MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF THE MAYOR
AND CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF EAST MOLINE,
COUNTY OF ROCK ISLAND, STATE OF ILLINOIS
JANUARY 22, 2008 AT 6:30P.M.
Mayor Thodos led the City Council and all those present in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.
Mayor Thodos called the meeting to order and directed City Clerk Arletta D. Holmes, to call the roll. The following Aldermen were present: Helen Heiland, Luis Puentes, Luis Moreno, Cheri Bustos, David Kelley, Roseann Cervantes, Gary Westbrook, and Mayor Thodos.
ADDITIONS/CORRECTIONS TO AGENDA
City Administrator Rich Keehner stated that under closed session Item B should be F.O.P. Exempt Salary Promotion issue and not F.O.P. negotiations.
CITY CLERKS REPORT
City Clerk Holmes wished everyone a Happy New Year.
City Clerk Arletta D. Holmes read the Consent Agenda that included the following:
a) Approval of the City Council Minutes of December 17, 2007
b) Approval of the Committee of the Whole Minutes of December 17, 2007
c) Approval of Salaries from December 28, 2007 in the amount of $331,386.14
d) Approval of Salaries from January 11, 2008 in the amount of $368,394.14
e) Approval of Bills through December 28, 2007 in the amount of $1,371,618.26
f) Approval of Bills through January 11, 2008 in the amount of $768,084.66
A motion was made by Alderman Moreno, seconded by Alderman Alderman Cervantes, to approve the Consent Agenda as presented with noted correction. Upon roll call, the following voted in favor: Heiland, Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Cervantes, and Westbrook. Motion carried.
REPORT BY THE MAYOR
Mayor Thodos received a thank you letter from Tony Banaszek of East Moline Main Street Association, thanking the Mayor, City Council, Fire, Police, and Maintenance Services Departments for their continued support of their 2007 fall and winter events.
Mayor Thodos informed the Aldermen that he will be scheduling appointments with the Senior High Rise Residence Facilities for his Annual Visits. He will listen to the residents regarding what type of issues they may have. Any Alderman interested in participating when the Mayor is in their Ward, should inform the Mayor. The visits will be scheduled for the latter part of February, 2008.
Mayor Thodos introduced Richard Glessner, Director of Rock Island County Animal Care and Control.
Mr. Glessner thanked Mayor Thodos for the gift of a John Deere riding mower that the Mayor donated to the Animal Shelter last summer. Mr. Glessner distributed to the City Council their Annual Report for 2006/2007 with comparisons of the number of animals taken in , animal adoptions, animals redeemed, animals euthanized, private request or DIED/DOA, and how the animals arrived at the Shelter. This report is on file in the City Clerk's Office.
The Mayor reminded the City Council that two (2) years ago the City was considering building our own Animal Shelter for a cost of $80,000, instead the City joint with Rock Island County, Moline and others. The initial buy-in cost the City of East Moline $50,000 Rock Island County is responsible for operating and maintaining the facility. The City of East Moline has two (2) representatives on the board Theresa Martin, and Virgil Dueysen.
Alderman Bustos asked if the City has any continuing financial obligation. Mr. Glessner states not at this time. What we have been doing on an annual basis is going to the smaller villages that we provide services to asking for a gift of $500 to $1,000. Mr. Glessner states in the City of East Moline CSO, Patti Roush is basically the City's buy-in, she picks up the animals, brings them out to the shelter. The County assumes responsibility from that point. Patti brings in 55% of the stray animals; she is a tremendous person to work with and gets along well with the other Community Service Officers.
Alderman Heiland stated that it took a lot of convincing for me, but overall it was the right decision. The animals are very well taken care of and everything is going great at the shelter.
Mr. Glessner stated it is very positive for the community and he has received much positive feedback from the community. Adoption numbers have grown, from 1,200 adoptions in 2006, to over 1,500 in 2007.
Mr. Glessner thanked the Mayor and City Council for giving him the opportunity to address the Council.
There was no one in attendance to accept the proclamation.
City Attorney Phares presented the following Ordinances and Resolutions:
RESOLUTION 08-01: A Resolution of the City Council of the City of East Moline, Illinois, Authorizing the Renaming of 12th Street, extending from Beacon Harbor Parkway to 13th Avenue as "Harvest Way".
A motion was made by Alderman Bustos, seconded by Alderman Cervantes, to adopt Resolution 08-01 as presented. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Heiland, Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Cervantes, and Westbrook. Motion carried.
RESOLUTION 08-02: An Resolution of the City Council of the City of East Moline, Illinois, Authorizing and ratifying the execution of an Agreement with Bi-State Regional Commission to prepare the CDAP Grant Application packet for the potential Babcock Sewer Project.
Discussion: Mayor Thodos questioned if this resolution was to facilitate lowering the cost to extent those services out in that area. Mr. Kammler stated that hopefully we are going to have some discussion during the Committee-of-the-Whole and one of the questions will be should the City proceed with the CDAP grant application. Mr. Kammler asked that the Council approve Resolution 08-02 and if for some reason the Council decides not to proceed with the grant application, the City can certainly not execute that contract.
