Friday, November 30, 2007

Baby Hughes

Congratulations to Commissioner Hughes and his wife on the birth of their son Thursday November 29th.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

DCEDI Financial Information

DCEDI Financial Information

DCEDI is an organization that is exempt from Income Tax and therefore files tax form 990.

Information below is from DCEDI’s forms for the year 2004 (the year they were formed), 2005, and 2006.

Total revenue: 2004- $328,616 2005- $348,843
2006- $605,552

Indirect Public Support: 2004- $327,150 2005 - $142,651 2006- $402,584

Net Assets End of Year: 2004- $210,190 2005- $257,459
2006 - $613,030

Expenses: 2004 - $118,426 2005 - $310,574
2006 - $249,981

Gov’t fees and contract revenue: 2004 - $0 2005- $ 196,848 2006- $189,289

Compensation of Director: 2004 - $ $32,154 2005- $126,491
2006- $91,944

Benefits of Director: 2004-$3717 2005- $16480+$15554
2006 $15,590 + $19,073

Savings: 2004 - $186,852 2005 $239,369
2006- $405,785

Accounts Receivable: 2004- $16,700 2005 - $28,332
2006- $227,234

Schedule of Contributors : 2004 $100,000 Lawrenceburg, $75,000 County, Greendale pledged $10,000

Private contributors (38) paid $129,650 of 142,150 pledged per attachment to form 990

2005- no attachment or detail

2006- 15 contributors- no names- most were $5,000, 2 were $10,000 and 1 was $15,000 totaling $95,000.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

WANTED: Four-year commitments

A lot of people are concerned about sewers in Dearborn County. Many have been participating in, or watching, the county's comprehensive planning process. There are complaints that deals apparently are still being done (by public officials) behind closed doors and/or under the table--many of which are discussed on the public forum website. That being said, it seems (to at least this interested member of the public) that there is an increasing need to find intelligent and fair ctizens to participate in the leadership structure of the county.

One of the real problems in this county is that for all of the discontent, distrust, and dislike of the public officials, there are few who are willing--or more importantly competent enough--to expose themselves to the rigors of public service. Instead of being upset or unhappy to the point that we simply check the other box on our ballots, the voters (the citizens) need to actively solicit our friends and neighbors to run against those who have drawn our ire--THE COMMISSIONERS and their many appointed board members among the Regional Sewer District, Redevelopment Commission, etc.

There are some who cannot and/or will not make a major commitment of their time and effort for the greater good; however, there is more than a small handful of viable candidates among the 50,000 (or so) people in the county. Let's find some for 2008! You know what the alternatives are like...

County Council Hears Several Sides of the Sewer Issue

County Council Hears Several Sides of the Sewer Issue

At the 27 November 2007 Council Meeting all 7 members (Chairman Charlie Fehrman, Bill Ullrich, Maynard Barrott, Liz Morris, Dan Lansing, Dennis Kraus, and Tom Cheek) were present to clean up errors in the budget and appropriate money to finance shortfalls in some departments.

The new Chairman,Dave Enzweiler,of DCRSD (Dearborn County Regional Sewer District) turned the podium over to John Maxwell, DCRSD board member, to present a request for a letter of support to go to Lawrenceburg for a $2.3 million loan for capacity at St. Leon Sewer District. In attendance for support was Brett Fehrman, DCRSD board member, Chuck Hale, St. Leon Board member, and Frank Leone St. Leon Engineer for their Sewer District.

Maxwell said that 2 years ago he accepted their appointment (Council appointed him to replace Greg Volmer). He said the TIF in St. Leon area and in West Harrison are by St. Leon’s District and that St. Leon didn’t plan to expand their system. If all the people who were supposed to be hooked up to their system were hooked up they would be at capacity. Now they are at 70% capacity. [NOTE: Maybe I’m missing something here. If they have 30% left and they are trying to force hook-ups so those tap fees pay for that, why not use that capacity for the development that the county sees bringing in and let IT pay for the 30% and abandon the lawsuits? All this legal wrangling has to be expensive.] He said we would be getting 45% of the expansion for the $2.3 million. With the agreement, we can extend lines and that extension will be driven by development. We see the lines being funded by development and TIFs.

They talked to Mayor Cunningham to see about the loan and Lawrenceburg wants unity. Sewers have been a political hot potato. Cunningham wants to see a letter of support from the county. [NOTE: Why Council and not Commissioners?]

Maxwell said they are also going to focus on West Aurora.

Enzweiler said that in the past we were talking about another plant outside Aurora. Now we want to take the sewage to Aurora and he said he was trying to get a meeting set up with IDEM to see about getting High Ridge fixed.

Kraus asked- what about the money we appropriated for the engineering study on a plant for High Ridge. If you go to Aurora, this was wasted.

Enzweiler said that SOME of it had been spent, but they are holding on to the rest until we settle with Aurora. He said their goal is to concentrate on these 2 projects and nail down details before we come in here. Our engineer looked at St. Leon’s new technology and things look solid there.

Ullrich said Tom (Cheek) and I are paying more for our sewers now as Aurora is fixing Phase 1. Brett Fehrman said the Cochran Plant is 65% complete in Aurora.
Cheek said he talked to Randy Turner (Aurora Utility Director) about the burned down house on Huseman Road. Cheeks mother lives on that road and they are all on an old failed system. Doug Baer won’t let the people rebuild so now they have to move and buy more land. He said that Baer showed up with people from the state and condemned it. Cheek said that if they won’t let these people live there then they need to condemn High Ridge and all these others. Cheek asked if Aurora could take this.
Enzweiler said that we don’t need any more package plants out there messing things up. He said Thompson had given them a name (Patty Yount) to see about getting a plant there that could them be converted to a lift station for when the sewers are available to go to Aurora.

Maxwell said he went on the DCRSD board to get things done and they are here to get a letter of support. They need a $2.3 million loan from Lawrenceburg and a letter of support from Council for this. The idea is to position ourselves for jobs and tax base. He said he’s NOT saying there won’t be residential development too. They are hoping to get DCRSD, SDRSD, and St. Leon to go to IDEM together to get this accomplished.

The 2 men from St. Leon Sewers (Hale and Leone) were supportive and said that there were negotiated agreements sent out to the people being sued to hook-up and they expected this was pretty much settled. They said things were working out with those people.

Ullrich said it was a matter of being fair – grandfathering people on fixed incomes and noted that some people don’t NEED the sewer and shouldn’t have to be hooked on. Plus they don’t VOTE in St. Leon.

Enzweiler passed out the letter of support for Council.

[NOTE: Thom Hammond arrived at this point.]

Cheek asked Maxwell- how we would recoup the $2.3 million.

Maxwell said that Umbaugh (INDY legal firm experienced in bonds etc) worked it out so it will come back monthly as tap fees. User rates will amortize some of it. They have not worked out who will be billing the users.

Kraus- What about the winery- he’d heard they were extending there and forcing the people in New Alsace on too. Maxwell said the winery had a different system set up.

Cheek asked why not use the money for West Aurora- that’s why you were formed.

Enzweiler- Because this one we can do now and with West Aurora, we’ve been through all the hoops and still can’t get it done yet, due to Aurora’s order from IDEM.

