Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Dearborn County BZA will consider a conditional use for a 60 unit assisted living facility on 10.7 acres in Section 5 of Lawrenceburg Township. The request was submitted by Daniel Fugate and is located on SR 48.

The meeting is set for Tuesday, January 13th at 7 PM in the County Administration Bldg- 3rd floor.

Any questions regarding this can be submitted to Katie Rademacher at the Dearborn County Planning and Zoning Office. Phone is 537-8821.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


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Friday, December 19, 2008

Breaking News Regarding Sunman Dearborn Teachers

There is a breaking news story regarding Sunman-Dearborn teachers at

Ewbank Resigns as County Attorney

Ewbank Resigns As Dearborn Co. Attorney

Taken from Eagle county online news today. Check

Posted at 8:28 am on Friday, December 19, 2008 by Mike Perleberg

(Lawrenceburg, IN) - After serving the past four years in the position, Bob Ewbank has resigned as the county attorney for Dearborn County.
Ewbank said on Thursday it was unlikely he would be reappointed by a new county commission anyways in 2009 because of differing opinions on key economic development issues facing the county like the Interstate 74 corridor.
He hinted that the differences were with current District 3 Commissioner Ralph Thompson and District 2 Commissioner-elect Tom Orschell.
Ewbank insinuated at Monday's commissioners meeting that he would not be back in 2009.
Ewbank says he wishes everyone well and that he will remain busy with his law office in Lawrenceburg.
It's unclear who the new three-member commission could appoint as the replacement county attorney.


Dearborn Co. Administrator Not Coming Back In '09

TAKEN FROM THE EAGLE COUNTRY ONLINE website- WSCH 99.3 go to for daily news updates.

Posted at 12:05 pm on Thursday, December 18, 2008 by Mike Perleberg

(Lawrenceburg, IN) - Dearborn County Administrator Bryan Messmore says he will not be reappointed to the position in 2009.
The move would not be official until at least the first County Commissioners meeting in January.
"I think part of it is they associated me with whatever the 'anti group' is against," Messmore said when asked why he thought he will not be reappointed. "It's not uncommon to change either when you have new leadership and they want to establish a new direction."
Messmore says it's undecided if the new group of commissioners will appoint a new county administrator or do away with the position.
"I would think they would want to coordinate a little bit with County Council to make sure they want to continue to fund the position as well," he said.
The new-look, three-member commission will include commissioner-elect Tom Orschell who defeated incumbent Rick Fox in the November election. He joins Ralph Thompson and the re-elected Jeff Hughes.
The Lawrenceburg resident who says he enjoys being in leadership positions hasn't shut the door on running for public office again in the future.
"It's fun and it's humbling working in your community and being a part of the discussion and the conversation and the arguments every day, but sometimes it can be a burden, too."

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

15 December 2008 Dearborn County Commissioner Meeting Notes

15 December 2008 Dearborn County Commissioner Meeting Notes

This was the last meeting of 2008 and the final meeting for Fox, who was not re-elected, Messmore, who was notified that he probably wouldn’t be reappointed in 2009 and apparently, Ewbank, as noted in the comments from presenters below.

Present: Hughes, Chairman, Fox , and Thompson.

Also present: Pickens, Auditor, Ewbank, Attorney, and Messmore, Administrator.

Commissioner-elect Tom Orschell was present also.

1. Med Ben appeal discussed in an executive session preceding this meeting, was TABELD for further investigation during the open meeting.

2. Bid proposals for inmate food will be opened by sheriff with a witness at his offices.

3. Mike Rozow- Chamber of Commerce- thanked Rick, Bob, and Bryan and said like Economic development- some people love you and some hate you- but he thought it was a unique and positive time. He also said it was awesome that people like Ralph, Jeff, and Tom run for office.
Rozow went on to discuss Argosy for the over 21 and PNS for family fun as 2 entertainment venues in the county. The CVRB wanted to find ways to make us stand out from the crowd- they decided that women make most of the travel decisions so they focused on that with Tour for the Cure (Breast CA) Girlfriend Getaways, where they have group tours to places like McCabe’s to make flower arrangements and painting classes etc. CVTB also caters to those who take care of themselves- healthwise- as being upscale groups who would spend more , with Dearborn Trails. Thompson noted that in INDY some RED HAT ladies had complimented the county after their trip to our area.

