Zionsville Town Council discusses elections, engineering


By Ann Marie Shambaugh

The Zionsville Town Council met April 6 and discussed election funding, engineering and legislative services, among other topics.

What happened: The council approved using up to $30,000 from the general fund to fund the 2015 municipal election.

What this means: Every four years all of the town council seats are up for election. The town overlooked budgeting for election expenses in the 2014-2015 budget. The amount approved is the same amount the town appropriated for elections in 2011.

What’s next: Boone County will administer the election and will bill the town for its services. If the total amount billed is less than $30,000, the extra funds will go back into the general fund.


What happened: The council selected Beam, Longest & Neff to provide engineering services for the next three years.

What this means: BLN currently provides the town’s engineering services, and they are one of three firms that expressed interest in serving the town for the next three years. After meeting with the three firms, town staff found no reason to switch to another firm at this time.

What’s next: In three years, the town will once again review options for engineering services.


What happened: The council delayed a decision on a proposal from Barnes & Thornburg to provide legislative services for the town.

What this means: For $5,000 a month when the state legislature is meeting and $3,000 a month when it is not, Barnes & Thornburg has offered to monitor legislation at the state level, provide lobbyists and provide other legislative services.

What’s next: The original proposal was written to take effect at the beginning of the state legislative session, which is almost over. Barnes & Thornburg plans to alter the proposal and present it to council for discussion at a future meeting.


What happened: The council voted to engage engineering firm HWC to help develop a plan for the site of the former PNC Bank.

What this means: The town purchased the site two years ago to have greater control over land near an intersection that was expected to be improved. Now that preliminary engineering work has been done and the town knows how much space is needed to expand the intersection, the council has the option of selling the land or finding another use for it. Council member Tim Haak suggested working with HWC to help develop a plan so that the town could maintain control of what develops as this crucial intersection.

What’s next: The council expects HWC to spend the next several months developing a plan for the area. Funding is available from different sources and will depend on the final scope of the study.


What happened: The council approved an agreement between the town and the Hamilton County Airport Authority that settles several disputes and drops a lawsuit.

What this means: The town and the Hamilton County Airport Authority have been embroiled in lawsuits for years over several issues, most notably if the airport has the authority to one day install an east/west runway. The agreement settles all disputes except the runway issue, which the two sides have decided to drop unless it becomes an issue again.

What’s next: Airport officials say they don’t expect to build an east/west runway, but if they one day decide to pursue it, the agreement states that nothing has been resolved and the two sides may dispute the issue again.

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