Government & School Board

Huntington County properties' smoking ban draws within days

Seven signs, like the one above, have been posted on the Huntington Cunty Courthouse entrances to make sure citizens are aware of the tobacco ban on county-owned properties.
Photo by Jessica Williams.

The time is drawing near for the smoking ban on county-owned properties to take effect.

The date, Jan. 1, 2010, has been set for several months now and County Commissioner Tom Wall believes county employees are ready.

The county is "pretty well set and ready to go," Wall said Monday, Dec. 21, just under two weeks before the start date of the county ordinance. The new rules ban anyone citi-zens smoking on county-owned land, including the courthouse, annex building, jail and the county highway department, and in county cars.

Shafer reaffirms support for HNHS administration after patron questions information about New Tech proposal

Huntington County Community SchooLs Superintendent Tracey Shafer reaffirmed his trust in the Huntington North High School administration after a patron alleged the HNHS administration had concealed information regarding the New Tech proposal.

However, two members of the board of trustees found some of the presentation - made during the board's meeting on Monday, Dec. 21, by Stephen Geders - to have merit.

McKee's HCCSC budget report somewhat positive

Assistant Superintendent for Business of the Huntington County Community School Corporation Dave McKee gave a quick report of where the corporation stands heading into the New Year on Monday evening, Dec. 21, and the news was somewhat positive.

McKee said HCCSC will finish the year in black, but it's getting tighter, and the true tests will come in the next 18 to 24 months. He said the corporation received a check from the auditor's office, and while the shortfall was expected, heexplained that the uncollected amount of property taxes is throwing the corporation for a loop.

Changes in Huntington County recycling sites are starting next week, Dec. 30

Beginning Dec. 30 the sites used for drop-off recycling in Huntington County will be undergoing changes.

The Huntington city drop-off locations at 2800 Walmart Drive and 220 S. Jefferson St. will no longer be active.
The drop-off site for all of Huntington will be moved to 515S-300W, at the City of Huntington Landfill, in the former Materials Recycling Facility.

Hours of operation at the site will be Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the first Saturday of each month, from 8 to 11:30 a.m.

Roanoke council approves 5K/10K run/walk in spring

The Roanoke Town Council voted unanimously to approve a 10K/5K Rrun/walk in the town this spring.

The action was taken at the council's meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 15.

The "1st Annual Discover Roanoke 10K/5K Run/Walk" would be the first of its kind for the town, and is slated for April 17, 2010, in line with the training schedule for the 500 Festival Mini Marathon in Indianapolis on May 8, says John Nelson, one of the event coordinators.

"There's nothing in Northeast Indiana that gives runners something organized like that," event organizer Joel Holloway says.

Markle Town Council approves pair of waste water projects

The Markle Town Council ended its year on Wednesday, Dec. 16, by tidying up its 2009 budget and approving funds to pay for two necessary waste water plant projects.

Rick Asher, the town utilities supervisor, reported to the council that the piece of equipment that cuts up waste in the first stage of the waste water plant needs to be replaced; its bearings are about to go out, Asher believes, so the equipment was shut down. It could cost between $3,000 and $6,000, depending on if just the bearings need replaced or if the whole thing needs replaced, Asher explained.

Huntington completes sewer separation project

The city of Huntington held a ribbon cutting ceremony near the City Buhilding on Tuesday, Dec. 15, to mark the completion of its storm water separation project
Photo by Matt Murphy.

The City of Huntington has completed the storm water separation project that has created construction zones on streets throughout the north side of the city during the summer and fall of this year.

The project separated storm water drains from sewer lines, and focused on three areas and the associated side streets: Division Street, State Street and Guilford Street downtown.

HCUED recognizes nine industrial projects at appreciation lunch

Larry Ingraham tells a story before getting into his keynote speech during the second annual Business Appreciation Luncheon on Monday, Dec. 14 at the Habecker Dining Commons. His speech was “Keys to Economic Development Success.”
Photo by Jessica Williams.

Nine 2009 Huntington County United Economic Development (HCUED) industrial projects were recognized at the second annual Business Appreciation Luncheon at Habecker Dining Commons on Monday, Dec. 14.

Curbside pick-up of recyclables to be discontinued in Warren

It was business as usual at the Warren Town Council meeting on Monday, Dec. 14, as the group tackled unfinished business from the last meeting.

The Huntington County Solid Waste Council met earlier in the day to accept a contract from Marion Services to collect recycling from each of the communities within Huntington County. The pickup will no longer be house to house, but at selected drop off locations.

