After several impassioned speakers and some questions, Warsaw Common Council voted unanimously to allow installation of a Safe Haven Baby Box at Warsaw-Wayne Fire Territory Station No. 2.

The vote came at Tuesday night’s council meeting.

The next and final step before the box can be installed is approval by the city’s Board of Public Works and Safety at its meeting March 1.

Among the speakers were Monica Kelsey of Woodburn. She is the founder and director of Safe Haven Baby Box. She told the board that billboards in Kosciusko and Whitley counties have led to two baby surrenders in the last week, the latest in Columbia City early Tuesday morning.

She also spoke about how personal her ministry is to her. She was abandoned as a baby and wants every child to have a chance to live. She admitted the boxes should be a last resort for a mother, after all other options are exhausted.

Council member Jack Wilhite asked Kelsey about a couple in Massachusetts, Mike and Jean Morrisey, who had inundated the council and other organizations, including the Times-Union, with e-mails against the boxes. Kelsey said, “It’s not a healthy situation,” and that she has a permanent injunction from an Allen County court preventing the Morriseys from having any contact with her.

County Coroner Tony Ciriello told the council how emotionally difficult it is to remove a deceased infant from a scene, and if the box can prevent someone from having to pull a dead child from a dumpster or other scene, it would be worth the cost.

Dave Koontz, executive director of Right to Life of North Central Indiana, said his organization raised the money for the purchase and installation of the box, and cited the two recent surrenders as evidence of the effectiveness of the Safe Haven program.

The city will have a cost of $3,000 for the alarm on the box, with annual maintenance of $200. The alarm will notify officials when a surrender has been made and monitor for smoke. Fire Chief Mike Wilson said that kind of system was going to need to be installed at the station anyway.

Other agenda items included discussion of mobile devices for Warsaw police. Chief Scott Whitaker said that in the recent past, officers used personal cell phones while on duty.

Angie Howard, systems administrator for the police department, said the devices would allow officers in the field to use secure state-issued software, some of which isn’t available for use on laptops installed in police vehicles.

Whitaker said the mobile devices also have GPS tracking, meaning everyone who needs the information would know exactly where an officer was in a pursuit situation outside of a vehicle.

Whitaker said officers have declined to accept a stipend offered by the city for use of their personal cell phones. Tuesday’s discussion came after the second reading of a request to transfer budgeted funds to pay for the devices, and a motion to approve the measure died for lack of a second.

The council will take up the matter again at its March 4 meeting.

In other business, the council:

• Transferred funds to pay for GIS server software.

• Heard Comcast paid franchise fees to the city totaling $12,495.17.

• Approved the formation of a revitalization area and a tax abatement for Lake City Heat Treating Corp.

• Accepted into the budget a reimbursement for engineering done for the new Rotary Park.