The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

La Harpe Council Meets Upstairs In City Hall

by Deb Olson, The Quill

La Harpe- Thirty people in addition to the La Harpe City Council members crowded into the second floor meeting room at City Hall.

During the Public Comment session both Brian Covert and Dan Gillett spoke about the parade route. Covert suggested that the parade travel in only one direction on Main Street then turn on 2nd and walk back to the park district on Archer.

Gillett expressed his belief that the parade should keep its current route.

Holly Willdrick and her sons presented a check for $826.00 that had been raised over the summer at a hot dog and lemonade stand to the Police Department for their use.

David Clover expressed concern about semi parking on Main Street. He said he understands how semi parking could be a hazard but feels that there is nothing to be gained by alienating people who come to La Harpe to patronize local businesses.

Max Owsley expressed his concern about unorganized meetings and asked that the council stay consistent with their agenda.

On a motion by Marcia Stiller the council went into Executive session at 7:12

The Executive Session ended at 7:44.

In the re-opened regular session the motion was made, seconded and approved to pay bills, The council then decided that:

A series of discussions continued regarding policies and procedures of the water department. First a new water ordinance was read. (see below) It will be placed on the next meeting's agenda. Also discussed was raising the the water deposit fee from $100 to $150 and who will report to the chair of the Public Works / Finance Committee about water shut-off for non-payment.

There was further discussion about non-payment and the water shut-off policy. Audience members spoke to a variety of options open to those with financial difficulty and other hardship.

Donna Wood told the council about the Township General Assistance Fund, and suggested that John Louden is the one to contact about this. Darrell Kraft informed the council that the Veteran's Assistance Committee in Carthage might also be able to help veterans and their families.

It was discussed that it is necessary to put together a job description for the new part time or full time employee being considered for the water/street department.

Tim Graves spoke to earlier comments that anyone hired for the position should be a Class A Water Operator. Graves listed the names of men who previously held a position with the city. Most of them had the license. He felt confident he could guide a new employee through the licensing process, but the bottom line is that he needs help now.

The meeting adjourned at 8:54 p. m. The next meeting will be held on September 20th at 7:00 p.m. at the La Harpe City Hall.

The Proposed Water Ordinance, No. 2016-7.


WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 1-2-1 of the Illinois Municipal Code (65 ILCS 5/1-2-1), the corporate authorities of each municipality may pass all ordinances and make all rules and regulations which are proper or necessary to carry into effect the powers granted to municipalities: and

WHEREAS, pursuant to Section 11-39-8 of the Code (65 ILCS 5/11-39-8), municipalities that provide water and sewer services to their residents may enact and enforce any non-discriminatory regulations to construct, improve, manage, maintain, care for and protect the system and may charge reasonable rates for the use and service of the system; and

WHEREAS, the City Council of the City of La Harpe ("the City Council") previously enacted what is currently Section 1048.04 of the City Code of Ordinances ("the City Code") to address water and sewer usage charges as they applied to multiple-use and multiple-occupancy buildings, and that ordinance has been amended from time to time (such as Ordinance Nos. 354, 2015-13 and 2016-2); and

WHEREAS, Section 1048.04, in its present form, has been inconsistently interpreted and applied, and the City Council desires to repeal it, and to re-enact it with the amendments set forth below: and

WHEREAS, Paragraph C of Section 1044.18 of the City Code, which was enacted in 1946 by Ord. No. 273, imposed the cost of the meter, as well as the cost of installing, repairing, and replacing it (regardless of fault) on the consumer and owner, but the City Council desires to amend Paragraph C to apportion those costs by imposing the costs of acquiring, repairing , and replacing the meters upon the City of La Harpe ("the City"), unless the repair and replacement is needed due to any negligent or intentional conduct of the water user or building owner, as set forth below: and

WHEREAS, the City Council believes it is in the best interest of the City's residents to adopt those amendments.


Section 1. The facts and statements contained in the preamble to this Ordinance are found to be true and correct and are hereby adopted as part of this ordinance.

SECTION 2. Section 1048.04 of the City Code is hereby repealed in its entirety and is re-enacted with amendments to read as follows:


A. Usage Charges, Water and sewer usage shall be charged as registered by the water meter, at the rates and in the manner specified in the City Code, as amended from time-to-time by ordinance.

B. MULTIPLE-OCCUPANCY/MULTIPLE-USE BUILDINGS. For a multiple-occupancy or multiple-use building, a separate bill shall be issued for water usage registered on each meter.

If such buildings currently do not have separate meters, for each tenant/user, the City shall provide separate meters, and the owners shall provide the necessary connections to those meters. If the installation of such connections is shown to be cost prohibitive, the City Council may waive that requirement, upon written petition made to the City Council.

C. EXEMPTION TO SEPARATE-METER REQUIREMENT. It is the desire of the City Council to exempt all nursing homes and assisted living centers from compliance with Paragraph B above.

SECTION 3. Section 1044.18(C) of the City Code is hereby amended by deleting the stricken words (paragraph 2 below) and adding the underlined words (paragraphs 3 and 4), as follows:

(C) Meters shall be placed either in frost-proof meter boxes or in an approved pattern in the terrace where they are readily accessible or shall be placed in the building under the direction and supervision of the Superintendent. Meters shall be located as near as possible to where the service pipe enters the building or structure and so as to afford easy access for examining and reading. After the meter is placed, only members or employees of the Water department shall be allowed to repair, remove, or in any manner interfere with the same.

(strickened paragraph) The cost of such meter and the installation thereof shall be paid by the consumer. Repairs and renewals of meters shall be at the expense of the consumer, and the owner of or applicant for such meter shall be at all times responsible for any damage done to such meter; including that resulting from freezing, hot water or breakage, and shall also be responsible for the theft thereof:

(underlined paragraphs) Meters shall remain the property of the City of La Harpe. The City shall pay the cost of the meters and the cost of their installation, repair, and replacement. However, if a meter is damaged or stolen as a result of negligent or intentional conduct of the water consumer, the property owner, and/or their agents, servants, and employees, then the water consumer and the property owner shall be jointly and severally liable for all costs related to the replacement and installation of the meter as well as pre-judgement and post-judgement court costs and attorney fees incurred by the City to recover its costs.

The property owner shall pay the cost of any connection and re-connection to the meter, and any connection and re-connection to the meter must be done under the supervision of a designated city employee.

SECTION 4. Effective Date. This Ordinance shall be effective following its passage, approval, and publication as provided by law.