West Lafayette city hall

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA

The West Lafayette City Council is set to vote Monday on the Parks and Recreation Department’s action plan, which includes spending more than $1.8 million on the Morton Community Center – a building that’s been the de facto city hall for the last three years.

City of West Lafayette

After years of literally molding over, West Lafayette’s city hall has been demolished. But what will replace it is still unclear – as is where that replacement might stand.

City of West Lafayette / http://westlafayette.in.gov/

West Lafayette Mayor John Dennis is assured of a third term in office after no one filed to run against him by this week’s deadline. So this month on our conversation with Mayor Dennis, we talk about leadership in Indiana – and about its intersection with ambition. If he believes he’s doing a good job here, why not go for more?

On this week’s Ask The Mayor, we also address the latest delay to Amtrak service through Greater Lafayette – and how much the cities in the area might have to pay to keep it going, even though there’s now more money from the state.

City of West Lafayette

As West Lafayette’s redesign of State Street gets going in earnest, there are still more questions than answers.

What does a public-private partnership actually do for the city?

Is the collegiate feel of the area in danger?

And what does the city have to give up to the University to get it to fork over so much cash?

During this week’s discussion with West Lafayette Mayor John Dennis, we ask if he sees the State Street project as his legacy as the city’s leader.

City of West Lafayette

West Lafayette officials are in the process of deciding what to do about City Hall.

Mold drove them out of the building on Navajo Drive in February.

Mayor John Dennis says options for the future of city hall include bringing the current building up to code, completing gutting and renovating the structure, or razing the building and starting over—likely at a different location.

He says public hearings next year will give residents the opportunity to have input into the final decision.

City of West Lafayette

West Lafayette mayor John Dennis says there are still improvements to make in the way law enforcement deals with domestic violence situations, but he’s not sure that should include enhanced mandatory minimum sentences.

"If there's an understanding that there is a definitive penalty -- a non-defensible penalty -- for a specific act, does that enhance the severity of that act? And it's a question that we as a society don't really know yet," Dennis says.

City of West Lafayette

Some questions for the mayor on this month's program:

Since we spoke last month, it seems the mayors of the cities along the Amtrak corridor from Indy to Chicago have gotten noticeably more pessimistic about its future. Todd Barton told me two weeks ago on this program he thinks it’s dead in October. Is that now your thinking, too?

Your office is moving, at least temporarily, to Morton Center. Are you doing a site comparison between there and the mold-ridden city hall?

WL city hall problems more extensive than originally thought

Apr 29, 2014

West Lafayette City Hall could be headed for demolition.

The building has been vacant since early February after the discovery of mold on all three levels.

Mayor John Dennis says a consultant is examining the structure and will report on its findings in August.

He says the initial review indicates the mold problem is more pervasive than originally thought.

And Dennis says water continues to leak into the basement due to the deterioration of the building’s substructure.

WL officials adjusting to move from City Hall

Mar 18, 2014

The West Lafayette Board of Works has approved spending up to 35-thousand dollars to determine the extent of a mold problem in City Hall.

All offices were moved out of the building in February to allow for an environmental remediation survey.

Mayor John Dennis says the results will determine whether or not officials move back into the building.

Currently, the mayor and the clerk-treasurer are on the second floor of the Police Department, while the Engineering and Development offices are in Morton Community Center.

Burst water pipe at WL City Hall could expedite relocation

Jan 29, 2014

There is no estimate yet as to how much damage a ruptured pipe caused at West Lafayette City Hall.

Mayor John Dennis says this is the second time this month that a water pipe in the building has frozen and burst.

He says the problems are reigniting talks about moving City Hall to Morton Community Center.

Dennis says officials have discussed the move and have had conceptual plans created, but he says the relocation is still several years away.