April 18—GOSHEN—An existing ordinance was amended to include enforcement, fines, and penalties for illegally dumping items at the city’s new recycling center.

The Goshen City Council unanimously approved the ordinance Monday night. The recently opened recycling center is the only one in the city after the county closed all its sites due to user abuse. The new center is located on Indiana Avenue, between the railroad tracks and Wilden Avenue, next to the cemetery.

The site is monitored with video cameras that can clearly show license plates.

“We’re going to go after this hard,” Goshen Mayor Jeremy Stutsman said.

Flock cameras will be used. Goshen Police Chief Jose Miller had just explained the benefit Flock cameras have had for the department prior to the introduction of the ordinance.

The ordinance calls for up to $500 in fines per violation. People may not throw anything other than approved materials in the trash containers. Items may not be left outside of the trash bins. Recyclable materials include: cardboard, cardstock, newspapers, magazines/catalogs, copy paper, mail, other paper products, plastic products (1-7), glass products (clear and colored), and metal products (aluminum , steel, tin and bilayer). rails).

Currently, there are two dumpsters on site. Asked if more would be coming, Stutsman said that would be based on usage. There have been reports of recycling being placed outside of the dumpsters and that the bins were full.

Stutsman said the waste company will take better care of managing it by monitoring it to see what is needed.

“We want to make sure the site continues to be successful,” he said.

And while Stutsman wants to give it a try, he noted that if the public can’t abide by the rules, the city will shut it down if necessary.

Goshen City Attorney Bodie Stegelmann explained that the fines are based on a first, second or third offense and run up to $500. The ordinance violation office would handle those violations. However, if a ticketed person wants to contest the ticket or if the city files a lawsuit against the offender, the matter would go to county court.


Police Chief Miller explained how the Flock cameras have been a benefit to the police department and ultimately to the victims.

Flock cameras are mobile, solar-powered, and can capture high-quality license plate images even in low-light conditions, according to information provided by Miller.

If a camera detects a license plate or a vehicle within its parameters, it will immediately notify the police. Another benefit is that it provides the data to identify criminal trends.

Goshen uses 20 of these cameras. Eighteen are run by the city and two are private cameras that a company gives the police department access to, Miller said.

When asked how many the police would like to have, Miller replied one on each road in and out of Goshen, but he knows that’s not feasible.

The network in the US is expanding, he said. A police department may, upon written request, access another department’s cameras to search for a specific vehicle. If detected, the camera will notify that department.

Miller added that the cameras cannot see the driver or the interior of the vehicle. And officers must follow the same normal rules and procedures. An officer cannot perform a license or background check without recording that information, which is then reviewed.

The cameras cost about $2,500 each per year. The Elkhart County Community Foundation has agreed to pay for 10 of the cameras over three years, Stutsman said.

Also, Miller said, the cameras move from time to time.

During the past 12 months of use, the Goshen Police Department has received 1,241 hits from the system. These hits included: 612 sex offenders (not a unique number), 102 stolen license plates, 75 stolen vehicles, 173 arrest warrants, six suspected terrorists or gang members, seven Canadian Police Information Center data records, nine people disappeared, two protection orders and 255 personalized visits.

Some of the cases that Flock cameras have helped solve include:

* One of a missing 12-year-old girl. The girl had been missing for three days and the camera identified the vehicle she was in, leading police to the people the missing girl was with.

* A fugitive was found in Pierce County, Georgia.

* Police were able to help a woman whose ex-boyfriend had pointed a gun at her, beaten her and then sexually assaulted her. Miller said there was little evidence; however, the camera caught the ex-boyfriend’s vehicle following the woman to her house.

* An armed robbery was solved when a Flock camera was used to find a vehicle, identify its owner, and meet the owner at his home as the man arrived, arresting him and a second person. Miller said that without the camera, it could have taken him months to solve this case.


A resolution was passed authorizing the submission of a Community Development Block Grant application for 2023.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development allocated $267,010 to the City of Goshen. The public did not comment during the comment period.

Stutsman said he checked with HUD to see if there was a conflict of interest for him, since he will be CEO of LaCasa after its last day on June 16, and there was none.


The council also approved a basically unchanged ambulance user fee schedule.

The only change was the addition of specialty care transportation, charging residents $1,238 and residents $1,650.

There are other levels of service ranging from $152 to $1,396, along with mileage of $13.07 per mile.

Sheila Selman can be reached at sheila.selman@goshennews.com or 574-533-2151, ext. 240311. Follow Sheila on Twitter @sselman_TGN.

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