Decatur County Council Meeting

The Decatur County Council meeting began at 6 pm on January 16, 2024. The meeting was held at the EOC Classroom to allow for a larger crowd. The meeting had approximately 25 in attendance. The meeting began with the Pledge of Allegiance and then approval of the December meeting minutes. 

Judge Bailey, Superior Court requested additionals for a cart, television, and a neat bar. These will be used for providing interpreter services within the courtroom. Judge Bailey stated that he is seeing different languages coming through his court room and local interpreters do not speak or translate for those languages. He has looked at bringing interpreters in for court hearings, however, he soon found out that providing transportation to Decatur County, hotel accommodations, transportation while in the county, and food reimbursement is not an economical avenue. He contacted the County IT department and received estimates for the equipment. Purchasing this equipment will allow the Judge to have the ability to provide an interpreter via Zoom or another web-based platform reducing costs. The council unanimously approved this request. 

Judge Day, Circuit Court stated that a prior Decatur County Clerk made the decision not to perform specific duties for the courts which led to the County Council giving Judge Day $10,000 and Judge Baily $10,000 in their budgets to hire a PT employee to take on these duties. Also, a $2,500 postage appropriation was given to Judge Bailey’s court. Recently Elaine Sebastian retired from that position. Current Decatur County Clerk Janet Howell has agreed to take these duties back into her office. Janet joined both Judges at the podium and asked that the council take the $22,500 and transfer that to the Clerk’s office to cover any costs that are added with this change. The council approved this request. Janet also asked that she raise the pay of the two part-time staff in her office from $16 to $18 per hour to compensate for the additional training and tasks associated with taking this into their office. That was approved as well. 

All additionals, transfers, and encumbrances were approved. The Sheriff Crisis Intervention Team Board had a vacancy and Danny Peters stated that Bill Metz offered to be appointed. All Council members voted to approve this. 

Teresa Kovacich, Pool Committee Member and Director of Parks & Recreation came to the podium and stated that after choosing RL Turner Construction for the Pool project they discussed having the opportunity to come speak to the council and community to answer questions that have been raised. A representative was in attendance this evening with conceptual drawings of the current pool and several projects that they have completed previously just to provide information for the Council and the community. Teresa turned it over to RL Turner Construction and HWC Engineering. A representative for RL Turner spoke about the different designs that were presented to the audience. He stated that the estimated costs associated with those builds were the original price of the build plus they factored in inflation showing what it would cost to build that concept. The designs that were on display are not what the Council or Commissioners have approved, instead, these are just designs to get the community, council members, and commissioners talking about what Decatur County needs and wants. The conceptual drawings are attached.

Council members had several questions which were answered to the best ability of RL Turner and HWC Engineering. The council began to discuss giving a budget number that they can allow the team to move forward and see what they can get for that amount. This was discussed by all council members and Danny Peters thanked both companies for their presentation. 

Danny Peters, Council President then asked the council what they were thinking and reminded everyone that we are here tonight to approve, deny, table, or postpone the Food & Beverage Tax. The discussion quickly went back to what the pool would cost and how it would be paid for. Kenny Hooten, a council member asked that they give a number to the companies in charge of the design and construction and see what they can come up with. Ernie Gauck, a council member stated “I think again we are putting the cart before the horse here.” A representative from RL Turner stated that as of now if they got started on the pool they would be looking at a May 2026 completion date. Ashley Hungate made a motion and Melanie Nobbe seconded the motion stating that the public be given time to review the concepts and have time to provide input on the pool and the Food and Beverage or other funding sources. This discussion then went to Melanie Nobbe making a motion to postpone the Food and Beverage vote until February 20 with Ashley Hungate seconding. Ashley Hungate stated that she reached out to the Public Library Director and that the drawings could be made available for the public to view. Ernie Gauck stated that it should be put out longer, and Deanna Burkart stated that the further we push this the longer it will be before a pool is completed. An attendee stood up and stated that the council has had evening meetings and time for public input. Danny Peters then took this to a Roll call vote- Yeas: Deanna Burkart, Ashley Hungate, and Melanie Nobbe with Neas: Ernie Gauck, Bill Metz, and Kenny Hooten. The tiebreaker vote went to Council President Danny Peters and he voted for Nea. Yeas:3 Neas 4. The motion did not pass. 

With that motion failing Danny asked what the council members wanted to do next. Ernie Gauck made a motion to table the Food & Beverage Tax discussion with Kenny Hooten seconding. A roll call vote was held with Yeas: Ernie Gauck, Kenny Hooten, Bill Metz, and Neas: Deanna Burkart, Ashley Hungate, and Melanie Nobbe. The tie-breaker vote went to Council President Danny Peters and he voted Yea. The Food and Beverage discussion is now tabled which requires ⅔ vote to bring it back up to the Council. 

The council continued to discuss providing a solid number for the design and construction team to work with the pool committee to bring back drawings that are within those guidelines. This was stated to be the only way to move forward with this discussion. Bill Metz made a motion and Ashley Hungate seconded to provide the team with a realistic number to look at what can be provided. That amount that has been given to create a concept is $5-$6 million. All county council members voted and unanimously approved this. The Council will continue to look into how the pool will be funded and will work with the committee on what the next steps are. The $5 million- $6 million motion does not mean that is what is being approved, this is just an approval to look at what can be built for that amount. The meeting was adjourned. 

The following conceptual drawings will be available at the Greensburg-Decatur County Public Library on approximately January 25, 2024, for the public to view. These are meant to be visual to gauge the costs associated with building a pool and what amenities we could get for the price. If you have any questions, comments, or input please reach out to a council member or pool committee member.

Utilizing the current layout and pool and building back what we currently have

8,500 sq. ft. pool surface area 

Capacity: 450 patrons

Deck size: 14,000 sq. ft.

Estimated Cost: $5.6 million to $6.1 million


8,000 sq. ft. pool surface area

Capacity: 670 patrons

Deck size: 17,500 

Estimated Cost: $5.9 million- 6.3 million


3,200 sq. ft. pool surface area 

Capacity: 270 patrons

Deck size: 9,000 sq ft. 

Estimated Cost: $2.1 million- $2.7 million


4,000 sq. ft. pool surface area

Capacity: 340

Deck size: 14,000 sq ft. 

Estimated Cost: $5.3 million- $5.8 million

North Vernon

4,600 sq. ft. pool surface area

Capacity: 380

Deck size: 15,500 sq ft. 

$5.4 million- $5.9 million

Madison (currently being completed)

15,000 sq. ft. pool surface area

Capacity: 1,000

Deck size:15,500 sq. ft.

$9.3 million- $9.9 million


8,000 sq. ft. pool surface area

Capacity: 670

Deck size: 21,500 sq. ft. 

$12.9 million- $13.3 million

This concept is the design that has been available for some time now. There are no specific numbers for this layout. This is what the Pool Committee provided READI when 1.5 million was secured.

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