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BE IT REMEMBERED, that the White County Commissioners held a regular meeting on Monday, April 7, 2008, at 8:00 a.m. in the White County Building, 2nd floor, Commissioners’ Conference Room.

Commissioners present were: President John C. Heimlich, Vice President Steve Burton, and Commissioner Ron Schmierer. Also present was the White County Attorney George Loy, White County Auditor Jill Guingrich, and the Commissioners’ Assistant Donya Tirpak.

Commissioner Heimlich called the meeting to order.


  • Commissioner Schmierer made a motion to approve the minutes as presented for the regular meeting on March 17, 2008, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous


  • Commissioner Schmierer made motion to approve the payroll as presented for April 7, 2008, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous


  • Commissioner Burton made a motion to approve and pay the claims as advertised, seconded by Commissioner Schmierer. Vote: Unanimous


Commissioner Heimlich said that the last time they discussed rebate checks was in February. At that time there were questions for the County Attorney about changing the law.

Bill Heiny, Deputy in the Auditor’s office, said that he understands that the State passed the law to provide an opportunity to apply these rebates to tax delinquencies for an individual. He didn’t think that the law specifically said delinquent taxes on that particular parcel only. So then we’re force to review everything a person owns which could be very time consuming.

Bill said that he thinks that the county will be running into a lot of problems because the tax bill that went out shows who owned the property as of March 6, 2006. He said that there have already been a lot of transfers of property in the past two years. Bill made the recommendation to just process the refund checks and get it done.

Other counties have told Bill that they have had arguments as to who is supposed to get the refund checks, the buyer or the seller. Bill said that ideally, it should go to whoever received the tax bill. Bill said that he doesn’t know exactly how the law is written but if the county attorney could specify in an ordinance to apply the delinquent Homestead credit to that particular parcel number only.

White County Treasurer Kathy Gross said that the way she understood the law was that we just need to send out the rebate checks. It was not the intent of the legislation that the credit be applied to any delinquent parcels, it was their intent that it be sent to the person. On Organization Day at the legislator, they said that we don’t have to research the person to see if they own anything. Originally, we would have to do a research and it would require an ordinance by the Commissioners. Kathy said that the last discussion that was held about this in February, it was the intent that we didn’t want to send out rebate checks to someone whose property may go up on tax sale. She said that they can’t apply anything until they have an ordinance from the Commissioners. She said that if you want us to just send out the rebate checks, that won’t be an issue and she can send them out tomorrow.

Commissioner Schmierer said that we shouldn’t send out a rebate if someone owes $1,000 on their Homestead parcel.

Bill Heiny asked if there was still an ordinance needed for something like that. Kathy said, “Yes, that’s what we’re waiting on. If you want us to apply any of those funds to anything, we have to have the ordinance.”

Attorney George Loy said that there was also the question about a sewer lien being on a property from a municipality and if we were going to address this. Attorney Loy recommended that it would be very time consuming and not to address it because the lien was not generated by the county.

Commissioner Burton said that he can see how complicated this could get because there are going to be some tax sales but the number could be smaller because of the checks going out.

Commissioner Schmierer asked how many Homestead parcels are delinquent. Kathy said that there are five to seven hundred.

Bill explained that this money, being a part of the Homestead credit, comes from the state straight to the county. This year the taxpayer got billed that amount so the county is not out of any money. The county has already received their money.

Bill said that he asked the Local Department of Government Finance if we could just send out a correct tax bill because we were so late sending out bills and they said that the state will not allow us to send out a correct tax bill because they wanted everyone to get a refund check.

  • Commissioner Schmierer made a motion to direct the rebate checks for the Homestead credit to be sent out immediately, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous


Commissioner Heimlich said that a meeting was held with the E-911 Director, Emergency Management Director, Monticello Fire Chief and a Commissioner to discuss the grants. It was the consensus of everyone that we need to wait for a little while and see what happens with the EMA grant.


Randy Mitchell, Director of Kankakee-Iroquois Regional Planning Commission, requested the Commissioners signature on a letter that will be submitted to the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration. This letter aligns the regional planning district with EDA. The EDA records do not include Benton County. To have this done, K-IRPC has to have a letter from the Commissioners from every served county in their district.

