Debate continues on a potential outdoor project in the town of Ferdinand.

Last night, the Ferdinand Town Council spent the majority of its two and a half hour meeting fielding concerns from citizens on the amphitheater project that the town is embarking on. The council heard a report from park board president Scott Tretter on the first two meetings of an amphitheater committee that was recently formed. Tretter formally presented three options based on committee recommendations and a fourth option was brought out after talking with the council. Tretter also had cost estimates for each of the first three options. Option A calls for the facility to be located on property just south of the Ferdinand Community Center and east of the library. According to Tretter, that option would require the second-most site work at 65 thousand dollars. Option B has the amphitheater located near the Leininbach sign facing Forest Park High School. That option would require the most site improvement work (roughly 140 thousand dollars) according to Tretter. Option C has the facility located on the northwest corner of 18th Street park near neighborhoods and where the temporary stage for the yearly Ferdinand Folk Fest is set up. Tretter stated there wouldn’t be development costs with this option and the total costs for work in the area would come out to about 28 hundred dollars. Though the cheapest, Option C is the one that is most vocally opposed by residents as it would be close to houses. The fourth option discussed with the council, Option D, involves cutting and filling near the playground in 18th Street park.

Several residents expressed a desire for a temporary structure that could be easily moved when it wasn’t being used. Ultimately, the council has a lot to think on and town council president Ken Sicard says there are things that need to be addressed:

As mentioned, the committee has held two meetings to date. The committee is composed of councilman Ron Weyer, 3 park board members, a member of the Ferdinand Folk Fest committee, and a resident who lives near the area in question.

In other business last night, the council formally approved a contract with Jasper-based Monster Recycling for a new curbside recycling service in the city. The new contract is set for 2 years and begins December 16th of this year. Under the contract, the town bought 920 bins at a cost of just under 99 hundred dollars, including 102 extra bins for folks who may need a replacement bin or would buy a second bin later on. The bins are at a cost of $10.73 each to residents and will be distributed by Monster Recycling owner Paul Voegerl Jr. Senior centers and an apartment complex in town will have a centralized bin for this program. Residents would have an option to not take the bin under the deal.

Under the contract, the town can opt out of the program at any time with 30 days notice. Voegerl would be able to opt out of the contract if the cost of diesel fuel hits $4.35 per gallon at any point during the two year period.

Voegerl Jr says the contract is an important step as he continues looking at growth options for his company:

No sorting of recyclable items will be necessary, nor will they need to be covered. Magazines and large appliances will also be accepted. Voegerl Jr told the council that he has a certified appliance technician on his staff, so anyone recycling an old appliance such as a refrigerator would not need to remove the Freon from it first. Additionally, any color glass will be accepted. Items would also be able to be brought to the Monster Recycling facility in Jasper. As for the bins, the bins would have to be returned in reasonable condition (regular wear-and-tear accepted) at some point in time or the resident would incur a 15 dollar fee for the bin.

Finally last night, the council approved a proclamation in honor of the Forest Park Marching Rangers. The band captured its second straight Class D state championship a couple of weeks ago at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Sicard says the band’s success brings the town a lot of pride:

Under the proclamation signed by the council, Friday November 22nd has been set aside as Forest Park Marching Rangers Day in Ferdinand to commend the state champion band.