Kraus- St. Leon scares me a little bit.

Morris- I don’t want to see the county involved in billing and getting staff etc. She wants others to do billing for us.

Thom Hammond- I represent 70 families who have received mandatory letters of connection. I was late tonight because I was meeting with our steering committee to decide what to do next. I want to dispel any thought that there is resolution on that forced hook-up issue.

Charlie Fehrman- That’s not our issue; we are only deciding to ask for money from Lawrenceburg.

Hammond- I was here January 17, 2007 begging commissioners and council to take the people’s position. As I read the blogs etc. and people are up at arms about this. We need to change the laws to fix this. Our group came up with a 7-point plan to expose what goes on in Dearborn County. Hammond went on to detail all the costs associated with a forced hook-up. He added that he had heard Maxwell say they will pay the loan back with tap fees. These are $4100 vs. the $400 like he paid.

Maxwell said- I’m not paying anything- I’m on a septic tank.

Charlie Fehrman tried several times to get back to the letter of support throughout this discussion.

Hammond told Council- that they would be grouped with St. Leon who is doing this to YOUR citizens. Why can’t the county back us- we have to dig into our pockets for 2 ½ years to defend ourselves. Let the legal system resolve this before you put your necks on the line. No one considers us- yet we LIVE and VOTE in Dearborn County. Light will be shed on this county from the state and we’ve talked to the Institute of Justice.

Fehrman- I appreciate your passion- but this is not our issue.

Fehrman asked for a motion for a letter of support. There was a long period of silence, as Council seemed to be absorbing the entire presentation.

Morris motioned and Barrott 2nd – Morris stating that people are primed for jobs and business and it was time to move forward. The vote was 2 Ayes (Morris and Barrott and 4 Nays (Kraus, Ullrich, Cheek, and Lansing). Motion failed.

Thompson addressed Council at this point and informed them that commissioners at a meeting were in favor of a no forced hook-up letter in the county- not municipalities. He also said that DCRSD had engendered animosity by their own behavior. If they want to get capacity for economic development then the $2.3 million should be earmarked for capacity for that only.

Enzweiler was quite upset at this point and accused Thompson of pointing fingers at them and stated that the county couldn’t get ahead- they were always going to be behind the times with this attitude. He said he was done- that they wouldn’t be seeing them again.

At the end of the meeting, Charlie Fehrman asked the 4 Nay votes to explain themselves. Reasons cited included the unfairness of forced hook-ups just because a line goes past the property, that relatives were among those sued by St. Leon, that they didn’t want to give money to cause this for our citizens, that West Aurora was to be fixed first and it keeps being pushed back. They said the DCRSD was to FIX problems and now they are buying capacity to expand in an area beyond that without fixing the problems first.

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

26 November 2007 Dearborn County Plan Commission Meeting Notes

26 November 2007 Dearborn County Plan Commission Meeting Notes

Present: Hall, Chairman, Cheek, Nelson, Held, Feiss, Thompson, Laws, Kraus, Jr., and DeMaynadier (arrived at 7:15)
Also Present: McCormack, Plan Director, and McGill, Attorney

Hall announced that an n executive session was held Nov 13 on the status of Sugar Ridge. No action was taken.

Old business to be reopened:

Zone Change for 56 acres from Ag to R for 75 single family lots in Logan Township on Whites Farm. Jeff Tucker and Richard Schmidt were present as was their surveyor- Jeff Stenger. This item has been heard several times with varying changes. It started with 131 lots and has decreased twice to 108, then 94, and now is at 75 lots. The amenities and financial packages have been removed. There is no improvement to county roads, nor curbs and gutters, no landscaping, no buffers, and no financial commitment to parks or schools as in previous presentations. There will be sidewalks on one side of the street. Lot frontages will be 100 ft or greater. Outer perimeter lots are slightly larger than inner lots to serve as self- buffers for adjoining properties. (.53 – 1.1.7 acres)

Two people sent letters- Baer and Hollander. The room was full of neighbors opposed to the proposed density.

PC had said they wanted ¾ - 1-3 acre lot sizes. These lot sizes will be about 2/3 acre. Tucker said they plan $250-300,000 homes (he had pictures of examples) with minimum 1500 sq ft. on lots selling for $50,000 each. That puts the price per acre at $75,000. It would appear that this is a significant profit margin even given the higher price paid for this farm and subtracting the costs for roads, water, sewers, etc. St. Leon expects gravity feed and there will be a lift station with back-up diesel pumps.

Public speakers included: Bill Williams, Steve Kuhn, Tom Gaynor, Glenn Crocker, Bob Gaynor, Richard Jung, Ralph Geis, and Todd Schumate.

Their discussion was similar to previous hearings as nothing has really changed other than the number of lots. Issues brought up centered on the safety of the Short Road- North Dearborn intersection (which will be cut back- but won’t meet total standards for safety there per Listerman, County Engineer) and the overcrowding of the schools. They also touched on the issue of farm work and the incompatibility of these two uses in close proximity.

Cheek and Laws went on at length with residents telling them to get to their school boards. They need to divide SD school district and give some to Batesville and some to Lawrenceburg according to Laws. Cheek referred to the Taj Mahals that are being built in the school districts with sports equipment rooms and facilities.

Pictures were passed out showing land damaged by cars going off the roads and the 90 degree turns on Gaynor Ridge. Anecdotal evidence was given of several cars spinning around as well.

It was mentioned that just because a sewer runs by your property- it doesn’t mean you have to have high density. The open lots stats prepared by the Plan staff for the master plan was also passed out to demonstrate that with the slow housing market and high number of lots still unbuilt, there was no major need for more. Tucker answered this later saying that his sub’n – Brookstone Way- was an error on there- they only have 9 lots left. The typo on the form had the number built out versus the number open. Tucker also knocked down the number of lots available in HVL to about half what was listed saying some were unbuildable or were double lots. In doing so he reduced the nearly 3,000 available by about 600- (assuming he had the facts). [NOTE: This still left 2400 available lots with permits running at 300 a year- a number that has been liberally accurate for the last 10 years. This is 8 years of building.] Tucker claimed that he’d be hard pressed to find 300 available lots in the county to build on right now. [NOTE: The data does not support that statement.]

The lack of landscape, buffers, and road improvements etc were also brought up. Tucker stated that people didn’t think those were good enough so he took them out. [NOTE: Residents were asking for MORE not less. Removing them gave then less.]

Tucker showed a map of development in a 1.1 mile radius of Logan with Whites Farm on the edge. Residents noted that if he’d shown a map of a 1 mile radius around White’s Farm the picture would show all the Ag surrounding it as opposed to the encroaching Bright development coming from the south and east. Residents noted this was a TRANSITION parcel and needed low density to blend the development with the Ag.

They referred to this plan as a negotiation package. They also stated that Nelson had warned members not to start negotiating at their last hearing. Neighbors also noted there were 7 working livestock and 3 horse farms in this area. They were worried about places for these kids to play. Public discussion ended with a comment that PC should give the residents a reason WHY they would deviate from the 1 acre lots they asked for in February (on average).

