Chesterton Tribune

Chesterton has long record of neglect and failure

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Voice of the People

At the Chesterton Town Council meeting on July 9 concerning annexing land in Liberty Twp., Council member Mike Bannon made a statement to the effect that non-residents were trying to tell the town what to do. Just the opposite is true. Chesterton is trying to control Liberty Twp. with land grabs. They have screwed up the intersection of 1050N with SR 49 and are now trying to do the same at 950N. They wish to rezone with no concern for adjoining land owners. Valpo does not do this. They first consult with the County.

Developers try to build in marshy, wet, unstable locations where drainage must be installed around footings to protect the foundations from damage. The town then refuses to treat this wastewater advising the people to route this wastewater illegally into the storm drains. They created the expensive MS4 program. The NIRPC states only rain in the drains.

I have lived in the area 82 years, 35 years on the NYCRR at Porter Tower. I am very familiar with the governments of Chesterton and Porter. Fifty-five years ago I advised Chesterton not to permit the NYCRR to install automatic gates at road crossing - gates that had no type of release when trains had to stop.

The town would not listen in the 1920s when sewers were first installed in Chesterton. Sewage was discharged into streams with no treatment. Chesterton did not discharge this sewage into Coffee Creek. They did not want to contaminate the banks along Morgan Park. Instead, they routed the sewers down 8th St. through String Town and the clay diggings and into the Little Calumet River in Porter. Raw sewage was okay for that town.

After 1960, treatment plants were mandated. The towns found the storm sewers were tied to the sanitary sewers. This would over burden the treatment plant during rains causing raw sewage to be discharged into the rivers.

The federal government came up with the federal grants for the towns. Porter used it to separate their sanitary and storm sewers. Chesterton bought a new aerial fire truck and kept bypassing through Porter.

How long can Chesterton keep thumbing its nose at the IDEM and EPA? The EPA was quite shocked to find Chesterton might take 15 years to correct its problems.

Chesterton really needs someone to tell them what to do in their town.

J.F. Schrader

Liberty Twp.


Posted 7/17/2007