Mayor Thodos stated that technically, in order to apply there does need to be a motion of endorsement from the City Council along with the application. Mr. Kammler noted that they will be bringing the project to the Council tonight to discuss in more detail. One of the requirements is a resolution of Support by the City Council which in effect, guarantees funding of the local match of the project. Funding must come from the residents, the City or a combination of both, and that will be part of the presentation tonight.
A motion was made by Alderman Moreno, seconded by Alderman Kelley, to adopt Resolution 08-02 as presented. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Heiland, Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Cervantes, and Westbrook. Motion carried.
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE (Alderman Puentes)
Alderman Puentes has no items for discussion. All items have been covered under the Consent Agenda, or by Ordinance or Resolution.
CITY STAFF COMMUNICATION:
Each City Staff member present was given the opportunity to inform the City Council and those present of events in their departments:
Elliot Liebson, Economic Development Director - informed the City Council that progress is being made on the Strand Theatre. Doors and windows are to be renovated this spring. Staff cleaned out all unnecessary debris from the theatre two weeks ago, and moved the projectors to secure building in the maintenance complex. A discussion of possible uses of the theatre was held at the last long-range planning meeting downtown; one suggestion was putting the farmers market inside the building on an interim basis. This requires an understanding of the work needed to be done on the building and the cost. Staff has been requested to have the inspectors to review the building and determine what the issues are. Staff will be meeting with prospective buyer/operators this Thursday to tour the building and attempt to come up with an outline for acquiring and developing the building. Mr. Liebson thanked Mr. Willemarck and his staff for the work they have done cleaning the theatre.
Jim Hughes, Director of Finance – informed the City Council that he is thanking Mr. Willemarck and his staff for reading the City's water meters. The current meter reader injured her knee and required surgery. It was especially important that the meters be read by Friday, because this Monday or Tuesday the Civic Software representative will be in the City of East Moline, converting the utility billing software. It was imperative that we have all the readings. Mr. Willemarck and his staff would have been done by today if one of his staff had not been ill. The Finance Department just cannot thank Mr. Willemarck's staff enough. The Finance Department is "short handed" this week. Kathryn, Regina, and Jackie are in Madison, Wisconsin, at the Civic Software Training Center. They will be back on Friday. Last Thursday; staff transferred all of the information from our "400". Monday, staff will use the new software to send out bills for February 1st. These will be more detailed, at the City's request. Once staff is satisfied with the conversion, staff will be asking for some volunteers (Aldermen, Staff, and Residents) to use the internet to pay their bills on line. Our Systems Administrator, Eddy Boggs, feels it is safe; also Budget Books will be available on Friday for your review.
Mr. Keehner asked with the new billings is the Finance Department going to put out an explanation on how to read the bill, or is it, self explanatory, Mr. Hughes stated hopefully it will be self explanatory
Mayor Thodos asked if everyone on the Council was aware that we are no longer doing estimated water bills, we are doing actual billings. As you recall this has been the concern of some residents. We are now doing 100% actual billings. Mr. Hughes informed the Council that staff read every meter in the City this month. It was quite an undertaking, especially with one person injured, and probably off until March. One of the problems is that some bills were estimated incorrectly. Some residents have low usage and for some reason it jumps up to a higher usage.
Alderman Bustos asks if the City has ever done a study on what it would cost to go to automatic readers and partner with Mid-American Energy. Mayor Thodos noted that we have estimates on that, and it is something that could give accurate readings. In regard to the receiver it is on the back of the City's garbage trucks, Mid- American is already converting over.
Bruce Willemarck, Director of Maintenance Services - informed the City Council that the Park Board has applied for a grant from The Moline Club in the amount of $8,313.00 for Garfield Park the grant will be used to purchase playground equipment designed for Children ages 2-5 years. There is no City match required for this grant. Mr. Willemarck distributed to the City Council a comparison of Road Salt Purchases from Fiscal Years 2000 to 2008. (In tons purchased). In 2007/2008 the City purchased 2,730 tons. That is the City's allotment. At this time the City currently have seven (7) tons of road salt left. There is just enough for approximately three (3) more storms. The City is already getting calls from other Cities asking if extra salt is available. Staff is going to start rationing salt.
Alderman Heiland asked if the City runs out of salt, do they have the availability to purchase additional salt. Mr. Willemarck assured her that the City does.
Leath Drake, Director of Water and Wastewater Facilities, reports to the City Council that most of the building renovations have been completed. The Bar Screens are scheduled for delivery tomorrow, when they will be set in place, Staff will then start the removal of the others.
