2017-08-09 / Front Page

Flora residents speak out about concerns

By Lauri Rice
Contributing writer

Flora residents came to Monday’s Town Council meeting prepared with complaints.

Charlotte Hicks asked about town ordinances being available to new residents, handicap access to ball fields at the park, and general accessibility to restrooms at the park. Although the Town of Flora has hundreds of ordinances, none are available online through the Town’s website. Hicks believes a condensed version of everyday ordinances and laws should be available to residents.

Council President Josh Ayres explained that handicap accessibility at the ball park would be expensive. In order to make the ball fields handicap accessible, the Town would have to comply with ADA regulations that are extensive and costly. The park restroom situation is a big ongoing problem.

Hicks mentioned the handicap restrooms at the little league diamond were locked on the 4th of July. Because the restrooms have been vandalized and “messed up” so much, they must be locked sometimes because no one is available to fix them or clean them up.

GeeKnee Rioux spoke about flooding in her property along W. Elizabeth St. Rioux spoke to the Council two years ago on the issue. It was the Council’s belief the issue had been taken care of. However, Rioux has had continued flooding from the Community Club’s field that borders her property and other fields that drain in her direction. The Council advised her to contact the County Surveyor about the watershed and possible solutions.

Charlotte Moppin brought up visibility at the Columbia and Main street intersections with Division St. She said when big trucks park in the available street spots, especially in front of Pizza King and the post office, they obscure visibility to traffic. Two bids for the demolition of 105 W. Columbia St. were opened. The decision was tabled so the Council can compare the bids and clarify details in order to make the best decision.

The Park Department reported how pleased members are with the new building in the park. They also mentioned several items on their “to do” list, including installing seeding around the new building, remediating flooding around the new building, sealing the walking trail, planting more trees, repairing the tennis court, and installing a camera system throughout the park. The camera system was discussed last summer and earlier this summer, however rebids have not yet been sought.

The Utilities Department had several items to report. The Solar Park is due to come online Sept. 9. The recycle truck is causing trouble every week. The repair estimate is around $18,000. Town employees plan to attend a local auction to purchase equipment for the Town. The Council was reluctant to give employees an exact dollar limit because of the public nature of the meeting. The Council will trust employees’ judgment on cost of items they want to purchase.

The police department reported five misdemeanor arrests, two felonies, 12 citations, 24 warnings, 52 calls for service, two accidents, and one warrant served.

The plan commission reported six building permits were issued in July: Conor McIlrath for a fence; Terry Bechtold for a fence; Lora Blackburn for demolition; Dave and Marilyn Minich for demolition of old shed and placement of new shed; Robert and Shirley Thompson for a sidewalk; and Paul Wisler for a patio and sidewalks.

A non-compliance letter from the INDOT Aviation Department was received concerning runway lights and height of grass. All issues will be remediated and a letter will be sent in response.

A Community Shred Day is scheduled for Aug. 19 at the Municipal Shop from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Town offices will be closed Sept. 4 for Labor Day.

The next meeting will be Sept. 11 at 6 p.m.

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