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Friday, Apr. 29, 2016

Pinckley Street to be repaved

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Karen McQueen
* City, county officials working together to complete project

A project Brazil residents have wanted for a long time will soon be underway.

In a special meeting Wednesday, the Brazil Board of Public Works and Safety signed off on an interlocal agreement with Clay County, which allows for the repaving of Pinckley Street, between State Road 59 and Murphy Avenue.

According to Brazil Clerk-Treasurer Karen McQueen, $88,000 has been committed to the completion of the project.

"Between our Rainy Day Fund and other budget cuts we have made, there was money available to do this," she told The Brazil Times. "The residents have wanted this for quite a while, so it is great to be able to make it happen."

With responsibility of Pinckley Street being split between the city (north side of the street) and the county (south side), both entities will play their part in the repaving.

According to the interlocal agreement, the city will be responsible for purchasing the cold mix (for blacktopping) and milling the street, while the county is committed to providing the equipment (trucking and paving machines) as well as the labor.

The Clay County Commissioners' signed off on the agreement during its regular meeting Monday, and President Charlie Brown expressed his appreciation about having a good working relationship with the city.

Charlie Brown
"It means a lot to all of us to be able to work with the city," Brown said during Monday's meeting. "There is a lot of progress that can be made when governmental entities work together, rather than doing their own thing. I think that is why there are so many projects going on to improve both the city and the county."

On Wednesday, board member Bill Lovett said everything is pretty much in place for the project to begin as soon as possible.

"The risers for the manholes have been ordered," he said. "Those will go in after the milling is done, but before the blacktop goes down."

Banning Engineering (Plainfield) Project Engineer Tabatha Briones told The Brazil Times a four-foot wide strip will be milled along curbs, side streets and other areas necessary to maintain a consistent road height.

She added Wabash Valley Asphalt provided the best quote for the cold mix and other road materials, which the board unanimously accepted.

One major concern for the board is how it would affect access to Forest Park Elementary. McQueen said the city would contact the Clay Community School Corporation to determine a plan to conduct work on the project with as little interference to the school as possible. As of press time, no definitive plan or schedule had been finalized.

Work is anticipated to begin in the next 7-10 days, with completion to be no later than mid-November.

"As long as the temperature is above 45 degrees, asphalt work can still be done," Briones said. "Even though weather conditions can vary, this type of work can be done through the middle of November."

McQueen told The Brazil Times additional plans are in the works to pave more roads in the next couple years.

"With all luck, we should be done paying for the sidewalk project this year," she said. "Other than maintenance costs, we should then be able to start utilizing Cumulative Capital Development Fund dollars on repaving roads starting next year."

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lets wait and see. then the list of "what about my streets" will cascade upon us.

-- Posted by wtfizdat on Thu, Oct 7, 2010, at 1:30 AM

ditto, freedom1.

-- Posted by Conservative Dad on Thu, Oct 7, 2010, at 6:33 AM

Hallelujah!!!!! I drive Pinckley every day to get to work and my poor little car has about had it. Now if they could just put up a fence to keep those little kids from running in the road at those apartments. LOL!

-- Posted by ugotitdude on Thu, Oct 7, 2010, at 8:19 AM

I find it comendable that their able to find the money. Cudos to the current administration. I know this is a project that previous administrations have worked to accomplish. As for you nay sayers, just wait until November when the property tax cap is on the ballot. I bet you'll be the first to vote yes to cap your taxes at 1%. Where do you think the local governments get their money? Sure it sounds good on paper, but how do you think this will affect police and fire protection and what street repairs they can do. It's an expensive proposition to maintain streets. Think how the cost of gasoline has increased over the past 10 years, same is true for asphalt. SO VOTE NO ON MAKING PROPERTY TAX CAPS PERMANENT.

