Milford Considering Verizon Cell Tower

The Milford Town Council had quite a few important discussions Monday night, beginning with the consideration of a Verizon cell tower to be placed behind the sewer plant.

While it is not yet confirmed by Verizon engineers, a representative of Verizon visited the site, and three other potential sites, and told the council last night that the Milford site was his top pick.

Verizon representative Judd Chaille explained parts of the process to the Milford Town Council. He described the three most important factors to deciding which land they will lease as “leasibility, zonability and constructability.”

He went on to explain that, because the land in question is zoned as public, per Verizon policy, the Kosciusko Economic Development Corporation will have to approve an exception to the zoning laws in order for the tower to go up, should Verizon choose to build in town. The location and town support, however, appeared to increase the likelihood that the site will be chosen.

“The site there is the closest to the original set of coordinates that the engineers have given me,” Chaille explained. If Verizon chooses the Milford property to build its next tower, and the town of Milford agrees to lease the land over the 30-year period generally applied to Verizon land leases, the town could see approximately a quarter of a million dollars in additional revenue.

The Milford Police Department may be seeing some changes in the near future. A new 2013 Ford Explorer with all-wheel drive is being bought from Kerlin Motors in Silver Lake. It will be the first SUV for the MPD.

Also, Milford Town Marshal Rich Miotto said the continuing debate in regards to school safety is demanding a result soon. Miotto has begun pushing for a response from the council. Councilman Bob Cockburn plans to attend the Wawasee School Board meeting tonight to further discuss the options with the board.

“As leaders in the community, we want to do everything we can,” said council president Doug Ruch.

Options currently on the table suggest that either the school or the town can fund a resource officer, however, at $50,000 to $60,000 for an additional officer, the likelihood that either entity can afford to place another officer in Milford for the next school year is questionable.

In other business:
Indiana Department of Transportation has requested an engineering study at the intersection of Emeline and First streets in Milford. INDOT is questioning whether the stop sign is the best option for that intersection and is proposing a switch to a yield sign. The council has decided to speak with Wessler Engineering in an effort to support the right to leave the stop sign as is. They believe that changing the sign will cause more problems with town safety.

Parking downtown has been a topic at town council meetings for about three months now. Concerns about cars parked on Main Street have led the council to seek advice from town attorney Jay Ridgon. The hope is that no parking signs which are currently only on certain portions of the road can be extended the entire length of Main Street with no parking from 2 a.m. to 6 a.m.

The Milford Community Center is being looked at by the Kosciusko County Chapter of the American Red Cross as a possible emergency shelter. Although it has already been deemed too small to become a main shelter, the Red Cross is suggesting the center as an overflow for emergency situations. The paperwork given to the council, however, brought up several questions including wear-and-tear to the building, financing and any liabilities the town may face.

The next meeting for the Milford Town Council is scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday, April 8.

For a more in-depth account of the meeting, see this week’s issue of The Mail-Journal.

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