Village of River Forest Board of Trustees met December 11.
Village of River Forest Board of Trustees met December 11.
Here is the minutes provided by the Board:
1. Call To Order/Roll Call
The meeting was called to order at 7:05 p.m. Upon roll call, the following persons were:
Present: President Adduci, Trustees Cargie, Henek, Vazquez, Conti, Gibbs, and Corsini
Also Present: Village Clerk Kathleen Brand-White, Police Chief Greg Weiss, Deputy Police Chief James O’Shea, Police Commander Dan Dhooghe, Fire Chief Kurt Bohlmann, Finance Director Joan Rock, Public Works Director John Anderson, Management Analyst Jon Pape, Village Attorney Greg Smith
2. Pledge Of Allegiance
President Adduci led the pledge of allegiance.
3. Citizens Comments
Jan Saeger, 435 William, praised the Village’s new website look and ease of navigation. She said it was time and money well spent. She stated that demolition of 747 William Street has been proposed and a hearing was held. She presented a book, The Invisible Frank Lloyd Wright and the 700 William Street, River Forest Project by William Allin Storrer with Richard Johnson and Dominique Watts, to the Village and discussed the significance of the 700 block of William.
Katie Brennan, Chair of the River Forest Sustainability Commission, thanked the Village President and the Board of Trustees for their leadership in regard to reducing global warming and the effects of climate change. She announced that based on that leadership, President Adduci was selected to be one of 10 mayors and municipal presidents to represent Illinois at the Climate Summit. She provided a brief history of how local municipalities, and River Forest in particular, came to lead these efforts.
Julie Moller, 1006 Forest, River Forest Sustainability Commissioner, updated the Village Board on the events she has recently attended including the Climate Summit, Plant Green event, and Metropolitan Mayors’ Caucus, and Leadership Lab. She noted that the Climate Summit was about local Solutions and that River Forest was recognized as a leader in sustainability by many attendees of the Summit. She requested that the Board consider people, planet, and profit in the Comprehensive Plan.
Monica Halloran stated she has been on the Sustainability Commission at Dominican University since its inception. She thanked the Village Board for signing on to sustainability efforts for River Forest.
Gina Latinovich, 7311 Quick Avenue, thanked President Adduci for signing agreement at the Climate Summit. She said it gives her hope that local communities are stepping up to combat climate change and she is proud of the efforts going on in River Forest,
Matt Gnabasik, 7311 Quick, thanked the Village President for attending the Climate Summit and encouraged the Village Board to continue to pursue green initiatives. He discussed the positive economic impact of green initiatives.
4. Elected Officials Comments And Annoucements
Trustee Gibbs wished everyone happy holidays and congratulated Police Chief Weiss on his retirement.
Trustee Henek said her thoughts and prayers go out to the Summy family in regard to the unfortunate accident that happened that morning and noted their son is doing well. She said she attended the Sustainability leadership breakfast event and she is excited to see what the Village can continue to do and what it can do to expand Sustainability in the community.
Trustee Conti thanked the guests for attending the meeting and for their Sustainability efforts.
Trustee Vazquez wished everyone happy holidays. He said his prayers go out to the Summy family. He said he wished Chief Weiss the best in his retirement and thanked him for his service to the Village.
Trustee Cargie complimented Chief Weiss and congratulated him on his retirement.
Trustee Corsini stated that the combined Finance Committee / Pension Board meeting was postponed because the information they needed for evaluation was received late. She said it has been rescheduled to January 25, 2018. She said she attended the Historic Preservation Commission public hearing. She said she has a few items in regard to that hearing she would like to discuss if this matter comes before the Board. She wished everyone happy holidays and thanked Trustee Conti in her efforts with Public Works and the village administrator for beautifying the Lake Street Corridor with holiday decorations.
President Adduci said that her thoughts and prayers go out to the Summy family and their son and she is glad to hear that he is recovering. She stated that the flag was raised to celebrate the Illinois Bicentennial. She congratulated the staff on the launch of the Village’s new website. She said she is a member of the executive committee and director/vice president of the Illinois Municipal League (IML) and attended the winter meeting. She said the major legislative issues include SB 1451 which would allow for the installation of Small cell wires on utility poles. President Adduci noted that there is an aesthetic issue with these wires and an issue of fees, which are normally decided by the municipality but will now be set by the State. She said the West Central Municipal Conference (WCMC) is opposed to the legislation. She reported that the bill passed both the House and the Senate but Senate President Cullerton is holding it. President Adduci stated SB 851, which is a property tax freeze bill, currently passed the House. She said it will probably be held in the Senate for some time. She stated the Village Board is interested in lowering property taxes and noted that 72% of property taxes go to the schools and only 11% to the Village. She expressed concern that this bill will hurt the schools. President Adduci said she attended the Climate Summit. She said she was thrilled to be one of 10 that were asked to join the summit. She stated that the purpose of the Summit was to reaffirm what the Village already does as a Board and as a community. She recapped various projects that the Village has undertaken. President Adduci reported that she attended the dedication of St. Vincent’s Kyte Hall. She wished everyone a Merry Christmas, happy holidays, and a Happy New Year.
a. Recognition of the Retirement of Police Chief Greg Weiss
President Adduci and members of the Village Board of Trustees recognized and thanked Police Chief Weiss on his service to the community and congratulated him on his retirement. She read a brief Summary of Chief Weiss’ career and accomplishments and presented him with a commemorative plaque. Chief Weiss thanked the Village Board for the opportunity to serve the residents and thanked those who supported him throughout the years. Trustee Gibbs, Corsini, and Conti discussed their experiences with him and expressed their thanks to Chief Weiss for his service.
b. Appointment by the Village President of James O’Shea as Police Chief Effective January 3, 2018
President Adduci recommended Deputy Chief James O'Shea for appointment to the position of Police Chief effective January 3, 2018. She briefly discussed his career and accomplishments in River Forest.
