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BE IT REMEMBERED that a regular meeting of the White County Council was held at the White County Building in Monticello at 9:00 A.M. on August 21, 2017 for the purpose of discussing the additional appropriations, budget and other business that might come before the membership.

Council President Butch Kramer called the Council meeting to order in joint session with the Commissioners. The following members were absent: None

The following members were present:

 

Dennis E Carter Kevin L Crabb Art A Anderson

Bruce D Clear Raymond L Kramer Jr James G Annis

James B Davis

HIGHLIGHTS OF JOINT SESSION:

Dr. Derek Sharvelle warned everyone not to look at the sun this afternoon during the eclipse, even with dark sunglasses. It could cause blindness. He said only special eclipse glasses should be worn.

 

White County Communications/E911 Director Terri Brooks said her Department saves lives every day, but she wanted to recognize some people who were thinking outside the box to save the life of Mr. Bob Burley. A three-year-old girl told her grandma she heard someone crying, and her grandma, Maureen Scalise, went to check and could hear it was coming from across the lake. She called 911, and dispatcher Katie Stout exhausted all normal avenues to help. When that brought no resolution, Katie called the Sheriff’s office manager, Marla Gregory, who Katie knew lived in the vicinity. Marla immediately went outside to see if she could hear or see anything. Marla stayed on the phone with Katie as she searched. She came upon Mr. Burley’s overturned mower and Ms. Scalise, who had decided to join in the search and had ahold of his outstretched arm. Ms. Scalise held him above water until help arrived. Mr. Burley attended the meeting with his wife, Kathryn. He said he had fallen into the water when his mower tipped. He was trapped with one leg pinned on the seawall and the rest of his body in the water. He was desperately trying to hold on to the seawall but his grip kept slipping and he was repeatedly submerged. Mr. Burley said he had just given up and put it the Lord’s hands, and was going down for the last time. Something in him made him push up one last time. As he rose above the water with his arm outstretched, Maureen was able to grab his hand. He said it was truly a miracle. Director Brooks said because of everyone’s efforts, Bob is here and celebrating his 62nd wedding anniversary today with his wife, Kathryn. Mr. Burley wanted to thank and praise those who serve in the emergency field. He said he received exemplary care.

 

White County Economic Development (WCED) President Randy Mitchell said although the number of new jobs is down, there are signs that the economy is doing well.

There were some good meetings at a recent conference he attended, and he talked with site selectors one-on-one.

There was a recent site visit of the shell building in Mid-America Commerce Park.

 

White County Highway Department Superintendent Mike Kyburz said the Department is in the middle of chip and seal projects. He may have them begin work on hard surfacing the windmill area if it is going to be done. He said contractors are booked and unavailable. There are six bridges in the Monon area being repaired. Mr. Kyburz is anxious to find out if the Department will be awarded money from the Community Crossings Grant.

 

White County Area Plan Director Colin Betts reported 100 permit inspections and 30 new permits in July which are both ahead of last year at this time.

Director Betts said the new Building Department fee schedule combines some of the odd fees to others making it simpler to understand. Everything will fall under one of two categories: primary structures or secondary structures. There have not been any adjustments to the fees since 2014.

Commissioner Diener made a motion to accept the new building fee schedule. Commissioner Burton seconded the motion. Vote: Unanimous

 

White County Recycling Director Dawn Girard said she used 2017 County funds and grant money to purchase an F250 pickup truck, baler repair and purchase of tools. The remaining grant funds will be combined with some of 2018 grant money to replace an F250 pickup truck with over 175,000 miles.

Director Girard said receipts are up by about $28,000 for July (over July 2016) because of stock market prices, bartering with brokers and more materials collected. Cardboard brings in the most money.

The collection trailers are being color coded giving them a fresh look. Director Girard said trailer and location maintenance is an ongoing battle. New fencing is going up at the Monticello location to help coral items blowing around.

Director Girard said she has been helping local businesses find avenues to recycle materials the recycling center does not take.

The public can bring TVs to the Recycling center to be recycled for free, while others charge $10.00 to $15.00 to take them. Northwest Indiana Solid Waste District pays Electronics Recyclers Inc. 2¢ or 3¢ per pound for recycled TVs.

