Pulaski County Coroner’s Office to Transfer Funds to Cover Chief Deputy’s Raise

Now that Pulaski County Chief Deputy Coroner Jon Frain has finally gotten his pay raise, county officials now have to figure out where the money is going to come from. Last month, the county council voted to pay the chief deputy 82 percent of the coroner’s salary, which more than quadrupled Frain’s pay rate to almost $8,100 a year. While the Coroner’s Office had about $8,000 budgeted for that purpose in previous years, that figure had been cut to match Frain’s previous pay rate.

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Pulaski Superior Court Requests More Money for Witness Fees, Examination of Prisoners, Pauper Counsel

Just a few weeks into 2019, Pulaski Superior Court has already used up its annual budget for examination of prisoners and witness fees. Judge Crystal Brucker Kocher told the county council and commissioners Monday that the two line items had a combined $3,000 budgeted for this year. That money is used to hire doctors for the process of determining whether defendants are competent to stand trial.

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Vote to Add New Secretary for Pulaski County Prosecutor’s Office Ends in Tie

Pulaski County Council: back row: Mike Tiede, Kathi Thompson, Brian Young; front row: Scott Hinkle, Rudy DeSabatine, Jay Sullivan (not pictured: Ken Boswell)

The addition of a new secretary for the Pulaski County Prosecutor’s Office appears to depend on a recommendation from the county commissioners, after the county council was once again unable to reach a clear consensus Monday.

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Pulaski County Council Votes to Give Chief Deputy Coroner a Pay Raise

After months of discussions, the Pulaski County Council has finally agreed to give the chief deputy coroner a pay raise. Council members voted six-to-one Monday to pay the chief deputy coroner 82 percent of what the coroner makes. That will amount to almost $8,100 a year, which is more than four times the current pay level. Mike Tiede cast the lone opposing vote.

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Pulaski County Council Takes Steps to Make Donation Funds Available for EMS Department’s Use

After a couple left almost $30,000 to the Pulaski County EMS Department in their will, county officials are now taking steps to allow that money to be used. EMS Director Bryan Corn asked the county council this month to formally incorporate that money into his budget. “Just a little over a month ago, I believe, we received a check,” he explained. “It was a donation from the estate of a Henry and Alice Mooi. That total comes out to $29,901.71. That is strictly to be used for the EMS Department only, and that is strictly to be used for equipment for the EMS Department.”

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Pulaski County Council Considers Budget Transfer, Additional Appropriation Requests

Funding for Pulaski County’s fiscal plan, the courthouse elevator replacement project, and reassessment expenses was among the transfer and additional appropriation requests brought to the county council last week. Community Development Commission Executive Director Nathan Origer explained that he has $50,000 budgeted annually for potential land acquisition. But since the CDC won’t be needing it for that purpose, the county council agreed to let him make $36,000 of that available for the fiscal plan. The county commissioners have since decided to hire Peters Municipal Consultants for a cost not to exceed $24,000.

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Culver School Board Makes Arrangements for Bus Purchase

The Culver Community Schools Corporation is looking to replace an extra school bus this year. Bus 24 was scheduled to be replaced in 2020, but school officials have decided to move that forward, according to Treasurer Casey Howard. The school board took steps to make funds available earlier this month. But Howard told board members this week that the 2018 through 2030 bus replacement plan had to be amended before the state would allow the additional appropriation. The school board passed a resolution Monday to accept the amended plan.

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Pulaski County Council, Commissioners Approve Vehicle Purchase for Prosecutor’s Office

The Pulaski County Prosecutor’s Office is getting a new investigator vehicle. Prosecutor Dan Murphy plans to get a 2019 Dodge Charger from Braun. “We’ll have about a $12,000 discount buying it through that program that the State Police use for vehicles,” Murphy told the county council Monday. Once the discount, trade-in, and the addition of a police package are taken into account, the final cost is around $26,400.

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Hamlet Council Arranges Financing for Road Work to be Done by County Highway Department

The Hamlet Town Council approved funding arrangements Wednesday for some upcoming street repairs. Council member Brian Earnest said the town’s identified four sections of road in need of work, with the repairs to be done by the Starke County Highway Department. “The roads that they found were Maple Street from Plymouth Street to Oak Street, Madison Street from Hamlet to Main, Davis Street from Division to Lincoln, and Main Street from Terry to Madison. Those were the four roads,” he said. Continue reading

Pulaski County Officials Continue Working on Masonic Lodge Purchase

The Pulaski County Coroner’s Office is pushing the county council and commissioners to finalize the purchase of the former Winamac Masonic Lodge as close to the original deadline as possible. Last month, the council and commissioners approved a joint ordinance to purchase the building for $50,000 from the Royal Center Masonic Lodge. The plan is to convert it into a dedicated morgue and coroner’s office, which the county has lacked until now.

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Pulaski County Council Decides Not to Proceed with Additional Funding for Human Services

Pulaski County Human Services will not be getting a funding boost from the county. Executive Director Jacki Frain asked the county council last week for another $10,000, after the organization was only budgeted to get $30,000 in county funding this year. While that’s the same amount that Human Services got last year, Frain said it’s about $15,000 less than what it traditionally got in the past.

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