agrees to not support sewer proposal
Wanda English Burnett, Editor
The request of Sunman resident Donna McCool for the Ripley County
Council to revisit a decision the council had made initially supporting
the proposal of the Sunman Regional Sewer District was honored
at the meeting Monday, January 12.
Commissioner Robert Reiners was in attendance at the meeting and
noted that the commissioners never supported the proposal of a
sewer district. He said they felt there was never a need shown
to them for the district in the first place. Other things that
had them question the validity of the project, was how the route
of the sewer lines had been changed several times and the burden
it would place on property owners in the area. Why force
something on someone when they dont want it and the need
hasnt been shown? he questioned.
The whole signing of the resolution seemed vague to members of
the council and no minutes were ever found to substantiate the
councils initial decision according to McCool.
Sunman resident Ruth Riehle was also in attendance and noted that
183 letters have been received at IDEM in opposition to the proposal.
Saying in this mostly rural area this type of project would cause
undue hardship on people financially, council member Juanita Kaiser
made the motion for the council to withdraw their support. I
have concerns over people being able to afford it, she noted.
Attorney Neil Comer advised that a new resolution had to be adopted.
You cant take back the other one, he noted.
The council agreed to adopt a new resolution that would rescind
what they had previously agreed to. Newcomer to the council, Bill
Warren, seconded the motion and it carried five in favor with
Bill Dramann abstaining. He told Riehle after the meeting that
as a newcomer to the council (this was his first meeting), he
didnt know enough about the situation to make an informed
decision. Ed Armbrecht was the only member not in attendance.
The council voted unanimously to keep the meetings on the third
Monday of each month with the exception of February. That meeting
will be held one week earlier on February 9.
Dephane Smith was again elected president of the council.
In other business:
$40,000 was appropriated for a new phone system for the
county. This was a grant from the Lily Foundation that was channeled
through the Ripley County Community Foundation.
Commissioner Reiners reported on the most recent SEI Regional
Planning Committee meeting. He noted there was a large turnout
with a lot of interest generated from President-Elect Barack Obamas
stimulus proposal. He said that Ripley County will be applying
for their share of the money that would help with roads, bridges,
and economic development such as shovel ready sites.
Attorney Neil Comer noted that a new bill now in legislation
could impact the local Solid Waste District. More information
would be given at the Thursday SISWD meeting (January 15).
Reiners reported that the county highway department has
applied for a grant to purchase a culvert cleaning machine. The
RCRC has also applied for some grants for economic development.
Under appointments to represent the council:
Jeff Volz was appointed to Economic Development.
Rick Green was appointed to the Batesville Economic Development
Don Dunbar was appointed to the SEI Solid Waste District
with Bill Warren serving as pro tem.
Dephane Smith was appointed to the SEI Regional Planning
Ben Peetz was appointed to the E911 Advisory Board.
The next meeting of the council will be held February 9 at 7 p.m.
at the courthouse annex in Versailles. Bill Dramann, Bill Warren,
David Simon, Don Dunbar, Dephane Smith, and Juanita Kaiser were
present at the meeting. Auditor Mary Ann McCoy was present to
take the minutes with Attorney Neil Comer to advise the council.