WARSAW — At the Kosciusko County commissioners meeting Tuesday, April 4, two proclamations were approved regarding safety.
James Dawson, representing Kosciusko County American Bikers Aimed Toward Education, presented a proclamation, asking the commissioners to declare May as “Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month.” ABATE is a non-profit safety, educational, charitable and advocacy motorcyclist organization. The proclamation read, in part, “Motorcycle Riders Association of Indiana has joined with Indiana Department of Education, Indiana Department of Transportation and other state and county agencies in an effort to increase public awareness for the need of improved safety on our streets, roads and highways.” The commissioners approved and signed the proclamation.
Tracey Sleighter, Warsaw, and Ken Mounsey, Syracuse, approached the commissioners to request that April be proclaimed “Distracted Driving Awareness Month” in Kosciusko County to bring awareness to the dangers of texting while driving. Mounsey’s son, Erik, was killed in 2016 just before his 21st birthday when he was hit on his motorcycle by a driver who had been texting. The commissioners unanimously approved this request.
A Fallen Rider Memorial Ride is being held Saturday, April 15. Registration for the 94 mile ride begins at 10 a.m. at Chubbie’s Pub & Grub, Syracuse. The actual ride will begin at noon. Proceeds from the ride will be given to Wawasee Community schools for their driver’s education program. Mounsey states that early education regarding motorcycle awareness is crucial. He hopes in the future to see motorcycle safety signs in every town that has a state road running through it. Mounsey states this will assist in making people more aware of motorcyclists on the roads.
Bob Conley, vice president of the Kosciusko County commissioners, offered “heartfelt condolences” to Mounsey on behalf of all the commissioners. Brad Jackson, commissioner president, stated he could not begin to imagine what Mounsey has had to deal with. Mounsey thanked board members for their condolences, adding that there are over 300,000 motorcycles registered in the State of Indiana and that motorcycle awareness is very important because, “Everybody matters.”
Scott Tilden, Kosciusko County Highway Department superintendent, submitted the 2016 annual operations report for local roads and streets as well as a 2017 municipal lease agreement for the John Deere motor grader. Both of these were approved.
Tilden presented a parking permit for an AKC Spring Hunt Test event that is scheduled to be held in April by the Backwater Retriever Club of northern Indiana. Tilden states they have been holding this event for several years and it has never been a problem. They park along CR 1000E near the Tri County Fish & Game Preserve, Syracuse. They are requesting permission to park along one side of the gravel road. This request was approved.
Tilden lastly presented a construction inspection engineering agreement for the Kern Road and CR 1300N project in Syracuse with USI Consultants. Tilden expressed that, with the permission of the commissioners, he would like to review the bids for the Kern Road project and to return later in the day to give his recommendations. This request was met with approval.
In other news:
- Commissioners approved a request by Chad Miner, Kosciusko County attorney, for a small lot in Winona Lake that had originally been acquired through a tax default to be donated back to Winona Lake.
- Michelle Puckett, county auditor, submitted the annual conflict of interest disclosure from the Nappanee Public Library. The commissioners approved this.
- Marsha McSherry, county administrator, submitted several internal control procedure documents that required signatures from board members.
- The next regular meeting will be at 9 a.m. Tuesday, April 18.