John Dennis

New city council districts set for West Lafayette

Dec 13, 2012

West Lafayette city council districts have been updated in advance of a state deadline. Officials had until December 31st to vote on new boundary maps.

At a special meeting Thursday night, councilors approved a proposal that was spearheaded by representative Eddie VanBogaert (D-Dist. 1).

Mayor John Dennis says the new map does a good job of meeting the guidelines for redistricting.

WL cuts ribbon on new roundabout

Oct 11, 2012
Mike Loizzo / WBAA Radio

West Lafayette officials say they are happy with the roundabout at Northwestern Avenue and Yeager Road.

City leaders held a ribbon cutting ceremony for the traffic circle Thursday morning.

Mayor John Dennis admits there have been some minor fender-benders and a few complaints, but overall, the intersection is working as planned. He says the roundabout is an ideal way to handle traffic in a city like West Lafayette.

West Lafayette is partnering with the Purdue Research Foundation to fund a study of the New Chauncey neighborhood.

The city’s Redevelopment Commission approved a contract not to exceed 30-thousand dollars for its half of the cost.

Mayor John Dennis says one goal is to identify what areas of the historic neighborhood need to be revitalized.

He says concerns from residents about the Wang Hall project encroaching on residential areas prompted the idea for the study.

Dennis says that is why the Research Foundation is involved.

Faith West development draws opposition

May 22, 2012

The mayor of West Lafayette says the decision to issue bonds for a project along Northwestern Avenue does not cross the line between separation of church and state.

John Dennis says the money generated from the bonds will not support any of the religious activities that take place at Faith West.

The Freedom from Religion Foundation is objecting to the arrangement.

The organization is also expressing concern that the mixed-use development will be given a property tax exemption.

Faith West project draws support and concern

May 8, 2012

A more than $11-million project in West Lafayette is moving forward, but not without some opposition.

The city council agreed to issue $7-million in bonds for Faith Church to build a community center along Northwestern Avenue.

The measure passed with a six to one vote.  Councilor Peter Bunder opposed. He says the move crosses the line of separation between church and government.

However, mayor John Dennis this is a way for the city to support the project and overall community development.

Faith Church could secure funding for WL project

May 7, 2012

West Lafayette’s city council is considering a move to help launch a proposed mixed-use project.

Members will vote Monday, May 7, on issuing $7 million in bonds for Faith Church.

The non-profit wants to build a 94,000 square foot community center along Northwestern Avenue.

If the city sells the bonds, Faith will receive a lower interest rate because it’s through a government agency. But, it comes at no financial risk to West Lafayette, according to Mayor John Dennis.

Millions of dollars in income tax revenue has been withheld from counties because of another programming error at the state Department of Revenue.  As a result, the head of the Department of Revenue is stepping down.

Roughly $206 million of Local Option Income Tax funds were supposed to be distributed to Indiana counties since January of 2011, but were incorrectly stored in the state’s General Fund.  That comes after the state announced only four months ago more than $300 million in corporate tax revenue was mistakenly withheld from the General Fund.

West Lafayette officials are supporting two major developments planned for the city.

Council members approved rezoning requests for a residential building at Grant and Harrison streets and a new Faith Ministries project on Northwestern Avenue.

Plans for the “Faith West” complex include a recreation and worship area, a fitness center, and space for retail and food service.

Mayor John Dennis says the development will benefit the community in many ways.

Progress is being made on a new fire station in West Lafayette, which will become the permanent station number three.

The temporary third fire station currently operates out of a remodeled parks building at Cumberland Park. Mayor John Dennis says this fire station will stand out from others in the city.

WL moving forward with fiber optic network

Feb 22, 2012

The city of West Lafayette is moving forward with plans for a fiber optic network.

However the details of the project have changed.

Initially Metronet officials asked the city to partner with Lafayette and Tippecanoe County to create a tax increment financing district that would enable the company to secure a bond for startup costs.

The Lafayette Redevelopment Commission would have been the lead agency.

But the West Lafayette Redevelopment Commission voted today to establish its own TIF district so it would have more direct input in the process.