An ongoing saga at the Starke County Forest was recently brought to the attention of Park Board President Richard Ballard. “The beavers are back,” Ballard told the rest of the Starke County Park Board Tuesday. “I don’t know exactly what that means for us, but he said the beavers are back.”Continue reading
While a Stellar Community designation could bring upgrades to the Bass Lake Beach area, there might also be major improvements to recreational facilities throughout Starke County.Continue reading
Big upgrades could be coming to the Bass Lake Beach, if Constellation of Starke gets its Stellar Community designation. During Tuesday’s Starke County Park Board Meeting, Board Member Rik Ritzler said several ideas have been thrown around.Continue reading
The Starke County Commissioners reviewed a lease for the Solid Waste Building on the grounds of the Starke County Highway Department to the Solid Waste District.Continue reading
Work continues to address safety concerns at the Bass Lake Beach House patio. The facility’s operator, Callahan Development, LLC has made temporary repairs to the patio’s railing. Starke County Park Board Member Rik Ritzler gave an update during last week’s meeting, according to County Attorney Marty Lucas.Continue reading
Starke County will apparently cover the cost of last summer’s electrical work at the Bass Lake Campground. Last week, the Starke County Park Board agreed to reimburse the lessee, Callahan Development, LLC, for the bill of about $3,500, according to County Attorney Marty Lucas.Continue reading
As the Starke County Park Board monitors improvements at the Bass Lake Beach and Campground, what qualifies as a capital improvement and what should be considered normal maintenance continues to be discussed.Continue reading
The Starke County Park Board has gotten $5,000 toward a planned Yellow River access point, but where exactly it will be built remains to be determined. Starke County Community Foundation Director of Development Jessica Martinovic presented the park board with a check during Tuesday’s meeting.Continue reading
The Starke County Council members recently received a Notice of Claim from Tom DeCola who was expelled from his seat on the Starke County Council on Feb. 18.
DeCola claims that he was not given the full 30 days to respond to allegations of disorderly conduct and public intoxication during a “social event hosted by the Indiana Association of Counties” in Indianapolis. He stated that the deadline was technically Feb. 21 and he was asked to provide an explanation during the council’s meeting on Feb. 18. During that meeting DeCola had this comment, “After reviewing the paperwork that was handed to me, I read it and decided that it was my in persona civil cause of action and that it wasn’t an authoritative official cause of action. So, I decided it’s not even worthy to respond to it.”
DeCola also claims the Starke County Council wrongfully expelled him for allegations that were outside his term. He took office on Jan. 1, 2019 and the allegations occurred on Dec. 12, 2018. He said he wasn’t acting under any type of official duty and has not been criminally charged. He also claims the witnesses who gave statements were unreliable.
DeCola’s oath of office was filed on Dec. 7. Witnesses at the conference in Indianapolis stated he introduced himself as a Starke County Councilman.
Starke County Attorney Marty Lucas said the claim is currently under review.
In a press release, Starke County Council President Dave Pearman said the fiscal body may, by state statute, “(1) expel any member for violation of an official duty; (2) declare the seat of any member vacant if the member is unable or fails to perform the duties of the member’s office; and (3) adopt its own rules to govern proceedings under this section, but a two-thirds ( 2/3 ) vote is required to expel a member or vacate a member’s seat.”
Pearman stated that DeCola’s Notice of Claim will be discussed during the council’s next meeting on Monday, March 18 at 5:30 p.m. CT in the meeting room in the Starke County Annex Building No. 1 at 53 E. Mound Street in Knox.
After deciding not to respond to allegations against him in an incident in Indianapolis, the Starke County Council voted by a majority to expel Tom DeCola from his seat on the council.Continue reading
Starke County officials hope that recent upgrades to the County Forest will help attract new visitors. County Park Board members and Community Foundation representatives joined Forester Bruce Wakeland, Commissioner Kathy Norem, and several others Wednesday afternoon, to cut the ribbon on the forest’s upgraded access road.
The Stellar Executive Team of Starke County has been assembled.
Starke County Economic Development Foundation Executive Director Larry Wickert is serving as one of the members and shared the other individuals who will be involved. Continue reading
The Starke County Park Board may consider applying for grant funding to help prevent erosion at the Bass Lake shoreline. Board member Debbie Mix and a small group of local residents recently met with representatives from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources to get some ideas.
The deterioration of the Bass Lake Beach House patio may be worse than originally thought. Now, the Starke County Park Board is demanding action from the facility’s operator, Callahan Development, LLC. Officials with the Starke County Highway Department recently took a look at the site to see what may need to be done, but they’ve determined that the project is too large for them to do themselves.
Preventing the erosion of the Bass Lake shoreline is the goal of a planned research effort. Resident Rick Anderson told the Starke County Park Board Tuesday that it’s a challenging issue, due to the lake’s big waves and hard winter ice, but there are a couple officials with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources who might have some ideas.
The Starke County Forest’s new access road is now complete. The County Highway Department recently upgraded the old access trail into a gravel road with a 10-to-12-car parking lot. The work was funded by a $15,000 grant from the Hardesty Memorial Endowment Fund.
Concerns about the safety of the Bass Lake Beach House patio have led Starke County officials to look into repairing it themselves. The patio was the topic of a heated discussion during Tuesday’s County Park Board meeting. Board member Debbie Mix said the facility’s operator, Callahan Development, LLC, still hasn’t made repairs that have been discussed for several months or longer.
The bid opening for the Starke County Courthouse elevator project has been moved to Wednesday, July 18th, according to County Commissioner Kathy Norem. Continue reading
As work gets underway to protect the Bass Lake Beach from future erosion, concerns remain about the beach house patio. Last summer, a group of local residents and Starke County Park Board members studied the site and pointed out that the fill that’s supposed to support the concrete patio had mostly washed away.