Town Wastewater Improvement Work Well Ahead Of Schedule

If there is any good news because of the drought in Indiana, it is that there have been no weather related delays in the progress of the Crothersville Wastewater Improvement Project.

That was the message brought by Brad Bender, engineer with FPBH of North Vernon.

“Mitchell and Stark are well ahead if schedule in meeting the Dec. 31 deadline,” said Bender. “Perhaps as early as mid-November.”

There have been few delays to the project since it began, he said, noting the work on sewer lines and improvements at the sewer plant are ahead of schedule.

At the request of the town council, clerk-treasurer Michele Teipen reported that a town owned credit card could be obtained from The Peoples Bank in Crothersville for purchases of materials and supplies.

The council noted that currently employees must purchase supplies and materials themselves and file a reimbursement claim with the town.

“It seems unfair to ask our employees to use their money to buy items for the town and then wait to be reimbursed,” said councilman Lenvel ‘Butch’ Robinson.

The credit card would have a $5,000 purchase limit and the town council limited the credit purchase to just one card for the time being.

It was noted in the amended minutes of the town’s special meeting on July 31 to deal with property & casualty and liability insurance quotes that the council unanimously voted to remain with ISU Insurance and Financial Services of Scottsburg. The current insurance carried provided a quote of $31,628. John Moore Agency of Seymour entered a bid of $31,283.

Andrew Nehrt of the Crothersville Area Planning Committee told the council of the committee’s intent to seek a grant to develop a master plan for Crothersville’s future.

“We want to see the town improve its downtown image, have welcoming entrances from the interstate to the north and south, and develop green spaces and trails connecting them,” Nehrt said of the group’s initial efforts.

“A master plan is not for bricks and mortar or improvements. Those, hopefully, can come with future grants after we have an established plan of what Crothersville wants for its future,” he said. “But to be eligible for those grants which can lead to funding improvements, we first must have a master plan.”

He asked the council to come up with the 10% matching fund needed to fund a planning grant. The council approved the request 3-0.

In other matters, the council continued its discussion to liquidate town owned real estate.

Originally, the council was considering selling the former town hall property at 101 W Howard Street, the water Treatment building on North Kovener and the former town barn property adjacent to the old Jackson-Jennings Co-Op grain bins.

However, council president Ardell Mitchell, an early advocate of selling the old town hall property, said that he has changed his mind.

“In light of the Crothersville Area Planning Committee’s consideration of establishing green spaces for the public, it might be premature to sell the old town hall properties at this time,” he said. “It might be something the Red, White & Blue Festival may want to use like was done for the sesquicentennial.”

The former town barn near the old grain bins will also be re-considered to have new metal placed on the building to make it more presentable.

The council will continue to consider to sell the concrete block building on North Kovener which served as the water treatment plant.

Crothersville Red, White & Blue Festival chairman Sherry Bridges reported to the council that there were 34 booths at the recently completed town festival, an increase of eight over 2011.

“The petting zoo was very well received and there were nine different groups who performed,” she said. “We have three new volunteers to our committee and they are looking at adding a car show, softball tournament and kids games to the 2013 festival,” she said.

“The council would prefer that there be one point of contact for the festival. Not multiple people for things like street closures, borrowing and transporting town picnic tables, placing baracades,” said council president Ardell Mitchell. “I’d like to see that resolved for the next festival.

Mitchell intimated that there appeared to be friction between the festival committee and the Crothersville Lions Club when it came to festival organization and preparation for the three day festival.

“The Lions Club tried to work with people but when people won’t work with the Lions Club, there’s a problem,” said Lions club member Roger Teipen who managed the festival carnival.

“There seems to be a feeling that the Lions Club is trying to take over the festival,” said councilman ‘Butch’ Robinson. “And the festival doesn’t want the Lions Club taking over the festival.”

“The Lions Club want no part of taking over the festival,” said Teipen.

Mitchell reiterated his request for a single festival contact with the town and suggested a meeting between the festival and Lions Club leadership to put differences aside and work more cooperatively.