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Council finalizes fire-truck purchase

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Yaggi expresses concerns about funeral escorts, traffic light

By KEVIN KOELLING
Managing Editor

CANNELTON – Members of the Cannelton Common Council voted at a regular meeting July 14 to approve a promissory note for a fire truck they purchased from the Tell City Volunteer Fire Department.

As the News reported May 8, they voted in a special meeting May 1 to purchase the vehicle for $40,000.

He’d been working with Tell City’s city attorney, John Werner said at the July 14 meeting, to prepare the sale documents, which outline four annual installments of $5,000 and two of $10,000. Five percent interest will be added to each payment.

Payments will begin July 1, 2015 and payoff will come in 2020, explained Werner, city attorney for Cannelton.

Tell City will retain a lien until the vehicle is paid off. As the News reported Monday, the Tell City Board of Public Works and Safety formally approved terms previously agreed to informally by officials from both cities for the 1993 Spartan ladder truck.

Appointees approved
In other business at the Cannelton Council meeting, Mayor Mary Snyder said some realignments were necessary in planning-and-zoning appointments. She told some of the appointees “when I got those committees together real fast … I’d try to move some of them out and try to get some more on, and we also need a few citizens to be on there,” she said.

The mayor’s appointments to the city’s board of zoning appeals would be Dave Covetts, Randy McBrayer and Vince Gagliardi. Snyder said Covetts is also required to be on the planning commission.

She also said Bruce Myers would be willing to serve as the council’s appointee if they agreed, which they supported with a unanimous vote.

“The planning commission appointed Dennis Bolin to also be on the zoning (board) so there is a total of five,” Snyder added.

“State statutes on this are really tedious,” Werner explained. “These people all have to meet certain criteria, right down to political affiliation. You (the council) make some of the appointments, the mayor makes some of the appointments, and to go through all of that process in a small community like this is hard, and then they’ve got to be willing to do it after all of that.”

Utilities Superintendent and Building Inspector Phillip Ball is the administrator for the zoning board and planning commission, the mayor noted, and “I was required to have two Democrat and two Republican representatives, so I have Larry Schank and Ralph Terry, and then I have Dave Covetts and Dennis Bolin.”

About council appointments, Snyder said Marion Lawalin, Chris Herzog and David Marsh had agreed to continue to serve on the planning commission. The council voted to retain them.

Councilman’s concerns
When the mayor went around the council table asking if anyone had issues to raise, Councilman Emory Yaggi said he was “glad to see they got the grass cut up there in front of the sheriff’s office.”
“Well, they threw it all out in the highway, though,” the mayor replied. “That’s the only bad thing.”

Yaggi also had concerns about the traffic light at the Ohio River bridge. While approaching the city’s center, “I can be up there by Wall’s (Drive-in) and make that stoplight on green. Other times, I can be at the liquor store, and I can’t even make it (before it changes). Three cars have a hard time getting through.”

He and others discussed possibilities such as “they’ve got the timing screwed up” and different settings for night and day.

“It’d be good at nighttime if it was on a flasher,” Yaggi said. “A lot of times, people coming off of work sit there at red and don’t ever see a car.”

Snyder said she could send an email message to the Indiana Department of Transportation.

Yaggi also brought up funeral escorts, saying Tommy Huber of Huber Funeral Home told him he calls the dispatch center in Tell City when an escort is needed.

“They’re not relaying it out to the police department,” the councilman said. “There’s a lot of times we have funerals and we have no police escort. We always had an escort when we had only one policeman. I’d like to have that checked out.”

“I’ll talk to him about it,” Snyder said, referring to Police Chief Lee Hall. “But generally, if they’re on a call or if they’re called to a scene, they can’t do it. There’s only one person (on duty at a time).”

She said Wednesday it is an issue of officer availability, not of failures by dispatchers to pass the requests along.

“It seems like they’d get the sheriff or somebody,” Yaggi said. “If it’s one of the policemen, they’ll have all kinds of police cars,” Yaggi said. “I think we should be able to show respect for the families and at least have a police escort. That’d be a good thing for reserves to do. We keep getting more reserves … and we can’t do our duty, what we need to do.”

Reserve police officers are unpaid volunteers and Snyder explained Wednesday that they have jobs and are limited in the number of hours they work.