Merrillville could help solve Winfield's equipment problems

2013-11-10T21:30:00Z 2013-11-10T22:35:11Z Merrillville could help solve Winfield's equipment problemsChas Reilly chas.reilly@nwi.com, (219) 662-5324 nwitimes.com
November 10, 2013 9:30 pm  • 

WINFIELD | The town of Winfield is seeking assistance from its neighbor to the north to handle stormwater maintenance work.

Winfield Clerk-Treasurer Rick Anderson said Winfield doesn't have its own specialized equipment to maintain and clean culverts, drainage ditches and other stormwater management areas in the community.

Matt Lake, executive director of the Merrillville Stormwater Utility, said Merrillville owns several pieces of equipment it uses for those purposes. A proposed interlocal agreement would allow Winfield to rent the equipment, Lake said.

The cost of using the equipment ranges from $70 per hour to $175 per hour, according to the interlocal agreement. Lake said Merrillville employees would operate the equipment.

Winfield would submit requests when the equipment is needed, and Merrillville would determine if it's available, Lake said.

"Obviously, Merrillville comes first," he said.

Lake thinks the interlocal agreement is a good way for Merrillville to show it's a "good neighbor." It also creates a new revenue source in Merrillville.

Lake said funding Merrillville obtains through the rentals would be earmarked for maintenance of the equipment.

If the interlocal agreement is approved by both communities, it would be reviewed annually.

Lake said area stormwater officials involved in the Northwest Indiana Stormwater Advisory Group have discussed the possibility of sharing equipment and resources.

He thinks other communities could seek partnerships similar to the proposed agreement between Merrillville and Winfield.

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