Chesterton Tribune

 

 

Town of Chesterton looking to find tourism board nominee; Paul Tharp resigns from RDC

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By JEFF SCHULTZ

The Chesterton-Porter-Burns Harbor appointed seat on the Porter County Commission, Recreation and Visitors Commission is currently vacant due to the death of Judy Chaplin two months ago.

Now is the time, Chesterton Town Council member Emerson DeLaney said, to start looking for a successor.

DeLaney’s colleagues on the Council agreed during their meeting Monday to advertise the position. The appointment would need to be made jointly with the Town Councils in Porter and Burns Harbor, Town attorney Julie Paulson said.

At least two out of the three need to agree, Council member Jim Ton said, and the legislation creating the board makes certain requirements of who can be on the board.

According to state law, a majority of the commission must be made up of members engaged in businesses that promote local tourism and at least two members must be engaged in hotels or lodging. The PCCRVC has a total of 11 members.

Chaplin was an owner of Shady Lawn Florist in Chesterton.

DeLaney asked his colleagues to give names of any possible candidates to Council President Sharon Darnell.

Tharp resigns

On another note, Town Clerk-Treasurer Stephanie Kuziela announced that Paul Tharp has resigned from the Redevelopment Commission and the Tax Abatement Committee for health-related reasons, leaving his seats open for replacement.

Tharp is a presidential appointment on the RDC and a Council appointment to the Tax Abatement Committee.

Public comment

During the meeting, which had a sparse agenda, the Council heard complaints from resident Jeff Wozniak who lives in the 900 block of 5th Street of utility trucks that have left ruts in his yard and other damages.

Wozniak said the electrical lines had been dug up under his property for upgrades starting in 2013 and he has been in communication with representatives from NIPSCO, Frontier Communications and Comcast about restoring his yard to its original condition.

After none of the companies were able to restore the 20’ x 25’ area, he turned to the Council to see if they could help.

“I’m lacking confidence that anything will get done,” said Wozniak who added that he doesn’t think residents should have to spend money to fix the damage caused by utility trucks.

None of the Council answered how they would be able to help, but Ton said he “definitely agrees with” Wozniak that residents should not have to pay repair expenses.

Vacant building ordinance

In other business, Ton asked Paulson for an update on the ordinance regarding vacant or abandoned buildings in town.

Paulson said she is putting in language from Indiana Code and has looked at other municipalities’ ordinances. She expects the ordinance to be ready in time for the Council’s next meeting on Monday, Aug. 10.

Ton last month expressed frustration over the appearance of several buildings around the downtown area that have been vacant, two owned by George Manning. The Indiana Code discussed in late June looks to enforce fines of $500 per structure if vacant for 90 consecutive days.

Duneland-Prairie Trail

The Council approved unanimously a letter of endorsement for the Northern Indiana Regional Planning Commission to include the Duneland-Prairie trail as part of a national trail system.

 

 

 

Posted 7/28/2015

 
 
 
 

 

 

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