 

White County Environmental Investigator Jim Reynolds said he has dealt with 104 calls/complaints and reviewing weekly pool samples. He has had training on homemade explosives. He was also notified that White County tested positive for West Nile virus, as have most Indiana counties.

 

Metronet Representative Mike Crabb was seeking to move forward with a 5-year renewable phone contract with the County. County Attorney George Loy wanted to be sure there was a notice given to the County a few months in advance of the renewal date, and he asked how termination fees work should the County decide to terminate their services. Mr. Crabb said early termination reimbursement is a percentage of the MMR recurring fee. There is no additional cost to adding the Highway Department or the Recycling Department to the plan other than the $16.00 per phone per month charge. Cost would be the same whether they are added initially or later. Mr. Crabb does not anticipate any issues running fiber as Metronet runs fiber throughout the state. Whenever additional phones or additional buildings are added to the plan, they are added as an addendum to the original contract with the initial expiration date.

White County currently owns the equipment and pays $6,200 a month. With Metronet the County will pay $7,000 a month and it covers the equipment, services, and maintenance. Once the contract is signed, it will be a couple of weeks to begin assigning numbers. Then an additional 60 to 90 days before the actual cut-over, which will have no service interruption.

Commissioner Diener made a motion to enter into the contract with Metronet. Commissioner Burton seconded the motion. Vote: Unanimous

 

Commissioner Diener said the Courthouse will be closed to the public the afternoon of August 23, 2017, for Courthouse employee safety training. The Security Committee has been and continues to consider many different ideas for making the Courthouse and other County buildings safer. They recommend hiring an additional full-time and two part-time Officers for a total of two full-time and two part-time Officers. The committee also recommends using the north ADA compliant entrance as the only public entrance into the Courthouse, and to set it up with a metal detector. They are researching video conferencing in place of transporting inmates when possible, such as for initial hearings and bond hearings. Camera equipment and installation cost approximately $15,000 per location.

For more detailed content of joint session, see Commissioners’ minutes.

 

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

Council President Kramer opened the special Council meeting with the Council reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

 

MINUTES

Councilor Clear made a motion to accept the July 17, 2017 minutes. Councilor Crabb seconded the motion. Vote: Unanimous

ADDITIONAL APPROPRIATIONS

There were no additional appropriation requests brought before the Council.

TRANSFERS

The following transfers were received:

 

AMOUNT FROM TO

White County Circuit Court $4,000.00 174-4-1-10 1-4-1-11

Petit Jury Pauper Attorney

White County Highway Department

$30,023.10 4-402-1-13 4-404-4-41

Laborers New Equipment

$ 9,121.26 4-402-1-11 4-404-4-41

Truck Drivers New Equipment

$19,596.42 4-402-1-16 4-404-4-41

Drag Operators New Equipment

$18,081.80 4-404-1-11 4-404-4-41

Mechanics & Welder New Equipment

 

President Kramer suggested tabling the Highway Department request until after speaking with Superintendent Kyburz during his budget hearing to learn more about what the new equipment is.

Councilor Crabb made a motion to approve the above transfer for White County Circuit Court and to table the Highway Department request until further information is obtained. Councilor Davis seconded the motion. Vote: Unanimous

TAXING ENTITY COLLABORATION GROUP UPDATE

Mike Godlove said there is a meeting with the city of Avon that all White County School Superintendents and Auditor Rogers have agreed to attend. He wants to meet with Avon because they have not had a referendum and have done a good job of managing their budget. They are in the top 10 or 20 schools in Indiana. He hopes to develop some form of taxing entity collaboration group to help save money in all the White County Schools. Mr. Godlove wants the public to know what is being done so they can see the schools are doing everything they can to cover expenses and keep their budgets intact. He said White County Community Foundation and White County Economic Development is behind this, and the schools seem to be moving it up their priority list.

