The duties of the the Township are diverse, and are set by state law and community needs.
- The township trustee is designated as the administrator of emergency assistance within his or her township. The township trustee, as administrator of that assistance, is responsible for the oversight and care of all poor individuals in the township as long as the individuals remain in the trustee’s charge. It is the trustee’s responsibility to see that township residents are properly taken care of in the manner required by law.
- Indiana Code: IC 12-20 & IC 12-30-4
- Township Assistance- Informational Brochure
Fire & Emergency Services
- The trustee of a township, with the approval of the township board, may:
- Purchase fire fighting and emergency services apparatus and equipment for the township, provide for the housing, care, maintenance, operation, and use of the apparatus and equipment to extinguish fires that occur within the township but outside the corporate boundaries of municipalities, and employ full-time or part time fire fighters to operate the apparatus and equipment and to provide services in that area:
- Contract with a municipality in the township or in a contiguous township that maintains adequate fire fighting or emergency services for the township in accordance with IC 36-1-7;
- Cooperate with a municipality in the township or in a contiguous township in the purchase, maintenance, and upkeep of fire fighting or emergency service apparatus and equipment for use in the municipality and township in accordance with IC 36-1-7;
- Contract with a volunteer fire company that has been organized to fight fires in the township for the use and operation of fire fighting apparatus and equipment that has been purchased by the township in order to save the private and public property of the township from destruction by fire, including use of the apparatus and equipment in an adjoining township by the company if the company has made a contract with the township of the adjoining township for the furnishing of fire fighting service within the township; or
- Contract with a volunteer fire company that maintains adequate fire fighting service.
- Indiana Code: IC 36-8-13
- Indiana law gives the responsibility for maintaining abandoned cemeteries in the state to the township trustee. Indiana townships may also administer public cemeteries that are either:
- Established by the township as a public cemetery (IC 23-14-69), or;
- Conveyed to the township by a cemetery association existing under any Indiana statute before March 9, 1939. (IC 23-14-64)
- Indiana Code: IC 23-14-68
Parks & Recreation
- The township executive may levy a tax and use appropriated township funds to pay for recreation programs, facilities (including a community center used for recreational purposes), or services.
- The legislative body of a township may adopt a resolution creating a department of parks and recreation, whose board shall be established by the township executive.
- Indiana Code: IC 36-10-7 & IC 36-10-7.5
- It shall be the duty of all owners of land whose lands lie outside or abuts or lies adjacent to the boundary of the corporate limits of any town or city, to separate said land from adjoining lands by a partition fence to be constructed upon the line or lines dividing or separating said lands whether said lands were divided heretofore or may hereafter be divided. This only applies to a fence that separates two (2) adjoining parcels of property when at least one (1) of the adjoining parcels is agricultural land
- If any landowner fails to build, rebuild or repair such fence after receiving notice as provided for by law, the township trustees wherein said land or line is located, shall build, rebuild or repair such fence in a manner as provided for by law.
- Indiana Code: IC 32-26-9
- Indiana Code 36-6-4-3 Duties of the Township Trustee, continues to list destruction of “…detrimental plants, noxious weeds, and rank vegetation under IC 15-3-4″ as a duty of the township trustee. However, IC 15-3-4 has been repealed.
- Indiana Code 15-16-8 now specifies the role of the township in destruction of detrimental plants.
- As of July 1, 2008 all assessing duties have been transferred from the township trustee to the county assessor.