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Commissioners follow council in approving $20K for Milltown project

June 26, 2019
Following the action of the county council, the Crawford County Board of Commissioners, at its meeting at the judicial complex on Thursday night, voted 3-0 to provide Milltown with $20,000 to build a new wastewater treatment plant.

The council on June 11 voted 6-0 (member Dale Roll was absent) to give $20,000 to the project from the county's Orange County Riverboat Gaming Fund. However, any monies distributed from that fund also must be authorized by the commissioners.

The council's vote to provide the $20,000, however, is contingent on Marengo building a force main line to the new Milltown plant to treat its sewage, as the council believes that would open up the possibility for economic development in the approximately four-mile stretch between the two towns.

Milltown remains hopeful of receiving a 20-percent matching $700,000 grant from the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs to pay for its new plant, which at one time was estimated to cost $1.6 million. Marengo also would likely have to receive a grant to construct the connecting force main line.

The commissioners also voted 3-0 to approve an ordinance that authorizes the collection of fees for real property endorsements by the Auditor's office as well as establishes the Plat Book Fund.

Effective July 1, amendment of the Indiana Code allows auditor offices across the state to charge $10 for each real estate endorsement that is on a parcel of real estate, a conveyance of land or a deed or partition.

"The commissioners had passed an ordinance back in 2008 that allowed the (current) $5 fee, and the Auditor's office had gone to a conference and had become aware of the change and requested that we change the ordinance to allow the $10 fee," county attorney Burgher IV said.

The $10 fee — which is an increase of $5 of the existing one — is in addition to those already allowed by law and required on transfers will go into the Plat Book Fund, which is to be used to maintain county plat books.

The ordinance approved by the commissioners repeals the one passed in 2008 and takes effect July 1.

In other business, the commissioners:

Voted 3-0 to deny a request from a company wanting an easement on county right of way to install underground ducts and fiber along White Oak Lane south of Marengo. Morton Dale, president of the board, recommended a motion to deny the request because of potential future complications and liability to the county, noting the company needs to attempt to secure private easements.

Approved, 3-0, a contract with the Association of Indiana Counties to utilize budget consultant Jacque Clements as the county has in previous years.

Voted 3-0 to approve an employee Family Medical Leave Act request retroactive to May 22.

The commissioners' next meeting will be Tuesday, July 9, at 3:30 p.m. at the judicial complex.

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