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BE IT REMEMBERED, that the White County Commissioners held a Regular Meeting on Tueday, February 21, 2006, at 8:00 a.m. in the Commissioners Conference Room in the White County Courthouse.

Commissioners present were: President John C. Heimlich, Vice President Steve Burton, and Member O.D. “Bud” Ferguson. Also present was the White County Attorney George Loy, White County Auditor Mary Jo Pool and the Commissioners Assistant Donya Tirpak.

Commissioner President Heimlich called the meeting to order.


Commissioner Ferguson made a motion to approve the minutes as presented for the meetings on January 16, 2006, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous


Commissioner Burton made a motion to approve the payroll for February 27, 2006, seconded by Commissioner Ferguson. Vote: Unanimous


Commissioner Heimlich discussed the proposal of excess earthquake insurance from Heiny Insurance. The proposal is to have an additional $10 million above the base coverage for $2,400.

After a short discussion, the Commissioners decided to have our agent come in and give more information.


Terry Beasy, Operations Manager, appeared before the Commissioners reporting that the landfill has purchased the Nelson property. This property is approximately .84 acres purchased by Liberty Landfill for $4,500.00 and deeded to the White County Commissioners. This property will straighten out both of the 90 degree corners. This property is located west of Mark Crowders’ property.


AT THIS TIME, Council President James Mann called the White County Council to order in joint session with the County Commissioners. Council members present were:

James Mann Richard “Buzz” Horton Dennis Cain

Kevin “Casey” Crabb Dennis Carter


Randy Mitchell appeared before the Commissioners and Council announcing that he is the new Director for the Kankakee-Iroquois Regional Planning office. Mr. Mitchell explained that K-IRPC has procured over $11 million in grant funds for the six county region since 2000. Their last project for the county was for the White County Food Pantry which brought in $189,000.00 for their new building.


White County Building Inspector Dave Anderson reported that there were three new homes built in White County last month.

Mr. Anderson said that they do have a new look in the Area Plan and Building Department and he welcomes everyone to stop by and see the finished remodeling work. In one week, the rolling shelving will be installed.

Commissioner Burton said that Dave Anderson went above and beyond his duties to have the remodeling project a success and he appreciates everything that he has put forth for the project.


E-911 Director Terri Conwell reported that she is currently working with the cellular phone representatives trying to figure out why the cell phones ring at least five times before the call actually rings at the E-911 center. Terri is also trying to put together some statistics for her department to give everyone an idea how busy the department gets each year.


Connie Neininger, Director, reported that the Industrial Foundation Annual Meeting was held at the Brandywine with 65 attendees. Mrs. Neininger gave a handout to everyone highlighting the county statistics, employment statistics, top manufactures, population, goals for 2006, etc.

Councilman Horton said that on behalf of the White County Industrial Foundation they are very happy to have Connie Neininger and Dr. Hanni on board with the county.


Environmental Officer John Raines submitted the Complaints and Violations for January 2006. Mr. Raines reported that last month he had a lot of interstate traffic accidents, clean-ups.


Lakeview Home Director, Kae Fuller, announced that she is hosting the State Meeting on July 15th at Lakeview Home beginning at 10:00 a.m. and she asked the Commissioners and Council to please be present.

At a previous State Budget meeting, Kae was complimented on Lakeview Home being such a cost-effective alternative program for people in our county.

Lakeview Home will be celebrating 100 years and there are several celebration events that Kae would like to put together for next year.


White County Memorial Hospital CEO, Paul Cardwell, presented the Financial Analysis report for January 31, 2006.

Mr. Cardwell reported that the board hopes to start construction on the Medical Arts Building in June. The board will be voting on a construction manager at their next meeting.

The Medical Arts Building is going to be about 50,000 sq feet and 39,000 sq feet has already been spoken for. The amount that the hospital can afford on the building is around $6 million.

There are still a lot of things to get started for the hospital, but Mr. Cardwell reported that they would like to see construction start in October.

Councilman Horton asked Mr. Cardwell to give them the latest information on the underwriter.

Mr. Cardwell said that the board does have a dollar amount if the hospital would stand on their own and say that its just the hospital and no backing from the county and no taxing authority. The bank has also given Mr. Cardwell a dollar amount for another option, which would be, the county not putting in any tax money but the county giving the agreement that if the hospital could no longer pay its debt, the county would take over the hospital. Mr. Cardwell will present the dollar amounts to the board and he is not for sure which direction they will go. Mr. Cardwell did say that between the two options there is over a $3.5 million dollar difference.

Councilman Horton said that in his own personal opinion it does make sense for White County to purchase the land for the hospital but his biggest fear is the bond indebtedness.

Mr. Cardwell said that the bank has stated that ultimately if the hospital cannot continue to make its payments, the hospital will be turned over to the county.


Commissioner Heimlich discussed previous meetings where the Commissioners and Council discussed purchasing the land where the hospital will be built on. Since the hospital has already purchased the land, 38.125 acres located on South Sixth Street for $950,125, the county would be reimbursing the hospital and the land would be deeded in the county’s name. The hospital needs to know what their bottom line figure is going to be by the 28th of this month.

