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Residents urged to collect caps for rain garden benches

Updated: July 30, 2013 7:37AM



MERRILLVILLE — Councilman Richard Hardaway, D-2nd, is asking residents to save their plastic caps — lots of them — to help the town obtain two recycled benches for the new rain garden on 54th Court.

Hardaway challenged the community to collect 800 pounds of plastic caps — from bottled water, pop containers, milk cartons and other sources — and bring them to the town hall where a bin is being set up.

He said the benches normally cost $600 each, but $400 of that cost would be subtracted once 400 pounds of plastic caps are collected per bench. The other $200 per bench would be paid by the Lake County Solid Waste Management District, he said.

Hardaway said the benches are made of all recyclable material.

“No graffiti will be able to stick on them,” he said during Tuesday’s council meeting.

“The rain garden enhances the area and the entire town,” Hardaway said.

Matt Lake, executive director of Merrillville Storm Water Utility, said the recently installed rain garden on 54th Court is the largest in the state.

It was part of a project that included the reconstruction of the road and courtyard in the cul de sac area near Maryland and Carolina streets and 54th Court.The rain garden is located in the middle grassy area to collect and treat water runoff in the area.

In other matters, Councilman Tom Goralczyk, D-4th, said he would schedule an executive session to discuss personnel matters after Hardaway and other council members said they’ve been getting phone calls from residents complaining about the rude behavior of some town employees.

“No one should have to call a councilman and say they’ve been treated rudely by the town of Merrillville. This is not the first call I received. I’m fed up with it,” Hardaway said.

Council President Carol Miano, D-3rd, said she’s also received calls from people complaining about town employees being rude and sarcastic. She suggested council members get as much information as they can, including the names of the caller and employee in question.

Councilman Shawn Pettit, D-6th, said there are other issues as well and suggested a two-hour executive session to discuss them.

The council also declared the location of the former Saturn dealership and future Infiniti dealership as an economic development target area on second reading, approved a new electronic message sign for Andrean High School at 5959 Broadway and set a public works meeting at 5 p.m. July 9 to discuss which roads will be paved this year.



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