Tucker rebutted briefly saying he was granting 40 ft ROW along N Dearborn Rd to help take out trees and shave the hill back for site distance. He said this development was similar to Harley Springs across the road. He noted recent densities as 1.33,1.34, 1.34, 1.78, 1.91, 2.27, 2,28, and 3.34 homes per acre.

Board discussion:

Thompson asked Tucker about the type of sewers St Leon wanted (gravity). He asked Listerman about the traffic on these roads and the status of the N Dearborn Road improvements. (County still trying to get N Dearborn back on the INDOT list to get matching funds, as we have the match in the next couple of years.) Listerman also responded that the internal streets of the sub’n were designed to keep traffic from using them as a thru street. [NOTE: So the subdivision will use the county deficient roads, spend no money to help upgrade them in that vicinity, and the county won’t get any benefit from the subdivision road- EVEN THOUGH the county will eventually inherit that road and its maintenance. Sounds fair?]

Listerman also detailed how buses use alternate routes to circumvent the bad part of North Dearborn between this development and the school.

Thompson asked about bonding and lapsed ones. Listerman said Tucker is working to get the ones in Seldom Seen corrected and accepted. Some of these are 7-9 years old. [NOTE: Why is this still going on?]

DeMaynadier- nothing to add.

Cheek- likes home sizes, sewers, and 2 points of entry, plus home prices high enough to pay for the school services. He didn’t like the buffer removal, the site distance issues, or the school bus accessibility.

Nelson- Wouldn’t want anything greater than ¾ acre- he likes high density to get the amenities and buffers. Large houses pay their way and improve property values. Wants site distance improved and a 12-15 ft buffer.

Held- Need buffer- still torn as to if this fits the surroundings.

Feiss- agrees with Held- feels that this is NOT responsible development and growth.

Thompson- Cited section 540 of the ordinance and said the Comp plan shows this as Ag use, but R would be OK with buffers and restrictive covenants. It is largely Ag use on the north so there is a problem with mixing these uses. Transitional area and we have to be careful here in order to conserve property values and rural character. The increased lot sizes and home sizes were OK. For responsible development and the school issues, he stands by his previous thought that these should be 1-3 acre lots. High Density development does NOT save farmland- it just adds more and more high density. Low density locks the land up in greenspace. A development credit system might work here- but in this- high density just gobbles up farmland in chunks.

Laws- Believes in high density and this is the spot for it.

Kraus, Jr.- fits well with other developments in the area, wants written commitment for buffers and site distance at Short Road.

Motion: Nelson motioned, Laws 2nd for a FAVORABLE recommendation for the subdivision as presented with 75 lots and a buffer area on lots that rear up to the existing public streets, and that site distance be addressed at Short and North Dearborn Roads. Findings of fact were that the land use is consistent with adjacent development, the current conditions are similar to those in the district or in some cases an improvement, it conserves or enhances property values, and the sewer and water is there so it is responsible. 4 Ayes (Cheek , Nelson, Laws, and Kraus, Jr.) 4 Nays (Feiss Thompson, Held, and DeMaynadier) Hall thought about it for over 8 minutes and voted AYE- Motion Passed.

New Business:

Changes to the Zoning ordinance- Article 4- assurances for completion and maintenance of improvements regarding bonds and letters of credit, etc. was sent on to Commissioners with Favorable recommendation.

Article 3 – 305 P on private streets was sent on with Favorable recommendation.

Article 25- section 2516 and 22 section 2275 accessory structures and fences were tabled.

Article 7 Certificate B1 was sent on with a favorable recommendation.

Board approved spending $5,000 per year with OKI for fiscal analysis.

Bond status reports are being worked on.
A vehicle needs to be replaced or a new transmission is required.
Dillsboro and St. Leon plans continue.

Comp Plan was tabled by commissioners. McCormack will notify board when it will be decided and on Commissioners agenda again.

Problem with press release faxed to radio was discussed- McCormack wants it read as sent- changing it apparently confused citizens.

Meeting adjourned at 10:55 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

Sunday, November 25, 2007


Dearborn County
P.O. Box 21 Aurora, IN 47001
Phone: (812) 926-3375


November 16,2007

Dearborn County Commissioners
Dearborn County Administration Building
215 B West High Street
Lawrenceburg, IN 47025

Re: Proposed Comprehensive Plan
Land Use Map

Dear Commissioners:

We feel compelled, along with a feeling of responsibility as business owners of Dearborn County, to address some serious concerns we have with the proposed future land use map, which has been forwarded to you by the Plan Commission. Below is a list of items of concern:

•In our dialog with many of the Advisory Board members who were a part of developing this map, it was understood by most that this map does not represent any consensus that was reached by the committee's recommendations and understandings.
•This map does not address planning for the future business growth of this community. Basically, what this map does is establish where business uses already take place and gives future business land use designation to only a few parcels in the county, thus giving only a few landowners the value they deserve for their land. Furthermore, looking at the corridors that typically head east and west in our community - US 50, State Road 350, State Road 48, I-74 - and look along the north corridor, it is apparent that there was backlash from the recently proposed northwest quadrant plan that proposed business use in the northwest quadrant. This map totally does not touch that quadrant with regard to future land uses, because of the outcry that came from the most recently proposed industrial park in that area. To not take advantage the existing State Road 46 and 1-74 corridor for residential and/or commercial or industrial uses is irresponsible as a County.
•We understand that the County needs to maintain its character, which is what we believe makes Dearborn County special above the surrounding counties, but that character is for the entire county not just the north west quadrant. The future industrial growth needs to be balanced between the 1-74 corridor as well as the US 50 corridor. These two corridors are a main means of connection to other parts of the county, state and country. As it states on page 150 of the Comprehensive Plan under the Land Use Planning Principles, "Plan and direct growth to the extent that it can fairly balance the rights of landowners with community needs. As part of this planning effort, the entire community must work together for growth that stresses conservation of farmland and open space in rural areas as a way to preserve the local economy and to preserve a high quality of life." We feel this means that the growth needs to be balanced within the County. The northwest quadrant cannot be exempted from the county's needed economic future growth. The rights of landowners needs to be balanced.
•The high density residential areas that are designated on the map simply give residential uses to areas that already exist or are already approved. This gives the future homebuilding industry of this community nowhere to go in the future. This also minimizes the county to preserve the farmland in this county.
•This map takes value away from many landowners. This map seems to only benefit a few landowners with the potential of increasing the value of their land. The future growth of our county is severely limited by this map.
•Furthermore, the definitions outlined in colors laid out on the map are very restrictive. Our interpretation of the colors makes no general difference between the color yellow and the color green. The color yellow designates residential uses 1-5 acres, which is an already allowable use in the agricultural zone. The agricultural zone is colored green so for the purposes of this map, it can be interpreted that all of the yellow shall be colored green. The color orange currently shows already approved or already existing subdivisions that are one acre or less. The residential uses designated on the map in orange only show existing approved projects or currently platted and developed subdivisions and future areas designated with this color are very,. very limited. There are many orange areas that need to be connected to ensure the use of existing and adequate infrastructure. Also with the high density residential (orange) areas being limited to existing development, we are not meeting the Land Use Planning Principle (page 151) which states "Actively promote high-density, cluster development in order to preserve rural amenities.
•The map is to be "designed as a dynamic, advisory tool that will enable community officials to: Commit funding and resources--such as infrastructure and public service(s) improvements-to areas that are planned to support growth and development, starting in, and adjacent to urban and suburban areas that are more intensively developed. " (page 152) The proposed map lacks the ability to provide this service for our public and private agencies to plan the County's infrastructure needs.
• Currently it is widely known that the rising taxes in this County are a concern with residents, public officials and business owners. The existing land use composition in the County is 11.6% combined residential and 0.5% combined commercial and industrial. If you compare those percentages with the proposed: 16.6% residential and 1.6% commercial and industrial, the County will be no closer to closing the tax gap. The gap will be greater and the rising county tax issues will continue to increase.