Rozow noted he wears 4 different hats, with the chamber, Redevelopment Commission, CVTB, and DCEDI.

He said that for DCEDI- they are taking away the “pay to play” part of the board of directors and getting intellectual capital by nominating people to that board. This will make DCEDI more transparent and will help with communications. He noted West Harrison area is most shovel ready and the best sales people we have are those who live and work in the county. Commissioners want them to get Lawrenceburg on board again. Rozow professed huge respect for Cunningham and all they do.


He demurred when praised for his work, saying that it really was a bunch of people working together and also noted the addition of the DC Foundation in their building.

Commissioners signed the administrative contract with the Chamber.

4. Negangard, McCarty (SIRPC) and Sarah ? from Child Advocacy Center got signatures for their reapplication of their grant. Negangard noted a legal technicality in the original got it turned down- so they are re-doing it for March 2009 consideration.

5. Commissioners signed the software maintenance contract for the judge’s computers with the assurance that it was coming from the judge’s budgets.

6. Todd Listerman- Highway Dept- gave a 35 minute report:

1. County Council gave them the OK for 1 full time and 1 part time out of 3 open positions. There were 44 applicants and the full time was replaced by Randy Solar from the bridge dept. They will now seek someone to fill Randy’s spot.

2. Change order on Chesterville Bridge for 4.5 cubic yards of concrete signed for $362.75.

3. Over-run on inspection costs for Chesterville Bridge of $5,000 was approved after discussion and pointed questions from Fox on how that had occurred when they had bid it as a not-to-exceed $60,000. Listerman noted this overrun put it at 8% of costs and normally they allow 12% so they are still under accepted amounts.

4. Change order on the Triple Whipple (covered in budget) for 139 ft of facing blocks to cut and relay stone on in vents was approved at $13,900.

5. Collier Ridge Contract Development and Design was given to Barth and Associates for $17,000. The plan is to fix it in place with caissons and HC Nutting designed slip repair. Contract to be let in March- start when school gets out and finish before school starts again. Commissioners decided to WAIT to award inspection contract on this till after bids are in. Listerman wants Barth and Associates for that also. [NOTE: Barth seems to have the inside track on all this- even though bids are not necessary for these amounts of money, it might be wise to introduce some competition and get quotes from other firms as well – to keep prices low.]

6. Stone gravel aggregate bids were all accepted: Newpoint Stone, Hanson Aggregates, and Harrison Sand and Gravel.

7. Asphalt bids were both accepted for O’Mara and Paul H Rohe Co.

8. FEMA rates for Hurricane cleanup and for snowstorm cleanup are not acceptable to private contractors. FEMA said Listerman has to have an official formal schedule if he wants higher pay on these things. These are only used in emergencies when more manpower is needed. The 5 companies responding with their fees that were accepted by commissioners were: Links Fencing- Steve Linkmeyer, Gehring Group- Tom Gehring, Mike White Construction, Wilson Landscaping, and Hafner Landscaping.

9. Bittner Road cul de sac was signed already per last meeting.

10. Listerman said he appreciated working with Rick, Bob, and Bryan the past 4 years.

7. Pickens got claims signed, and is still researching the one from last meeting. Hughes wouldn’t approve the minutes on the last meeting until it reflected what he intended regarding Thompson’s actions on the Animal Shelter. Those were tabled for correction. [NOTE: Hughes should just ask for a verbatim transcript of that section. Perhaps he should have done his duties as head of Commissioners in the first place, rather than shifting the “tough work” to someone else. The redundancy of the actions he says were expected from Thompson seems ludicrous. Fox, who sits on Animal Control Board, even noted last meeting that Thompson had done what the Animal Control Board had all decided. ]

8. Messmore- NOTHING.

9. Ewbank- - It’s been a pleasure representing the county, you’ve been extremely good clients. Hughes said- “You’ve been an exemplary attorney.”

