WARSAW — A Warsaw property owner is at odds with the Plain Township Trustee over a fencing issue.
Chad Zartman, Warsaw area property owner, came to Ink Free News because he says he’s having an issue with Plain Township Trustee Jerry Kammerer and wants to bring this matter to light in hopes of some sort of resolution.
The crux of the dispute is Zartman wanting to place a boundary fence on his property, located on the west side of SR 15, just south of CR 600N. This fence would separate his property from the neighbor, whom he purchased the property from. He said he would like the fence for livestock and to resolve numerous problems with the adjoining neighbor.
In accordance to Indiana Code 32-26-9-3, Each property owner is responsible for his or her portion of the fence. Zartman put up his side of the fence and sent the neighbor a certified letter stating she had 20 days to install her portion of the fence. The code states, if the adjoining property owner does not comply within the time limit, then Zartman should notify the township trustee of the township in which the properties are located of the default. This would be Kammerer. It would then be Kammerer’s duty as trustee to install the fence and put the cost on the neighbor’s property taxes.
Zartman stated he’s followed the law and sent the letter to his neighbor and waited the 20 days and received no response. He sent the letter certified and was notified it was received Oct. 27, 2015. When he contacted Kammerer, in a recorded session, over the issue Kammerer stated, “I don’t want to be involved.”
Kammerer eventually did get involved by telling Zartman his land was zoned commercial and, for the law to be effective, he would have to rezone his land to agriculture, which he did on Feb. 3. When Zartman again talked to Kammerer on March 1, he asked if Kammerer was going to put the fence up. Kammerer then stated, “That was my out.”
As it stands currently, Zartman’s neighbor has told Kammerer to put the fence up and put the cost on her taxes, but Kammerer has refused to do so.
When IFN talked to Kammerer he said, “He doesn’t see the purpose (of the fence). It’s just a grudge thing.” Kammerer said of Zartman, “He came on wrong with me. He told me what I was going to do. If he had asked me it might have went the other way.”
Kammerer said the Indiana Fence Law is in appeals, not for a specific case, but to restructure the current law. IFN has contacted the Director of Communications at the Indiana State House and is still waiting on a response.
Kammerer stated he doesn’t believe it’s right to make someone put up a fence if they don’t want to. He also said the fence is a “spite fence.” A spite fence is a fence that is erected for the sole purpose of annoying the neighbors.
Kammerer ended with, “If he wants to take me to court, take me to court. It will cost the township court costs; he’s taking the township to court.”