Town Council Meeting - 6/9/14by Amy Wenger on June 11, 2014
On Monday, June 9, members of the Bremen Town Council were quite pleased to learn that the new restaurant about to launch in the former Kopper Kettle site may be open for business in the next week or so. The reaction to additional news that a fireworks shop is planning to debut in the same plaza as well was far less favorable. Director of Operations Trend Weldy was quick to reassure the council, however, that such a facility simply cannot exist at that particular location.Weldy observed that the plaza, a longtime fixture along the West Plymouth Street corridor, is not currently zoned to accommodate a business of that nature. He added that to his knowledge, the fireworks retailer was making preparations to rent the space from the building's owner, who is also working on final preparations for the debut of Tony's Famous Grill. Fire Chief Matt Neher also bolstered that sentiment by noting that a business of that type must be situated in a building with a minimum of 20,000 square feet, preferably in an independently formed structure. As the current town statutes dictate, Neher went on, such a business would only be allowed in an industrial park setting.
Weldy went on to note that he will continue to make attempts to clarify the situation with all of the parties involved, as there is already signage in place indicating that a shop is opening soon.
Town Engineer Larry Long was present to review bids on the 2014 Dewey Street resurfacing project, as bids for the work were received during Monday's meeting. Four area contractors submitted the following bids:
- Walsh and Kelly, Inc., South Bend - $90,335.50
- Phend and Brown, Inc., Milford - $80,929.72
- Rieth-Riley Constrution, Co., South Bend - $92,892.07
- E & B Paving, Inc., Rochester - $95,619.85
Long looked over the bid submissions as the council moved along with business, and during his perusal, he discovered a calculation error in the bid submitted by Phend and Brown. The mathematical mistake was a minor one, but it did bump up the cost of the project to $81,037.72. Even so, Long offered his suggestion to proceed with that firm, as their bid remained the lowest submission. The council approved Long's recommendation without further issue, although new paperwork will need to be drawn up reflecting the revised amount.
More details from Weldy's regular report included an announcement that the town is giving serious consideration to the removal of the local Goodwill collection box. Weldy expressed concern that residents were abusing the service by using that site as a dumping ground for items that are decrepit, or too large for the box to hold, such as old mattresses, sofas, and other items. He is hopeful that when or if the box is returned, people will be more willing to abide by the rules set forth by Goodwill, and make proper use of the service.
Weldy also informed the council that he received a letter from the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) with regards to the abandoned former Clark station, located at the intersection of Bowen Avenue and West Plymouth Street. The area has been an eyesore for an extended period of time, and there appears to be no new developments in the offing. The contact information that IDEM provided to the town, Weldy said, is the same as the information that they had on hand, so the sleuthing on how to reach anyone connected to the facility continues.
Drainage issues at The Pines is resulting in some new guttering being installed at the main building, Weldy noted. With only one downspout, excess water is tending to pond in the basement, where the bulk of electrical work is located, and the runoff is creating problems for the integrity of the walls and flooring. Just nearby, Weldy also said that they are reviewing designs for new signage at the west gateway into Bremen. He hopes to have some idea of the winning design within the next few weeks.
In other matters, the council:
- Heard an announcement from park superintendent Brian Main about the resounding success of Saturday's community pool anniversary celebration. Main said that the weather was perfect, and an estimated 300 people were on hand for the contests, food, and other festivities.
- Learned that there will soon be a list compiled for several side streets that will need to have some new parking restrictions, as they are presently too narrow for emergency vehicles to safely navigate when cars are parked on both sides of the road. Police Chief Matt Hassel has received a copy of those suggested roads, and he is planning to contact affected property owners. A time for residents to hear more details and voice their concerns is being planned for a future council meeting.
- Approved a recommendation from Fire Chief Matt Neher to give probationary full-time volunteer firefighter status to Adam Siefer and Colin Snyder, effective mid-June. This gives the fire department a total of 28 full-time volunteers, nine auxiliary members, and one vacancy expected to be filled in the near future.
The next session of the Bremen Town Council is scheduled to take place on Monday, June 23 at 7:30 p.m. in the council chambers of the Bremen Town Hall. The public is invited to attend.