Grant re-application will not cost Town of Roachdale

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

ROACHDALE — Calling himself out for a basic arithmetic error, the contractor working with the Town of Roachdale on state grant funding for streets appeared before the town council recently.

During the monthly meeting of the Roachdale Town Council, John Craig of Midwestern Engineers told town representatives the Community Crossings grant application to help pave East Columbia Street from Indiana Street to Lonoke Street, as well as the entirety of Lonoke, south to State Road 236, will be resubmitted at no further cost to the town.

The application to have the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) fund 75 percent of the project, or $170,916, was denied in the fall round of applications, even as Roachdale’s application for $325,457 to repave portions of Indiana and Washington streets was approved.

Owning up to the error himself, Craig said it was a simple matter of him figuring the 75-25 split incorrectly.

As such, the application is being submitted again, in the hopes that both projects can get state funding and be completed in 2019.

The pre-construction phases of the Indiana and Washington project are already on their way, with the job advertised and bid openings set for the February meetings.

Craig said that INDOT requires that a contract be signed on projects from the earlier round of funding by April 15.

While meeting with the council, Craig shared with council members that portions of a number of streets are not listed on the INDOT inventory, and are therefore ineligible for state funding.

The board unanimously approved having Midwestern submit those roads to INDOT to be officially listed.

In other business:

• The board reorganized with its first meeting of 2019, though things are largely remaining the same.

Zach Bowers was unanimously re-elected council president. The town will keep Dave Peebles as town attorney.

Additionally, the council will continue to meet at 7 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month at Roachdale Town Hall.

• Clerk-Treasurer Debbie Sillery reported that a second set of bids will be opened on the Roachdale Community Building on Jan. 31.

The town has a budget of $500,000 from a grant for converting the old TDS building into a community center, but the first round of bids all came in at a minimum of $606,300.

With changed specifications, Sillery said she is confident the new bids will be under budget.

• An ordinance concerning animal care in the town that was first discussed in December was the subject of further discussion.

Peebles presented a draft of the ordinance, but Town Marshal Adrian Lepine was not in attendance due to an EMT class he is completing to complement his duties for the town.

The board suggested a number of changes and Bowers plans to have Lepine review it further before the matter comes up again in February.

• In other animal matters, Sillery announced that dog registration tags are available at town hall for $5 each.

A rumor has been circulating that this is a new tax, but Sillery assured residents that the requirement to register dogs has been in place for quite some time.

“That is not a new thing to Roachdale,” she said.

After March 1, the cost for Roachdale residents to register their dogs will go up to $10.

• The possibility of Lepine purchasing AED (automatic external defibrillator) machines was also discussed.

Bowers, who works in emergency medicine, hopes to go over the choices with Lepine before a final decision is made at a later meeting.

• The board approved $1,000 for the purchase of security cameras for both town hall and the utility plant.

Utility Superintendent Nick Miller has been looking into options for several months since an Indiana Department of Environmental Management inspection found the town lacking in that area at the utility plant.

A quote for a contractor to do it was in the neighborhood of $4,000, but Miller has found a two-camera system for town hall for $179.99 and a four-camera system for the plant for $499.99.

The town approved a higher cost to cover other costs such as extra cable.

“I think it’s long overdue, especially here at the town office,” Bowers said. “And IDEM will be happy if next time they’re here, we have it.”

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