Victor Moreno, Police Chief – advised the City Council on a high profile case that took place in July of 2007. The City had serval residents and businesses that were being burglarized. Staff developed a suspect and East Moline Police got into a foot chase with the suspect on July 21, 2007. The suspect was a transplant from Louisiana identified as Mario Westbrook. He is in custody now in Carrol County Georgia. He was arrested for killing two police officers last Wednesday.
Tim Kammler, Director of Engineering – reported thatstaff is working on an appropriate design for Morton Drive reconstruction between 8th and 25th Avenue. Staff has been coordinating with Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) for a design on the frontage road between 7th Street and Archer Drive. Approximately one week ago our staff completed plans for the low pressure sewer system designed for the Babcock area. Last Saturday and Sunday Don Mayhew, who is our Senior Engineer, coordinated a very fineexhibit on behalf of our City atthe Bald Eagle Days exposition. The exhibit explained Storm water control, and Pollution prevention. The engineering website has been updated.
Rich Keehner, City Administrator- reported to the City Council that Wednesday the Committee-of-the-Whole information was E-mailed to the Aldermen in order to give them more time for review of the information and to ask questions of the Department Heads or express their concerns.
Jim Hughes, Director of Finance- informed the City Council that the Northwest Municipal League will be meeting on Thursday, January 31, 2008 at the Q.C. Botanical Center. Social Hour is at 5:30p.m. and Dinner is at 6:30p.m.
Alderman Heiland asked Mr. Willemarck what staff members did the work, Mr. Willemarck stated that everyone chipped in to help, Alderman Heiland stated the reason she asked is because a lot of times we do not give the workers enough credit for what they do.
Alderman Bustos asked Chief Moreno if staff has any more information about the revise 911 and our ability to call out to the residents. Chief Moreno stated he spoke with Captain Bill DeVrieze, and the system is not fully operational. Alderman Bustos asks that the City Council be kept apprised of the progress.
Mayor Thodos informed the City Council there was a very nice ceremony honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at the Martin Luther King Center in Rock Island, Illinois. On Saturday, Alderman Westbrook and his sisters sang at Augustan's Centennial Hall. "If you missed it you missed a good show". The Mayor complemented Alderman Westbrook, and his sisters and what a fantastic job on a wonderful program. If you ever have the opportunity to hear Alderman Westbrook sign in person, you should take the opportunity.
Mayor Thodos read the proclamation proclaiming January 2008, as National Mentoring Month in the City of East Moline, Illinois. The Mayor encourages all citizens, businesses, public and private agencies, and religious and educational institutions to support mentoring and give young people in our community the gift of time and friendship through the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mississippi Valley programs. Mayor Thodos presented the proclamation to Josh White and D.J. Wellington and they were given the opportunity to address the City Council.
FIVE-MINUTE CITIZEN PARTICIPATION
Mayor Thodos gave East Moline residents in the audience the opportunity to address the City Council.
David Nowack 3904 1st Street, East Moline, IL. - Two years ago the administration passed a garbage fee. The garbage fee was supposed to be on the quarterly rate, the water bill than became more than a quarterly rate, now they are done on a monthly basis. The garbage fee stayed the same per month was there a resolution passed regarding this. Finance Director Hughes stated that the garbage user fee has always been $6.00 each month, so the garbage user fee has never increased.
Mr. Nowack asked if No Smoking Signs could be posted, by the bleacher area in the parks. Moline Parks are enforcing a no smoking policy in their parks. Mayor Thodos referred him to the Park Board for discussion of this issue. Attorney Phares stated that it would bethe recommendation of the Park Board to the City Council. There is a provision in the City Code which set forth the rules for the City Parks. It would then come from the Park Board to the Committee-of-the-whole and to the City Council.
RECESS: A motion was made by Alderman Moreno, seconded by Alderman Westbrook, to recess the City Council meeting and convene the Committee-of-the-Whole. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Heiland, Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Cervantes, and Westbrook. Motion carried. 7:19p.m.
(Mayor calls for a break)
RECONVENE: A motion was made by Alderman Westbrook, seconded by Alderman Cervantes, to reconvene the City Council meeting. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Heiland, Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Cervantes, and Westbrook. Motion carried. 9:24p.m.
(Mayor calls for a break)
CLOSED SESSION: A motion was made by Alderman Westbrook, seconded by Alderman Cervantes, to go into closed session to discuss Fire Fighters Union Negotiations, F.O.P. Exempt Salaries, and AFSCME Union Negotiations. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Heiland, Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Cervantes, and Westbrook. Motion carried. 10:43p.m.
OPEN SESSION: A motion was made by Alderman Moreno, seconded by Alderman Puentes, to return to open session. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Heiland, Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Cervantes, and Westbrook. Motion carried. 10:43p.m.
Mayor Thodos reported no action taken in Closed Session.
A motion was made by Alderman Westbrook, seconded by Alderman Moreno, to adjourn the City Council meeting. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Heiland, Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Cervantes, and Westbrook. Motion carried. 10:44 p.m.
Minutes taken and submitted by,
Arletta D. Holmes, City Clerk
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