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Chesterton Town Hall stock

Chesterton Town Hall

CHESTERTON — Town Council President James Ton, saying the Chesterton Economic Development Corp.’s purpose is more important now than ever, has convinced the council to revive the nonprofit group.

“The downtown business district is in most need of its help right now. As a result, I would like to name Richard Riley as presidential appointee to the CEDC. He has consented to serve. I believe this is a vital step forward in the revitalization of the Chesterton Economic Development Corp.,” Ton said.

Ton said the CEDC would convene a meeting in the near future.

“It’s great to get that going again, for the development of our downtown,” Councilman Lloyd Kittredge said at Monday's council meeting.

In other business, six town residents spoke in opposition to a proposed ordinance prohibiting parking on residential yards. Ton said it was not on the evening’s agenda, but may be addressed in the future. He said they would take the residents' comments into consideration.

“It’s nice to see people proud of their property and proud of what they have," Councilman Emerson DeLaney said. "But there is one thing that could help tremendously. If you have a driveway or park in front of your house, do not block the sidewalk. That is against the law, and that would help tremendously.”

Fire Chief John Jarka said the town’s fire department will collect water for East Chicago residents affected by lead contamination. Donors can drop off bottled water at the station.

Street Commissioner John Schnadenberg reported he is beginning the process for the lease purchase of a town dump truck, which was approved by the council. Three of the four paving projects for the year have also been completed, and the sidewalk trip hazard program is underway.

Attorney Greg Babcock, representing resident Jill Chitwood, spoke in preparation for a request to annex a two-acre parcel.

Babcock also presented the board with a fiscal plan, outlining the benefits to the town including an increase in property taxes paid to the town and payment of a park impact fee.

The council also approved an ordinance to increase hourly compensation for a summer park department employee in anticipation of the new splash pad opening in Chesterton Park.

The wage was previously designated for a youth employee, but due to the safety requirements of the job, a more mature employee would be required at a higher rate of pay.