Porter County to add some government offices to Portage University Center
By John Robbins Post-Tribune correspondent February 11, 2013 1:16PM
Updated: March 13, 2013 6:20AM
Three major Porter County government offices will soon be conducting business in Portage. Porter County Auditor Robert Wichlinski, along with Treasurer Michael Bucko and Assessor Jon Snyder announced plans at the Portage Redevelopment Commission meeting Monday morning to lease space at the Portage University Center, 6260 Central Ave.
The three county officials expect to offer essentially all services normally provided by their offices to residents and non-residents alike. Sharing space with the county offices, Portage Township Assessor Millie Arocho will be moving to the University Center location from the current office at the North County Complex, enabling one-stop shopping for Portage township residents.
“We’re not growing county government, we’re moving county government out to the edges,” Wichlinski said.
The three officials do not expect to hire additional staff for the new offices. They haven’t worked out staffing requirements yet but expect a minimum of two people staffing the offices. “Conceptually this will ‘morph’ into cross-training where assessors will be able to perform auditor’s functions,” Wichlinski said.
“We’re attempting to improve the efficiency of our offices,” said Wichlinski. “It has been a goal that has persisted. We felt it important to establish a footprint in North Porter County.”
Wichlinski expects the auditor’s non-reverting fund will be used to pay the lease costs for the first two years in what he termed “a pilot project.”
The redevelopment commission approved the terms of the two-year lease but the county commission has yet to approve or sign the lease.
The combined government offices will occupy approximately 5,300 square feet of space at a monthly cost of $7,043.75. The space has been unoccupied since WorkOne decided against relocating to the new facility. All office space is now leased, according to facility manager Mike Micka, of Holladay Properties.