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

Thursday, June 9, 2016

More meetings 6-6-2016

The main item at the Drainage Board meeting on Monday afternoon was a problem caused by the installation of a fiber optic cable for Franciscan Hospital. In the process of installing the roughly six-mile cable, the contractor damaged about a mile of drainage tile along SR 114. The cable was approved by the commissioners in April with some conditions, but apparently those conditions and the fact that there was a public tile along the route were not communicated to the people installing the cable. The tile no longer is draining water and people affected have more water than they want.

The tile needs to be replaced, but it cannot be put where it is now because there are gas lines and optic cable that are very near it. Moving it will cause problems because there are lateral drains the come into the tile and no one seems to know exactly where those drains connect. The whole matter was pushed to a special meeting for next Tuesday at 9:00 when some of the unanswered questions should have answers.

In items of some interest to Rensselaer, ConAgra is adding parking, but the drainage plan the Board had approved a plan in 2001 that was big enough to handle the current changes. The culvert under Vine Street for the Maxwell ditch (the creek that runs by Brookside Park) is corroding and there have been some small sinkholes in the road. The Board agreed to supply a new culvert but left it to the city to install it.

There were a number of other items on the agenda that were less interesting from the point of view of Rensselaer.

At 4:00 on Monday the Rensselaer City Council had a public hearing that was required by the loan application the City is making to help fund the water main linking the new water well to the city water treatment plant. The public seating was empty and there were no questions from the lone member of the public in attendance. People for KIRPC were there with details. The well and the water main can be justified because cities should have wells in different aquifers and the new well is a over a mile south of the closest well. In addition, if one well is down, the other well should be able to meet the capacity of the the water plant and currently it cannot. The meeting lasted less than ten minutes.

In the evening the Park Board meeting lasted much longer. The transfer of the Staddon Field property is still not complete. There was discussion of where new ball fields should be placed. There is more recognition that the old football field is heavily utilized by soccer players. For many years the area was little used, but the growth of soccer has changed that. As a result, there is now thought that perhaps a better place for new ball field is the large area north of the cemetery and west of the tennis courts that is used only about one day a year. The size of that parcel is much larger than the inside of the running track. There was some sentiment that the old Monnett building in which the meeting was being held should be torn down. It had little use and cost too much to maintain. There was question of whether the park would do better if it was directly incorporated into the city and given a larger budget rather than operating as a quasi-city department aided by a separate park corporation. Not much was decided.

In a week something exciting should be happening on this wall.

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