Wednesday, November 24, 2010

23 November 2010 Dearborn County Council Meeting Notes

23 November 2010 Dearborn County Council Meeting Notes

Present: Dennis Kraus Sr., President, Tom Cheek, Dan Lansing, Liz Morris, Maynard Barrett, Bill Ullrich, and Bryan Messmore
Also present: Bill Ewbank, County Coordinator and Gayle Pennington, Auditor

Superior Court II – Sally Blankenship- Additional request for Public Defenders-Bill Ullrisch said he saw this coming as they are very busy there. This was advertised out of County General- for $25,000. She said they can do it for $20,000. Passed with Cheek as only Nay.

DCRSD- Steve Renihan- transfer of funds for sewer district budget- Gayle Pennington asked permission to move DCRSD budget to where it belongs.

Wages- $ 1,450 for Secretary (Vera Benning) get one more day per week when they were working on High Ridge project. All ayes passed.

West Harrison TIF District- $1,382,000 to serve this area to help promote industry there. This will take it to Harrison. They are NOT going to force people on. They expect to have a payback over a 40 year period. They have an interlocal agreement with Harrison and they will charge the same rate that they charge to West Harrison. There are several businesses in the area that will look up.

Dennis Kraus Sr asked if the taxpayers should be paying so that others will do better financially.

Mike Rozow for Redevelopment Commission- Rozow said they have a company with 140 jobs lined up already that is relocating to Indiana from out of state. This will cause a domino effect if we move forward this evening. Rozow said he wasn’t sure he’d answered Kraus’s question. He did say that he thought that in years to come perhaps people will say that we did this right.

Council members discussed that they’d set the wheels in motion on this to get more jobs to see it through.

Messmore tried several times to make a motion during this interchange.

Kraus asked what’s to stop someone from putting a huge residential development up there.

McCormack said there is almost nor residential zoning up there. All ayes passed.

Guilford preliminary engineering study- $17,500 approved by Commissioners to go to Council for this. 43 homes identified by Health Dept. Options to take it to Greendale or run it to PNS to take it thru their lift station to Pribble to be treated by that. Both municipalities are willing to take this. All ayes passed.

Rozow also said he wanted to thank Tom Cheek for his service. (Cheek is leaving Council at the end of his term)

Planning and Zoning- Mark McCormack- copier, fax, printer machine- he’s trying to save money because of the increased maintenance costs due to being past 5 years. He got quotes and the cheapest was actually an upgrade of current one. Asking to have permission to lease with option to buy the next machine. Also needed direction to either auction the machine or to give to some other dept that has low volume needs. Already have money in the budget to do it. They will get maybe $1,000-1,500 for it. They’ve done 300-400,000 copies on it. All ayes approved.

McCormack said that the money that will be generated in tax revenue will probably pay for this sewer project for the TIF. He thought the Council might want to know that regarding DCRSD’s previous request.

Elks Youth program- Sue Dausch- thanks for supporting them last year. She gave Council a handout. Asking for $1,000 for 2011. All ayes approved.

Coroner-Wesley Holt- day to day operations- was taken care of the last meeting.

Surveyor Dennis Kraus Jr., - Stateline monument- information only. Rough drawing handed out. He will come back for this at a future meeting. There is a monument there on the corner. It has been hit by semi-trucks many times. He met with Ohio in Cleves. It’s been replaced several times. Israel Ludlow, surveyor, originally placed it in 1838. Can’t move the monument as it is historical. They decided to put a turn lane around it. This will improve safety for semi-trucks that swing wide to make that turn. Ohio will pay for most of this. Greendale is probably not wanting to put money into this. $10,000 would be our share. Hoping that the guy that owns the land there will donate it. Only about 10 ft that we have to acquire. He will advertise this out of riverboat revenue for next meeting. Greendale BOW will be kept in the loop and they have no problem with us doing it.

Highway Dept- Todd Listerman absent so Dennis Kraus Jr- read his request for permission to encumber funds for Short Ridge Bridge- $600,000 needed and only has one last parcel to acquire for it. Approved.

Park Board- Steve Walker- getting a Bright parcel for $53,900 for 3.811 acres. Kraus said this needs to be approved by Planning- and Kraus Jr.- said that it will go thru as a certified survey- minor land division. All ayes approved. Funds are already in their budget. Walker thanked council for their help with capital improvements. He apologized for confusion- it is their first time they have purchased any land.

Auditor- Gayle Pennington- Minutes and EMS Training claims- In the commissioners budget and signed off by Council- there are 23 awards from Dearborn County Hospital for EMS training- needing signatures. Signed. Minutes were tabled till next meeting.

Cheek asked about plans for next year- and resolution on new hires for vacated positions. It has not been drawn up yet.

Tom Cheek asked for a few minutes to make some comments per Dennis Kraus Sr. Cheek later provided the text of his comments reprinted verbatim below:

Fellow Council members:

First I want to publicly thank the people of Dearborn County for putting their faith and trust in me for the past twelve years to serve as their Council Representative. I would also like to extend a special thanks to some of the office holders and employees who have treated me with the respect and professionalism that anyone could ever hope for. I started this position with a clear and open mind hoping I could make a difference in our community. Unfortunately it didn’t take long for me to figure out the amount of politics that are involved. Not that I was na├»ve, but I didn’t imagine it was as wide spread as it is. I distinctly remember my first round of budget hearings. I looked out in the hallway and saw three people changing a light bulb! I thought to myself, what a waste of tax dollars!

On a more serious note, I know that everyone here knows what has to be done to make a more affordable and efficient County government. I know you are all familiar with your Governor’s opinions on streamlining local government. A lot of it is spelled out in the Kernan-Shepard Report of 2008. Although I do not agree with all the recommendations in this report, I do agree with most. For instance, establishing a single more unified legislative body for county government and expand legislative membership to insure representation to all areas of the county. Another would be to create one body to oversee all county public safety services. This would break up all the little kingdoms around the county. We should expand coordination and consolidation of services. This would strengthen the power of voters to compel consolidation. And lastly Prohibit employees of a local government unit from serving as elected officials within the same local unit. I quote directly out of the Kernan-Shepard report. “Allowing the employees of a unit of local government to serve as elected policymakers for that unit is an unacceptable practice for a number of reasons. First, it is a clear conflict of interest for public employees to benefit from their actions as elected officials. Second, it undermines the chain of command and procedures for discipline that are critical to effective public services, particularly public safety. And perhaps most important, it diminishes the faith that citizens have that local governments act in the public interest. End quote. This is part of your Governor’s platform and agenda for Indiana. I would think that this is the direction our county would want to go. With the amount of political power and the number of majority votes in this county and having control of both houses of the Indiana General Assembly in January along with the Governor’s office I am confident that some of these changes will occur. I charge both bodies of our local government to listen to your Governor and step up to the plate and be a leader in some of these reforms that he is advocating. Thanks you for this opportunity to address Council and good luck on your future council agendas. Thank you.


Tom Cheek

Ullrich moved to give him a round of applause for his service. {APPLAUSE}

NEXT meeting will be a short one on Dec 14 – 6 PM to transfer money for Votaw building and Shumway along with Hoosier Square. The county will advertise for $1,250,000 to cover this.

Meeting adjourned at 8:30 PM

Christine Brauer Mueller
Lawrenceburg Township


Anonymous said...

sewer is this just for the car dealer whats the name of others that want it please?

Anonymous said...

no one going to jump on this! come on if you make every body hook to this it will pay for it self in 5 years why the tax payers?