Wednesday, December 20, 2006

19 December 2006 Dearborn County Commissioner Meeting Notes

19 December 2006 Dearborn County Commissioner Meeting Notes

Present: Hughes, President, Benning, and Fox
Also present: Pickens, Auditor, Ewbank, Attorney, and Messmore, Administrator.

No uniformed officer was present
Ralph Thompson, Commissioner elect, was present

Benning addressed the board and the audience, as this was her last meeting as county commissioner. She stated that it had been a journey over the past 18 years and that she’d written her comments down so as not to have her message wander as she knew everyone there wanted to get their business covered and get home. Benning said an Irish grandmother and mother who taught her to never be a quitter had influenced her. She said she was beaten fair and square, but she was not a quitter. She noted her father had worked for the Hamilton County Engineering Dept and so she had an appreciation for our highway workers. She named several good people she’d worked with over the years- Swales, Cunningham, Kraus, Fehrman, Wissman, etc.
She also said it was a great privilege to work with Fox and Hughes. She said Messmore, as administrator, would take the commissioner’s wishes to new heights that can only be imagined. She thanked everyone and ended with the phrase- only in America…
There was polite applause at the end.

1. CASA grant needed an account assigned and pre-approval to pay 2006 bills. Donna Thacker and Nancy Weldon presented stating the grant was for $100,000 for 5 years. Commissioners approved with Pickens concurring.

2. Greg Fox and John Gause of Apex Benefit Group presented Heath Insurance option to the commissioners. IN Assoc. of Counties has approved them and they agreed to evaluate any county for free to see if they could improve their insurance options. Fox and Gause have been employed there at 15 and 20 years respectively. The commissioners approved them evaluating the county plan for our 215 employees. Greg Fox noted that the county plan is ‘rich’ compared to others. Ewbank noted they have to conform to HIPPA privacy rules. They will get letters together to officially authorize the evaluation.

3. Cook Road Extension- Kraus, Jr. presented as county surveyor. He noted the request was withdrawn, because it’s not really an extension. He and Todd Listerman spent some time explaining how the road was actually still on the books and that small discrepancy in the distance was due to realignment around the new bridge put in along that roadway. (1.72 vs 1.67 miles)

Lisa Lehner represented neighbors, Jamey Ponte and Mike Frank. They were concerned with the width of the new road. They said they did not dispute that they needed access to their (Volkers) land. Volkers agreed to pay for and give fee simple title to the county for a turnaround there at the end.

Ewbank said- once a county has ROW it stays ROW until vacated. Inventory maps are just for funding. If the highway engineer is confident that this is the true end of Cook road then they should go with that.Listerman was confident.
Lehner attempted to argue about apparent ROW statute and stated she has seen no deed record that shows this ROW. In old days you could lose ROW by not using it. Ponte then went to the board to explain more clearly his position on the extension.
Fox motioned to maintain the county ROW to the end at Volkers and to get fee simple title from them for a turnaround there. Volkers were to pay for that. The road is about 10 ft wide and a mixture of gravel and chip seal. It used to join with Hartman and go to Yorkridge. Part of Hartman has been vacated. Approved.The record reflected that the original petition had been withdrawn per Lehner’s comments.

4. Tom Kent- Perfect View Zone Map amendment. Two members of the public spoke opposing the change primarily because of affects on their properties due to construction of roadway and equipment usage on a private section of Cambridge road. If the new commitments by Kent to be able to cut the hill but not build on any slope greater than 20% was NOT approved, then the map reverts to the original commitments.
Robert Craig complained that Kent himself and his workers were using his private section on a Y that goes to Cambridge road. He wants buses and neighbors to be able to use what HE BUILT, but not the new subdivision and definitely not the heavy equipment. Cambridge (the official road) was to be for emergency access only per the Plan Commission and building is not an emergency.
Bob Billups was concerned with the 8 ft berm that would create an unmowable section by his pond on SR 1. They referred him to Mark Brunner of INDOT and also stated that this could be considered a “taking” so he needs to look into that.
Fox and Hughes ratified and confirmed the changes in commitments. Benning abstained- didn’t say why.

5. Todd Listerman- Transportation Dept-
will run a public notice announcing plans to be unveiled for reconstruction of North Dearborn Road from SR 1 to McCann on Jan 25th at North Dearborn Library form 4-8 PM with formal presentation at 6PM.

RFPs for Bridge inspections came in. Out of 12, Listerman picked #1 and #2 to negotiate a fee. If 1 is unsatisfactory, he’ll move to #2 and so on. American Consulting , Inc is #1, and Bernardin, Lochmiller is #2. American Consulting is in process of name change, so that might look different by the time the contract comes in..
Commissioners authorized with Benning abstaining- again with no reason why.

Utility easements for the SR48 area around DCH had to be redone due to property ownership changes. Commissioners will sign when finished.

6. OLD BUSINESS: Benning presented the Siemers report on Energy Savings from the Courthouse Renovations. [NOTE: These are required annually to justify the expense and grants.]

7. Messmore- asked Listerman to present the letter of request from Seymour district office on STATE road priorities for the county. This was INDOT’s call for projects and the commissioners signed the letter as drafted. It stated the following priorities:

1. The intersection at SR1/US50?I-275 (Greendale’s Belleview area)
2. US 50 Corridor Study and OKI/County Land Access Management Study (Gateway Project)
3. Entire SR1 Corridor study for access, truck lane on the hill, and upgrades rather than just spot fix.
4. Ramp on I-275 to KY/OH- fix the lane change problem spot
5. Bridges 95,15, and 159

Messmore- also stated the property liability proposals should have recommendations by the end of the week.

He met with each town to get more input on the Gateway Study and by 1st week in Feb will get findings out to the public on Gateway Study of Access Management.

Jan 16th will have the Comprehensive Capital Management plan. [NOTE: This is Vieste/Level 5 Engineering and London Witte. This plan attaches economic values to the county “wish list” and to road projects and economic development. Paying for these items will require several options, including increased taxes and maybe even instituting new ones as allowed by state law.]

Jan 23rd- the Council will get the same presentation as Commissioners get on the 16th.

Jan 25th there is a special meeting for DCRSD to have Woolpert Sewer Study presented.

IT services with the county have bids due by Dec 29th for award in January.

8. Claims and minutes signed

9. Ewbank noted the county still hasn’t been sued this month.

10. Fox thanked Benning for her service to the county and though he didn’t always agree with her, he thought she’d always done what she thought was best for the people in her heart. Benning said she didn’t want to get tearful, said everyone was wonderful, and wished them “Godspeed.”

Benning motioned to adjourn, Fox 2nd. All ayes.

Meeting adjourned at 8:05 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

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