Chesterton Tribune                                                                                   Adv.

Town Council names Brandon Kroft to Police Commission

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The Chesterton Police Commission now has its full complement of members.

At its meeting Monday night, the Town Council voted 4-0 to appoint Brandon Kroft to the commission. President Jeff Trout, R-2nd, was not in attendance.

Kroft will complete the unexpired term of long-time member Steve Brickner, who resigned last month.

Member Jim Ton, R-1st, said that five residents were interviewed for the seat, all of whom “were excellent candidates who brought something to the table.” But Kroft has “particular assets needed for the Police Commission at this time.”

“There were a lot of good candidates out there,” agreed Member Emerson DeLaney, R-5th. “And I’m very, very pleased to see more residents wanting to get involved in our community.”

Kroft formerly sat on the Board of Zoning Appeals but the council did not re-appoint him to the seat when his term expired at the end of last year.

Brickner, for his part, resigned on Jan. 8, citing differences of opinion with some council members about CPD policy.

The commission’s first big task in 2010 will be to name a new chief, after George Nelson announced his resignation last month pending his successor’s appointment.

From the CFD

In other business, members voted 4-0 to authorize Fire Chief Mike Orlich to spend $35,000 in already earmarked CEDIT funds for the purchase of new bunker gear. Orlich noted that the council approved a similar earmark last year but added that going forward he hopes to be able to replace bunker gear on a regular schedule through the Chesterton Fire Department’s annual equipment budget.

Orlich also announced that the CFD has been awarded a grant of $18,000—with a $900 match—from the Federal Emergency Management Administration. The funds will be used to purchase a forcible entry simulator, re-chargeable fire extinguishers for training, and new CPR mannequins.

By consensus members authorized Orlich to consult with Town Attorney Chuck Lukmann about contracting with a used fire engine broker to handle the sale of the old ladder truck. Members authorized the CFD as well to use the town hall on Wednesday evenings for its weekly business meetings now that the Police Commission has moved its regular meeting day to the second Thursday of the month.

Meanwhile, Clerk-Treasurer Gayle Polakowski took note of receipt of a letter from resident Tom Lee thanking the CFD for its early-morning assistance one day this month when his wife had fallen. “I can’t say enough about what your people did for us,” Lee wrote. “Not only were they very professional they also were very caring. They took their time, even though I’m sure, from my experiences, they would rather be in their warm beds. . . . This town doesn’t know what kind of a jewel we are lucky to have. Words can’t express how thankful Diana and I are for all of their help.”

From the Streets

Street Commissioner John Schnadenberg announced that he has taken delivery of a new salt brine machine plus a storage tank and truck pump. Typically, he said, the liquid brine will be applied to dry roadways in advance of a snow event to get a headstart on the melting process but it can also be used for some de-icing as well. In three years, Schnadenberg has said, the $22,000 equipment should pay for itself in salt savings.

The gear is currently being calibrated and should be available for use soon. It cost 10 cents per gallon to mix the brine and will be applied to the tune of 50 gallons per lane mile, Schnadenberg added.

Schnadenberg also said that the Fifth Street sidewalk project—from 1100 to Hunters Court—should be ready to go out for bid in March. A total of $85,000 in CEDIT funds has been made available for that project.

Schnadenberg said as well that he is in the process now of compiling a list of paving projects for the season. A total of $200,000 in CEDIT funds has been made available for that work.

From the CPD

The Chesterton Police Department has responded to 174 calls so far in February and to 870 in the year-to-date, Nelson reported.


Town of Chesterton now on Twitter and Facebook


Cyberspace is all atwitter about Chesterton.


As Town Manager Bernie Doyle announced at the Town Council’s meeting Monday night, the Town of Chesterton now has accounts at and

Go to and read the tweets about the comings and goings and activities in Chesterton. Hot topics at the moment: the Town of Chesterton’s new MS4 website and the 2010 census.

Go to, search for Town of Chesterton, and join the other 1,265 fans who are networking. “It seems like the number has doubled every four or five days,” Doyle said.

Not only are the two venues good ways to keep abreast of life in the town, they also could be used for emergency notifications and informal surveys, Doyle told the council.

In related news, the Town of Chesterton’s municipal website is currently scheduled to go on line on March 1, Doyle said. SH/Mindbend of Valparaiso was awarded the contract for designing and implementing the website.

Able Complaint

Meanwhile, Doyle said that he and Town Engineer Mark O’Dell and MS4 Operator Jennifer Gadzala recently met with Jim Smith of Able Disposal to discuss a complaint received about litter blowing out of the facility.

“We’re confident that this issue will be corrected,” Doyle said.

Re: Doyle’s Assistant

In other business, members voted 4-0 to place Doyle’s administrative assistant, Stephanie Kuziela, on full-time status. Kuziela is not getting a raise but will work one hour more per week, from 31 to 32, which makes her eligible for benefits.

President Jeff Trout, R-2nd, was not in attendance.

Clerk-Treasurer Gayle Polakowski told the Chesterton Tribune after the meeting that the cost for those benefits will be around $10,000.

Place on the National Register

In a letter to the council, Robert Carter Jr., state historic preservation officer with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, announced that the Chesterton Residential Historic District was entered in the National Register of Historic Places on Dec. 24.

That district includes, “roughly,” the following: 303-203 W. Indiana Ave., 215-135 S. Second St., 202-210 W. Morgan Ave., and 201 W. Lincoln Ave.

“In addition to a degree of environmental protection, owners of listed properties may be eligible to apply for matching federal grants for restorations or preservation work, if funds are available,” Carter wrote. “Owners of commercially-used properties are also eligible for federal tax benefits for certified rehabilitation work.”

Tri Kappa Week

Members voted 4-0 to declare the week of Feb. 21-27 Tri Kappa week in the Town of Chesterton, at the request of the Chesterton Epsilon Kappa Chapter.

Tri Kappa, founded in 1901, is an Indiana philanthropic organization.



Posted 2/9/2010




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