This blog reports events and interesting tidbits from Rensselaer, Indiana and the surrounding area.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

City meetings

Monday was a busy day for city meetings. At 1:00 the Rensselaer Redevelopment Commission and the Rensselaer Redevelopment Authority met to make a couple amendments to the lease that they have involving the proposed fire department building. One involved insurance and the other was about where funds were deposited and both were made so that the bonds that are being issued to fund the new fire station will be rated by Standard and Poor. The bonds are scheduled to be auctioned on June 25. The Commission and the Authority are two different bodies. I do not understand what the function of each is or why two different groups are required, but I am sure that there is a law somewhere that mandates this structure. The Commission met first. After it adjourned, the Authority met. Both meetings were short.

Going to these meetings I noticed that the work on the utility payments offices in the front of city hall was almost complete. The new intercom system is running, so when you enter the building, you are greeted over the intercom by someone in the office. (They take security seriously.)

At 5:30 the Rensselaer Board of Public Works met to approve six pay requests that come from the four construction projects either underway or in the planning stage. The road being constructed in the Drexel Park area has crushed stone forming the base of the road and will be ready for paving in a few weeks. Over the weekend two large pieces of construction equipment were protecting it from anyone foolish enough to try to drive on it.
 The other projects are all in the planning stage: the water line from the fairgrounds to the interstate, the fire station, and the high rate water treatment plant that will be built on Lincoln Street. Below is a picture of what I call Lake Weston. The river has spilled over it banks and flooded the area. The high rate water treatment plant will be built on the shores of this lake. The nearest trees under the dark rain clouds are where it will be. (The rain mostly went to our east last night. I suspect the farmers there did not appreciate the extra moisture.) The river continues to rise and should set the daily record for flow on Tuesday.
The plans for the water treatment plant have been approved by IDEM but now need to be submitted to the USDA.

Board of Public Works meeting lasted about ten minutes, so there was a short wait until the city council meeting began at 6:00.  The first item was a request from the Eagles to shut down Harrison between Front and Van Rensselaer later this month for a fundraiser for a young child or baby that will need surgery. The request was granted. The editor of the Rensselaer Republican was recognized. This was his last council meeting--he is leaving the paper and will be moving to Alabama.

The gas tracker rate of a seven cents decrease per hundred cubic feet was approved, as was a request from the superintendent of the cemetery for a new mower that will cost $6900 after trade-in. The members of the Council had interviewed three candidates for their appointment to the school board and decided to appoint Brad Cozza, who is the manager of the Jasper County Airport.

Requests for funds for funeral flowers and for two upcoming retirements were approved. One of the engines in the powerhouse is down and needs to be repaired. While it is down, it will undergo the maintenance and inspection that was almost due. Finally, Rensselear is getting an award for being the  municipality recycling leader of the year and the mayor and one of the city councilmen will be traveling to Indianapolis to accept the award on Wednesday.

The minutes of the last meeting, which I was unable to attend, are here.

(I forgot to mention in yesterday's post that the fireworks store is back in what was the Sears store in the College Mall. It will be there through the fourth and maybe a week or two later. What was Knights Inn by the Interstate is now the Interstate Motel. I saw the new sign a few weeks ago but did not realize that the name change was recent.)

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