To summarize, the failure to recognize the State Road 46/1-74 corridors, as a corridor of growth should not be acceptable by us as a County, especially when the map recognizes all of the other state and federal highway, i.e. US 50, State Road 350, corridors as future planned growth areas. State Road 46/1-74 is an area where we have not only one, but two, state and/or federal interstate highways and for this area not to show future growth as this country grows westward, especially with the impact from continued business and industrial growth from our western counties, is just not responsible planning by our County.

This map was dramatically influenced by a group of people in this county who have strong disagreements with the Viesta Study and failed to separate that study with the Future Land Use Map. If this map is adopted, it will be a major step backwards for this county and a disservice to future generations.

Even as a home building organization we recognize that the County needs a balance between residential and industrial/commercial growth, but everyone also needs to provide residential growth for our future generations .

We would recommend that the County Commissioners table the current map at this time. We request you review the work that the Advisory Committee did prior to the Viesta fire storm created by the residents of the northwest quadrant. The Advisory Committee created 6 general maps, which were generated prior to the public meetings of the northwest quadrant study. We understand the maps went for review by the public, but we also feel that there where too many residents not separating the two different planning tools.

Thank you for your time and please take the time to review the attached map with associated points.

Respectfully Submitted,

Mark A. Rosenberger
Board of Director DCHBA
Dearborn County Development Council

Mark Bossert
President DCHBA

We took the time to just point out a few of the anomalies of this map that specifically struck us as very odd, see attached map for key to below numbers:

1. Cedar Creek subdivision - agricultural subdivision with I-acre lots - by looking at the maps, this subdivision is seemingly very out of place because of its "high-density designation" surrounded by Green Agricultural/Rural designation. This subdivision was developed over 20 years ago and at the time provided much needed affordable housing to the north area of this county. Sure seems out of place on this map - even though it has better access to infrastructure, schools, large roadways and job centers than most of the rest of this county.
2. Harvest Ridge - the slight "bump out" of this orange color on the map seemed very odd to us. Further research determined that this represents an already approved subdivision and that explains the bump out of orange. This map obviously thinks that is out of place because areas to the north, west and south of this bump out are not given at least the same designation. Harvest Ridge was approved 2 or 3 years ago and is providing new homes to the residents in the north end of the county.
3. Falcon's Nest, Harley Springs, Misty Meadows, Autumn Way, and Steeple Chase subdivisions respectively - Again, these areas look as if they have never happened. They look out of place on this map. It is hard to assume that what we have done in the past was wrong and not, at a minimum, allowed for surrounding areas in the future. "Smart Growth" would dictate that these few subdivisions were not dense enough to preserve the green areas on the map. Smart Growth would also encourage the connection of these existing high-density areas with future high-density growth to help preserve agricultural and open space areas. The connection of these areas would also help to eliminate the potential for spot zoning or leap frog development.
4. For this "future" land use map not to recognize one of Dearborn County's most economically potential assets, the I-74/SR 46 corridor as a tremendous untapped resource is a real shame. The map seems to recognize the other main corridors in this county, but are limited by topography, poor location and not enough NIMBY-ism, as is within the "NW quadrant". This very economical viable area is being protected from any economic prosperity, due to a backlash to master planning recently proposed in that area that which by most people has been highly misunderstood.

The reason for the most support of this map does is because a select few know that it will only give this County the most minimizing opportunity for growth. This will lead to hop scotch, haphazard "stripping of roads" and platting of more I-acre residential certified surveys that have no "plan" for building a community. Please don't take a step backwards, when this County recently begun to strive for better planning. This map is doing a disservice to our future generations and the planning purpose of a Future Land Use Map. Current generations in control may feel that the map is ok, but the "short sightedness, unwillingness to embrace change" attitude will be the end of economic prosperity for this county.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

20 November 2007 Dearborn County Commissioner Meeting Notes

20 November 2007 Dearborn County Commissioner Meeting Notes

Present: Hughes, Chairman, Fox, and Thompson.
Also present: Pickens, Auditor, Messmore, Administrator, and Ewbank, Attorney

As always a uniformed police officer was present.

Sheriff Lusby asked the commissioners to accept all three bids for food services. Approved.

Kuebel Road concerns regarding Mr. White’s property – Ewbank notified the commissioners that after 20 years of public use- a road is considered publicly owned. They will pass the info on to Listerman in Highway after he returns from vacation.

Arnie McGill’s statement was sent to Pickens to be viewed as a claim for services where he represented the county in a summary judgment. Ewbank noted the fees were fair and reasonable for the time spent on the case.

Lifetime Resources were approved with Hughes appointed to sign off for an owner occupied rehab program and Community Development Block Grant. They are applying for a $300,000 grant and will use $32,000 left from a previous grant for matching funds. No county funds are being used.


Mark McCormack – presented the amendment to the Land Use Element of the Master Plan. McCormack took nearly an hour to present the background, explain the enabling laws that cover it, and showed the map. He also showed the text changes that occurred as a result of this process. He explained that by law this plan is to be reviewed at least every 5 years and that they intend to update it sooner with census data in a couple of years. The master plan was initiated in 2003 AND PASSED IN 2005. The Land Use Map was initiated in late 2005 and is here tonight for consideration.

Three PC members were present: Mike Hall, Chairman, Dennis Kraus, Jr., County Surveyor, and Ralph Thompson, Commissioner. Commissioners asked several questions during this time to clarify their understanding.


John Rahe- Aurora and Chairman of the County Redevelopment Commission- Noted there were several maps and that Map C was the preferred one for business and job creation. He said the process did not give enough consideration to job creation and reasonable economic development. There are over 500 kids who graduate from high school in the county each year. We need to provide work for them and NOT send them to other counties to work. Alternative C does a better job of providing employment here. He noted that taxes went up 50% this year and that commercial uses would help control those increases. It is irresponsible to not do this for economic development.

Jim West ( Chairman of DCEDI) Advisory Board Master Plan and Mike Rozow (Chamber of Commerce) Advisory Board Master Plan - spoke representing their constituent members. West claimed 45 companies funding his group and Rozow claimed 450 companies and individuals as members. [NOTE: There are some individuals in both of these organizations who do NOT support the comments that were spoken on their behalf.]

