Brownstown Township / Jackson County / Indiana

Board Minutes and Schedule, Project Updates, and News Items



Chairman Brownstown Township Board Retired Veterinarian: Retired from Lilly Research Laboratories and Gillespie Veterinary Clinc


The Brownstown Township Board met 7-31-2019 at the Trustee’s office.  Members present were Conner Barnette, Angela Blann and Jack Gillespie.  Trustee Jenifer Isaacs was present.   Barnette called the meeting to order.  Copies of the 2-6-2019 email of the board minutes were provided by Gillespie and read by Isaacs.  The minutes of the 2-5-2019 meeting were approved.

Old business:

Gillespie  presented copies of the 2017 agreement with the Jackson County Fair Board to complete the Multi Purpose Path to the fair grounds.   No follow up was decided.  Gillespie also reported paying $18 for annual web site fee, and the board approved reimbursement.

New business:

Isaacs updated the work on weed control at the First German Presbyterian Cemetery (Wegan).  Jail inmates were used to help with weed control. At that location until roots of dead trees are removed to allow mowing, spraying and hand labor are required to control weeds.  The board approved donuts and pizza for the Sheriff’s department  to show appreciation for their help in weed control.

Isaacs requested approval for a Brownstown Township Internal Control Policy dated July, 25,2019.  A copy of the policy was distributed, and the original was signed by the board members.

The proposed 2020 budget was distributed and discussed.

Barnette distributed copies showing current county paving projects in the township.

by Jack R. Gillespie, Secretary


Board Minutes 2-5-2019

The Brownstown Township Board met on Tuesday 2-5-2019 at the Trustee’s office.  Members present were Jack Gillespie and newly elected members Conner Barnette and Angela Blann.  Trustee Jenifer Isaacs was also present.  Gillespie gave Barnette and Blann the schedule for the Indiana Township Association training for newly elected board members, and suggested they try to attend. 

The 2019 organizational  meeting was called to order by last year’s Chairman Jack Gillespie.  Angela Blann nominated Conner Barnette for Chairman and Jack Gillespie for Secretary. Both agreed to serve and were elected.  Both  were elected to also serve as officers of the Finance Board.  Barnette took over as board chairman of the Township Board Meeting 2-5-2019. Minutes of the 9-26-2018 township meeting were read and approved.

For old business, Gillespie presented his copy of the Audit Report from the State Department of Local Government Finance(DLGF). This report of non-compliances was reviewed by DLGF with Trustee Isaacs on October 18, 2018.  This board chairman’s copy is to be made available for public review.

Under new business, Trustee Isaacs presented Resolutions concerning nepotism, an annual finance report, and salary proposals for 2019.  These were approved and signed by all board members.  Gillespie presented copies of a recent newspaper article about Durland Cemetery.  He also presented copies of some estimates for cemetery restoration projects completed or proposed by John Walters (“Graveyardgroomer”) and Helen Wildermuth (“Stonehugger”) since 2014.

by Jack R. Gillespie, Secretary


Board Resolution 9-12-2018

The Brownstown Township Board resolves to maintain the current environmential protection of sensitive local watersheds provided by the Lake Residential District designation in the Jackson County , Indiana Zoning Ordinance.  This is in opposition to the Jackson County Board of Zoning Appeals application for Special Exception for Section Number 5-2-Keeping of Livestock and Other Animals (Lake Residential District (S)).  Signed by: Jack R. Gillespie, Board Chairman and Beverly DeWitt, Board Member.

Article submitted to local papers 9-12-2018:  The Brownstown Township Board passed a resolution to maintain the current environmental protection of sensitive local watersheds provided by the Lake Residential District designation in the Jackson County, Indiana Zoning Ordinance.  This action was made necessary by the action of the appointed Jackson County Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA).

At the 9-11-2018 (BZA) meeting a Special Exception to Section Number 5-2-Keeping of Livestock and Other Animals (Lake Residential District (S)) was approved.  That action would eliminate the protection from potential water pollutants entering the public waters of Brownstown Township in rain water runoff.  That environmental protection is currently provided by the designated zoning regulation of Lake Residential District in the Jackson County, Indiana Zoning Ordinance.

In the discussion of the legal responsibilities of elected township and county officials, it was pointed out that although the public health concern for a zoonotic disease transmission such as leptospirosis may be low, the potential for other pollutants entering the lake water in rain water runoff and causing fish kill and water contamination is the reason for the current zoning designation of Lake Residential District.  The resolution passed with a two to one vote of the members.

Jack R. Gillespie, Board Chairman

Brownstown Township Board

Board Minutes 9-13-2017

The Brownstown Township Board met on Wednesday, September 13, 2017 at the Trustee’s office.  Members present at the meeting were Bev Dewitt, Jack Gillespie, Angela Blann, and Jennifer Isaacs.  Meeting was called to order by Jack Gillespie.  Angela Blann read the minutes from the July 31st meeting and they were approved.

Old Business

Jack passed out a Path Project proposal that he presented to the fair board on Monday, September 11th requesting financial assistance to finish the path and is currently awaiting their decision.

