Minutes 7/15/2020

Meeting Minutes – July 15, 2020


The Churubusco Town Council met on July 15, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. in the Scout Building. Members present were Council Members Mark Pepple, Bruce Johnson, and Nathan Van Horn; and Clerk-Treasurer, Madalyn Sade-Bartl. Also in attendance were residents Pat Stanford, Zachary Armstead, Austin Winans, Adam Gospodareck, Pat Liggett, and Jill & James Lemmon; Todd Thurber, DLZ; Park Superintendent, Rick Krider; Town Marshal, Dustin Papenbrock; and Wastewater Superintendent, Bob Gray.


Council President, Nathan Van Horn, called the meeting to order and led the pledge. Roll was called by the Clerk. All members were present.


Public Hearing: Ordinance 2020-12: An Ordinance Amending Charges and User Fees for Solid Waste Collection and Disposal in the Town of Churubusco:

President Van Horn opened the public hearing for Ordinance 2020-12. Pat Stanford stated he felt this was bad timing on the Council’s part to plan a $10 million sewer expansion project which will raise rates and raise trash rates. He reiterated that his utility bill was the largest recurring bill. He also voiced his concerns with Advance canceling the Spring Junk pickup and the late pickups that occurred in the months of March and April. Mr. Pepple asked Ms. Bartl if she had reached out to Advance to discuss a credit of some kind for canceling the Spring Junk Pickup. She stated she had not asked. She did say that regardless of a credit being issued, the trash rates incurred by the town were going up on August 1st and residential rates were also going up, regardless of what the Council decided to do with the ordinance being heard. The ordinance on the table would raise the residential rates more than the current ordinance stated. This was to cover the user costs and other incidental costs like postage, printing, insurance, and legal fees. Hearing no other public comments, President Van Horn closed the public hearing.


Approval of Meeting Minutes for July 1, 2020:

Mr. Johnson made a motion to approve the meeting minutes from July 1, 2020 as presented. Mr. Pepple seconded, and the motion carried 2-0 with Mr. Pepple abstaining.


Approval of Claims and Payroll Vouchers:

Claims Vouchers dated July 15, 2020 in the amount of $138,818.33 were presented and approved.


Public Comment:

James Lemmon, owner of James Automotive, approached the Council with an idea he had and sought the Council’s approval of forming the Busco Blue Knights (information attached). He explained this organization would help the community by volunteering and assist the Churubusco Police Department in protecting business owners and their property. Marshal Papenbrock stated he was in favor of an organization that helped the community by doing volunteer work and helping the elderly and vets but saw numerous liability issues with others outside of law enforcement protecting other people’s property. Mr. Lemmon stated he was not looking to be a law enforcement entity but stated his group would have meetings and would appreciate the police department attending, give trainings, and offer professional advice. Mr. Pepple stated he was in favor of Mr. Lemmon’s proposal, but saw legality issues with the statement “defending the community”. Mr. Johnson agreed and stated there were liability concerns with the police department train members. Marshal Papenbrock stated he could not legally do that but was supportive of other aspects within the proposal. Mr. Van Horn asked if he was planning on becoming a non-profit entity. Mr. Lemmon stated he had already garnered support from business owners and stated the group would be self-sufficient. The Council did not give any formal approval to Mr. Lemmon’s proposal.


Old Business:

  1. 1.       Ordinance 2020-12: An Ordinance Amending Charges and User Fees for Solid Waste Collection and Disposal in the Town of Churubusco: Ms. Bartl stated Ordinance 2020-12 had been introduced last meeting, had been advertised, and was ready for consideration. Mr. Johnson made a motion to approve Ordinance 2020-12. Mr. Pepple seconded, and the motion carried 3-0. 
  2. 2.       BZA Appointment: Ms. Bartl stated she had received an email from Amanda at Planning & Building concerning a term expiring on the BZA and Brenda Saggars needed to be re-appointed. Mr. Pepple made a motion to re-appoint Brenda Saggars to the BZA. Mr. Johnson seconded, and the motion carried 3-0.
  3. 3.       API Contract for CCMG: Todd Thurber from DLZ provided the Council with the contract from API for the Home Avenue CCMG project. Because the Council had already approved the award, not motion needed to be made to approve the contract and the Council just needed to sign it. However, the Council did need to make a motion that the Notice to Proceed could be signed outside of a Council meeting so the project could begin as soon as funds were released. Mr. Pepple made that motion. Mr. Johnson seconded, and the motion passed 3-0.