-- Posted by Partrosie on Thu, Oct 7, 2010, at 6:04 PM

Partrosie, it is so good to see an intelligent person respond to this article. Thanks

-- Posted by Tracy Jones on Thu, Oct 7, 2010, at 9:38 PM

Partrosie, you might want to check out the Clay County budget (http://www.in.gov/dlgf/files/BudgetOrder_2010_ClayCounty.pdf) especially the lines labeled "highway" and "local roads and streets". Property taxes are not used for these as there is not a property tax levy for them. You may wish to read the recent article on the consideration of a local wheel tax (http://www.thebraziltimes.com/story/1668330.html) and of how the state motor vehicle highway fund is funded by taxation of fuels and vehicles, but not property, and then distributed to the INDOT and lower taxing units for road construction and repair (http://www.in.gov/legislative/ic/code/title8/ar14/ch1.html).

I have to agree that local government needs some flexibility in funding and the ability to raise funds, if not through property taxes then through other taxes. When the public demands services or infrastructure from a government body, the money to pay for it must be provided.

One good thing about the property tax cap, even without it being made permanent, is that it has caused a lot more consideration to be given to government budgets and spending. Without the ability to raise funds as easily, government officials are looking at items a lot harder to determine if they really need to expend money on them or if they can find a more cost-effective way to accomplish the desired end result. The bad thing is that it took public furor over taxation followed by a downturn in the economy to make people realize that we can have what we need without paying as much as we have been for years.

We, the public, have to pay for government services if we demand service and infrastructure of our government and the government is always going to ask for a bit more than is absolutely required from the people who pay taxes; it has to because there will always be someone who fails to pay the tax on time or at all. But government should always work in the most cost-effective fashion and never overtax to spend without the highest gain for the public that it serves.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Fri, Oct 8, 2010, at 3:13 AM

Will the police departments beef up patrols immediately after the paving? It will become a race track. I live on Pinckley St and I consistently see cars running 45 MPH or faster in a clearly-marked 25 MPH area. The poor street conditions slow down some drivers, but not all. I'd like to see additional speed limit signs put into place, and possibly a temporary "your speed is XX" while the road is being watched with police radar.

-- Posted by JHeffner on Fri, Oct 8, 2010, at 12:51 PM

Mr. Southworth,

You are correct that the city and county both receive funding from the state through gasoline tax distributions. However, local governments have the ability to "shift" property taxes from different parts of the budget on an annual basis. For example if the county collects $1000 in property taxes and all $1000 goes to the general fund, they could the next year (after publication and council approval) shift money from the general fund levy to local roads and streets. As in the example with the $1000, they could spend $800 in the general fund and $200 on roads. But like I said earlier, this as to be approved by the council at the time the budget is passed in the fall for the succeding year.

-- Posted by Partrosie on Sat, Oct 9, 2010, at 5:24 PM

Partrosie: It's true that the County Council has the ability to "shift" property tax monies among various funds. However, they are not allowed to shift property tax monies into local road and street accounts. "NOT ALLOWED TO BE DONE"! Local cities and towns however due get to use a small portion of their property tax revenues in their local road and street accounts. Don't know why it differs between cities and the county but it does.

-- Posted by open minded on Sat, Oct 9, 2010, at 8:21 PM

Partrosie - any taxing unit may form a Rainy Day Fund and move surplus funds, up to ten percent of the total budget, into it then to any fund determined to use those funds. However, you have to have a surplus or determine not to do something that you have asked that money be appropriated to accomplish in the last budget.

Revenue is down, state-wide, there isn't a lot of surplus that isn't going into operating expenses and that doesn't leave a lot to fix what has been neglected for years and decades.

Then there are the property tax caps and the "circuit-breaker" on property taxes, which is why local governments all over Indiana are looking at other taxing options. I can agree that there should be limitations on the share of the tax burden that is directly borne by one class of taxpayer such as property owners. However, everyone pays every tax, except the "sin" taxes such as the tax on tobacco, directly or indirectly. If you rent or lease property, the owner writes the check, unless you got a real good deal; however,what you pay should cover the tax, the upkeep, the administration costs, AND make a profit for the owner.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Sun, Oct 10, 2010, at 12:22 PM

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