West read the same letter he had presented to the Plan Commission in October (see those notes on this blog for complete transcript) He said that neither A or AA give the right type of environment for economic development in Dearborn County. We want and need economic development. There are many geophysical issues, which hamper this- in slopes, soil, and limited highway infrastructure. I-74 and US 50 are the two main transportation corridors.

He said 80% of companies want to be within 3 miles of an interstate. He cited the companies that were attracted to Boone County when he was working for them (Fidelity, Citi Bank, Toyota) all asked to look at their land use plan. This plan won’t help sell the county. We talked to property owners along I-74 and we have a collection of owners who want to sell. We have also tried to document why some companies rejected us and got one company to go on record.

West went on to talk about no growth agricultural interests and referred to them as having emotional responses and caring only about their own selfish needs. He also thought they were hiding behind Agricultural industry. He said his words were ignored- and that he has 35 years experience in this. Alternative C comes closest to their needs and it is closer to the 2005 map. (He’s referring to the 2005 draft map that was part of FOCUS group consolidations and not a map that was approved or discussed by the advisory board as a whole) He said they wanted to come forth with something positive and they want a strategic economic development plan to be done. They had a meeting today with eth Chamber and Purdue on how to do this. [NOTE: West has had almost 3 years to get his plan together- what exactly has he been doing trying to attract business without a plan? What kind of business runs that way?]

Fox- said- if you went to the Plan Commission, you’d find that some people would sell their land only for the right thing. We have casinos coming across the river- it will take our safety net away. We haven’t done our part here- people are afraid of what you’ll put here. Employment parks are not the same as INDUSTRY. They targeted A to be on the safe side- they don’t trust you. We have not done a good job of showing that we are not going to harm them. [NOTE: Fox seems to get this part.]

Rozow- We’re willing to work to build that trust- whatever it take to engage the people. [NOTE: But now it’s harder- you can’t be underhanded and then expect people to trust you- it takes a while to build trust in any circumstance- longer if you’ve shown yourself to be untrustworthy in the past. This is not going to be an easy task.]

Sandy Whitehead- Jackson Township -Rick- you are right. I know I saw West and a realtor at my parent’s (Stengers) house asking if they wanted to sell. THEN the Vieste phase 1 project came out.

If you ignore this plan- everyone worked so hard on it- it would be like a slap in the face. She pulled up the map showing the changes in land use acreages in the maps- we are residents of the county- the plan affects us. You will note that I-74 corridor is NOT ignored. The TIF in St. Leon and TIF in W. Harrison shows here as commercial. This is a living document- revisited every couple of years. Change it then- it is not going to prohibit industry and commercial- your infrastructure will limit it. Build from where it exists outward.

Chet Wolgamot- US 49- Manchester Township- Advisory Board Master Plan- commended Mark McCormack and his staff for leading and guiding the process. Given the polarization, I’m not sure if we reached a consensus or an armistice. Someone once said that if both parties feel shortchanged, then it’s a fair deal.

We need growth and we need jobs- the types of businesses that Fox mentioned. Fox is also correct saying we can’t take for granted that we’ll get what we want to come in. West said property owners are willing to sell and this map will prevent that. This map is nothing but a vision. 1% of the county was interested enough to speak to this. If no one has a better alternative- we should do this. If these gentlemen showed up with a Fidelity, I have a feeling it would all fall into place. I recommend we adopt this plan.

Nicole Daily- Manchester – Urban Planner with Bayer Becker Engineering- Advisory Board Master Plan - This plan doesn’t guide road growth, orange color only lists existing high density residential, and we need more- it will save Ag. Taxes went up. She said R shows a 7 % increase (11.6%-18.2% of the county) and Industry 1% (going from .5-1.6%.) [NOTE: This isn’t rate of increase- she’s talking about percentage of total acreage.]

Thompson- what do you consider balance?

Nicole Daily- I’m not sure- I can’t give you a percentage- it would depend on what kind of business you brought in.

Rozow- Don’t know either- we need a study.

Chris Mueller- Lawrenceburg Township- Advisory Board Master Plan- said I attended every meeting of the two failed master plans and am on the advisory board of this plan, giving me a unique historical perspective. I discussed two major issues with the map- high-density sub’ns, which will be covered more appropriately in ordinance changes and the NW Quad. I concurred with Fox on the lack of trust the people have particularly considering what many see as underhanded tactics during the Vieste project.

I explained why the maps only showed current high density residential- because the zone ordinance has to create that district in order to create more of it.

I stressed that we considered FACTS and DATA about what is existing and patterns of development. I spoke about the plan staff giving us the information we requested and we used it to determine if we were allowing enough. We looked at the rates of development and at the amount of acreage currently rezoned and platted but unbuilt and we have 10 years of building at 300 permits a year even if we use large 1-acre lots. Then add to that the amount of acreage increased in this map. Even using 1-acre lots and liberal estimates of one house per acre- you have about 25- 30 years of residential covered.

Commercial and industrial have some other considerations. I passed out fiscal impact paper to Commissioners as it relates to INDIANA. I related those common sense ideas to the county and noted that we CANNOT make everything pay for itself. There are people who cannot afford high end homes and do have kids. And we want those people to be here too. We do not want a homogenous county. So the most IMPORTANT thing we can do to offset this is to PACE the development so that we can absorb the costs realistically. (Pace and place was one of our tenets for the master plan)

Fox- asked if this map would affect people getting zone changes and I answered yes- in that it is one of the 5 criteria for a zone change in state law. Fox then concluded that it would affect a person’s ability to sell their land.

Chris Mueller said- not really- they can sell- it just might not be for development at that time.

Fox didn’t like that idea- - You mean I can’t sell it and get development price- I might have to wait 10 years?

Chris Mueller answered- it is like stock- you buy low and sell high. If you want the highest price you have to wait sometimes.

Dennis Kraus Jr. came to the podium at that time and explained to Commissioners how the Plan Commission handles those requests. [NOTE: The bottom line is IC says that the PC and Commissioners must pay reasonable regard to the master plan in granting zone change. This map will be part of that master plan.]

Chris Mueller- Have to consider county wishes from community to community. A plan is FOR PEOPLE. There are people in this county who live in subdivisions, others like denser living near towns, others like rural spaces. We must remember that ownership of the land trumps desires of those who want to change it. Over 500 people sent letters and they expressed desire to stay rural in the area DCEDI wants to have. I can’t in good conscience ignore their wishes. Property rights means that they have the right NOT to sell also. Forcing economic development there- ignores one or more of the legs of sustainable development.

For a plan to be sustainable it has to balance three areas- social, environmental, economic. Leaving any aspect out- or unbalanced -and the community will not be sustainable.

The advisory board was overloaded per capita with economic pressure - yet the majority vote was still Map A . I personally don’t like to draw lines on other people’s properties on maps. This map is NOT perfect in every way. But it’s a start- and we need to move on. I asked that they approve this map amendment to the master plan.

