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Warren TC increases park project donation

On Monday, Sept. 27, Jeff Souder, of Historic Warren, attended the Warren Town Council meeting to report that the organization is making steps towards collecting funds for Phase 3 of the Riverside Park Project.

Historic Warren is currently pursuing several grant opportunities, but one specific capital campaign would match up to $50,000 donated.

The council had originally agreed to give $5,000 from the County Economic Development Income Tax (CEDIT) funds, but Souder requested that they add an additional $5,000 because a maximum of $10,000 can be given to the campaign from any one entity. Souder said they appreciated what the council already committed to, but also said this was a great opportunity to get the funds matched.

The estimated cost for Phase 3 of the project is $137,000.

“That $100,000 would go a long way towards getting this park done,” Souder said.

Bippus State Bank has already donated $10,000 to the campaign. Souder says there are two or three other donations that are pending.

The campaign itself won’t take place until after the first of the year, but the campaign is short. Souder says that others who have done this grant have recommended getting commitments before the campaign starts.

“I think it’s an investment into the town,” Councilman Tavis Surfus said. “It seems to be taking off quite well.”

“Every act that comes down here has nothing but great things to say about the facilities,” Souder said.

The council’s motion passed to increase their original commitment from $5,000 to $10,000.

Clerk-Treasurer Marilyn Morrison then presented a letter to the council to be sent to the Huntington County Community Foundation (HCCF) to request funds for the project. She needed the council’s approval and signatures before sending it to HCCF.

In unrelated business, a draft of Warren’s Comprehensive Plan was presented by Matt Brinkman and Mark Cullnone, of Region 3A.

“We really want your feedback on this,” Brinkman said. “We want to make sure that the information that is there is on the right track and that you are satisfied with it.”

Along with input from the council, they are also looking into conducting public surveys through various means. Cullnone says the survey would likely include “a statement of current conditions” and Region 3A’s recommendations for each category. Residents will be asked to give feedback on those recommendations.

“We could have hard copies out at prominent locations here in town for people to pick up and submit,” Cullnone said.

Another option Cullnone discussed was having a QR code that residents could scan in order to fill out the survey online. This would make the data easier for Region 3A to keep track of, but they are willing to work with people who would prefer to do hard copies.

“We want to provide as many avenues for people to do that as we can,” Cullnone said.

During department reports, Utilities Operations Manager Brian Sills reported that one of the water wells had holes in the casing that needed to be addressed. Sills said he would speak to the engineer to discuss the best solution, but he says it would be cheaper to buy a new well as opposed to fixing the existing one.

Sills also submitted a quote for concrete curbing at a recently installed catch basin on Second Street. The quote was from Doctor Construction in the amount of $1,800. The council approved the quote unanimously.

The town is also still in the process of finding a business to cut tree limbs, particularly ones near power lines. Sills has had several entities come and inspect the work, but he has yet to receive a quote from any of them.

In unrelated business, five separate resolutions were voted on and approved by the council. The resolutions were as follows:

• Resolution 3-2021 – Reducing appropriations in the 2021 Municipal Budget to fund the 2022 Municipal Budget.

• Resolution 4-2021 – Authorize a one time transfer to the electric depreciation fund and to establish an automatic monthly transfer to the electric depreciation fund from the electric cash operating fund.

• Resolution 5-2021 – Adoption of internal controls policies and procedures.

• Resolution 6-2021 – Adoption of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This resolution also named the clerk-treasurer as the ADA Coordinator for the town.

• Resolution 7-2021 – Accepting ADA Guidelines of Accessibility for standards for accessible design and guidelines for pedestrian facilities in the public right-of-way.

In other business:

• Jessica Beal, of the Huntington County Department of Community Development (DCD), submitted a report on the progress of renovations on 218 W. Third St. The council’s consensus was to have the Notice of Demolition extended until Jan. 10, 2022. The progress will be reviewed again on that date.

• The Warren Volunteer Fire Department had a member resign due to relocation, so they are now taking applications for that position.

• Morrison presented a new lease agreement for the Conservation Club. The council approved the changes made to the lease. It will now be submitted to the president of the club for additional comment.

• Fall Clean-Up Days for Warren have been set for today, Monday, Oct. 4 through Saturday, Oct. 9.

• Trick-or-Treat hours for Warren will be Sunday, Oct. 31, from 6 to 8 p.m.