Etna Green Town Council Presents 2018 Budget

Pictured, from left, are Council Member Kevin Smith II, Vice President Keith Claassen and Clerk/Treasurer Laura Baker.

ETNA GREEN — The first 2018 town budget public hearing was held during Etna Green Town Council’s meeting last night, Sept. 12.

The total budget is being advertised for $214,546 with an adopted tax rate of .91 percent. Two funds within the budget, motor vehicle highway and parks and recreation, may need to be further adjusted in order to have sufficient fund amounts.

“These are two funds we need to keep an eye on,” said Clerk/Treasurer Laura Baker. She explained that an allocation was made for the motor vehicle fund that no longer allows street employees to be paid from within it. This means that those salaries must be drawn from the general fund and will require money switched around. The parks and recreation budget could be short in funds as Baker explained she has to keep taking money from the general fund to keep the balance.

Even though the budget was presented as a public hearing, there was no public comment made. The final public hearing and adoption of the budget will be during the Oct. 10 council meeting.

Continuing on the subject of budgets, Baker requested switching the bank that the town uses. Currently, the town banks with iEB Financial, but the company is merging to First Merchants Bank. First Merchants Bank will waive use fees for only the first quarter, while iEB previously waived all fees.

Baker requested switching to bank with Interra Credit Union. This will allow the town to maintain no monthly fees on banking. The council approved this request effective immediately.

In other news:

  • Three utility adjustments were made totaling $181.11.
  • A salary ordinance was approved to allow part time workers to receive a wage of $16 an hour while performing utility work.
  • Dick Long was present to represent the Etna Green Museum. He announced that the museum has been open for 10 years and the building is now officially paid off. He thanked the council for allowing the museum to exist.
  • The council approved writing a letter to the Kosciusko County Plan Commission in regards to the studio property at 120 1/2 Broadway St. The owner hopes to tear down the whole property and rebuild with the same footprint and needs permission to acquire the same setback variances. The council approved the plan and will write a letter stating its approval.
  • Variances were discussed concerning the Etna Green Mobile Home Park. The council agreed with the opinions of the Board of Zoning Appeals and will recommend any action they make at next month’s meeting.
  • A three-year contract extension was approved for trash and recycling pick up. The rate will rise 13 cents a year.
  • A quote for $2,120 was approved with National Asphalt Solutions to repair three small sections of streets.

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