New Business:


  1. 1.       Crossing Guard position: Marshal Papenbrock stated he and Ms. Bartl met with Dr. Hile the previous week and the topic of crossing guard had been brought up. Papenbrock explained that the Council needed to decide whether this was a position the Town was going to keep and if it was not, that needed to be communicated with residents as soon as possible. Papenbrock also stated Hile had inferred there may be school staff that would be interested in supplementing their income should a position open and he would be willing to relay that information to the staff. Papenbrock also stated he had not discussed anything with Angie Taylor, the guard hired by the Town last year, as to whether she wanted to continue the position. He thought having someone who was already at the school would be a better fit than to expect someone to come in twice a day for a total of an hour and fifteen minutes. A discussion concerning whether the Town should keep that position was had by the Council. Mr. Pepple stated if the school could find someone for the position, great. If not, then the Town just not provide a crossing guard. He advised Ms. Bartl to get the posting out. The other members agreed by consensus to post a job opening.
  2. 2.       Ordinance 2020-13: An Ordinance Regulating the Use of Golf Carts within the Corporate Limits of the Town of Churubusco: Mr. Pepple stated he had discussed with Marshal Papenbrock about the opportunities that lie in making Busco a golf cart friendly community. He stated he has looked at Columbia City and has seen how they make it work and feels we could do the same. He understood there was the issue of getting to south side businesses but thought there may be opportunities to coordinate with C&A to allow for carts to use their drive off of Washington Street to get to those businesses. Marshal Papenbrock responded that, after more consideration, he saw more issues with it than originally thought. He mentioned Thresher’s Ridge being landlocked as the Park trails are closed to motorized traffic. He stated he thought people would push things to the limits. Mr. Pepple stated that is what the police department was for- to enforce those ordinances. A resident in the crowd asked the Council if ATVs and UTVs would be allowed. Ms. Bartl stated that in this version of the proposed ordinance, those vehicles would not be allowed on town streets. Fee structure and fines were also brought up by both the Council and Marshal Papenbrock. Mr. Johnson and Marshal Papenbrock felt the fines needed to be heavier than what was in the proposed ordinance. The way fines were collected was also unclear and was something Marshal Papenbrock stated he would discuss with Columbia City. Mr. Pepple made a motion to introduce Ordinance 2020-13 as presented. Ms. Bartl stated that if the motion to introduce the presented ordinance carried, the ordinance would be published as is and a public hearing would be held. If changes were made, the ordinance would again have to be publicized and another hearing held. She advised the Council not to introduce any ordinance if it was not ready for publication. Mr. Johnson reiterated he was very leery about 33 and 205 and felt the same way as Marshal Papenbrock and felt people would drive on both of those roads even though it was not permitted. President Van Horn stated there were too many questions concerning the ordinance and felt the Council and Papenbrock needed to hash out some details before the ordinance was introduced. Mr. Johnson agreed and stated he would not feel comfortable with any golf cart ordinance until the penalties were much stiffer.  


Department Reports:

Jeremy Hart, Town Supervisor:

Mr. Hart was not present.


Bob Gray, Wastewater Treatment Plant Supervisor

Mr. Gray stated IDEM had provided an inspection report and I&I was the only issue the plant had.


Dustin Papenbrock, Town Marshal:

Marshal Papenbrock stated the application process had closed and he only received two applications for qualified candidates. He stated he would be conducting interviews later in the week and hopefully have the new officer on the road by the beginning of September.


Rick Krider, Park Supervisor:

Mr. Krider stated Youth League had to cancel their sandlot league due to some players testing positive for COVID. He was still allowing some travel teams to practice on the diamonds. Mr. Johnson asked if there were any upcoming tourneys and Mr. Krider stated there were none scheduled.


Ron Felger, Town Attorney:

Mr. Felger was not present.


Council Reports:

Mark Pepple:

Mr. Pepple asked President Van Horn what his thoughts were concerning getting the sewer project finalized. He proposed having a special meeting. Ms. Bartl stated at the last meeting, that was discussed and after that, meeting with the RSD. Mr. Pepple asked if the Council could shoot for July 29th for a special meeting. The other members stated that was fine and Ms. Bartl stated she would reach out to DLZ and Mr. Felger.


Bruce Johnson:

Mr. Johnson had nothing to report.


Nathan Van Horn:

Mr. Van Horn had nothing to report.


Madalyn Sade-Bartl:

Ms. Sade-Bartl reviewed her attached report. Marshal Papenbrock added to her report and stated he was excited about the recent meeting they had with ASG concerning cameras at the Park. He stated there had been a string of vandalism and disturbances happening at the Park. He felt the sooner we could get cameras, the better.


Having no other business and after all proper papers were signed, President Van Horn adjourned the meeting.





Council Member, Mark Pepple



Council Member, Bruce Johnson




Council President, Nathan Van Horn





Madalyn Sade-Bartl, Clerk-Treasurer

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