Bainbridge takes inventory after 13 inches of rain

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Since June 1, the town of Bainbridge has received 13.4 inches of rain, said Water and Sewer Superintendent Jim Nelson at the town council meeting Wednesday night.

"The excessive rain caused some damage but nothing major," Nelson told board members Richard Cope, Bonnie Osborn and Naomi Barker.

Workers spent most of Wednesday cleaning up branches and other debris from the town's tower site. The towers are 12 feet high and have motors mounted on top of them.

"The water was only up about three feet on the towers so they really weren't damaged," said Nelson. One sump pump was not working but the electric box was still under water.

"We won't know until the water goes down further if it is damaged," he added.

Nelson also reported a damaged tile which runs from S.R. 36 to the ball diamond. This is the first tile that has broken since they were laid in the mid to late 1960s.

"I hope it's just one tile. It's probably not a big deal but it could be. We'll know better on Thursday after we get into it," said Nelson.

The streets held up well despite the torrential rains. Nelson said there were more potholes but they could be patched easily.

The board also agreed to accept applications for a new part-time town employee. This person will deal with code enforcement, assist with snow removal, mowing and maintenance of town property, help with meter reading and assist with animal control.

An hourly rate of $10 per hour is assigned to the position with no benefits. They will work 16 hours per week. Town Clerk Jason Hartman plans to advertise the position. Persons interested in the position should fill out an application at town hall.

Board members also discussed acquiring new ordinances for nuisance properties and animal control. Stray cats and dogs continue to be a problem in the town and board members are determined to get better control of the situation. They are looking at laws in other communities that involve licensing and fines for animals picked up.

The town currently pays $15 per animal plus the cost to drive them to the Putnam County Humane Shelter.

"Fifteen years ago if I picked up a stray dog I could look at a tag and see who it belonged to. I'd just take it home," said Town Marshal Rodney Fenwick. "We are seeing a lot of out of town animals as well as seeing some diseases. We need to do something."

"The Greencastle Police Department takes an animal to the shelter and leaves a ticket for people which they get when they get their dog," Fenwick told the group. "That's one idea."

Hartman commented that it does not appear that the county is going to do anything about animal control. He suggested the town talk with an officer from Hendricks County who may be able to assist the town in determining how to handle the ongoing problem.

"I don't know what to do with this issue," said Cope. "It may take a special meeting for us to decide how to handle it."

The board agreed to continue to investigate the issue and ask for assistance from the Hendricks County officer.

The board also heard a report about the Blast from the Past Festival last weekend.

"It was a washout," said Friends of the Park President Dianna Gorrell.

"We had 65 vendors signed up but only 30 came on either Saturday or Sunday. Some of them couldn't get here because of the floods. Two tents blew down on Friday evening," added Gorrell.

The group is planning on rescheduling the car show, music and fireworks in July or August. Gorrell plans to meet with the Bainbridge Improvement Society to look at the facility's availability.

"Right now we've lost money. We had to purchase permits this year that we have never had to pay for in the past. We get a rain date for them so we won't have to pay again. We also paid the music ahead and didn't use the fireworks. I think we can work something out," she concluded.

Gorrell told the board that money from the festival is used to fund the summer kids program at Roachdale, Russellville and Bainbridge.

"Right now we have about 60 kids in Roachdale signed up and only five in Bainbridge. We may have to look at holding the program in Roachdale and ask parents to drive kids there. It might pick up here but funds may be an issue," she added.

The Bainbridge Town Council meets on the second Wednesday of the month at Town Hall at 7 p.m.

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