Chesterton Tribune



Porter capital fund tax hike a step closer

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The Porter Town Council gave first reading to an ordinance that would increase the tax rate for the cumulative capital development fund, which president Greg Stinson said is used for infrastructure improvements and capital purchases like police cars.

During a public hearing Tuesday, no one commented. A final vote on adoption is slated for June 10.

The current rate is just under $0.03. The proposed rate would not exceed $0.05 on each $100 of assessed valuation. The new rate would be levied beginning with taxes for 2014 payable in 2015. State approval is needed before any increase can take effect.

Stinson said the townís financial advisor recommended increasing the CCD rate, which used to be higher than $0.03 cents but was reduced in previous years.

Stinson announced he wonít be present for the June 10 meeting and will miss the two meetings after that because he will be teaching in China.

In other business the council voted 4-0 with member Elka Nelson absent to spend $19,660 from the sewer utilility fund to upgrade a back-up generator for the Triangle Trail lift station. The generator previously was used at the former Porter Avenue lift station, where a new one has been built.

Engineer Jeanette Hicks of Global Engineering and Land Surveying updated the council on the status of an approximately $245,000 upgrade of the Triangle station located at the east end of Triangle Trail. Contractor Woodruff & Sons began construction May 19 and the work will necessitate periodic road closures in the area.

The project is jointly funded by both the Town Council and the Porter Redevelopment Commission.

Town Public Works superintendent Brenda Brueckheimer said the Indiana Department of Transportation plans to replace several bridge decks on Interstate 80/94 in the area; she predicted traffic will be heavy and back-ups are likely to occur so traffic diverted locally onto U.S. 20 could be a nightmare.

Brueckheimer also said no brush/leaf pick-up will take place the last two weeks of June and the first two weeks of July because other projects need to be undertaken. She thanked volunteers who participated in a recent Porter Beach clean-up day when 175 pounds of trash were collected.

Police chief James Spanier said the Chesterton and Porter police departments were scheduled to merge their radio dispatch operations today at the Porter police station. Spanier anticipated the transition to be seamless and said itís been long awaited.

Porter park director Brian Bugajski said the Park Departmentís summer activity program for children ages 6 through 11 begins June 9 at Hawthorne Park. Hours are 9 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday. Parents must register the child their first day of attendance.

Bugajski reminded the public of a free concert at Hawthorne June 11 at 7 p.m. sponsored by Westchester Public Library.

The director also thanked everyone who participated in Porterís Memorial Day observance at Hawthorne, and he said work has begun on the Tilden Family memorial garden there.




Posted 5/28/2014