Grant to Portage will require change in police rules
By John Robbins Post-Tribune correspondent May 13, 2013 11:12AM
Updated: May 13, 2013 4:42PM
A $174,380 grant recently received by the Portage Redevelopment Commission from the Indiana Department of Homeland Security and Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority will require the city of Portage to rewrite some police department rules and regulations the Portage Board of Works learned at its Monday morning meeting.
A new condition of grants using federal money requires local law enforcement agencies to address the use of excess force during peaceful civil demonstrations, according to Police Chief Troy Williams.
The grant will be used to demolish a structure along the Little Calumet River that is endangered by severe erosion to the banks that occurred during the major flooding of September 2008, according to John Shepherd, Finance Advisor of the Redevelopment Commission.
The board took under advisement for review bids for street paving submitted by Rieth-Riley and Walsh & Kelly. Both firms submitted costs for 21 separate items, ranging from dollars per ton of aggregate to cents per foot for street stripping.
Rieth-Riley will charge $45 for a lane directional arrow compared with a cost of $24 for Walsh & Kelly. Painting a word on the road will only cost $35 if Rieth-Riley does the work compared with $60 for the same word painted by Walsh & Kelly.
Unsafe practices by some Portage tag day groups are causing the board to tighten up their rules for tag days. Tag days, where groups are permitted to stand in the road collecting donations from vehicle occupants, require approval from the board. Some groups are not wearing required highly visible bright green safety vests and allowing children in the median, according to Williams.