INNKEEPERS ORDINANCE CHANGES

Councilor Clear said the Tourism Authority would like to have both groups that receive Innkeepers taxes get together and come up with a plan. Council President Kramer said the 3% board would like to see some of the money shifted away from the Tourism Authority because they seem to be getting away from the original intent for the use of that money. They are using it for brick and mortar projects instead of expanding the tourist season. Councilor Clear said you would hear the opposite view from the Tourism Authority which is another reason the two groups should meet. He said the Tourism Authority felt like the ballfield, for example, would bring people in before and after the usual tourist season, however, it may be difficult to compete with other counties that have larger facilities. Councilor Clear was not sure if the two groups could assess penalties to those not paying the tax without changing the ordinance.

BOARD MEETING REPORTS

 

White County Emergency Management Advisory Board: Councilor Clear said EMA wants to purchase a UVA and a trailer to haul it to use at the Fair and other various times. They currently have $5,200 to put toward it, but will need a little more. He and the EMA board see there is a need for this and suggested Director Roberta Yerk bring in estimates.

 

Community Corrections Advisory Board: Councilor Anderson said there are people from the Sheriff’s Department, City of Monticello, Wolcott, Monon, and Brookston who want to get new $245,000 software with $18,000 maintenance fee for the White County Emergency 911 Communications Department (E911). He believes it’s so they can have more control of that Department. He said E911 Department Director Terri Brooks already purchased software that does what these people are wanting for only $30,000 and it covers all the towns. These people are not talking with Director Brooks; they are acting on their own. Councilor Anderson said these people found software for $50,000 per town and they want the County to pay for it. Councilor Clear said these people should be communicating with Director Brooks since she understands what is needed.

 

Kankakee-Iroquois Regional Planning Committee: Councilor Davis said about half of what KIRP-C does is overseeing the Head-Start program for Jasper, Pulaski, and Newton Counties. He is hearing complaints about the White County Head-Start program and understands that the program here does not compare to the other programs. Councilor Davis said it is a Federal program, but he wondered how the program is controlled, and by whom. The group meets at North White High School. He said the other counties bus children into their respective meetings, but in White County the children must find their own way. That is a problem because it is an income-based program. He would like to know who runs it. It used to be run out of Area IV which no longer has an office in White County.

 

WHITE COUNTY PAYROLL REQUESTS

Auditor Rogers turned in payroll requests:

 

Community Corrections:

Riley Young as a replacement Surveillance Officer at the designated pay for that position. He was a Corrections Officer.

 

Sheriff’s Department:

Adam Langley is replacing Riley Young at the Jail at the Corrections Officer rate.

Robert Alley, Corrections Officer at the Jail, part-time hourly rate.

Toni Fox, part-time cook which is a new position that was approved at budget time and they are just now filling the position.

Kathy Mc Meeken part-time cleaning lady at the jail.

 

Emergency 911:

Alice Dilling moving to full-time from part-time Dispatcher.

Miranda Peck part-time Dispatcher.

 

Emergency Management Association

Tim Mc Fadden, new employee six-month pay increase.

 

Auditor Rogers said in the Tim Mc Fadden situation, EMA Director Yerk could have started him at the budgeted rate without Council approval, or moved him to that budgeted rate at a later date, as was the rule at the time he was hired. The October 17, 2016 minutes stated that the additional funds for him would be in the 2017 budget. If he was doing the job well, she could raise his pay by 1 ½ %. Councilor Clear said the discussion last month was that the letter requesting the raise was recommended by the EMA Board Councilor Clear serves on, and he didn’t remember the subject coming up. He wanted to check into that.

Councilor Clear made a motion to move up Tim Mc Fadden’s salary to 31,961.00. Councilor Annis seconded the motion. Vote: Unanimous

 

Councilor Davis asked if there are exit interviews for those who leave and especially when there are several from the same office. And if so, is there anything the Council should be aware of? Auditor Rogers said they do exit interviews with those who are willing. She said employees sometimes leave for better pay, but more so lately for personality conflicts.

Council President Kramer asked how these new employees are being hired without Council approval. To clarify, he checked the July 17, 2017 minutes, and said so long as Department Heads hire at the base rate of the matrix salary range for the position, they do not need to bring it before the Council. It’s when they want to pay more than the base rate for the position, they need to bring it before the Council.

