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Council discusses drainage issues, Tree Lighting Festival

The Villa Grove City Council met on Tuesday, October 12 for its regular, voting meeting. All were in attendance other than aldermen Cheely and Garrett. Also attending were Mayor Eversole Gunter, Clerk Osborne, Administrator Athey and Public Works director Lake.

After stating the pledge, Mayor Eversole Gunter moved to the consent agenda which consisted of approval of:
* Minutes of the September 13, 2021 regular city council meeting.

* Minutes of the September 13, 2021 closed session.

* Minutes of the September 27, 2021 Committee of the Whole meeting.

* Minutes of the September 27, 2021 COTW closed session.

* Authorization for the payment of bills in the amount of $355,019.44.

* Financial statements for the month ending August 31, 2021.

* Cash balance report for the month ending September 30, 2021.

* Purchase of Fire Department pagers as part of the annual cycling of replacements.

The motion passed unanimously. Mayor Eversole Gunter then called for public comments, and finding none, moved to Administrator/other reports.

Administrator Athey the final audit report would soon be available. She also noted that she had begun the annual TIF report and had begun working on a grant for the streetscape project. Finally, she noted that she was working with two temporary agencies to fill the city hall vacancy.

Public Works director Lake then made his report, in which he stated that all the recently repaired pumps, other than the Adams street location, were working well. He also noted that Ruby street, in McCoy subdivision, had severe flooding issues, because of a lack of ditches. He noted that the problem could be fixed, and that now would be the time to consider doing so because the yards are already in disrepair due to the water line project. He also noted that Cross Construction had not made good on capping a leaking line, and it was causing the city to lose water. Both he and the city engineer had been in contact with them, but so far hadn’t gotten results.

Mayor Eversole Gunter then discussed the Christmas Tree Lighting Festival, scheduled to be held on November 27. She suggested moving the craft bazaar to the plaza so that it would be near city businesses and is well lit. People could then buy from local artisans and then move to the north end for the Christmas Tree lighting ceremony. Alderman Blaney suggested that perhaps people could walk together, singing Christmas Carols when the time came. The mayor then noted that she would talk to Dave Rahn about decorating the plaza for the holidays. 

The mayor then moved to new business which included:
* Ordinance 2021-MC07-An ordinance approving the city’s annual budget.

* Ordinance 2021-MC08-An ordinance which authorized the mayor to execute Administrator Athey’s contract as City Administrator.

* IEPA loan disbursement #4 in the amount of $113,711.38.

* Cross Construction pay request #2 for the amount of $101,211.38.

* Purchase of Salt Spreader for $11,620.

* Purchase of swing arm mower for the city Bobcat for $15,500.

* Treasurer’s attendance at IMTA Institute from November 14-18 for $1202.80.

* Assignment of 2022 fireworks contract to Pyrotecnico Fireworks, inc.

* Approve permit/application related expenses for placement of waste disposal containers on the state easement near the route 130/school bridge.

* Approve moving forward with municode for new website and municipal code hosting.

After discussion, it was decided to seek alternatives to placing waste receptacles on the bridge, due to the bureaucracy associated with having to commission drawings and apply for permits required by the state. All other items were approved, with Hooker voting no to the payment to Cross Construction. Finding no other business, the meeting then adjourned.

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