Foster Named Chief Deputy Town Marshal For Winona Lake

WINONA LAKE – Mike Foster will serve as Winona Lake’s chief deputy town marshal, and the speed on Pierceton Road near the Greenway has been reduced.
Joe Hawn was appointed and sworn in as the town’s marshal March 29, replacing Paul Schmitt, who retired.
Hawn said at Tuesday’s Winona Lake Town Council meeting that when he was interviewed by the council, he was asked if he would be willing to have a chief deputy. He said yes.
“Since I became the town marshal of Winona Lake, I’ve been working with Mike Foster. Mike has been a tremendous, I mean a tremendous, asset here with me to give me transition into the town marshal position,” Hawn said.
Hawn went to Town Coordinator Craig Allebach to discuss making Foster the chief deputy town marshal.
“I did talk to the other officers as well. They all respect and get along with Mike very well. So my proposal tonight is to promote Mike as the assistant town marshal,” Hawn said.
The council approved the resolution naming Foster as the chief deputy town marshal. In that position, Foster will receive an additional compensation of $57.70 bi-weekly added to his existing compensation over a period of 52 weeks, amounting to about $1,500 for the year, according to the resolution.
Allebach then told the council about ordinance 2016-5-3, which reduces speed on Pierceton Road from Freedom Lane to 500 feet west of Packerton Road from 35 to 30 mph. He said it’s getting busy out in that area even though the Greenway hasn’t officially been open yet. Grace College has developed about 35 acres along Pierceton Road for tennis courts, baseball, softball and soccer fields.
The council approved a motion to consider the ordinance and then another motion to approve the ordinance. Normally, the ordinance would have to be published in the newspaper first, but town attorney Jim Walmer said the council could approve it in this manner without being advertised as it is an “emergency.”
The next ordinance approved by the council, No. 2016-5-4, limits parking to “residents only” on the west side of West Canal Street from Esplanade Street to 400 feet south of West 12th Street; and prohibits all parking on the south side of Mineral Springs Avenue between Chestnut Street to the east side of Kings Court Street.
The council also approved an additional appropriation of $217,670 out of the Motor Vehicle Highway fund.
Town Coordinator Craig Allebach said, “This was money that came in after we approved our budget last year. Basically, this is money from the Wheel Tax, so to spend those monies they need to be appropriated, so this is an additional appropriation for 2015 and 2016 Wheel Tax money, which is going toward our Muirfield (street reconstruction) project.”
Warsaw Mayor Joe Thallemer gave a presentation to the council on the Stellar Communities initiative, in which Warsaw has been named one of three finalists in its division. The other two finalists are the cities of Rushville and Shelbyville.
The city is partnering with Winona Lake as part of its application. It sent its letter of intent out in early March, and was notified April 3 that it was a finalist.
“Stellar Communities is a consortium of 10 state agencies who banded together and will set money and technical advice kind of off to the side for a designated Stellar Community. If we are named a Stellar Community, we will have the benefit of access of up to $6.5 million of funds,” he said.
The three main agencies are the Indiana Housing Community Development Association, Office of Community and Rural Affairs and the Indiana Department of Transportation.
Stellar Communities was started in 2010 by former Indiana Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman. The first two designees were Greencastle and North Vernon in 2011.
If Warsaw is named a Stellar Community designee, eight projects in the East Market Street neighborhood would be targeted, including the roundabout in Winona Lake; Argonne Road streetscape; a senior housing project across from Fribley Field; Gatke property turned into a makerspace; neighborhood beautification; cycle track on the west side; improvements to the three parks; and housing improvements.
After the cities turn in their strategic investment plans, and a committee makes site visits to each one, the designees will be announced Aug. 18 at the Indiana State Fair.
Thallemer also presented the council with a 1913 postcard of the Studebaker spring (fountain) he received in the mail last week from an 87-year-old gentleman in Stockton, Calif. The man found the postcard in a shop and thought the town might like it.
In other business, the council:
• Reported pier space rental along the canal will remain as it was. At the April meeting there was a long discussion about it, but the council met in executive session about it since then and determined it was OK as it was.
Resident Jim LeMasters had an issue with that, which he said he would be willing to speak privately about with the town.
• Approved $20,000 from the town’s rainy day fund for its match to the tennis court improvement project, basketball court resurfacing and the town’s Bison-tennial art project.
• Approved a subrecipient agreement between the town and the Housing Opportunities of Warsaw.
• Heard upcoming events included the Fat & Skinny Tire Fest, Friday through Sunday, Village at Winona and Warsaw; Tracy Yeager Memorial 5K, May 30, Winona Lake Park; Art Fair, June 4-5, Village at Winona; Blackburn Run for Others, June 18, Village at Winona; Jazz Fest, June 18, Winona Heritage Room; Exotic Car Show, June 18, Village at Winona; and Warsaw Breakfast Optimist Triathlon, June 25, Winona Park;