One of the different options that were discussed to come up with the money was to sell the 78.6 acres, of farmland that the county owns and leases every year. This is not a part of the Lakeview Home land. The money from selling the county farmland could be used to purchase the land where the hospital is going to be built. Commissioner Heimlich explained that the only problem with this option is that selling the county farmland takes a couple of months and the hospital does not have that much time.

Commissioner Heimlich explained the other option that the county could do to borrow the money. The money could be borrowed out of the Landfill Reserve Fund which currently has over $5 million, and replenish the money after the sale of the county’s farmland.

Attorney George Loy said that the ordinance was created by a joint ordinance of the Commissioners and Council. The ordinance does not prohibit the borrowing of funds but he feels that it would be appropriate to have a joint resolution authorizing the borrowing, so long as it does not interfere with any type of appropriation that you may come up with in the future in the reserve fund. At this time, there are no appropriated funds because under the current ordinance the only way money can be spent out of the fund is if there was an emergency.

Councilman Cain asked if the process for selling the county farmland has been started. Commissioner Heimlich said that they do have an interested buyer, Indiana Beach, and they will now focus on the appraisal process. Commissioner Heimlich pointed out that knowing Indiana Beach is interested; the county will still have to go through a process of an auction or collecting sealed bids because it is public land and it does have to be offered to the public.

Commissioner Heimlich asked if there were any additional thoughts from the Council members. Councilman Horton stated once again that he personally thinks that the county should purchase the land for the hospital, continue with the $180,000 a year, but he feels that the county should not be included in the bond.

Commissioner Heimlich explained that since the money is needed by the 28th the Commissioners and Council need to adopt a joint resolution authorizing the borrowing of the money from the Landfill Reserve Fund. Then a motion is needed to use that money borrowed to reimburse the hospital for the purchase of the land.

  • Councilman Richard Horton made a motion that the county be authorized to borrow money from the Landfill Reserve Fund to reimburse the hospital for the purchase of the ground where the new hospital will be constructed, seconded by Commissioner Steve Burton. Vote: Unanimous

  • Commissioner Steve Burton made a motion that we use $954,200 borrowed from the Landfill Reserve Fund to purchase/reimburse the White County Hospital Association for the ground, 38.125 acres, that the new hospital will be constructed on, seconded by Councilman Denny Carter. Vote: Unanimous


White County Treasurer Kathy Gross appeared before the Commissioners and Council presenting a contract for a software and maintenance package for the Auditor’s and Treasurer’s office. This is a new tax software system used for creating the property tax, personal property tax and ditch tax. Kathy said that effective December 31, 2006, she will not be supported by her current tax system. The system currently is Atek, which is the oldest Manatron tax system dating back to 1985. It is a requirement that she has a new system by the end of this year.

Kathy explained that right now would be the ideal time for her to purchase the system because the Legislation is in session with House Bill 121. This means that the Auditor and Treasurer doesn’t know exactly when they will get the tax rates, when the tax bills will be sent out or when tax collection will be.

Kathy also noted that out of all of the software companies that she has met with, G.U.T.S. (Government Utilities Technology Service, Inc., is the only company that will offer a “no additional fees” for software changes called by the Legislation.

The yearly support and maintenance cost was higher then the other companies but Kathy feels that this cost will be lower than having to pay for updates. Kathy said that she already has a good working relationship with G.U.T.S. because they are currently putting all of the tax information on the internet for White County.

The total cost of the tax software package is $120,500 with a yearly Support Services/Maintenance contract cost of $49,100.

Kathy also presented a contract/agreement for the Lock Box and is requesting the Commissioners approval on this contract today. The cost of the Lock Box Contract is $33,600. Kathy said that getting this signed is very important because once the county gets the tax rates this will get the ball rolling with the tax collection.

Commissioner Heimlich reminded the Council that everyone was aware that this purchase was going to be sometime this year and this is the tax software package that they (Auditor and Treasurer) have chosen.

  • Commissioner Ferguson made a motion to approve the Lockbox Agreement with G.U.T.S (Government Utilities Technology Service) for $33,600 for the 2006 tax season and also approve the purchase of the tax software system agreement for the Treasurer and Auditor’s office from G.U.T. S (Government Utilities Technology Service) for a one time fee of $120,500 and a yearly support services/maintenance cost of $49,510, seconded by Commissioner Burton. Vote: Unanimous


Eric Storm appeared asking permission to receive quotes for leased copiers and the cost of new copiers and present them at the next joint meeting. Mr. Storm said that the lease copiers have drastically dropped in cost compared to purchasing and buying the maintenance contract. He has two offices (Area Plan and Assessor) that are currently in need of new copiers. PERMISSION GRANTED

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

______________________________ _____________________________ _____________________________

John C. Heimlich, President Steve Burton, Vice President O.D. “Bud” Ferguson, Member

ATTEST: _______________________________

Mary Jo Pool, White County Auditor