Presbyterian Cemetery has been sprayed for weeds and saplings.

Miller Cemetery project has been completed by Graveyard Groomers.

New Business

Jennifer Isaacs attended the 2018 Budget Hearing, the only change from previous estimate is that we are unable to increase the cemetery fund as discussed due to the tax cap.  Bev Dewitt made a motion to change from $25,000 to $20,000 for the cemetery fund and Jack Gillespie seconded.  Budget otherwise as planned.  Jennifer passed out copies of the 2018 Budget Estimate to members.

The next meeting is the Budget adoption meeting on Wednesday, September 27, 2017 at 5:00.

Meeting was adjourned.

2018 Board Organized

The Brownstown Township Board meet 1-3-2018 at the Trustee’s office.  Jack Gillespie was elected Chairman, and Angela Blann was elected Secretary.  Beverly DeWitt was unable to attend.  Trustee Jenifer Isaac met with the Board.


September 11, 2017

 Jackson County Fair Board:

 The original (township, town and county) cooperative “Bicycle/Pedestrian Path” project plan (2011) included connecting a multi-use path with the existing asphalt paths in the Jackson County Fairgrounds.  That BROWNSTOWN/EWING MAINSTREET project was started with the Brownstown Community Indy 500 contest winnings of $25,000.  Brownstown Township matched the $25,000 and the Brownstown Chamber of Commerce helped complete the project to Hough Creek in 2012.  At that time, limited funds prevented connecting to the fairground paths.

 In 2016 Jackson County was designated by the United States Center For Disease Control (CDC) as one of the most obese counties in Indiana, Therefore, elected and appointed local officials need to consider projects which may help encourage more local physical activity. Completion of the “Bicycle/Pedestrian Path” to connect with existing facilities in the county fairgrounds has been identified as a project to help increase local physical activity.

 The Brownstown Township Board has budgeted for an increase in our 2018 Recreation and Culture Fund to help support the “Jackson County Healthier Together” project.  We request the Jackson County Fair Board cooperate with the  Brownstown Township Board to financially support the completion of the “Bicycle/Pedestrian Path” by the Jackson County Park Board.

 Jack Gillespie, Chairman, Brownstown Township Board

Larry Raymer, Chairman Jackson County Park Board




Local Health and Wellness

The Brownstown Township Board and Trustee agreed to increased our 2018 Recreation and Culture budget to help create a sustainable culture of health and wellness in our local communities. We plan to help support the vision and mission of the Healthy Jackson County (HJC) project.*
Do you know your township board members and trustee? Have your township officials budgeted for local recreation and culture activities? For a “Healthier Jackson County” some of your local tax dollars are needed to develop and maintain environments which encourage more local physical activities. Ask your township officials if your township has a budget item for recreation and culture! If not, suggest they add one.

Board Minutes June 21, 2017

The Brownstown Township Board met on Wednesday, June 21, 2017 at the Trustee’s office.  Members present at the meeting were Bev Dewitt, Jack Gillespie and Jennifer Isaacs.  Meeting was called to order by Jack Gillespie.  Jennifer Isaacs read the minutes of the May 1 meeting and they were approved.

Old Business:

The First German Presbyterian Cemetery in Wegan is almost complete.  The boys have done a great job and the Highway Dept. has completed the road access to get to the cemetery.  The amount the township owes should be less than $500.  The next stage will be to spray for weeds.The Multi Path Project has a bid of $11,000.  The Brownstown Township might have to pay half of it, but not until 2018.

New Business:

The Brownstown Township Trustee received a letter from Smallwood Cemetery about giving a donation to help them mow the cemetery this summer.  Bev and Jack both agreed to make a donation of $250.00.

Jack Gillespie brought a bill in for Word Press (our township webpage) for $18.00.  Jennifer reimbursed him with a check.

Meeting was adjourned.

Cemetery Tree Clearing Project

The First German Presbyterian Cemetery restoration project was initiated June 1, 2017, after the Jackson County Highway Department constructed an access lane on the easement to the cemetery property located north of county road 400 South at about 75 East in Brownstown Township. This access lane allowed the Township Board and Trustee to begin a tree clearing project for this historic site recently donated to the township by retired Brownstown High School Teacher, Lynn Hinnefeld.

Brownstown Township entered into independent contracting agreements with Brownstown High School students Jordan Statzer and Dylan Cockerham to clear the small trees and brush from the cemetery property.  Teacher Blake Hackman and Township Board Chairman Jack Gillespie provided supervision for the tree clearing work.  On June 14, 2017 Gillespie brought Mr. Hinnefeld to the site to get pictures of the project progress and meet with Hackman and the boys to discuss some of the family history of the cemetery.

As Jackson County departments have compleated cooperative projects of surveying the cemetery property and constructing an access lane to the site, the Township Board Chairman sent a gratitude email to the County Commissioners, Council, Auditor, Highway Department and Surveyor.  This was another local government cooperative project to restore a truly historic Brownstown Township site.



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