Chesterton Tribune



Porter Cove resident told to raise funds for Kids Cove, not ask for handouts

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Porter Cove resident Blake Lange appeared again before the Porter Town Council at its meeting Tuesday night to express the need for improvements at Kids Cove Park.

President Greg Stinson, however, said that it’s too late in the year to add funds for Kids Cove Park to the 2018 budget. An additional appropriation, on the other hand, could conceivably be pursued next year, Stinson said.

Lange previously presented a plan to raise $250,000 in donations and corporate sponsorships to rehab the park, which serves the 267 homes of Porter Cove subdivision. He also presented a draft of a flier to advertise incentives for donations, which was met with some skepticism from council members at an August meeting.

Member Ross LeBleu said in response to Lange that in his years of experience volunteering for the Park Department, he’s learned that hard work is the way to secure funding for park projects. “The best thing to do is get out there and raise it. Start going to events. Park cars.”

LeBleu also stressed the importance of follow-through in fundraising efforts, said that no one ever asked for handouts from the town for park projects he worked on, and specifically asked Lange if Porter Cove residents were planning to work the Perfect Pint festival on Saturday.

Lange said he was unsure.

Public Works Auction

In other business, members voted unanimously to declare nine Public Works and Fire department vehicles surplus: 2000 FWD Ford Explorer, 1997 Ford Super Duty Bucket Truck, 2007 Toyota Prius, 2005 Chevrolet Trailblazer, 1994 Chevrolet Box Truck, 2010 T7500 Total Patcher, 1992 International 4900 Dump Truck, 2002 GMC Schwarze Sweeper, 1986 Hustler Zero Mower.

The auction itself has not yet been scheduled.

Fire Department

Meanwhile, Deputy Fire Chief Jay Craig commended Porter’s firefighters and their families for handling an abnormally busy month. He noted that for a two-week period in September, the PFD responded to an average of three calls a day. All but one of Porter’s 28 firefighters are volunteers.

Stinson also presented a plaque to Fire Chief Lewis Craig Sr. in recognition of his years of dedicated service. Craig Sr. was named Grand Marshall of this year’s Family Fourth Fest Parade but has been out of the saddle for several months with health issues.

“One of the pleasures of being on the council is getting to know the staff,” Stinson said. “You make our jobs easier. You make us look good.”

Other Business

* Members voted unanimously to enter into a contract with retired Valparaiso University human resources director Nora Wiergacz, who will assist in the rewriting of the employee handbook, at $100 per hour on an as-needed basis. Stinson took a moment before voting to say that, in his own time at VU, he was impressed by the quality of Wiergacz’s work for the university, and that he believes she will be an asset to the Town of Porter.

* Building Commissioner Michael Barry reported that Michigami Trail is on track to be partially or completely repaved before the start of winter.

* Members unanimously approved Parks Director Brian Bugajski’s request to allocate a maximum of $2,000 to buy and install wireless cellular field cameras in Porter parks. The cameras must be cellular due to limited power sources and wireless Internet quality in their proposed locations. The reason for the cameras: a rash of vandalism, including the theft of three trees actually ripped out of the ground. The cameras will have GPS tracking chips in case of theft and are expected to be up and running within 30 days.


Posted 10/11/2017






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