BTC answers questions about Brook Hill
By Makenna Mays, Staff Writer
During the Wednesday, Dec. 26,2018 Brookville Town Council meeting, council members answered questions from constituents regarding Brook Hill Golf Course and the proposed annexation area.
Members Curtis Ward and Darrel Flaspohler have headed the project from the town's end. Ward said they have agreed to keep the project moving forward.
Ward explained the plan was to have a group buy the course and hold it for a period of time until the town is ready to move forward with the purchase. Ward added the town would still want a majority of the signatures for annexation. If the signatures were not forthcoming, the town would not go through with the purchase.
Since the Dec. 26 meeting, Dave Chaddon, interim president of a group forming an LLC for the preservation of Brook Hill, provided an update. Chaddon said they were currently in the process of forming a group of local people for the preservation of the golf course. The intent is to have the course operational by spring and additional updates will follow.
Some property owners who attended the meeting were curious as to how the proposed annexation would impact their taxes. Ward directed them to the Department of Local Government Finance site where they could calculate the tax increase.
Another topic of discussion was how the adopting of town ordinances would affect those in the annexation area. Ward said when they get into the next steps in the decision-making process and discussing annexation, they would look at current ordinances and ask if any of those make sense to carry over into the annexation area.
Firearm discharge, agriculture and fires have been recurring issues brought up to the board. It was stated that the town would be open to adjusting some of the ordinances.
Brookville Police Chief Doug Ralph was also present at the meeting to discuss purchasing a new police vehicle. They are considering many options which include both 2019 and 2020 models.
One option was purchasing a 2019 Ford F150 which would be ideal as it could be filtered down to other departments such as street or fire. Ralph is going to put together a package of all of their options before a decision is made.
The town also made the decision to continue 2019 Flex Bank Enrollment FSA accounts. In addition to health insurance benefits, the town gives an option for employees to enroll in a flex spending account which would match up to $250 for each employee wishing to enroll. Usually, 10-12 employees participate.
The town discussed potential retainer walls for the Blight Elimination Project houses. It was mentioned that a landscape wall would make the area look nicer, but it would also be an additional maintenance issue for the town.
The town council adjourned their normal meeting and then readjourned for their reappointment meeting. Mike Biltz was reappointed as president, Darrel Flaspohler as vice president, Tim Ripperger as town administrator, Kurt Riedman as utilities superintendent, water/
wastewater operator, Ryan Bischoff as waterworks main operator, Brent Riehle as street superintendent, Tammy Davis as town attorney, Gina Gillman as office utility manager, Doug Ralph as police chief, Aaron Leffingwell as fire chief and Mark Shires as assistant fire chief.