PIERCETON — Business at the Pierceton Town Council meeting held Monday, Sept. 10, primarily focused on a discussion regarding life insurance policies for the town’s police officers.
Town Marshal Tim Sammons started the discussion by mentioning a pending criminal case involving officer Jim Bumbaugh and a gun. He stressed the importance of life insurance policies and the need for officers to have them. However, Sammons added that with the state of Indiana’s policies, there are many restrictions.
“There are so many loopholes even at the state level,” said Sammons. “I bought into this policy until I started studying the loopholes. I want to be able to protect myself and my officers.”
Sammons invited Angie Shaw to the council meeting to discuss her experiences with losing her husband in the line of duty. On Nov. 12, 2009, Jeff Shaw died from injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident while responding to a call.
Angie discussed how many police officers in the county struggle to make life insurance payments.
“For a lot of those families, those life insurance payments are top priority over car and house payments,” said Shaw. “That first year of losing someone dear to you is completely a blur. You don’t know when something will happen to your loved ones.”
Shaw mentioned the limitations of her late husband’s pension and life insurance policy.
“I think it would be very beneficial to create a fund to help officers just in case a tragedy were to happen,” said Shaw.
A final decision was not made on implementing life insurance policies for officers. The council thanked Sammons and Shaw for their input and said they would look at options. However, all full-time employees of the town of Pierceton have a life insurance policy of $25,000.
Sammons also thanked Ryan Piper and Alicia Elder for helping complete car seat inspections at Pierceton Elementary School on Aug. 30. Six car seats were provided to families free of charge by Lutheran EMS Kosciusko. 23 students were given proper direction on wearing safety restraints properly.
Sammons also asked the board to establish a rate scale for body cam footage, incident and accident reports and color photos from accidents. Attorney Tammy Keirn said she would create an ordinance to allow a rate scale for people and attorneys who are wanting to obtain those types of evidence.
The Pierceton Fire Department will hold a fire prevention safety day from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20. There will be free food, an obstacle course, CPR and first aid station, and a K9 demo.
During the meeting, Sammons also reminded citizens to make sure their vehicles are always locked. Several vehicles have been broken into near the Pierceton Woods area.
In other business:
- The meeting minutes for Monday, Aug. 13, were approved.
- The council agreed to contact the Area Planning Commission regarding a cul-de-sac that has plans to be built in the Maple Street area.
- The council will hold a budget adoption meeting at 6 p.m. Monday, Sept. 24.
- The council agreed to let Town Manager Chip Hill attend a hearing regarding a building in the town made without a permit.
- The council agreed to look into next steps for a building located at 708 W. Tower St. during its next meeting. The building is being investigated due to an unsafe building law. A letter was sent to the property owners in May.
- The council’s next meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 8.