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February 4, 2008 meeting minutes

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FRANKLIN COUNTY COMMISSIONERS MEETING
FEBRUARY 4, 2008 @ 9:00 A.M.
County Commissioner Public Meeting Room
Those Present: County Commissioners: Tom Wilson Eric Roberts Don VonderMeulen
County Auditor: Susan Jones
Commissioners Secretary: Carol Westerman
Tom Wilson opens the February 4, 2008 Commissioners Meeting at 9:00 A.M. with the Pledge of Allegiance.
WEEKLY
REPORT Susan Jones, Auditor reported that the Homestead Credit Rebates are calculated and Manatron is putting a more user friendly list together for the Treasurer’s Office to check the delinquencies. The Assessor’s Office had forward the Personal Property Values to the Auditor’s Office and needing to collect data. Presented copies of the 2007 Annual Report for your review. Also Don had asked for a copy of a checklist of procedures for the processing of taxes, presented you a copy. Sharon Halcomb, Assessor reports is working on printing of the commercial & industrial Form 11’s, getting ready to be mailed out on the 5th of February. The agriculture and residential will not be mailed out, as their tax bill with be their notice of assessment. The Real Estate files are being collected and being sent to the Auditor’s Office this week.
AS2 AGREEMENT
2003‐2004
HISTORICAL DATA
Sharon Halcomb presented a Contract Agreement from Assessment Software Solutions, Inc. (AS2) for the 2003‐2004 Historical Data that needed to be submitted to the Department of Local Governmental and Finance to be in compliance. They have already been paid. The State is asking for all contracts and this one was not signed by the Board of Commissioners, because it was under $25,000.00. This is a formality to get in compliance.
Tom Wilson made motion to sign contract. Eric Roberts seconds. Don VonderMeulen, All in favor. Motion carried.
CITIZENS INPUT
COMMITTEE LIST
Jim Suhre of Brookville Township presented a List of Names for the Citizens Input Committee (CIC) and Synopsis of Citizens for Common Sense Meeting. The Citizens for Common Sense had met on Thursday, January 31st, approximately 180 people attended. At least 90% of the attendees wanted a committee of a least 50 members, the rest wanted a committee of at least 25 members. Attendees nearly unanimously wanted the new code to be shorter and simpler to read than current code, and wanted unnecessary and unenforced sections of the law removed. Also wanted the CIC, and all APC business, to be better publicized, better than Indiana Code requires, and for the CIC to make the new code available to the people “in progress” though a website, and printed versions available around the county.
SLOPE ‐ At least 90% of the attendees did not want any slope requirements, except for those that allow for responsible septic fields. Those remaining indicated that slope requirements as they were in the previous proposed code, were too stringent, and that where 10% slope was sited, it should be changed to 20‐25%. A minority of people mentioned slope requirements on driveways might be what is needed. Instead of slope requirements on the entire lot.
ACREAGE REQUIREMENTS – Attendees nearly unanimously wanted minimum acreage determined by availability of primary and secondary septic field. Other county’s minimum lot sizes are 1.5 and 2 acres.
DIVISION OF LAND AMONG FAILY MEMBERS – Attendees nearly unanimously wanted no restrictions on division of land among family members.
WASTE DISPOSAL SEWER/SEPTIC – Attendees nearly unanimously wanted septic requirements to be the basis for any minimum lot size, and for any slope requirement. It was also noted that dry composting toilets can be built on smaller lots and on highly sloped ground. The law needs to allow for other systems and options to be available.
EASEMENTS, RIGHT‐OF‐WAY, AND SETBACKS – Attendees were very concerned at the language “apparent right‐of‐way” that was in the proposed code. Any forfeiture of property rights must be explained and discussed fully. Law should not be written for the benefit of the utility companies.
MULTIPLE HOMES ON PRIVATE LANES – At least 90% of the attendees wanted to allow multiple homes on private lanes, if all affected landowners agree. The remaining do not want to allow this.
SIGNS – Attendees nearly unanimously wanted few sign restrictions. Signs should not cause any hindrance to traffic. Not to impede line of sight. Permanent signs should be subject to the building code. Temporary signs should be removed in a timely manner after the event is over. No color restrictions.
HOME BUSINESSES – Attendees nearly unanimously wanted no restrictions on home businesses.
PETS – Attendees nearly unanimously wanted no restrictions on pets.
NON‐CONFORMING USES – Attendees nearly unanimously wanted sections on non‐conforming uses removed from the code.