Andrews will again support county-wide development efforts

The Andrews Town Council has renewed the town's contract with Huntington County United Economic Development, in which HCUED tries to develop the town's economic base in exchange for funding.

The contract was approved during the council's meeting on Monday, Dec. 14.

Mark Wickersham, executive director of HCUED, said that in 2009 in all of Huntington County, nine new industrial projects were developed, 450 new jobs were created and the county increased its tax base by about $34 million.

County officials hash out weather strategy

Better communication between county authorities during snow emergencies was a topic of discussion at the Huntington County Commissioners meeting on Monday, Dec. 14.

Commissioner President Tom Wall cited the numerous phone calls and steps that occur before a snow emergency is declared in Huntington County.

"There's a lot of calling to get something done," Wall said.

Wall invited representatives from the Huntington County Community School Corporation to the meeting to discuss a better communication link between the corporation and the county government.

City to hail project end

The City of Huntington will hold a celebration on Tuesday, Dec. 15, to mark the substan-tial completion of its sanitary sewer separation improvements project.

All sewer lines have been installed and restoration items including asphalt paving will be completed in the spring.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held at the Huntington City-Township Library, at 10 a.m. After the ceremony, a reception will be held inside the library.

City staff will then demonstrate the effectiveness of the stormwater treatment system in-stalled in Area 1 of the project.

BZA to meet on Tuesday

The Huntington County Board of Zoning Appeals will meet Tuesday, Dec. 15, at 7:30 p.m. to consider a request to place a wireless communication tower near Andrews.

JB Towers, LLC, is asking for a special exception to place the tower on property zoned for agricultural use. The property is located along Ind.-105 near Andrews.

The meeting, which is open to the public, will be held in the GAR Room of the Huntington County Courthouse.

 

Board of works proposing cut to shelter for animal control

In another cut in spending for 2010, the Huntington Board of Public Works and Safety announced on Monday, Dec. 7, that an agreement is being proposed between the city of Huntington and the Huntington County Humane Society to reduce the amount the city pays to the Humane Society for animal control services by $12,000.

The new contract is to be created by attorney John Branham.

The services include animal control calls from city dispatch during business hours, as well as emergency calls after hours dealing with sick, injured or aggressive animals.

Commssioners OK new fee schedule for DCD

The Huntington County Commissioners approved an ordinance on Monday, Dec. 7, that will change fees for numerous permits related to construction at businesses and residences in Huntington County.

The new ordinance, officially named 2009-20, is actually an amendment to the existing fee schedule for permits issued by the Huntington Countywide Department of Community Development.

Nate Schacht, director of the DCD, says that the fees are being raised to help the department cover expenses associated with the department issuing such permits.

City finds 'stop-gap' to keep 2010 budget in black; seeks long-term solutions

A bare-bones spending plan, concessions from employees and an infusion of cash from city savings accounts may be enough to keep Huntington's 2010 budget in the black -- but more needs to be done, noted Mayor Steve Updike.

"This is a stop-gap; it's not a long-term solution," Updike told members of the Huntington Common Council on Tuesday, Dec. 8. "We're keeping the wheels slowly turning, but we're not answering the long-term question."

Roanoke council tables raising permit fees

The Roanoke Town Council tabled an amendment to the current Roanoke Zoning Ordinance, Section 360, which would raise fees charged for permits and other construction-related government expenses at their meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 1.

The new ordinance, proposed by the Huntington Countywide Department of Community Development, would override Roanoke's current policy, which allows most temporary signs to be placed without a permit free of charge.

Dillon invites students to serve as Senate pages

Sen. Gary Dillon recently invited area middle and high school students to make the Indiana Statehouse their "classroom for a day" by serving as Senate pages during the 2010 Indiana General Assembly.

During the legislative session, pages spend one day at the Statehouse working with their senator and Senate staff.

Final leaf pick-up of season in Huntington to be week of Dec. 7

Final pick-up of leaves in Huntington that are curbside will be made the week of Dec. 7.

The city street department asks to have all leaves raked the curb by Monday, Dec. 7.

 

Commissioners asked to back grant to fund Andrews library renovation

The Andrews/Dallas Township Library is looking to make its 83-year-old home handicap accessible and compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act through a construction project that will potentially add ramps, an elevator and a new restroom, said Nancy Disbro, Andrews Library director.

SBA offers free Internet workshop Dec. 15 to provide guidance

The United States Small Business Administration (SBA) will host a free Internet small business workshop.
The online workshop will be held on Tuesday, Dec. 15, from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Parrett completes training at Fort Sill

Army National Guard Pvt. Marc O. Parrett recently graduated from Basic Combat Training at Fort Sill, in Lawton, OK.

