The Villa Grove city council met for its regularly scheduled meeting on June 8, 2020, with all council members in attendance.
Mayor Eversole-Gunter called the meeting to order at 6:04 p.m., and after the pledge, the board moved to consent agenda, which included minutes from the May 26 meeting, closed minutes from the same date, claims for payments in the amount of $449,821.40, financial statements, cash balance reports and a boiler repair at the sewer plant in the amount of $7200, was approved unanimously, with Alderman Hooker suggesting one small correction in the minutes.
With no one wishing to make public comments, the city then moved on to its regular reports.
* Engineer’s report: Discussions are underway to fix a leak at the water plant. After some discussion, the plan for the pedestrian crossing on Route 130 near the Christian Church has been finalized, with representatives of the city, church and Paul’s Machine and Welding coming to an agreement. Finally, the city was able to work with the school on the placement of a new hydrant on school property, near the new gymnasium.
* Committee of the Whole reports: Alderman Hooker brought up the issue of purchasing new playground equipment for Harrison Park, which was brought to him by Tom Wegeng, a resident of his ward. After discussing costs and other issues, it was agreed that Hooker would form a committee to seek out contributions from city groups so that Harrison Park would have equipment that is comparable to Henson and Richman Parks. It was agreed that the timing wasn’t ideal, due to lost revenues by area businesses, but also that Hooker should begin to lay the groundwork for the future.
* City Administrator report: Administrator Athey reported that the city audit is set to begin in three weeks. She also noted that the state has changed the way city employee insurance premiums are set. This resulted in some city workers having higher premiums, while others saw their premiums go down. Athey also reported that the city had been sent two notices of violations from the IEPA concerning the sewer plant. The first notice regarded effluent run off, and the second notice regarded a failure to report the issue in a timely fashion. The city has 45 days to respond to the notices. Finally, she reported that she continues to attend state-wide weekly Covid-19 task force meetings, online.
* Mayor’s Report: Mayor Eversole-Gunter reported that discussions were underway to honor Chief Gire on his retirement after serving the city of Villa Grove for nearly 30 years. She also stated that the council would be holding a closed meeting on June 15 to interview the two final candidates for Chief of Police.
* New Business: The council voted unanimously to reschedule the fireworks for September 19, to coincide with the Villa Grove School’s alumni events. The council also voted unanimously to purchase the blighted property at Vine and Douglas streets through a tax agent for $750.00
* Executive Session: The council went into executive session to discuss personnel issues at 6:36 p.m., returning to open session at 7:32 p.m. Finding no other issues, Hooker’s motion to adjourn passed unanimously.