  • Commissioner Schmierer made a motion to approve the letter from the Commissioners to the EDA including Benton County into the K-IRPC’s district, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous


White County Clerk Bruce Lambert submitted in writing the voting places in White County for the Primary Election on May 6, 2008 as follows:

Big Creek Chalmers Town Hall

Cass Richard Welker Residence

Honey Creek Reynolds Fire House

Jackson Burnettsville Community Center

Liberty 1 Buffalo Fire House

Liberty 2 Sitka Baptist Church

Lincoln Idaville Fire House

Monon 1 Monon Fire House

Monon 2 North White High School

Monon 3 Lions Club Building

Prairie 1 Frontier – Brookston Gym

Prairie 2 Frontier – Brookston Gym

Princeton 1 Firehouse Community Room

Princeton 2 Firehouse Community Room

Round Grove Don Burton Residence

Union 1 American Legion

Union 2 CDC Resource Center

Union 3 Moose Lodge

Union 4 County Building

Union 5 County Building

Union 6 County Building

Union 7 County Building

West Point Tri-County High School

  • Commissioner Burton made a motion to approve the primary polling sites for May 6, 2008, as presented, seconded by Commissioner Schmierer. Vote: Unanimous


Darryll Johns, SFLECC, appeared before the Commissioners informing them that starting on Saturday, weather permitting, they are going to start lowering Lake Freeman for the Community Lake clean-up for a couple of weekends and after that they will do Lake Shafer. He said that he will have 4 dumpsters that were donated to them on each lake for the project. He has talked with Liberty Landfill and Mr. Terry Beasy has told him that if the county will waive their tipping fees waived then he could possibly waive all of the dumping fees. Darryll asked the Commissioners if this would be possible.

Commissioner Burton commented that the dumpsters that the county has been using for the flood clean-up; the county did pay all of the tipping/dumping fees from the landfill and also the fee for the use of the dumpsters. Under these circumstances, Steve said that he feels reluctant to waive the fees for the SFLECC.

Mr. Johns said that he wasn’t aware of this and he understands.


White County Economic Development Director Connie Neininger presented a proposal for a change order on the Ivy Tech renovation project. Change Order #1 was for $5,082.00 which is the cost of removing all of the wall coverings, drywall, and replacing it with new. In the original proposal, there was a cost for removing the drywall but they forgot to add the cost of putting it back on.

Connie requested an approval from the Commissioners for the change order.

  • Commissioner Burton made a motion to approve Change Order #1 which is the change in dry wall in the amount of $5,082.00 for the Ivy Tech Renovation project, seconded by Commissioner Schmierer. Vote: Unanimous

Connie also presented two other documents that they will probably receive change orders in the future. The proposal for $1,100 is for furnishing labor, material, and equipment for a 7’x8’ masonry opening. The proposal for $162 is for labor and materials to add half inch diameter flexible tubing within the exterior metal framed wall to accommodate a portable vacuum pump.

Connie said that Fanning/Howey Associates have looked over the proposals and they are comfortable with the dollar amount.

They are now shooting for a July 1, 2008, completion date which is one month ahead of the schedule.


White County Attorney George Loy said that the Pickens case is still pending from the first phase of the 6th Street Construction project. Attorney Loy asked permission from the Commissioners to settle the case.

At the beginning the original offer to Mr. Pickens, which they turned down, was $242, 215. Since this amount was turned down the case went to condemnation and was transferred to Carroll County. Attorney Loy said that the court appraisers came in at $189,000 and he would like to split that difference and settle it for $216,000.

  • Commissioner Burton made a motion to direct Attorney Loy to settle the Pickens for $216,000, seconded by Commissioner Heimlich. Vote: Unanimous

There being no further business to come before the board, their meeting was adjourned.

________________________________ _____________________________ ___________________________

John C. Heimlich, President Steve Burton, Vice President Ronald Schmierer, Member

ATTEST: ____________________________________

Jill Guingrich, White County Auditor