During the nine weeks of training, Parrett studied the Army mission and received instruc-tion and training exercises in drill and ceremonies, Army history, core values and tradi-tions, military courtesy, military justice, physical fitness, first aid, rifle marksmanship, weapons use, map reading and land navigation, foot marches, armed and unarmed com-bat, and field maneuvers and tactics.

He is a 2008 graduate of Huntington North High School.

HCCSC income numbers also down this year

The numbers tossed around at the Huntington County Community School Corporation Board of Trustees meeting on Monday, Nov.23, could suggest HCCSC finances are following those of the city of y, but Assistant Superintendent for Business David McKee says that the circumstances are different.

Three existing HNHS courses to be recognized as senior year math credits

Three of Huntington North High School's existing courses will now be recognized as senior year math credits.

The decision was approved 4-0 during the Monday, Nov. 23 Huntington County Community School Board of Trustees meeting, with Vice President Rick Brubaker and members Dr. Jennifer Goff and Troy Smart absent for the vote.

Assistant Superintendent for Instruction Charles Grable said those classes are Machine Trades, Agricultural Economics and Family Economics and Financial Education.

Trash pick-fee up to rise $3 in Warren

The cost of trash and recycling pickup in Warren will increase by $3 per household, the Warren Town Council learned at its meeting on Monday, Nov. 23.

The service provider, Marion Services, told the council that rates would have to be increased in order for the company to continue to provide the best service to the town.

Costs will be increased by $3 to $9.49 per household.

Clerk-Treasurer Marilyn Morrison noted that Warren is a high recycling town, which means that a large percentage of residents participate in recycling.

Council shoots down two revenue proposals; mayor says more layoffs in store

Huntington Common Council members Erv Ebersole and Brooks Fetters (from left, backs to camera) listen as Huntington resident Mark Krumanaker discusses a proposed trash fee during a packed public hearing Monday, Nov. 23, at Heritage Hall.
Photo by Cindy Klepper.

A shocked Mayor Steve Updike was left trying to figure out what to do next after the Huntington Common Council on Tuesday, Nov. 24, shot down both of his proposals for keeping the city from drowning in red ink.

"I am just overwhelmed," Updike said as he stood in his office following the two-hour council meeting. "I am speechless. I thought that vote was in."

The result, he says, will be the loss of more city employees.

"Layoffs are coming," Updike said. "I have to save money.

Markle council to have Wells County GIS access

The November Markle Town Council meeting was filled with routine business.

The council agreed to pay $452.60 to Wells County in order to have access to the GIS system Wells County is looking into purchasing. Upon payment, Markle will have full access to all of the data the system offers, which helps with economic development activities.

Half of Markle lies in Wells County.

Warren gets Main Street approval

Members of the Warren Area Economic Development group met with Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman Friday, Nov. 13, at the Indiana Statehouse to mark the agency’s inclusion in the Indiana Main Street program.
Photo provided.

Lieutenant Governor Becky Skillman welcomed the Warren Area Economic Development group and the Huntington Main Street group to the Indiana Main Street program at a ceremony on Friday, Nov. 13, at the Indiana Statehouse in Indianapolis.

Indiana Main Street is administered by the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs (OCRA). The program provides assistance to participating Indiana cities and towns for economic development efforts in their local downtown and commercial business districts.

County council to discuss 2010 salary ordinance

The Huntington County Council will meet tonight, Nov. 23, at 7 p.m. in the G.A.R. Room of the Huntington County Courthouse.

The agenda includes adoption of a salary ordinance for 2010, a discussion of the leaky roof at the Huntington County Jail, a discussion of part-time help by Linda Aldridge, representing Huntington County Purdue Cooperative Extension, and a discussion of a retiring employee by Mike Bir, head of the courthouse custodial staff.

Fletcher graduates recently from Army basic combat training

Scott Fletcher.
Photo provided.

Army Private E-2 Class Scott T. Fletcher, of Huntington, recently graduated from basic combat training at Fort Leonard Wood, MO.

During the nine weeks of training, Fletcher studied army mission, history, tradition and core values, physical fitness, and received instruction and practice in basic combat skills, military weapons, chemical warfare and bayonet training, drill and ceremony, marching, rifle marksmanship, armed and unarmed combat, map reading, field tactics, military courtesy, military justice system, basic first aid, foot marches and field training exercises.

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