By Leah Sander
WARSAW — The Kosciusko County Council has approved resolutions related to how members can attend meetings virtually and that addressed the public speaking at its meetings.
The council approved two resolutions on the topics at its regular meeting on Thursday, July 8, at the Kosciusko County Courthouse’s Old Courtroom.
The council did make some edits to the electronic meeting one before its approval.
Under the final plan, four members must be in person at meetings. Also aside from some exceptions, members are prohibited from attending two meetings in a row virtually and can only use the virtual option twice in a calendar year.
The exceptions include: military service, the member or their spouse or immediate family member being ill, the member’s relative passing away or “an emergency involving actual or threatened injury to persons or property.”
Another requirement is that those attending virtually must be able to be seen and heard if they’re “participat(ing) in final action.”
Members also must be present if at the meeting the council is “taking final action to: adopt a budget; make a reduction in personnel; initiate a referendum; impose or increase a fee; impose or increase a penalty; exercise the council’s right of eminent domain; or establish, impose, raise, reduce or renew a tax.”
Guidelines under the public decorum resolution include that anyone who wants to speak at a meeting has to sign in and will typically have three minutes to talk.
In other business, the council:
- Formalized the two tax abatements it granted Louis Dreyfus Co. for work to be done at its Claypool location.
The council approved one real estate tax abatement for five years at a cap of $9 million and one for three years for personal property at a cap of $6 million at its June meeting.
- Approved raising Kosciusko County Sheriff Kyle Dukes’ salary from a maximum of $161,125 to $164,950.
That was due to his salary being linked to what the prosecutor makes by Indiana code.
- Appointed Clay Brooks to the Milford Public Library Board and Sherrie Mullet to the Nappanee Public Library Board.
The council’s next regular meeting is 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 12, in the Old Courtroom.