The Porter Town Council convenes its final regular meeting of the year
tonight at 7 p.m. Five new members take office Jan. 1.
On the agenda are reports from department heads, boards and commissions; an
update on sewer projects; the winners of the Christmas outdoor decorating
contest; resolutions transfering appropriations; and an amendment to the
2012 salary ordinance adopted Dec. 13.
The public may address the council on other matters under audience
participation as the meeting begins.
The Porter Redevelopment Commission will not meet Tuesday as scheduled due
to the lack of a quorum, but the commission recently was notified by the
Indiana Department of Environmental Management that the town must better
determine the boundaries of contamination on an RDC-owned site near downtown
IDEM wants Porter to submit a report on its additional investigation
activities by late January.
In 2009 the RDC paid $350,000 to purchase for future redevelopment 32 acres
at Beam Street and Sexton Avenue known as the Brickyard because of
turn-of-the-century brickmaking operations there.
Two previous environmental site assessments done for the RDC found surface
soil contamination including lead and arsenic apparently confined to the
southern portion of the Brickyard site, according to IDEM, in areas where
historic rail transportation and industrial activities were reported to have
Based on the latest environmental site assessment completed in September for
the RDC by Weaver Boos Consultants LLC, their conclusions recommend
additional soil sampling be done at the Brickyard to zero in on where
exactly the contamination is.
IDEM agreed with Weaver Boos in a Nov. 28 letter to Porter director of
engineering Matt Keiser.
Furthermore, permanent ground water monitoring wells also should be
installed at the site, according to IDEM.
The RDCís past purchase and planned redevelopment of the Brickyard parcel
became an issue in this yearís Town Council election with the winning
candidates urging that a more cautious approach be taken on the project in
light of the contamination.
IDEM now suggests the Town of Porter conduct a risk assessment of future
land-use scenarios at the Brickyard based on either residential,
commercial/industrial or recreational uses at specific locations. Originally
single-family, townhome and senior-citizen housing all had been planned with
limited neighborhood commercial uses.
IDEM also notified the town that, as owner of the Brickyard, it could be
liable to reimburse the agency for costs Indiana incurs related to the
Brickyard project; these costs may include reimbursement for time spent on
document reviews by technical and legal staff, site visits, meetings,
telephone calls, the issuance of comment letters and validation of
A new Porter RDC will be appointed by the incoming Town Council after Jan.