Mentone Ok’s Police Trips, Street Vacation

Mentone Town Council Tuesday night gave a thumbs-up to Town Marshal Jim Eads’ request for a couple work-related trips.
Eads will go to Shipshewana March 2 to 6 to participate in the Northern Indiana Training Council’s training classes for police who teach others. March 9 to 13, Deputy Terry Engstrom will travel to Virginia Beach, Va., to attend courses from National Interdiction Training. His trip is funded through the Kosciusko County prosecutor’s office so there is no cost to the town.
Costs for Eads’ council training will be $140 for two participants and $279 for three nights lodging. There will also be a meals expense.
Council President Tim Croy said he had heard that membership in the Northern Indiana council was a worthwhile expense as all the courses would be free. Eads said he didn’t think that joining was necessary, and “they normally don’t offer the kind of training we want.” He explained that their courses wouldn’t take the place of qualification courses.
Utilities Superintendent Josh Shepherd asked if he could spend $1,200 for a 72-inch plow blade. He told council that the current one is 66 inches and would garner $1,500 in trade-in. The council approved his request.
In other business, council adopted a street vacation Ordinance 15-440, which vacates an unimproved street  parallel to Jackson Street in Tippecanoe Estate First Addition. Council tabled the request last month to let Shepherd first confirm there are no public utilities under the street.
Councilwoman Shelly Krueger gave the other council members a rough draft of a personnel policy she was working on. They will look it over and discuss it at a later date. The town has no policy now that deals with vacations and holidays and other employee matters.
Council was also approved a $649 per month hike in health insurance premiums for four town employees.
Croy thanked the street crew for a good job with snow removal. He asked residents to be patient as the town employees have to clear the roads first for emergency vehicles, and they will attend to parking areas afterward.

(Story By The Times Union)