Council Considers Street Funding

Information reprinted with permission of the Courier Times, local newspaper New Castle, Indiana www.thecouriertimes.com

Council considers street funding

Posted: Wednesday, May 18, 2016 6:00 am

Street resurfacing and maintenance plans in New Castle for 2016 will remain unchanged even though the state has provided the city with nearly $170,000 in additional revenue for that purpose.

Mayor Greg York told members of the city council Monday the city will receive a one-time distribution of Local Option Income Tax money totaling just under $170,000 and that a special fund must be established in order to receive the money.

In keeping with Senate Enrolled Act 67, 75 percent of the one-time distribution is restricted to the following uses: Engineering, land acquisition, construction, reserves, maintenance, restoration or rehabilitation of both local and arterial road and street systems, local costs required to undertake a recreational or reservoir road project, the purchase, rental or repair of highway equipment, providing a local match for the INDOT, local road and bridge matching grant, capital projects for aviation and the payment of principal and interest on bonds sold primarily to finance road, street or thoroughfare projects.

After the use of the first 75 percent of the one-time distribution, the remaining 25 percent is non-restricted and may be used for any purpose.

The mayor indicated he wants to use all of the money received to “put asphalt on the road.” Also, because of an available $1 for $1 match, York recommended banking the unexpected windfall until next year in order to accrue additional local funds and using only money already budgeted for street maintenance this year.

“We have some money that we can put towards roads this year,” York said. “We don’t have near the money to match (the state’s road funding program) with this year that I was hoping to have. I was trying desperately to find $500,000 to match it with so the state would match it with $500,000 and we could pave $1 million worth of roads, but it wasn’t that simple. I think we’re going to go with our original plan this year and bank (the LOIT money) for next year so we can find more money to add to it. That way we can get the biggest match possible.”

The council didn’t question the mayor’s idea of banking the LOIT money received from the state until next year, and unanimously voted on first, second and third readings to create the required fund in order to receive the LOIT money.

The council also reviewed a couple of fliers that will be distributed with July’s water bill. One of the fliers explains how the city’s trash ordinance works and the other details services and programs offered by the Henry County Solid Waste Management District.

Highlights from the ordinance include:

• Trash totes should be set out no earlier than the evening prior to pick up and retrieved no later than the evening following pick up.

• All trash should be placed in a provided tote with the lid shut.

• Scattered trash on any given property is the property owner’s responsibility.

• Syringes, needles, glass and other sharp objects must be placed in a sealed container said objects can’t penetrate.

• Loose leaves will only be collected Oct. 1 to Dec. 31; otherwise, they must be bagged and placed in a trash tote.

• Brush and limbs may be picked up by making arrangements with the Street Department.

• Heavy trash will only be picked up once a month by making arrangements with the Street Department and in keeping with the following schedule. If your regular trash collection day is Tuesday, your heavy trash pick up day is the first Friday of the month. If your regular trash collection day is Wednesday, your heavy trash pick up day is the second Friday of the month. If your regular collection day is Thursday, your heavy trash pick up day is the third Friday of the month. If your regular collection day is Friday, your heavy trash pick up day is the fourth Friday of the month.

• The entire bed of a privately operated truck hauling trash must be covered by a tarp to prevent trash from blowing out.

• Violators will be fined between $25 and $2,500 for each violation.

Questions about the trash ordinance may be directed to the mayor’s office at 765-529-7605 or the Street Department at 765-521-6836. A copy of the trash ordinance is available on the city’s website atwww.cityofnewcastle.net.

Questions about materials collected and services offered by the Henry County Solid Waste Management District may be directed to 765-529-1691.