LOGANSPORT, Ind. (WLFI) - There were some heated words and a series of divided votes in Logansport Monday.
Consulting services for the new power plant now exceed $1 million.
The Logansport Common Council passed a $778,000 agreement for consulting services for the proposed new power plant. City Council President Joe Buck say this money will be used to negotiate and evaluate a series of three contracts with Pyrolyzer LLC, including determining utility rates and the process by which the plant will be transferred back to the city.
Mayor Ted Franklin says the city already spent $517,000 to evaluate and vet the six power plant bids and make a recommendation. Logansport Utilites spent $250,000 on consulting on a feasibility study and to help write the request for proposals.
Franklin says, by law, all consulting money will be recouped from profits from the plant.
The vote was 5-2 with Councilmen Chuck LaDow and Jeremy Ashcraft voting no.
"It is expensive, but I think that's the cost of doing business," Buck says. "We are counting on this being it. We should have contracts hopefully by October."
A proposal to allow people to live on the first floor in downtown buildings was sent back to the planning commission after city council members make changes.
The initial proposal called for all residential spaces to be restricted to the second floor and above.
But Arin Shaver, the Executive Director for the Logansport/Cass County Planning Department, says with some recent amendments restricting how the buildings look from the street, she's in favor of allowing 75 percent of the first floor to be used as residential space.
Ashcraft says that's not a compromise. He was joined in the vote by LaDow, but the other five council members voted yes.
The planning commission must now approve the changes the city council made.
"It's still going to feel like a downtown storefront and so with that, we weren't as concerned with residents being on the first floor," says Shaver. "Because walking by, pedestrians, or driving by, you're going to get that same feel as you're downtown."
In a third divided vote, the council approved an extension for the contract for the new Mary Max theatre. The deadline for the contractor to get $225,000 of the city's TIF funds, or Tax increment financing funds, was March 1. But because various issues, the council voted 5-2 to grant an extension to May 1. Ashcraft and Teresa Popejoy voted against it.
The Council tabled a proposed 3,200 acre annexation of land around the new Hoosier Heartland Highway. Franklin says fewer than 100 homes are affected.
A public hearing is set for May 20.
Indiana Governor Mike Pence (R) proposed a pre-K voucher program as part of his 2014 agenda. The would give underprivileged children access to pre-K programs.
A former Frankfort middle school principal is arrested for his part in what police call a child sex abuse case.
West Lafayette police have arrested one of the men they say robbed a restaurant while armed with a machete.