FENCES AND HEDGEROWS – Attendees nearly unanimously wanted few fence and hedgerow restrictions. They should not impede nor inhibit the line of sight of traffic.
MOBILE HOMES – At least 90% of the attendees wanted mobile home restrictions balanced with the need for affordable housing. Some mobile homes are nice, some are not. The majority of people wanted code based on the mobile homes’ integrity.
PARKING – After debating the pros and cons of parking regulations, a majority of people agreed that parking regulations should be such that they fit on one page of paper.
ENFORCEMENT – Attendees nearly unanimously question the fine structure of Franklin County, Ripley County charges fines up to $2,500 dollars each 30 day period, 1/30th of our fines, and Decatur County charges up to $100 per day 1/25th of our fines, and Decatur County also said they haven’t issued a fine in 9 years.
It was recommended that the CIC to be 50/52 people, this would be 4 people from each township, want to make sure the common people are represented. Two other options, 70 people, this would be 2 people per township, plus additional based on population (1 person for each 500 in a township, rounded to the nearest whole number, 48 people, this would be 2 people per township, plus additional based on population (1 person for each 1000 in a township, rounded to the nearest whole number.
This list of names for CIC consideration are as follows:
Bob Bane Glen Baxter Clayton Brack Joyce Bradley
Robert Bradley Robert Braun Martin Brunner Tom Carrow
Richard Cartwright Darel Cooper Jimmy Day Bill Dickhaus
KeithDrake Margaurette Dye Margaret Fain A. Sue Ferris
Ruth Geis Harry Graves Joshua Grimmeissen Garry Harsh
Jerry Harnishfeger Dennis Hebauf Sally Henson Keith Hicks
Lauren Hinderberger Tim Hollard Lisa Hollard Joann Koch
Mike Kohlsdorf Dennis Kolb Theresa Kolb Ken Konradi
Daryl Kramer Brian Kunkel Dennis Lackey Donald Lackey
Bob Lecher Betsy Lecher Jean Leising Jill Leising Koch
Dave Lowery Rick McMillin Paul Miller Jean Miller
Justin Moore Michael Moore Brian Nobbe Todd Raible
Brian Patterson Gordon Ramsey Tom Ritz Carol Roemer
Ron Schneider Rob Seig Martha Shea Rob Siedling
Jacqueline Sizemore Joe Stahl David Stone Jim Suhre
Frank Thompson Dean Thompson Jim Vohland Andrea White
Dave White Grace Willis Gene Wilson Mike Wilson
Gary Wolf
Brian Patterson who had attended the December 31st meeting said it was chaos, was heckled. He said he made the mistake in talking first on the slope requirements, that there needs to be one. There needs to be rules. Betty Lecher stood up and agrees, there needs to be rules.
Jean Leising asked that property rights considered. She is in favor a large committee, she has set on several committees, where there was a chairman and a co‐chairman and sub‐committees be set on different areas, such as septic and agriculture. You don’t want anything in writing, you can’t enforce. Frank Thompson is also in favor of a larger committee. Tom Ritz said the meeting was very beneficial.
Eric Roberts would like representation from outside sources, may need to get an engineer study for the slope requirements, need help from neighboring counties.
Don VonderMeulen suggested that each Commissioner select 5 people from each district in which they are elected. There was discussion on the size of the committee and how they should be selected after 2 ½ hours there was no decision made, will discuss further at the next meeting.
COURTHOUSE
EXTERIOR
STONE WORK Carlos Monroe, a Local Stone Mason of 20 years, said the stone work on the Courthouse is in need of repair. Mr. Monroe had asked that he repair a small section of the stone and let you see what can be done. Don VonderMeulen asked that he get in contact with the Historic Landmark Association of Indiana and talk to Joe Jarzen, and let them make a recommendation.
WHITEWATER
RIVER ADVISORY
BOARD/REX PIPELINE
Tom Ritz mentioned the Whitewater River Advisory Board and it was dissolved illegally, wants it reinstated. Then went on to mention the Rex Pipeline issue.