10. Thompson- thanked the commissioners and all county employees who have served. They deserve our praise and thanks.

11. Fox- It’s been fun. I think we left things better than we found them. I’ve enjoyed sitting here with Ralph, even though we differ on opinions at times. I think the meetings are well run and Bryan- it’s been good- Bob too.

12. Hughes- I have an issue with a manufacturing facility in Jackson Township. I’d love to see manufacturing up there, but we all have to play by the same rules. This company is American Farm Products- advertising premium straw blankets direct from the manufacturer. Mark Hall owns it. Fox said he’s had neighbors complain about this too, but didn’t want to get into it because…

Commissioners voted to have Thompson take this to the Plan Commission. [NOTE: So the last action Fox and Hughes want to take together is to harass a small agricultural business owner in the county. And we wonder how we can create a business friendly environment here! Didn’t these guys – these former farmers- ever read the Ag zone code section 910?: Section 910 The following services are permitted by right on land zoned agricultural in Dearborn County: Section #9 Agricultural activities including grist milling services, corn shelling, hay-baling, threshing, contract sorting, grading and packaging services, and other agricultural processing services.
OR- is this just some lame attempt at political payback because Mark Hall was the head of Citizens For Dearborn County a PAC that did not support the re-election of either Fox or Hughes?]

13. Hughes then thanked Bryan Messmore- saying he was excellent and went above and beyond what he was asked to do. [ NOTE: See #8 above.] Healso told Ewbank he was an excellent attorney.

Meeting adjourned at 7:35 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

15 December 2008 Dearborn County Plan Commission Meeting Notes

15 December 2008 Dearborn County Plan Commission Meeting Notes

Present: Hall, Chairman, Thompson, Nelson, Lehman, Beiersdorfer, Lansing, Kraus, Jr., Hornbach, and Laws.

Also present: McCormack, Plan Director, and McGill, Attorney.


Primary approval for an additional 8 units in the Picnic Lawn Complex for Owner Picnic Lawn Apartments ( Jerry Tucker) and presented by surveyor, Jeff Stenger. Site Location- Jamison Road Miller Township. Currently zoned R and this area is 3.233 acres.

Two members of the public (Angie Braun and Jerry Osmond) spoke regarding drainage issues they have as adjoiners to the complex.

The detention/retention ponds are set to maintain the flow at current rates so their problems won’t get worse, per Stenger. If they can improve the issues by excavation, they will. Tucker asked Stenger to define the differences between retention and detention. Stenger said detention ponds are dry except while handing rain, etc and retention ponds have water in them. [NOTE: At this part of the meeting the PC allowed an informal interchange between public and applicant- rather than the usual method of addressing all issues to the PC and then they ask applicant to answer them after public is finished. There were times the applicant was answering from their seats and not at the microphone.]

PC noted that the application had two less units, the traffic counts fell within acceptable limits, the parking spaces were reduced from 34 to 21 (only 12 required, but they are addressing deficiencies in the complex and making sure spaces are within 300 ft of the apt.), the unit configurations were drawn with storage capacities on the detention facilities both existing and proposed, and general landscaping will match the plantings in existence.

Kraus, Jr. motioned and Beiersdorfer seconded to grant primary approval for the new apartments holding this to 6 units and no more, with the landscaping to be done as submitted per schedule. All ayes.

NEW BUSINESS: Changes to the ordinances:

Digital submissions text added to ordinances in Article 2 Sections 216, 232, 244, and 260 were unanimously passed as FAVORABLE recommendations.

Plat requirements for section 244 and 260 were TABLED to fix some language in section 22b.

Vacation procedures were unanimously passed with FAVORABLE recommendation.

