The Deadline to Sign Up for the Knox 50/50 Sidewalk Replacement Program is Coming Up Soon

With the weather improving many people may be looking to spruce up the area around their house or business. Luckily for citizens of Knox, there is still about one week to get involved in the city’s 50/50 Sidewalk Replacement program.

Mayor Dennis Estok issued a reminder about the upcoming deadline at Tuesday night’s city council meeting.

Estok explained, “The 50/50 program for residents and commercial, the due date for that is coming up pretty fast so if anybody is going to enter it, they have to come up and get the application and have it in by May 4th to be a part of that program.” Continue reading

Knox City Council Considers the Potential of Installing a Digital Message Board

This is an idea of what the proposed self-standing sign would look like. Mayor Estok said certain details, such as the colors, can be changed.

The possibility of installing a digital message board near the entryway into Knox was discussed during last week’s city council meeting. Mayor Dennis Estok told members that a message board could be utilized to notify citizens about upcoming events or any other messages that they may need to convey.

He said after doing a bit of research, he found there are few different options they have to consider. They can get a sign that would be on wheels, similar to what traffic control uses. That would cost approximately $15,000 to $20,000.

The other option they have is a sign that would be placed in the ground. Continue reading

Knox City Council to Meet Tonight

Amendments to the existing curfew ordinance for the City of Knox will be considered during tonight’s city council meeting at 7 p.m.

According to the council packet provided by administrative assistant Peggy Travis, the curfew ordinance currently in place was originally adopted in October of 1989.

City council members are also anticipated to receive a presentation from Starke County Economic Development Foundation Special Projects Coordinator Ron Gifford. As usual, a monthly progress report will be provided. Continue reading

Knox Citizen Voices Concern Over Heavy Trucks on Henry Drive

A member of the public voiced her concern about large trucks traveling on Henry Drive during the citizen’s comments portion of Tuesday night’s Knox City Council Meeting.

The resident said she understands that there are certain larger city vehicles that must come down that way, but she feels heavier semis that frequent the street are contributing to a road issue.

The resident of Henry Drive stated, “I noticed there is a huge crack that’s getting bigger and bigger and bigger from the big trucks going down. And I know that the garbage truck has to go down the street but there are big semis and delivery trucks, so why can’t they go on 8?” Continue reading

Knox Mayor Reports that Community Center Renovations Should be Wrapping Up Soon

When the Knox City Council convened on Tuesday, Mayor Dennis Estok alerted members that the community center renovation project is nearing completion.With the roof portion finished and the new HVAC system installed there’s one remaining renovation to that will be addressed in the near future.

Estok told members that next week, contractors will start working on the floors. He added,  “So hopefully, we can get that project wrapped up.” In a past meeting, it was stated that the proposed floor work is estimated to cost around $42,425. Continue reading

Knox City Council Members Elect New President Pro Temp and Address Additional Appointments

Knox City Council members re-organized and addressed appointments when they met for the first time this year.

On Tuesday night, Councilwoman Bertha Blue nominated Ron Parker for the position of President Pro Temp and former council president. Parker’s nomination was unanimously approved. A “president pro tempore” serves as the representative for the council members and they would run the meeting if the mayor is ever absent. Continue reading

Knox City Council Members Approve Proposal for IT Infrastructure Enhancements, Estimated to Cost More Than $17,000 in First Year

The Knox City Council members amended their meeting agenda to include a proposal for enhancements to IT infrastructure, when they met last Wednesday.

Mayor Dennis Estok informed council members that the City of Knox is not currently equipped with any “off-site backup”, which is a state-mandated requirement. He said that means that all city documentation, emails and additional information would be unsaved if their main system was to experience any major problems. Continue reading

City of Knox Receives a $20,000 Planning Grant

Mayor Dennis Estok told Knox City Council members last week that the city is the recipient of a grant worth $20,000.

The city received the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and according to the Office of Community and Rural Affairs, the planning grant is funded with money from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. OCRA says the goal of the program is to encourage communities to plan for long-term community development.

Mayor Estok said that CDBG funds will be spent to cover the cost of services being provided by the Troyer Group, the architecture and planning firm assisting city officials with the construction of the Knox Parks 5-Year Master Plan. Continue reading

Knox City Council Members Receive Update About Starke County Humane Society Agreement

Mayor Dennis Estok updated Knox City Council members about the agreement between the Starke County Humane Society and the city when they met Tuesday night.

He said the agreement still has some minor changes that need to be made before it will become before the council for approval. He added that the Humane Society Board is currently looking over the document as well.

Mayor Estok said the agreement states that the city will be charged $15 per cat and $20 for every dog that is brought into the shelter by city officials. He added that if Humane Society staff needs to do a pick-up on dangerous animals it will be the regular fee plus an additional $75 charge. Continue reading

SCEDF Helps Knox Officials Get to the Bottom of a CEDIT Account Deficit

Starke County Economic Development Foundation Executive Director Charlie Weaver spoke with Knox City Council members about an estimated deficit in the city’s CEDIT account at their meeting last Tuesday.

Back in October, Clerk-Treasurer Jeff Houston mentioned that he received a notification from the Department of Local Government Finance indicating that there would be a projected loss of revenue of $34,908 for next year. He told members that sometimes those figures can be off but also assured them that the SCEDF was working with representatives from Umbaugh to get to the bottom of it.

At the most recent council meeting, Weaver informed members that after speaking with the city’s financial advisor Todd Samuelson of Umbaugh and Associates, he had a better understanding of why next year’s numbers are lower than the figures from  2017. Continue reading