DNR LETTER
WHITEWATER
RIVER/REX PIPELINE
Lee Orschell presented a letter to the Board of Commissioners in which he had received from the DNR in which Rockies Express Pipeline had applied for a Permit for Construction in a Floodway in the Whitewater River. A Certificate of Approval for Construction in a Floodway was approved on January 23, 2008 by Markita Shepherdson, DFM, Environmental Scientist, Division of Water. The description of the project is as follows: A 42” diameter steel natural gas pipeline will be placed beneath the Whitewater River by the horizontal directional drill method. It will have approximately 4’ of cover beneath the streambed and 4’ in the banks. The portion of the pipeline that will run parallel to the Whitewater River will be placed by the open trench method.
Mr. Orschell is asking the Board of Commissioners to appeal by applying for administrative review. It was asked that Joe Gillespie prepare a letter from the Franklin County Drainage Board petitioning the Division of Hearing for an Administrative Review of the Application.
HIGHWAY ENGINEER
WEEKLY REPORT
BLUE CREEK BRIDGE 94 ‐ George Hartman, Highway Engineer reported to keep this project on schedule, the County will need to apply for additional Federal Funding in the amount of $197,000.00 based on estimates. John Graf also suggest that the Board of Commissioners apply for the additional funding. Eric asked if the County would do the roadwork ourselves, would that bring the cost down. John said as the bridge project set there the cost of the bridge goes up as an estimate of 4% each year. The Right‐of‐Way
still needs to be acquired for this project. Don VonderMeulen reported he had attended a meeting last week with INDOT Officials and these projects won’t set there forever.
Eric Roberts motions to go for the additional funding of $197,000.00 for Bridge 94. Don VonderMeulen seconds. Tom Wilson, All in favor. Motion carried.
RAILFENCE BRIDGES 110 & 111 ‐ Tom Wilson then made the motion to apply for additional funding for Railfence Bridges 110 & 111. Don VonderMeulen seconds. Eric Roberts, All in favor. Motion carried.
George had presented a copy of a fax that he had prepared that was sent to Becky Walters answering questions regarding the proposed RFP’s for Railfence Bridges 110 & 111. The DBE Goals needed to be re‐established for these Professional Services. There were six questions that needed to be answered concerning the project and the professional services to be provided.
FEDERAL AID
FA‐3 APPLICATIONS
John Graf of Howard J Barth & Associates request that the Commissioners reconsider submitting FA‐3 Applications for Federal Funding for new Projects. Tom Wilson asked where do we get the funding to pay for the project. John said it would take 6/7 years before the project would begin, the cost for the first couple of years would be minimal. A couple of projects were discussed, such as Columbus Ave Bridge 117 and Duck Creek Bridge 10, a Low Water Crossing. INDOT is waiting for a plan of action for bridges listed on the Bridge Inspection Report. John said Bridge 117 would likely get funded. It was suggest that the County might get with the City of Batesville for help in funding with this project. Don asked that applications be submitted for these 2 projects, and that George bring in figures to the next meeting.
SNOWHILL COVERED BRIDGE 102 – George had received a phone call from Joe Jarzen of Historic Landmarks Foundation of Indiana that he had sent out an email to those involved in the restoration of the covered bridge structure, since progress has been lacking in recent years. Joe is recommending a meeting with Federal Highway Administration, INDOT, County, Consultants and Local Historic Representatives. A list of proposed dates were given; February 11th, February 22nd, February 25th, & February 27th. It was decided to meet on February 11th at 1:00 P.M. and will also discuss Pipe Creek Bridge 48.
ENOCHSBURG COVERED BRIDGE 73 – George had presented a Section 401 Water Quality Control Regional Permit Notification that he had received from Jim Barker, Engineer for the Enochsburg Covered Bridge Rehabilitation Project that needs to be submitted to IDEM, along with a cover letter.
Don VonderMeulen made motion giving Tom Wilson permission to sign permit application. Eric Roberts seconds. Tom Wilson, All in favor. Motion carried.
NOTICE TO BIDDER
BRACKNEY DITCH
Joe Gillespie presented a Notice to Bidder as discussed last week for Brackney Ditch for approval. Bids are due and will be opened on February 19, 2008 at 12:00 P.M.
Tom Wilson made the motion to sign the Notice to Bidder for Brackney Ditch. Eric Roberts seconds. Don VonderMeulen, All in Favor. Motion carried.
EAGLE SCOUT
PROJECT Joe Gillespie reported that the Eagle Scout Project proposed by Joe Schmidt is okay to do, as long it’s within the County Right‐of‐Way. Joe had met with Chester Ball, District One Foreman at the site.
WHITEWATER
RIVER ADVISORY
BOARD Randy Ritz asked that the Whitewater River Advisory Board be put back in place, he nominates Cody Ritz and Ron Mason and will have 3 more members next week.
