January 5, 2006
The Palestine Board of Trustees met in regular session on January
Visitors in attendance were Bob Taylor, John Maddox, Mary Davis, Wanda Wells, Kurtis Tedford, Autumn Burkett and her 3rd class and family members, and Tom Osborn, reporter for the Robinson Daily News. Also present were Chief of Police, Jim Clark, and Sewer Utility Clerk, Margaret Littlejohn.
The meeting began with all in attendance reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.
A Public Hearing was held first regarding the Sewer Rate increase.
Floyd Fuller reported on the financial condition of the Sewer Department. According to Village Financial Data and our Auditors Report, the sewer system is not collecting enough funds to pay for any major breakdowns to the pumping system or the sewer lines.
David Branson reported on his study of the conditions of the physical plant and the possible impending costly breakdowns. Various repair and replacement costs figures show that various breakdowns to the physical plant can run from $4,850 to $43,368. Breakage or replacement of any sewer lines have not been studied yet.
Pat Schofield concluded that it would take several years for the new rate increase to fund any major repairs, therefore the need for the rate increase was a step towards better preparation.
A question was raised as to whether all fees had been collected each month. Pat Schofield reported that any fee unpaid at the end of three months resulted in a disconnect of water service, and that has kept the delinquency at a very low rate.
The Public Hearing was then closed at 6:20 P.M..
VILLAGE BOARD MEETING
The regular Village Board Meeting followed starting at 6:25 P.M..
The minutes of the November meeting were read and approved as read.
Pat Schofield announced that work on the Golf Cart Resolution was moving ahead. Lamotte Township has approved use of their specified roads from the Village to the park. The resolution will be signed at their January meeting.
Autumn Burketts’ third grade students presented a case against the burning of leaves within the Village each fall. Things mentioned were visibility in smoky areas, effects of asthma on the 30 students with that health issue, toxins in the leaf smoke, and water pollution from the smoke fallout. The students suggested to burn leaves on weekends or on days when school was not in session. Or that leaves be picked up only with a no burning law in effect.
Larry Miller presented a proposed revision to the Mobile Home Ordinance. This amended Ordinance would replace Ordinance 2002-0-10 and Ordinance 2004-0-02. This ordinance corrects issues with lot size, setbacks, moving of mobile homes over 10 years of age, permanent foundations, and temporary living quarters.
Gene Purcell moved that the new ordinance be accepted. Larry Miller seconded the motion. Roll call vote was 6/0 for the motion. Motion passed unanimously.
Steve Mitchell presented his list of costs for the use of his equipment and labor by the Village when needed. The cost structure was approved by consensus.
Jim Clark, Police Chief, gave his report of activities for 2005. He reported on 39 categories of events tracked. Only those items relating to vehicles showed an increase over an 11 year average. Other crimes were down because the perpetrators had either been jailed or had left town.
A new blade is needed for the Village snow plow. Larry Surrells moved and David Branson seconded a motion to replace the blade for a cost of $77.50. The motion carried unanimously.
New traffic and street signs are needed within the Village. Larry
Surrells moved and Greta Dennison seconded a motion to purchase new
The meeting adjourned to executive session to discuss raises for the Village Police Department at 7:15.
The meeting reconvened at 7:40 P.M..
Larry Surrells moved, seconded by Larry Miller, that Jim Clark, Ed
Meyers, and Brad Gurley be given a 5% pay increase, and that other
part time officers be given a $ .50 per hour increase starting February
The possibility of the Village accepting a passenger rail car from Indiana Rail was discussed at length. More information is needed.
Larry Miller moved for adjournment. Seconded by Walter Fritche. Motion passed unanimously.
Meeting adjourned at 8:02 P.M.
Patricia Schofield, President