Plat certificates were passed with FAVORABLE recommendations.


1. 2009 schedule was approved.

2. Bond reports will be emailed to members- no material changes this month- though several are sue in January. Elvin Miller has numerous old ones that probably won’t get renewed.

3. Nelson advised the board and staff to look at how they will handle issues with insurance companies UNABLE to re-bond due to economic issues.

4. Lawrenceville property owners are mainly in favor of replat- but a couple more are needed to proceed.

5. OKI fiscal impact model will be testable in January. [NOTE: Bill Miller, our long-time liaison from OKI has resigned and taken another position this month.]

6. McCormack and the board thanked Bob Laws for his years of service. Laws has resigned and will not seek another 4- year appointment. [NOTE: Laws serves as a DEMOCRAT on this board.]

7. There is no progress on Sugar Ridge.

Meeting adjourned at 8:05 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

1 December 2008 Dearborn County Commissioners Meeting Notes

1 December 2008 Dearborn County Commissioners Meeting Notes

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

Commissioner-elect Tom Orschell was in attendance.

From last meeting- Dedication of cul-de-sac on Bittner Road originally presented by Dennis Kraus Jr. Surveyor. Ewbank said he had reviewed the request and it met the statute requirements. There was no expense to the county. Commissioners approved the dedication of the cul-de-sac.

Messmore presented for Bill Black on EMA- The grant application from FEMA under Homeland Security was signed by commissioners for windstorm reimbursement- not to exceed $95,000.

Todd Listerman was not present. Hughes and Thompson gave update on the Triple Whipple Bridge. There are pooling issues on the deck as the road was not crowned per the specs. The contractor has been notified. If they do not fix it, there is a bond.

Pickens- Claims and minutes signed. Fox abstained on the one where he was absent.

Messmore- asked the commissioners to approve selling Fox his 4-year- old laptop as it would be difficult to purge it of all the information on it- including some personnel issues. Thompson asked Ewbank if this was acceptable. Ewbank had no problem with the sale. Commissioners approved selling it to Fox for $1.
[NOTE: Perhaps commissioners should be GIVEN their laptops at the beginning of their tenure and this issue would be eliminated. After 4 years the laptops are not worth much monetarily, anyway.]

Thompson asked about status of the CAC (Children’s Advocacy Center) in Dillsboro. Messmore said the reapplication is in 1st qtr of 2009.

Ewbank- lawsuit on 2 county police responding as back up to Lawrenceburg when the wrong apt. was allegedly entered will probably end up with no cost to county.

Thompson- asked about claim for deductible on mediation in Greg Davis case. Commissioners decided to reject the claim on Ewbank’s advice until they could research it. The claim was for costs to investigate the case. As this is something they’ve never done before as a charge, they thought it best to reject until they could determine validity.

Thompson reported that he took steps to resolve the issue at Animal Control per their instructions at the previous meeting. The director chose not to resign , so she was terminated. He worked with staff and gave them copies of the first week’s report.

Hughes said he thought the COMMISSIONERS would have had to take that action.
Fox said the animal control board was essentially unanimous on the action.
Hughes said Thompson was to report back and then the board (commissioners) would take action.
Thompson said that was not clear - you authorized me to take the necessary steps and report back. That is what I am doing.
Commissioners decided to affirm Thompson’s actions to make it official, as the Animal Control Board is an advisory board. All three approved his actions on the director issue.
[NOTE: The wording they took as action after the last executive session was to give Thompson the approval to take whatever steps were necessary to settle this. What Hughes proposed sounded complicated. Was Thompson supposed to come back and say the director didn’t resign. Then they vote to terminate and he has to go back and tell her that later? Wouldn’t that be an issue of security for the county to leave an employee on the job for a week or two knowing they were being eliminated? In any event, it is kinder to the employee to take action quickly, rather than add extra stress to the situation. The president of the commissioners or the administrator should have performed this task, in my opinion.]

Meeting adjourned at 6:50 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township