Chesterton Tribune


Town getting the message out about clean water

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The Town of Chesterton’s Stormwater Utility and the Recycling and Waste Reduction District of Porter County (RWRD) are teaming up to spread the message of clean water.

At its meeting Monday night, the Stormwater Management Board voted 3-0 to approve an agreement under which the town’s stormwater and water conservation education outreach will be expanded throughout Porter County, “specifically through the (RWRD’s) established education process.”

Among other things, the town will provide the RWRD with educational tools and promotional items which the RWRD will distribute throughout the county; when available, it will have access to the RWRD’s Pollution Town module; and it will get column space in the RWRD’s E-newsletter.

Of particular moment, however, the town has agreed to coordinate and monitor the RWRD’s rain-barrel painting contest in Duneland schools located in the Town of Chesterton. That contest is being promoted by the RWRD, with the best decorated rain barrel being announced on Earth Day, April 20, during an Earth Day celebration at the Porter County Expo Center.

Urschel Laboratories

In other business, the new headquarters and manufacturing facility which Urschel Laboratories Inc. is going to build at Coffee Center are beginning to wind their way through the town’s permitting process, as Town Engineer Mark O’Dell reported that he and MS4 Operator Jennifer Gadzala met earlier in the day with Urschel reps about the stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP) which the company must submit prior to construction.

“It was a really good kick-off meeting,” O’Dell said. He added that the SWPPP process will probably take two to three months.

A SWPPP is necessary for any construction project over an acre. Urschel Laboratories has said that its new facility will occupy a site of between 40 to 50 acres.

O’Dell said that it’s his understanding the company is currently expecting to go out for bid in June.

Val’s Lift Station

Meanwhile, O’Dell said that piping materials for the stormwater lift station to be built in the alley behind Val’s Famous Pizza & Grinders have been ordered, although he hasn’t yet received confirmation that the lift station itself has been.

Work hasn’t started—the “weather is not conducive” at the moment, as O’Dell noted—but should commence before the board’s next meeting, Tuesday, Feb. 19.

The contract has been awarded to low-bidder Woodruff & Sons for a listed price of $205,888, but O’Dell and Woodruff have tweaked the specs some and believe that the actual cost will eventually be around $178,00.

The alley behind Val’s is the lowest point in town and tends to flood during heavy rains. When completed, the lift station will pump runoff to a large stormwater sewer line on Lincoln Ave., about 1,100 feet to the south.

The project is being funded with the proceeds of an $880,000 bond issued late in 2011.


The Stormwater Utility concluded 2012 with a surplus of $65,910.

Election of Officers

Members voted 3-0 to re-elect Member Thomas Kopko to the presidency and Member Christine Livingston to the vice-presidency.


Posted 1/23/2013