Jeff Stenger- Surveyor- Jackson Township- former PC Chairman and served on other Master Plan committees- recommended that they adhere to what the PC sent as a starting point. There are some inadequacies. Improvements can be made. This is as close to consensus as we’ve ever gotten in 9 years! A lot of our existing infrastructure is inadequate- we need to know where the lines need increased capacity in sewers for example or water. DCEDI and the Chamber need to help get this. No matter what- when a plan comes in- it can be shot down- it all depends on how educated your PC board is. [NOTE: This is critical- we currently have two experienced members not returning (Cheek from Council and Feiss- citizen appointee) and one experienced member up for reappointment. If commissioners choose to just ignore those capabilities in their choices in January- they will do 4 years of harm to the county progress.]

Ronald Fischer- US Bank and DCEDI member- noted there was a lot of good discussion. Said Fox is right- this should be a guide- the people who use this will be professional staff and outside developers. This map shoots us out of the saddle- outside companies will see us as not wanting development.

Thompson- What would you see?

Ronald Fischer- Map C- we missed the Honda suppliers and the boat is going away too. Open up the WHOLE I-74 CORRIDOR!

[NOTE: The boat is going away? Did we not just see a huge expansion with a barge bringing parts down the river? If you open the whole corridor- how does that help you consolidate infrastructure- how does that point anyone to the best spot? How does that prevent scattered costly development?]

Mark Hall- New Alsace- Advisory Board Member- I served on the board for all 3 plans. Not too many things are guaranteed in stone- but I’ll guarantee I’ll be living here long after West has moved on to his next job. We’ve talked about dollars and cents and not the quality of life. Most people don’t think about the value of their property. People in rural areas want to pass their property on to their families. Some of us feel about our land the way we feel about family. My kids are 4th generation on our farms. Hall took exception to West’s comments about being selfish- if West is right- then the only way I can participate in Northern Dearborn County is to sell my land and move elsewhere.
We have too much growth- we have to pay more taxes for schools- this could drive people off their land.

Hughes- we need to make development more accountable.

Mark Hall- This plan should reflect what the people who LIVE here want also. Help them to do that. Less development means less taxes too.

Laverne Kolb- Miller Township- Farm Bureau - Advisory Board Member- all this talk about taxes- where were these people today when we were up at the statehouse discussing that? We need to restructure tax laws.

I don’t always agree with Mark Hall- and he knows that- but I do agree with him when he said Mr. West highly insulted us. We are not greedy and selfish- we just raised our kids on our farm. She spoke of her kids being harassed at the end of their street by developers telling them they had to sell their property. She said- “I don’t got to sell- I just got to pay my taxes and die! “

I agree with Fox- we have a right to keep our land and do with it as we want.

Helen Kremer- Advisory Board Member- Logan Township- All advisory board members with many different interests came up with these maps. We stand by the process- it is important. Map A is the closest to the citizen’s wishes at this time. She asked that they honor that and approve it.

Sandy Whitehead- I have a question. There are exit ramps in St, Leon and W Harrison. There is land for sale there and in the TIF’s there also. So why isn’t this economic development coming there? If not there- why would you add the NW Quad?

Ronald Fischer- Because it adds more opportunity. Some people in the TIF might not want to sell. [NOTE: Hey- I have an idea- why not just color the whole map RED. Is that enough opportunity?]

Cliff Eibeck- Why put TIFs where people don’t want to sell? I don’t think there was land marked in Greensburg, I think Honda came in and said- I want this piece of ground.

Chet Wolgamot- When we rezone we try not to hurt adjoining landowners. Is our property tax formula part of the problem? Is it possible that when Fidelity or whoever buys land it drives up the tax value of the farm?

Cary Pickens- Ag use is taxed at a flat rate- however it could affect the rate of the house and the land it’s on.

Public hearing closed:

Mark McCormack- You have to consider the community’s desires also. We cannot design our plan around a tax plan. I may be wrong- but I don’t think there was a 4000-acre site on a master plan for the Honda plant to look at. Let’s move this forward- the staff and board will remain engaged- we don’t sit still – we’re a dynamic staff- this will be a living document.

Thompson- Spoke about the two groups labeled the Developers and the “Do Nothings” or whatever they are called. Did some math calculations and showed them we have almost 50 years of R land in this map and 15 years of Commercial/Industrial – not county the mixed use areas.

McCormack- Also want the commissioners to note that these small lines and circles on this map aren’t small. The St. Leon area is 1200 acres- or 2 square miles. And there are 200 plus acres around Lawrenceville.

Thompson noted that 10/1 ratio on R to Industry may work out. The survey being 1% of the population is accurate but he countered that we should remove the kids from that number perhaps. He noted that municipalities and all their businesses were NOT in this map. This means there are many businesses in the county that aren’t on this map. He also said Mayor Cunningham said that DCEDI has produced nothing for Lawrenceburg. (Lawrenceburg pays the lion’s share of the public moneys for DCEDI.)

Hughes-Complimented the people who worked on this for 9 years. Since it’s been that long- it would be premature to vote on it tonight.

Fox- wanted to be sure we understood it before we vote. Made the motion to table it.

Hughes said he did a survey himself this weekend- contacting the owners of over 7,000 acres and none of them were notified about the land use map. He wanted to be sure everyone in the county was notified and understood this map.

Hughes 2nd Fox motion . All three voted aye to table.

[NOTE: Hughes spent the weekend contacting people and supposedly they didn’t know about this map. I personally know of one his wife contacted on his behalf who DID know. So is Mr. Hughes being entirely truthful? Every county address on record was sent a postcard notifying them personally of the master plan public meetings on these maps. The newspaper and radio also announced and wrote articles of the plan. The newspaper PUBLISHED the maps on a full page! I do not know who Hughes picked to call- but they either aren’t interested in the county, or he’s mistaken, or he asked the question in a confusing manner. People who vote get a say in their government. People who read the paper or listen to the news should also. It’s almost funny- in a sick sort of way- that Hughes hates any public input at his commissioner meetings- and now wants the plan commission to go door-to-door or something similar teaching everyone individually about the maps. The master plan process is the most open process in the county. The advisory meetings are open to the public to view and leave written comments. The open houses allowed numerous methods of responses. The outreach via media and mail was costly and time consuming. This is criticized by a commissioner who took about 10 minutes to vote on mega buck plan for the county from Vieste, without even vetting the company’s credentials. The hypocrisy is laughable.
If commissioners need time to think- that’s perfectly understandable. But don’t blame it on something else. Just ask for the time to think. That I can respect. Maybe Hughes should have done more thinking and less calling around with handpicked citizens to try to discredit an open process.]


Listerman- on vacation- no highway report.

Pickens had no minutes- phones ringing off the hook from tax bills. Claims were approved.

Messmore will have a letter sent to Mr. White on Kuebel Road and Ewbank will get the wording on the 20-year public use law.

Ewbank said Anchor Glass settlement is done and check is going to Treasurers Office.

Thompson presented the Artemis , OKI, INDOT proposal to use CMAQ money to complete the lighted sign loop on 275 in Listerman’s absence.. They need INDOT to do a significant part of the 2-% match for feds and a letter from commissioners will be going to request that.

Fox- wants to meet with Mark McCormack on some fiscal analysis.

Hughes got the commissioners to approve the committee to look into the employee advance payroll issue in order to become compliant. Committee will be Messmore, Lusby, Blankenship, Ewbank, ad Hughes.

