The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.
Board To Check On Loan For Water Tower
by: Shirley Linder, Quill Editor
At the regular meeting of the Village of Stronghurst board held on July 6th, Ronnie Gittings reported that both banks in Stronghurst were interested in loaning the village money for the construction of a new water tower. Following a discussion on the feasibility of having a new tower and the fact that, in all probability, they would not be receiving a grant the trustees agreed to meet with each bank and obtain the details on borrowing money.
Special board meetings will be held on Monday, July 20th and Wednesday, July 22nd at 7:00 p.m. to meet with bank representatives.
Chlora Beiner approached the board to learn what the policy was regarding removing trees on the outside of the sidewalk since they belong to the village. It was agreed she could have the trees cut down at her own expense. If the trees were dead or a danger then the village assumes the cost of removal, otherwise it is the property owner's responsibility.
Randy Jarvis gave the trustees a brief update on the progress of his properties and asked if he could put rock from the alley to his shed. The board agreed this was okay.
Gittings asked for permission to purchase a larger portable generator to pump the lift station at Surrey Lane and Elizabeth Street should there be no electricity. The cost would run approximately $680-$750 for one. On a motion by David Vancil, seconded by Amanda Kane the board voted to purchase one.
Gittings also informed the board the iron filter test had come back as having radium in it. Since there is no radium in any of the water tests they feel this may have been an error in the lab test and maybe should have another test done at another lab as this is a serious infraction.
Gittings also reported:
- Having a pump impeller go bad.
- Employees have been working in the park, replacing boards on the shelter house, painting the shelter house, etc.
- Have started on the sidewalk on Elizabeth Street and have JULIE marking the other sidewalk location
- Concrete has been poured for the two generators
- Has FS bringing a 500 gal. tank to each of the locations
The police report for June included: 175 hours worked; 2 training hours (2 per officer); 1100 miles on squad car; 3 traffic stops; 2 verbal warnings; 2 written warnings; 3 uniform traffic tickets; 3 assists; 11 service calls; 2 arrests; 21 business courtesy checks.
In other business the board:
- Passed the minutes of the June meeting
- Passed the paying of the bills with Brendan Schaley casting the only no vote.
- Discussed purchasing a generator for village hall, with the decision being made to use the one the village already has as it will run the lights and furnace.
- Discussed what should be written up as guidelines for employee drug testing. The clerk will see if she can get a copy of Stronghurst Grain Elevator's guidelines as a sample that can be tweaked to the village's situation.
- Jim Spiker said there had been a couple of requests regarding keeping chickens and a turkey in the village. Following a lengthy discussion of the pros and cons it was decided it was a zoning problem. The board would rather not have animals in the village due to noise complaints.
- Jim Spiker was appointed as the one to contact with complaints about unsightly properties. Mayor Gary Root said he would help him. Spiker will also monitor accumulation of junk on properties.
- Banning leaf burning was once again discussed. The attorney advised if an ordinance was to be drawn up it would need to be very specific, as there could be no selective enforcement. There is a village ordinance stating no burning after 10 p.m., no burning within 100' of a building without a person over 14 in attendance and no burning on public property, which does include the side of the streets and ditches. The board decided to let things remain the same, as about 85% of the residents do take their leaves to the burn area, according to Gittings.
- Passed the Appropriation Ordinance (see elsewhere in paper)
- Passed the Nicor Gas Ordinance, which is good for 50 years (see elsewhere in paper)
- September 19th is city wide garage sales which goes along with Stronghurst Fall Festival
- Heard from Spiker regarding a zoning committee meeting held June 8th. The zoning committee would like to have all the contractors be aware of permit requirements and tell the prospective customers what they are. If there is a question about property lines the zoning committee will require a survey of the land or an easement from the neighbors before a permit will be issued.
- Amanda Kane reported she and Gittings had gone to Ritters to purchase two trees which were planted in the village park by the memorial bench. She also commented about the comments put on facebook by one of the businesses and said she had saved it if any of the board members would like to read it.
- Mike Bohnenkamp questioned three bills that had come in over $500. Anything over $500 is to be okayed by the board. Gittings explained what these bills were for.
- Brendan Schaley said he had a list of things that him and Root had prepared regarding things to be done over the summer. However, in the interest of time he would give the list to Gittings and follow through on their progress. Schaley bought up that the flags are not being put up on holidays and the board needs to make some plans so this can be rectified. He said he had cleaned the weeds from one of the flower beds in the park and replanted flowers. He also suggested they think about the possibility of having fireworks in Stronghurst next July 4th.
- Heard Katrina Sherman, part time office help has quit.
- Heard liquor license were due July 1st and have been renewed.
- Root inquired if the new sidewalks would be done by the time school started. Gittings assured him they would. Root also advised Gittings to get some weed killer and spray the sidewalks around town so they could see what the walks look like and what needs repaired.
The board entered executive session for the purpose of personnel at 9:07 p.m. They re-entered open session at 9:22 p.m. on a motion by Kane, seconded by Bohnenkamp. They decided to take applications for 2 weeks for office help.
The meeting adjourned at 9:25 p.m. on a motion by Bohnenkamp, seconded by Vancil.
Present were: Mayor Gary Root; Trustees, Brendan Schaley, Mike Bohnenkamp, Amanda Kane, Betty Waterman, Jim Spiker, David Vancil; Employees, Lou Ann Nortrup, Ronnie Gittings, Arbry Vancil, Mark Jackson, Attorney Bill Rasmussen; Guests, Chlora Beiner, Randy Jarvis, and Shirley Linder