ADJOURN Tom Wilson motions to adjourn until 2:00 P.M. Don VonderMeulen seconds. Motion carried.
RE‐CONVENE Tom Wilson motions to go back in session. Eric Roberts seconds. Don VonderMeulen, All in favor. Motion carried.
CLAIMS Tom Wilson made motion to approve claims. Eric Roberts seconds. Don VonderMeulen, All in favor. Motion carried.
FCCR&VC BOARD
APPOINTMENT
AT LARGE Tom Wilson motions to appoint Jim Lierl to the Visitor Commission Board (Franklin County Convention, Recreation and Visitor Commission Board), until December 31, 2009. Eric Roberts seconds. Don VonderMeulen, All in Favor. Motion carried.
WHITEWATER
RIVER ADVISORY
BOARD APPOINTMENTS
Tom Wilson said we will try to appoint members to the Board as in Zoning Text pages 30‐31, membership described in definition page 109.
Tom Wilson makes motion to appoint Jeff Jones, Ron Mason, Cody Ritz, Ken Keith and Randy Roberts to the Whitewater River Advisory Board. Don VonderMeulen wants to make the appointments for a period of 90‐days to check out and talk to Gene Stewart and some prior board members and shouldn’t we talk to Larry Franzman. Eric Roberts states it’s in the current text and was disbanded. It may be decided by the end of the year we may not want it, there is a valuable place for the commission because of the rex pipeline. Eric Roberts seconds Tom’s motion. Don VonderMeulen votes NO. Motion carried. NOTE: The Board will decide which 3 members will have a 1‐year term and which 2 will have a 2‐year term at their first meeting.
ORDINANCE
2008‐03 Rebecca Oglesby, County Treasurer had requested an Ordinance Allowing Surplus Tax Refunds Less Than Five ($5.00) to Revert to County General. Gene Stewart, County Attorney reviewed Ordinance. Tom Wilson read Ordinance 2008‐03.
Tom Wilson made motion to adopt Ordinance 2008‐03. Don VonderMeulen seconds. Eric Roberts, All in favor. Motion carried.
MINUTES Tom Wilson moved to approve the minutes of January 22, 2008, except the portion of minutes of Tom Ritz, until the tape can be listened to. Eric Roberts seconds. Don VonderMeulen, All in favor. Motion carried.
Eric Roberts moved to approve the minutes of January 28, 2008. Tom Wilson seconds. Don VonderMeulen, All in favor. Motion carried.
RESOLUTION
2008‐06 A Resolution of the Board of Commissioners of Franklin County, Indiana Condemning the Location of a Proposed 42‐Inch Gas Pipeline submitted in a Proposal to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission known as Rockies Express Pipeline,LLC Rex‐East Project Across and Through Franklin County, Indiana, was presented for passage by the Board of Commissioners.
Eric Roberts moved to pass Resolution 2008‐06 as presented and direct Joe Gillespie to draft letter to be sent along with the Resolution to be sent DNR, (that the Franklin County Drainage Board feels that this project will adversely affect the quality of life for Franklin County Citizens. That in the near vicinity of the proposed crossing, there are (4) municipal water companies that provide water to the Citizens of Franklin County. The Franklin County Drainage Board feels that an infrastructure failure would severely and permanently impact the Whitewater River Basin by any spoliation and/or contamination of the Whitewater River Aquifer). Tom Wilson seconds. Don VonderMeulen, All in Favor.
SECURITY CENTER
AIR CONDITIONING
Don VonderMeulen mentioned that a Quote had been received for the replacement of the air conditioners at the Security Center. Will need to ask for a couple more quotes, because the amount of the quote was over $100,000.00.
ADJOURN Don VonderMeulen motions to adjourn. Eric Roberts seconds. Tom Wilson, All in Favor. Motion carried.
Those also Present: Thomas Ritz Omer Prickel Brian Patterson
Tammy Harnishfeger Carlos Monroe Jacqueline Sizemore
Sharon Halcomb Gene Wilson Jim Suhre
Jean Leising Frank Thompson Stanley Monroe
Cody Ritz Joe Gillespie Harry Graves
George Hartman Carla Austin Robert Lecher
Betty Lecher Robert Swininger Wilbur Fields
Randy Ritz Leroy Combs Charles Reams
Lee Orschell Jeff Jones

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