees waived: $21,000.50.
The cost of any
mandatory inspections or surveys, on the other hand, the Duneland School
Corporation will pay itself, Director of Support Services Greg Lindy said.
“It’s pretty much
what we did last year,” noted Member Emerson DeLaney, R-5th, who took a
moment to praise the council’s new and improved relationship with the
Duneland Schools. “This year they followed the proper protocol and met with
(Building Commissioner) Mark O’Dell. I think it’s an amicable relationship.
It shows we can work together.”
Squad Car Equipment
voted unanimously to award the contract for equipping the Police
Department’s four new squad cars to Bartronics Inc. of Chesterton.
of $60,517 was not, in fact, the lowest of the three received, Attorney
Lukmann explained to the council. Technically the lowest quote was the one
submitted by Waymire Fleet Equipment of Indianapolis: $58,275.
But Waymire’s quote
was found to be unresponsive, Lukmann said, inasmuch as the company
substituted alternative brands and models of equipment, not the ones cited
by Police Chief Dave Cincoski in his quote specifications.
Lukmann added that
Cincoski was very particular in his specs, in that he cited brands and
models which are compatible with equipment salvaged from older squad cars no
longer in the fleet and capable of being spare-parted.