The committee formed to determine whether Starke County needs a park board could present a report to the county council this evening. Such a board would oversee the Bass Lake Beach and Campground, Starke County Forest and other public lands controlled by the county. It’s up to the council to establish such a volunteer board. Members have previously expressed reluctance to do so because of potential future costs. County Auditor Kay Chaffins will also share initial findings from the 2013 State Board of Accounts audit with the council and commissioners, as well as an update on fund a report on balances in the county general fund budget. The council will also reconsider Sheriff Oscar Cowen’s request to purchase two new patrol vehicles. They deferred action last month in order to get more quotes and determine how much money is available in the sheriff’s commissary fund to cover part of the costs.
The council meeting starts at 5:30 p.m. at the annex building, and will be followed by a 7 p.m. county commissioners meeting. Their agenda includes a monthly management report from Bass Lake Beach and Campground operator Richard Callahan and his attorney, Dave Wallsmith. County information technology director Joe Short will discuss the 911 contract, and highway superintendent Rik Ritzler will provide documentation for a bridge repair project. The commissioners agenda also includes discussion of what to do with the current jail building once the new one is built. The existing building still has to be used for some sort of corrections function, as it is part of the collateral to finance the construction.