Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

May 30, 2013

Plans to be drawn up to extend sewer services in Nappanee

NAPPANEE — From artistic apples to aviation issues and appraisals, the Nappanee Board of Public Works dealt with a varied agenda Tuesday afternoon.

The board authorized having Commonwealth Engineers prepare plans and specifications to connect sewer east along U.S. 6 to the municipal airport.

Water and Wastewater Superintendent Gale Gerber said his staff is looking at plans to take sewer from Berlin Court Ditch out east to the drive at the airport.

Mayor Larry Thompson explained city officials have had a request for industrial development out to the airport. Officials want to move on that request and see about extending sewer out to airport drive in case there is future development there. Thompson said annexation would likely also play a part.

“This is just preliminary stuff to see what we’re dealing with,” the mayor said.

In other airport-related business, board members approved a change order for the runway paving project. The change order is to seal micro cracks that appeared when asphalt was put in, according to Gerber, who said it was decided to go with a fog seal at a cost of $6,125. Gerber said there was approximately $2,000 of grant money remaining for the project, which will be applied to that cost and the remaining balance will come out of the airport’s budget.

Redevelopment appraisals

Mayor Thompson reported that he attended the Redevelopment Commission’s meeting Tuesday morning and the commission approved at the mayor’s request, to seek appraisals for any properties west of city hall along Lincoln Street, including the former Fred’s Flowers. The appraisals would be seeking right of way if the time ever came where the city would extend the Lincoln Street corridor out west.

The Redevelopment Commission also approved seeking appraisals for 306 S. Nappanee St. — an industrial site across the railroad tracks. The mayor said the company could re-locate within the city so representatives of the company are looking to see who’d be interested in acquiring the property. Thompson said the property is not in the Tax Increment Financing District, but it could serve the TIF district.

“It’s an industrial site that’s been in the middle of the city for a long time,” Thompson said.

The board approved authorizing the redevelopment commission’s seeking the appraisals.

Also in redevelopment business, just for the board’s information, the commission approved having its attorney Craig Buche create a TIF district at the airport.

The commission also accepted appraisals on two properties — 251 W. Market (former Fins N’ Feathers building) and 155 S. Locke.

Neither property is occupied at this time. Now that commission members have received appraisals they intend to make offers on the properties.

Executive Director of Redevelopment Commission Jeff Kitson said the house at 155 S. Locke St. would likely be razed for parking and the commission is not sure about 251 W. Market. He said commission members would like to rehabilitate the property, but that decision has not been made yet.

A-peeling Apple Art

Jeff Stillson, artist and coordinator of the Appealing Art program for the city, sought approval for placement of the decorative apples. Similar to the Elk Art and St. Joseph, Michigan’s annual public art exhibits, the A-peeling Art is a way to bring art, community and a fun attraction to the city.

The 4-by-4-foot fiberglass apples were originally approved to be placed within the city’s flower planters but since the flowers are in full bloom there is no space. So, Stillson asked permission to place the apples next to the planters while not interfering with foot traffic.

Eighteen apples are ready to be placed either downtown or at the sponsor’s location around town, each one with its own unique design. Stillson said they will be placing the apples on Thursday and they will be out year round.

In other business, board members:

• Approved request from Second Saturday committee for use of Leadership Park and Clark Street on June 8 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for events.

• Approved requesting proposals for sidewalk replacement within the TIF district, including one section that has not had a sidewalk.

• Approved annual maintenance agreement with Keystone Consulting for computer software for the clerk’s office and city court — tentatively as new software may make the agreement shorter term.

• Approved excavation on public property permit for 502 E. Walnut for sewer connection.

• Approved hiring Scott Kern as a part-time seasonal employee for Street Department and Water/Wastewater starting June 10 at a rate of $7.50 per hour.

• Approved hiring Beer & Slabaugh to install gear box assembly at wastewater treatment plant at a cost of $2,300.

• Approved adding Dustin Croy as a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician. Croy was a former member of the department and has now moved back to the city.

• Approved accepting resignation of Brett Mitchell from fire department effective May 1.

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Three Goshen elementary schools — Chandler, Chamberlain and West Goshen — are providing free meals to all students during the school year as part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Community Eligibility Provision of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. Nearly 80 percent of students at Chandler, 89 percent of students at Chamberlain and 78 percent of students at West Goshen already qualify for free or reduced-price lunches based on their family income. How do you feel about the new lunch program?

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