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Merom council starts with road repaving bids, winds up beating a dead fish


The Merom Town Council dealt with several issues — running the gamut from road repaving bids, before ending with the subject of dead fish — at last month's meeting on Feb. 9.

The council opened four bids received for this year's Indiana Department of Transportation Community Crossing road repaving grant program. Bids were received from 4C, $85,000; Feutz, $78,476.11; E&B, $97,293; and Wabash Valley Asphalt, $71,258.80.

The council then approved Chriss Jobe, of RQAW, to review the bids and make a recommendation at tonight's 6 p.m. council meeting. If that occurs, it is expected that information will be passed on to INDOT with work starting as soon as April.

A discussion followed about lights for the town's basketball courts, but was tabled because it was more expensive than first thought. Council member Mike Rinehart will look into solar lights and other electric light options. The board would like to have plans in place before spring.

Doug Bates asked John Gettinger — the other two council members — to look at the stairs over the bluff. Clerk-treasurer June Shacklett reported that work will proceed on the playground equipment on the bluff as weather permits.

The old Betty Turpen property was reported as having been cleaned up and the camper moved off the property. A resident told the board the camper was torn apart, with the minutes stating "with part of the stuff inside being burnt in the yard over the weekend." Bates said he would look into it and was told by the owner that the locks were changed.

The council approved an expenditure of $700 to purchase a power washer — industrial gas powered with a Honda motor — for the town's use.

Rinehart told the board about a small trailer that the town's employee could pull with his four-wheeler. He said it measures 5’ x 8’ with a wood floor and the best price and value comes from the trailer at Tractor Supply at a cost of $850. After talk about putting sides as needed on the trailer it was decided to go with the Tractor Supply trailer.

Bates is hoping to get members of the community more involved in cleaning up the town and Rinehart wants people to know the rules and ordinances. One ordinance item discussed was that vehicles are required to have up-to-date license plates.

After the flyers that Rinehart worked on last month were distributed, vehicles were turned around so the plates aren’t visible from the street. The council noted a couple of residents had several vehicles on their properties. It was mentioned another property — a brick house on 5th Street behind the library — had three vehicles parked on the sidewalk.

Further discussion led to a conclusion that people in town have different ideas on what is a clean property, communication needs to be better and pride needs to be instilled into the town.

Bates said the town needs to come up with a wish list as there is a group that has access to COVID funds for projects. Ideas mentioned included working on the bathrooms at the bluff, putting pipes in the ditches, more sidewalks, an awning over the playground equipment in the uptown park, benches, trees planted by the playground, electricity on the bluff, Joink at the townhouse and internet into homes in Merom.

The council asked Shacklett to set up a charge account at Danko’s in Sullivan, so parts for the chainsaw and weed eaters can be bought.

Last, but not least, the question of dead fish being thrown back into the river came up. An efficient composting bin hasn’t been found or an idea for making one that works at all times isn’t likely with the river coming up at times and people putting trash in it.

Shortly thereafter, the meeting was adjourned.

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