Meeting adjourned at 10:05 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

Monday, November 19, 2007


The Master Plan Map A and text amending the currently approved Master Plan was given a favorable recommendation from the County Plan Commission and now goes to the County Commissioners for their consideration this week. This culminates nearly a year of work with the advisory board, planning staff, citizen (at open houses for input), and plan commission.

The plan can be viewed at

The Commissioner's meeting is 6:30 PM Tues Nov 20th for Commissioners to approve, deny, or amend this map and accompanying text.

Please feel free to forward this to any neighbors or friends and encourage them to attend this meeting.

Friday, November 16, 2007


DEARBORN COUNTY UPDATE FOR 2008 on An interview with Dearborn County Administrator, Bryan Messmore. (Approximately 22 minutes)

If you have a high-speed internet connection and working speakers connected, simply click on the following direct show-links to listen or copy and paste it into your browser. If you would like to download your own copy of these shows, they are available 'free' on the flypod website along with nearly 400 other show selections --

Thursday, November 08, 2007

7 November 2007 Dearborn County Commissioner Meeting Notes

7 November 2007 Dearborn County Commissioner Meeting Notes

Present: Hughes, Chairman, Fox, and Thompson
Also present: Pickens, Auditor, and Messmore, Administrator. Frank Kramer attended for Bob Ewbank, Attorney.
A uniformed police officer was present.

Kuebel Road concerns remain tabled.

Judge Sally Blankenship expressed about 8 concerns about the current court facilities including:

Probation facilities, which are not set up for confidential interviews.

Restroom facilities where the public and prisoners getting drug tests share the same facility

Courtroom not big enough for jury trial – and when using the commissioner’s room for jury trials there are no facilities to sequester the jurors as needed.

Grand jury investigations can be overheard by health dept office

On heavily docketed days, witnesses don’t fit in court and halls are clogged

Only one EXIT- concerned about fire code

No spare room for attorneys to meet with client in dissolution cases.

Mainly concerned with the IMPRESSION we give- we are behind the times with inadequate facilities.

Blankenship asked commissioners what they wanted her to do. Hughes said we were looking into it but didn’t have a solution yet. Maybe move that court offsite. Blankenship said maybe probation could do that but court needed to be in the building. She said she’s always worked well with everyone in the past. Thompson said- there is nothing you can do yet. We are looking at RQAW and video arraignment. It’s not just you- there are many offices with needs there.

Blankenship said the court has the ability to ORDER some of this and she didn’t want it to come to that. She said we could get a local contractor to build something over in the parking lot area. She noted it would take TWO YEARS to get this done, even if we started now. NO DECISION.

Barth Engineering- John Graf presented the Collier Ridge report. The final thought on these 4 alternatives was to go to Council and get $500,000 to phase in the fix as in Option 3.

Alternative 1 completely realigns Collier Ridge to a new roadway with a new RR crossing and a new Bridge to Bonnell for a total cost of $4.705 million.

Alternative 2 moves Collier Ridge, requires 2 new bridges, and has better site distance at Bonnell. It’s better safety-wise. Total cost $3.325 million.

The 3rd option realigns they road closer to the original bed except near the RR and bridge area requiring those to be built. Its advantage is that it can be phased with the first phase costing about $500,000. Total cost of 3 is $2.93 million.

Option 4 reroutes the road over the hill to meet Bonnell much further down. It requires 2 new bridges. Cost is $4.06 million.

There was much discussion of needing more soil samples to determine actual costs as this is still unknown strata. Graf said they recommend Alt 2 and then 3, in that order. Alternative 2 has better safety and goes behind the barn and house. It also has less grade. Alternative 3 can be phased in but requires taking the house. It gives access to the lower area and existing bridge.

Thompson kept asking about timing on each project. There were concerns about road closing and safety in the construction and pre-construction times. Neighbors are pushing for concrete barriers to be put on the edge to prevent anyone going over the side in bad weather. [NOTE: Perhaps it should be closed for those times.] There are issues with costs of barriers and equipment to place them. There are issues with flagging costs at $800 per day for some of the construction if railroad is involved. The current iron bridge has about a 5-year life expectancy and a 10-ton load limit. The other bridge has 18 years.

Federal aid could be used on Option 2. Local money has to be used on Option 3 because of the grade. It is clear that federal money is several years out IF it could even be captured. Listerman was told to get the barrier options and blind spot option specified and bring all to the Nov 20 meeting for a decision. Next step is to get soil borings and go to Council to seek funding.

Moores Hill Town Board request for use of HWY Dept frequency- no one showed up.

Sandy Leptak- Health Dept- informed commissioners that Dr Frable had resigned last year for health reasons and Dr Eliason was filling out his term Commissioners are open to reappoint him for a 4 –year term in January.

Vital records fee increases will be sent to Ewbank for ordinance requirements to take effect in January. Birth and Death certificates will be $10, Paternity affidavits $15. Affidavit of amendment will be $5.

Commissioners ratified the Lifting of the No Burn Ban.

Med Ben meeting will be Wed Nov 14 per Messmore.

The 2008 Holiday calendar was approved with 2 changes: To get a 4-day weekend employees will be off Dec 25-6 and Dec 31- Jan 1.

Sheriff Lusby opened 3 bids for food service: US Foods, Ellenbee Leggett, and Gordon. He will come back with recommendations next meeting.

Todd Listerman, Transportation Director, gave a 5- minute report. He will get other options to the concrete barriers and look at owning vs. leasing.
The HVL manager verified that Kathy Court, Par Dr, and Golfview were privately maintained by HVL and so commissioners voted to remove them from county maintenance lists.

Certified letters were sent to property owners on private drives to see if they will dedicate appropriate land for 50 ft of ROW to stay on county maintenance. They have until Nov 16 to respond. He will get list to commissioners after that.

Pickens- Auditor- Claims approved (did this include a $25,000+ payment to London Witte per newspaper listing?)

Pickens was approved to sign for the $75,000 stopgap on the health insurance.

Commissioners re-signed the Harrison contracts as the original was “lost”

Pickens brought up the State Board of Accounts write-up on the county payroll being non-compliant with state code. This has been ongoing but apparently the past year resulted in 2 cases where employees quit and were paid for work NOT done. There was no accrued sick or vacation pay to cover the days paid. There were several employees and Sheriff Lusby spoke also trying to find a way to not “hold back a week’s pay.”

Lusby said this only became a problem with direct deposit. He used to hold back checks on employees who hadn’t worked the days he had pre-certified and then have a check re-issued. He also did this to assure employees returned county property when they quit. County could file civil suit to get their money back or criminal charges if the employee won’t refund the pay.

Thompson asked- How does that get us into compliance?

Lusby said he feels bad that they might be taking money from employees that worked here before 1985. (Employees keep insisting they were docked a week’s pay when they started to work. They have no records to show this)

Pickens replied- we are not taking any money- we are just paying them post working rather than pre-working. Thompson reiterated this. Lusby said he would work on a way to help cushion the blow. Some of the highway is paid 2 weeks behind. (How did THEY get on that schedule?)

