Clean-up of the town’s streets, many filled with trees and limbs, from last week’s wind storm took up much of the discussion at the Hamlet Town Board meeting last night. The street department reported to the citizens in attendance that all streets are now open, and limb pickup will continue this week. Continue reading
Clerk-Treasurer Kristina Pitts and the town board members invite all Hamlet residents to take part in the celebration which includes opening a time capsule. The time capsule had been buried at the site of the Hamlet Town Hall for decades. It will be interesting to see what has changed in the town and what officials thought should be remembered during that time period.
Another time capsule will be filled and buried.
The celebration begins at 5 p.m. CT at the Hamlet Town Hall.
The Hamlet Town Board has published an amendment to an ordinance that pertains to the removal of weeds and rank vegetation within the town limits of Hamlet.
The amendment states that residents shall cut and remove weeds and other rank vegetation from their property. Growth should not exceed six inches in height.
According to the ordinance, residents may have up to six chickens on a property. Roosters, ducks and rabbits were not approved. The board members unanimously approved the ordinance during their meeting last week.
Hamlet Clerk-Treasurer Kristina Pitts said there are several residents that oppose the measure and they want to draft an ordinance that would settle the issue. Two public hearings have been held concerning the issue.
The Hamlet Town Board this week received a report from Town Marshal Frank Lonigro III, who informed the board that his department in March made 51 traffic stops, responded to 50 calls, and made six arrests. He said the department is also working on getting a car repaired because the car battery regularly goes dead, and he said they suspect the accessory cables were to blame. The department will return the car to the business where the lights were installed and have them rectify the problem, and Lonigro said they will also fix the siren box.
Following the trend of cities and towns that have passed similar ordinances, the Hamlet Town Board this week held a public hearing to gain input on the proposed idea of an ordinance regulating urban chickens – that is, chickens within town limits. Board President Dave Kesvormas printed a copy of the small livestock ordinance currently in place for South Bend which regulates how many chickens are allowed at a residence and the requirements that must be met to house any livestock.
Hamlet Clerk-Treasurer Kristina Pitts had earlier reported that the proposed ordinance would allow residents in the town limits to house chickens on their property. She stated that several people have been in favor of the ordinance.
Clerk-Treasurer Kristina Pitts noted that the proposed ordinance would allow residents in the town limits to house chickens on their property. She stated that several people have been in favor of the ordinance. No complaints were brought forth during the hearing.
The Hamlet Town Board met on May 1 with a light agenda.
Hamlet Clerk-Treasurer Kristina Pitts said the board members were reminded of the town-wide yard sale that is scheduled for the weekend of May 18 and 19. Sales will begin at 8 a.m. both days.
The Hamlet Town Board reorganized and elected Dave Kesvormas as the Board President. Brian Earnest was appointed to the K-IRPC Board, Martin Bedrock was retained as the Board Attorney and Frank Lonigro, Jr. was appointed to the Starke County Economic Development Foundation and Frank Lonigro III was retained as the Town Marshal.
Today our 2011 Campaign Spotlight turns to a Board race in Hamlet. The candidates are Democrat Dean Goble and Republican Dave Kesvormas.
Dean Goble is a lifelong resident of Hamlet. He attended schools in the Oregon-Davis School system. He is married and has 3 children and 4 stepchildren, and is a painter working out of Union Local 460 in Merrillville.
During their meeting this week, the Hamlet Town Board discussed entering into Phase II of the Wellhead Protection Program.
The Wellhead Protection Program is a strategy to protect ground water drinking supplies from pollution. The State of Indiana mandates that all communities implement this program and identify the area around the well that needs to be protected. The program consists of two phases. The first phase was done in Hamlet in 2002. The Wellhead Protection Area was identified around City Hall, potential sources of contamination were also identified and then management and contingency plans were made. The Phase II report is due in May of 2012 which will involve reporting on the implementation of the plan created in Phase I and updating it.
The Hamlet Town Board members went over the proposed budget for 2012 at their recent meeting. The proposed budget total for all funds is $408,178. The members cut five percent from last year’s budget. For the fourth year in a row, no pay increases were given.
The Hamlet Water and Wastewater Operator, John Goble, has put in a request to the Hamlet Town Board to order equipment so the department can test for E. Coli. Goble currently takes water samples to LaPorte several times a month and the tests are run there. The Town pays $30 for the testing fee, plus mileage and labor. The Board will look into the request.
Van Janovic appeared before the Hamlet Town Board last week to request the release of funds for the sewer improvement project that was recently completed. The Board agreed to retain a small percentage of funds contingent upon KIRPC’s approval of the project. Once the project gets the ok, all of the funds will be released to H&G Underground.
Several complaints have been received about cars traveling too fast between Pearl Street and Indiana Street in Hamlet, and the Town Board approve changing the speed in that area to 20 miles per hour. Because there are often children playing nearby, the Town Marshal originally approached the Board to request the installation of a stop sign on Short Street to slow traffic, but Board Members Curtis Simpkins and Kerry Stone were uneasy about the idea. Instead, they changed the speed in that area from 30 MPH, and will put reflective tape on the sign to ensure drivers notice the change.
The storm water improvement project in Hamlet in now substantially complete, according to Territorial Engineering and the Hamlet Town Board. Van Janovic with Territorial Engineering, the firm that handled designing and overseeing the project, requested the Board to consider the project substantially complete and approve a change order. This would allow them to receive some of the final payments for the project.
Tom Dermody, the State Representative for District 20, was present at the Hamlet Town Board meeting Tuesday night. Because of redistricting, Dermody may soon be the representative serving Starke County, Knox, and Hamlet. Dermody has been attending town hall meetings in both the new district and his current district, which covers the majority of LaPorte, Pulaski, and Jasper Counties, along with some of Porter County.
“I will be hopefully having the opportunity to serve Starke County, Knox, the Town of Hamlet, and so I’m spending my summer here once session is over going around not only to the current district that I represent but also the new district to learn about the issues as we prepare for legislation, and seeing what we can do to help the local communities,” said Dermody.
At their meeting Tuesday night, the Hamlet Town Board members learned that the storm water improvement project is almost complete. Paving will be done this week on Starke Street, Pearl Street, and Davis Street and the project should be done. Work has been ongoing to extend storm drains along those roads to alleviate a standing water issue in the old downtown area in Hamlet. The project came in under budget and the Board was able to use the extra funds, plus $15,000, to pave the roads after the drainage equipment was installed.