NORTH WEBSTER — The East Washington Street right of way access to Webster Lake is further along the way to being mostly the emergency access to the lake for fire and police departments it was learned at the Tuesday, April 23, meeting of the North Webster Town Council. It was held in the North Webster Community Center Banquet Hall with President Lisa Strombeck presiding.
The gates across the end of the street have been installed and locked. Keys have been issued to five pier and boat lift companies to install those at lake properties, as well as to the Webster Lake Conservation Association for its fireworks barge. The council set a fee for commercial companies of $420 a year to get a town permit and receive a key to the lock on the gate. WLCA will not be charged to use it.
When a gentleman in the room asked about putting one’s boat in there if he is a member of the WLCA, Town Attorney Jack Birch explained, “This access is primarily for emergency use. Those who have used it to launch boats illegally will no longer be able to do so.” It was further explained by Police Chief Greg Church it has never been a public launch site and has a natural bottom, not cement. No parking will be enforced at the end of East Washington Street as it is posted.
Boat owners were directed to use the launches at Fisherman’s Cove or Sock’s Marina, which has recently redone its launch site. Cost is $5 per boat at both. It was emphasized there has never been a public launch site on Webster Lake, only on Backwater Lake.
Birch will present an ordinance at the next meeting to be approved about the matter. Currently commercial companies are operating under a temporary permit that is good until June 15.
Council approved Jerry Fisher’s request to vacate a platted but unused easement next to his property at 518 S. Mary La Fern Drive. He will proceed to the Kosciusko County Board of Zoning Appeals for the final go ahead to build a garage there.
Utilities Manager Jayne Alger gave the department report. Progress has been made on the air-vac system and the repair of lift No. 5. The chipper has a newly rebuilt motor while street sweeping has begun. Salt mixed with beet juice has been secured. There were no violations in March and Alger attended a conference in Orlando, Fla.
Council member David Waliczek suggested using equipment such as the street sweeper and leaf vac as long as possible after Alger noted she would prefer to replace the leaf vac over the street sweeper.
Council approved the closing of West Washington Street for the Mermaid Festival June 19-22 and the Dixie Day Festival July 27. Park Board Secretary Tammy Walicczek reported Mark Hubbs is the new board president and work continues on the new entrance to North Webster Town Park.
Council approved the lease renewal for Lakeside Pizza King at $700 a month and the business will reimburse the town for the building’s new roof. Dixie Sternwheeler Inc. will pay for use of the remodeled storage room in the park.
The next meeting of North Webster Town Council will be 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 21, at the North Webster Community Center.