Fillmore Town Council members Jeff Osborn, Alan Jones and Wes Terhune agreed to the first reading of an ordinance to allow four-wheel vehicles to drive on town streets, are putting tough standards into place to deal with persons who have arrearages in water and sewer bills, and set Trick or Treat hours for Halloween.
The trio voted to approve the first reading of an ordinance that allows four-wheel vehicles to drive on town streets provided they carry insurance with a liability of $100,000 per person and $300,000 in property damage and personal injury. No passengers are allowed unless the vehicle is built to accommodate them legally and they must have it registered with the Department of Natural Resources.
Violation of the ordinance when it is passed allows for the vehicle to be confiscated and fines from $100-$500.
Town Marshal Tom Helmer requested an age limit be added to the ordinance since a drivers' license is not required for use with a four-wheel drive vehicle.
The council agreed to add the age limit and will do a first reading of the ordinance with the change at the next meeting.
Must discussion took place between the council members and some residents in the decision to move forward with the collection of unpaid utility bills for sewer and water.
The council is giving people until Jan. 1, 2009 to bring back bills current. After that utilities can be suspended.
"Anyone who is making a good faith effort can come and sign a repayment plan agreeing to keep their current bills paid on time and to pay back any arrearages within a given time period.
There are some people in the town who owe $3,000-$4,000 in back bills. Jones determined that over 12 months they would be paying $250 plus their current bill.
Town residents applauded one person who stood up and told the council she pays her bills on time and that it was time to make those who don't accountable.
After Jan. 1 those who have not paid or signed an agreement will receive a shut off notice.
"We wanted to offer people an opportunity and not chop off their heads. We will chop off heads (not literally) if they don't comply. We will shut off their water and sewer," said Osborn.
More information will be made available once the council finalizes all points of the plan.
The council also set the town's Halloween Trick or Treat hours from 5-8 p.m. on Fri., Oct. 31.
The sidewalk in front of the Town Hall will be replaced where it is broken as long as the cost to do so remains under $600.
"It's an insurance liability for us if somebody gets hurt," said Jones.
The Council also decided to turn over a complaint of breach of contract to the town attorney for the software purchased eight months ago. Town Clerk Wanda Sedlak is using the billing package but has not been able to use the accounting or payroll packages because the company has been unable to provide adequate training on the software.
They will pay for the package they are using and the data transfer.
Osborn told the group that the new patrol car they received from the Putnam County Commissioners was in use.
"I know it works. I saw it pull somebody over the other day," remarked Osborn. The group determined to give their old car to the Floyd Township Volunteer Fire Department who expressed and interest in having the car. Jones told the group that the Fillmore Volunteer Fire Department did not want the vehicle.
"Do we want to 'pay it forward' and give them the car? We were given a car from the commissioners so maybe we should 'pay it forward by giving them (Floyd Township) this car," said Osborn.
The council members agreed and Helmer is making the arrangements with Floyd Township to take the car.
Osborn also told town residents that Alan Jones was in charge of putting together a study of the town's water filtration system by Dec. 15.
The study is being paid for with a $4,000 assessment grant from the Lilly Endowment grant to make permanent fixes for problems involved in the flood earlier this year.
The Fillmore Town Council meets on the first Thursday of the month at Town Hall.