SYRACUSE — The Syracuse Town Council approved a rezoning request for Swiss Perfection, which locals may know as the old molasses plant, during its regular monthly meeting Tuesday night, April 19.
Dan Richard of the Area Plan Commission came before the council explaining Swiss Perfection would like to be zoned all commercial. Previously it had been zoned commercial and industrial. Richard told the council the area plan commission approved the change in a vote of 9-0.
Richard explained by allowing Swiss Perfection to be zoned all commercial, it allowed expansion and flexibility for the property owners. The area zoned industrial is already in the facility and can remain. The commercial zoning would also benefit that area of the business. The council approved the zoning change.
The council approved Resolution 2106-02 which initiates super voluntary annexation of the Industrial Park. Town Manager Henry DeJulia explained this was the first reading of the ordinance. A public hearing and second reading will be held at the May council meeting and the ordinance will be approved in June.
A copy of the ordinance has also been sent to the Elkhart County Redevelopment Commission for review. DeJulia told council he hopes the commission will vote on the matter in a few weeks.
The Arbor Day proclamation was approved. Arbor Day will be celebrated Friday, April 29.
In his department report, DeJulia requested the council approve letters of engagement with London Witte Group. The council approved the request. He requested permission for Clerk -Treasurer Paula Kehr-Wicker to advertise an appropriation of $44,000 this fall to replace the asphalt and sidewalks around Town Hall. The funds will be appropriated from the local road and street fund. The council approved.
Council approved road paving recommendations as well as approved advertising $6,000 to purchase a small piece of property at Palm Drive. The property will be purchased with Tax Increment Finance money.
Polywood, PW Realty, JP Inc., Precision Auto Technology, and Patrick Industries AIA, were found to be in substantial compliance for their tax abatements.
Police Chief Jim Layne requested $10,654 to replace the roofs of the range building and the animal containment building. Both have shingles that have blown off and water leaking into them. The council approved the request.
Chad Jonsson, park superintendent, reported baseball season begins at the Harold Schrock Youth Athletic Complex on Saturday, April 30. Also on April 30 will be Safety Day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Syracuse Community Center. Arbor Day will be celebrated at 1 p.m. Friday, April 29, at Henry Ward Park. The Artisans and Farmers Market opens May 7.
In old business, Randy Cox was approved as the at-large member of the Turkey Creek Fire Territory. Councilman Tom Hoover will be replacing Councilman Bill Musser as one of the council’s representatives to the fire territory board.
In new business, Musser explained the fire territory will be asking for an appropriation for a new chief’s vehicle and to replace eight of 10 overhead doors at Station I.
In public discussion, Andrea Reed was introduced as the new director of the Syracuse-Wawasee Chamber of Commerce
State Senate candidate Blake Doriot. Doriot, currently county surveyor for Elkhart County, reported how he and others tried to get the bridge at CR 29 and US 6 stopped. “INDOT (Indiana Department of Transportation) was going to do it, no matter what,” he said.
Doriot explained how both the Indiana Senate and House have passed legislation where INDOT must meet with local officials at least once a year. There are also plans to install a “jug handle ramp” at CR 29 and US 6 sometime within the next three years.