Regularly scheduled Lowell council work sessions keep topics secret?

2013-01-14T21:30:00Z 2013-01-14T22:21:04Z Regularly scheduled Lowell council work sessions keep topics secret?Melanie Csepiga Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
January 14, 2013 9:30 pm  • 

LOWELL | The Town Council will be meeting in a work session in advance of every regularly scheduled council meeting beginning with the Jan. 28 session.

Lowell Council President Edgar Corns, R-5th, Councilmen Robert Philpot, R-2nd, and Don Parker, D-3rd, passed the measure Monday with Council Vice President Craig Earley, D-1st, and Councilman Phillip Kuiper, D-4th, objecting.

"Personally, I don't see the need. ... If we want one, we can call one," Earley said. He said he, too, did not want to spend extra money for an attorney to attend.

Corns said an attorney would attend the 6:30 p.m. work sessions only when needed.

Parker made the motion to have a 6:30 p.m. work session in advance of every Town Council meeting and said they could be canceled if there were no business to discuss. "I think they're good," he said.

When Lowell officials have called work sessions in the past, the topic to be discussed has been included in the announcement of the meeting. That allows residents to attend if the subject interests them.

By scheduling the work sessions before each meeting, a separate announcement need not be made, thereby depriving the public of the topics to be discussed.

Also, board and commission appointments were made Monday and all department heads retained.

As announced by Corns, the annexation committee will be himself, Doug Niksch, Michael Mears, Randy Hall and the presidents of the Lowell Plan Commission and Board of Zoning Appeals.

The councilmen appointed to the Lowell Plan Commission and BZA are Philpot, Parker and Earley with James Konradi the resident appointee. The councilmen appointed Martin Freeman and Sharon Patterson to the Lowell Police Commission, and Corns, Matt Lake and Tom Carwright to the Lowell Storm Drainage Board.

All Lowell Redevelopment Commission members were returned to their positions. They are Kuiper and Earley as well as Niksch, Jim Langen and Anthony Muscari.

Hall resigned from the Historic Review Board to devote time to the Freedom Park Board where he will serve with Philpot.

Connie Schrombeck and Clifford Tetrault were appointed to the Historic Review Board, and Police Chief John Shelhart, Konradi, Dennis Rosengard, Eric Barnhill and Will Farrellbegg were appointed to the Lowell Traffic Commission.

Kuiper was returned to the Lake County Solid Waste District where he has served a number of years, while Parker was appointed to the Northwest Indiana Planning Commission.

Corns will be the representative to the Northwest Indiana Cities and Towns, while Dorothy Gwyn-Maas will represent Lowell on the Lake County Economic Opportunity Council.

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