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

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

A meeting and some pictures

The warm weather has encouraged a lone crocus to bloom in my yard.
The March Commissioners meeting had lots of little items but no big news. The meeting started with a postponement. The Pitstick rezoning request from the Jasper County Planning Commission was moved to the April meeting. The Planning Commission had split 3-3 on the request and the attorney for the Commissioners wanted more time to examine the law that might apply to the case.

There were two GPS items on the agenda. Community Corrections wanted to purchase (or lease) newer GPS equipment from the same company that it currently deals with. The request was approved. A person from Synovia Solutions introduced himself and tried to interest the County in leasing GPS equipment for County vehicles. The tracking would allow the County to see exactly how the vehicles were used.

Four bids were opened for leasing County and Airport farmlands. The bids ranged from $170 per acre to $252. The County and Airport have about 193 acres of farm land to lease.

The Commissioners approved a request from the Surveyor's office to provide (for a fee) information to a wind farm company in Texas. There has been renewed interest in wind farms in Jasper County in recent months.

There were several items involving using the County right-of-way. Two that were not in the Cable Permits item on the agenda were from Century Link and NIPSCO, the first for fiber optic cable and the second for gas pipelines. The Commissioners have decided that they will no longer approve any installation by plowing, which is often the cheapest way to install cable. Instead the installation must be done with trenching or boring. With plowing a blade or plow is pulled through the soil, creating a slit into which a cable in placed. Here is an explanation with an illustration and here is a video.

The reason that the County does not want plowing used is that if the installers hit something, such as another buried cable, a tile, or a culvert, they will not know that they have hit anything. With trenching bits of the hit object will come up to the surface so that the installer will know something is hit. Some of the County right-of-ways have many buried things in them and the County does not always know what is there.

Animal Control is planning an open house for the public in May. They also requested a new hire to replace a part-time person who worked only two weeks before she was offered a better job.

Software and electronics were involved in several requests. The Prosecuting Attorney requested approval of a contract that will allow her department to go paperless for child support cases. The County IT supervisor asked for approval of a new panic button system for County offices. The Sheriff reported that the video visitation equipment that is the only way that visitors can visit with jail inmates is failing and needs to be replaced.

Mentioned several times during the meeting was the problem with the Court House flag, shown below. The problem with the flagpole seems to be something at the very top, so it is a tricky repair.
Here are a few other things happening, illustrated with pictures. The new convenience store at the Marathon by the tracks has windows, doors, and most of a its siding installed.
A week ago when it did not have windows I took this picture of its interior.
A few blocks west the Elza Street apartments are getting a new exterior.
The end of construction is approaching for the high rate treatment plant. Last week the final sections of the water tunnel were delivered and this week they will be installed.

I talked to a supervisor about the progress. He said that when it is finished, there will be a walking path along Lincoln and the structures will be enclosed with a fence.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the news.