What is supposed to happen in the 1st payroll in January is that they will be paid one week’s pay. After that the payroll will have two week’s pay in it. The week they GET their check will be paid in the following payroll- continuously. At the end of their work for the county, there will be a paycheck that comes after they quit. It is easy to track this as each paycheck will show what time period is being paid.

It was very apparent that commissioners didn’t want to vote on this at this time- though it is also clear that payroll will have to change. Pickens gave them 3 months to prepare for it with notices in October. He also is doing it at the beginning of the month and many household bills are due at the end of the month. They also will be getting paid for 4 days holiday pay that was NOT WORKED at the end of Dec- early Jan. NO DECISION yet on whether they will phase it over 5 payrolls.

Meeting adjourned at 8:55 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Election Results

AURORA CITY MAYOR -- 4 of 4 precincts reporting (100%)
DONNIE HASTINGS JR. (R) 490 58% Winner
NANCY TURNER (D) 355 42%

AURORA CITY COURT JUDGE -- 4 of 4 precincts reporting (100%)
AVIS RIVERA (D) 468 56% Winner
BILL ULLRICH (R) 372 44%

AURORA CLERK TREASURER -- 4 of 4 precincts reporting (100%)
DENNIS KINNETT (R) 429 51% Winner

AURORA CITY COUNCIL- DIST. 1 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
JOHN BORGMAN (R) 420 51% Winner

AURORA CITY COUNCIL- DIST. 2 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
MICHAEL CRIDER (D) 590 70% Winner

AURORA CITY COUNCIL- DIST. 4 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
MEL KREMER (D) 367 45%
FREDERICK LESTER (R) 445 55% Winner

AURORA CITY COUNCIL- -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
R. BRETT FEHRMAN (R) 438 53% Winner

GREENDALE MAYOR -- 5 of 5 precincts reporting (100%)
DOUG HEDRICK (D) 936 65% Winner
ROBERT HREZO (R) 494 35%

GREENDALE CITY COUNCIL- DIST. 1 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
WALTER WILSON (R) 141 57% Winner

GREENDALE CITY COUNCIL- DIST. 2 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
ALBERT ABDON (D) 184 66% Winner

GREENDALE CITY COUNCIL- DIST. 3 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
EDDIE EDWARDS (D) 199 66% Winner

GREENDALE CITY COUNCIL- DIST. 4 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
GEORGE LANSING III (D) 210 58% Winner

GREENDALE CITY COUNCIL- D5 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
TY BOWELL 132 57% Winner

GREENDALE CITY COUNCIL- AT LARGE -- 5 of 5 precincts reporting (100%)
MATT MCCOOL (R) 752 48% Winner
ERIC SCHNEBELT (D) 824 52% Winner

LAWRENCEBURG CITY MAYOR -- 4 of 4 precincts reporting (100%)
BILL CUNNINGHAM (D) 679 65% Winner
CHRIS PRUITT (R) 368 35%

LAWRENCEBURG CLERK TREASURER -- 4 of 4 precincts reporting (100%)
JACKIE STUTZ (D) 656 63% Winner

LAWRENCEBURG CITY COUNTIL- DIST. 1 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
ANTHONY ABBOTT (R) 135 53% Winner
JANE POPE (D) 121 47%

LAWRENCEBURG CITY COUNCIL- DIST. 3 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
BILL BRUNER (D) 162 64% Winner

LAWRENCEBURG CITY COUNCIL- DIST. 4 -- 1 of 1 precincts reporting (100%)
DONNIE BRYANT (D) 291 66% Winner

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Why can’t Dearborn County shoot straight?

Why can’t Dearborn County shoot straight?

We have the debacle of the fortune Company with lawsuits flying back and forth. Fortune was given a bond bank loan at 1%, come on now where else can one get an 8 million dollar load at an interest rate of 1%. Why did the bond bank in its received wisdom do this? Was due diligence done? Did we hire investigators to check out the Fortune company?

On a smaller scale the town council of St. Leon in order to conform with the Bond Bank’s policy signed off on revenue bonds for their sewer system. Did no one read the bond documents that required an ordinance to force people, even those without voting rights in St. Leon, to hookup to the sewer system, whether or not they needed it and of course pay all of the attendant immediate costs, and the perpetual monthly costs for the hookup? The penalty is a sheriff’s auction of the property of a non-compliant home owner. Which officials knew this was part of the bond documents? Imagine taking an individual’s home because he can’t afford a sewer system that he doesn’t need in the first place. This, in these United States?

On a smaller scale someone was sold on the idea of hiring that Vieste bunch to remake Dearborn County. Did anyone do actual due diligence on Vieste, its principals, and its associated companies and their personnel? Were investigators hired to investigate Vieste and it its associated companies, or was it all done over a bottle of beer? Who is responsible for the introduction of Vieste to the Dearborn County Commissioners? Who requested that Vieste et al donate big money in the commissioner race of 2006 against our certified engineer, the holder of the degree of master of Business administration who barely won out?

On a smaller scale yet who let the Macke letter of credit for the traffic light in contention lapse. Who approved of such a weak letter of credit.? Why was it so weakly created in the first place?

Now we have Dr. Rahe writing a bit scurrilously about the group of people who simply want developers and their sycophants to FINANCE THEIR OWN PROJECTS.

Dr. Rahe described some outside woman’s remark in response to an obviously tendentious question at a Chamber of Commerce meeting about the “status quo obstructionists” and the” no grow” people influencing the political leaders. Her remake was that under such circumstances “You will die.” Oh really? Of course she said that, she was invited by the Lawrenceburg Chamber of Commerce that most likely has never seen a project financed by taxpayers of which they disapproved.

Dr. Rahe being a Dentist must have had some scientific training. Details are important. Therefore accurately and logically he ought to tell us in detail what the death of Dearborn County would resemble. How would it come about? Has he evidence of other counties “dying?” What is a dying County? Name one. Otherwise the lady in question and our own Dr. Rahe are simply throwing around demagogic words.

If the Chamber of Commerce, the DCDEI and Dr. Rahe want development it is very simple. You, of the Chamber and DCDEI, and you, Dr. Rahe, finance it personally. If one cannot finance it personally get a syndicate together.

You all want TIF bonds? That’s all O. K., you simply guarantee those bonds personally. I don’t wish to guarantee them, who does? Let’s not make the taxpayers guarantee the bonds.

If you believe that the risk of a project is so slight simply borrow on your liquid assets, your insurance policies, your 401 K funds, your pension funds, your bank accounts, and your own wives’ assets. Additionally maintain a 120% of the value of the loan or the bonds. This is the technique used by the large investment banks when working with private individuals. If you believe that there is more risk than you wish to assume, forget the project. Don’t ask the taxpayers to assume that risk for you.

It is puzzling to try to determine what part of PAY IT YOURSELF don’t these people understand.

Why can’t we shoot straight here in Dearborn county? Do we have perpetual amateur hour?

Alan Stanley Freemond, Sr.
Tanners Creek Farm
Jackson Township

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Commissioner Meeting Moved to Wednesday Next Week

County Commissioner Meeting has moved next week due to election day on Tuesday.
Meeting will be at 6:30 Wednesday November 7th.