Auditor Rogers said the base pay for each position was figured using numbers Waggoner, Irwin, Scheele & Associates Inc. provided and tweaked to our matrix system by Auditor Rogers and HR Auditor Deputy Leah Hull.

 

MONDAY, AUGUST 21

Council President Kramer called the budget hearings to order. Council discussed the departmental budget proposals and the economy of the County as a whole. Council met with County Commissioners John Heimlich, Dave Diener and Steve Burton. Upcoming projects and financial requirements were discussed. One of the projects discussed was the upcoming construction of a new highway department. Further IDEM requirements must be satisfied prior to the project getting off the ground. There are plans in place to move the HR Department out of the Auditor’s office sometime in 2018. HR will become a stand-alone department with its own budget, reporting directly to the Commissioners. A discussion took place regarding two large line item requests in the airport budget. When Commissioner Heimlich heard the request for the fuel system was $625,000, he expressed that he was told a couple years ago that project would cost in the neighborhood of $350,000. The Commissioners had not, at this point, received word from the WCBOAC that the road to replace Luse Road would not be constructed. The Council was told at their July meeting that the WCBOAC received word in April that the FAA would not fund the road replacement. The Commissioners’ salary recommendation was to provide no more than a 2.8% general increase with the exception of certain employees for whom the respective Department Head could show justification to waiver from the general increase. At 5:00 pm Councilor Annis made a motion to adjourn with a second by Councilor Clear.

Vote: Unanimous

 

TUESDAY, AUGUST 22

Council met with each Department Head to determine the reasoning and justification for that department’s proposed budget. Each Department Head was requested to try to cut 10% from departmental expenses in order to allow for a general salary increase.

Much discussion ensued regarding a request from the White County Board of Aviation Commission for two large expenditures for a new fuel system and to purchase air rights to trim trees blocking the lights on the runway, costing $625,000 and $641,000 respectively. There were two contentious issues:

The WCBOAC did not have a firm quote for either project;

The WCBOAC is not intending to construct the road to replace Luse Road.

 

At 5:30 pm Councilor Anderson moved to adjourn; Councilor Crabb seconded. Vote: Unanimous

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 23

Council did not meet.

THURSDAY, AUGUST 24

Council discussed each budget and finalized approved figures for future adoption. Tuesday evening (August 16th), Councilor Kramer received a phone call from Mr. Phil Gutwein, WCBOAC President, informing Councilor Kramer that Mr. Gutwein had received a firm quote for the fuel system project of $353,000. In view of all the confusion created with the lack of communication by the airport representatives, the Council made the following decision:

 

The WCBOAC must display due diligence on the Luse Road replacement. Once the new road is approved and funded by the FAA including an anticipated completion date and timeline acceptable to the White County Board of Commissioners and White County Council, the Council will reconsider the request for expenditure of funds for a fuel system and the purchasing of air rights. Also, a WCBOAC representative shall attend the joint session of Commissioners and Council on the third Monday of each month, or as scheduled, to provide those boards an updated report on the airport.

 

Highway Transfer, continued from Monday, August 21, 2017

 

Councilor Anderson motioned to approve the requested transfers from the Highway Department. There was a second by Councilor Clear.

Vote: Unanimous

The last action for the Council was to determine whether to grant a general salary increase. All members agreed the department heads did a great job of making budget cuts as requested. There were a few who didn’t try, but for the most part, everyone complied. Councilor Carter suggested a 3% general increase. All Councilors agreed.

 

Auditor Rogers will distribute approved budgets to department heads within the next week for their review prior to the scheduled adoption date of September 18, 2017.

ADJOURNMENT

As the budgeting approval process was concluded, Council President Kramer called for a motion to adjourn the 2018 budget hearings at 4:45pm. Councilor Clear, so moved. Councilor Anderson, second. Vote: Unanimous

 

 

___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________

DENNIS E CARTER JAMES G ANNIS ART A ANDERSON

 

 

___________________________ ___________________________ ___________________________

JAMES B DAVIS KEVIN L CRABB RAYMOND L KRAMER JR

President

 

___________________________ Attest: ___________________________

BRUCE D CLEAR GAYLE E ROGERS, AUDITOR

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

REGULAR COUNCIL MINUTES

August 21, 2017

 

 

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