Trustee Corsini made a motion, Seconded by Trustee Gibbs, to concur with the recommendation of the Village President to appoint James O'Shea to the position of Police Chief effective January 3, 2018.
Аyes: Trustees Cargie, Vazquez, Gibbs, Corsini, Henek, and Conti
Village President Adduci said that he will be sworn in at the first Board Meeting in January, 208.
Deputy Chief O'Shea thanked the Village Board for the opportunity. He discussed Chief Weiss leadership and thanked him for his mentoring, coaching, counseling, and perspectives. He noted that there is the opportunity in the River Forest Police Department to rise from the ranks and become chief of police and said that it is important for members of any organization to know that this is possible.
5. Consent Agenda
a Regular Village Board Meeting Minutes - November 27, 2017
b. Executive Session Minutes - November 27, 2017
c. Proclamation - Celebrating the Illinois Bicentennial
d. Personnel Policy Manual Update Regarding Anti-Harassment – Ordinance
e. Pre-Authorization for Travel to Washington, D.C. for Village President for US Conference of Mayor’s Winter Meetings for $3,000 (January 24-26, 2018)
f. Authorize Abatement of Debt Service Levy 2008B General Obligation Bonds – Ordinance
g. Approve Change Order #1 (Final) for the 2017 Street Patching Project for $19,304.29 Resolution
h. Approve Change Order #1 (Final) for the 2017 Pavement Rejuvenation Project for $3,658.87 – Resolution
i. Monthly Department Reports
j. Monthly Performance Measurement Report k. Village Administrator’s Report
Trustee Gibbs made a motion, seconded by Trustee Vazquez, to approve the Consent Agenda.
In regard to Item d, Trustee Corsini asked that staff provide training to the Board since they are also covered by the policy.
Ayes: Trustees Cargie, Vazquez, Gibbs, Corsini, Henek, and Conti
6. Consent Agenda Items Requiring Separate Consideration
7. Recommendations Of Boards, Committees And Commissions
8. Unfinished Business
a. Approval of the 2017 Village Property Tax Levy - $7,855,558 - Ordinance
Trustee Cargie made a motion, Seconded by Trustee Conti, to pass an Ordinance levying taxes for corporate purposes for the current fiscal year commencing on the 1st day of May, 2017 and ending on the 30th day of April, 2018 for the Village of River Forest, Illinois.
Trustee Corsini thanked Finance Director Rock for her work on the Tax Levy.
Ayes: Trustees Cargie, Vazquez, Gibbs, Corsini, Henek, and Conti
9. New Business
a. Discussion and Direction: Request for New Construction Signage at Lake and Lathrop
Village Administrator Palm Said that if the Village Board concurs with the request, staff will prepare an Ordinance for consideration at the next board meeting. He stated that the Village Code does not allow any temporary signs variations.
Trustee Henek stated that she thinks the signs need to be bigger to attract attention.
Eric Christman, Sedgwick Properties, stated that he would like the signs to be larger so that motorists passing would be able to see them. He said that by covering up the La Majada sign it would create a sense of something new and exciting happening in the community.
In response to a question from Trustee Cargie, Mr. Christman stated that the fence would be the same height. Trustee Cargie said that he is concerned about creating an exception for an ordinance. He suggested reconsidering the Ordinance rather than passing this on a One-off basis since it will open the door for other variation requests. President Adduci stated other requests might be different. Trustee Cargie said that there should be standards. Trustee Vazquez concurred with Trustee Cargie and questioned whether there is a process for temporary signs. Village Administrator Palm stated that there is a process for temporary signs but there is not a process for variations to the sign code. President Adduci stated sign variances should come before the Board because variance requests could vary. There was a brief discussion regarding the zoning variation process as it compares to signs. President Adduci said she did not know whether an ordinance would catch them all. In response to a question from Trustee Corsini, Village Attorney Smith Stated the duration of a temporary sign and other conditions could be stipulated by the Board. Trustee Henek stated that the size of a development could dictate the conditions of a temporary sign and sign variations should be looked at on a case-by-case basis.
In response to a question from Trustee Corsini, Mr. Christman said that the sign requested will be the same height as the existing sign. In response to a follow-up question, he noted that the La Majada sign has been removed from the building.
Village Administrator Palm stated that if the Board is in general agreement with this proposal the Village Attorney will author an Ordinance memorializing that variance. Mr. Christman stated that they would like to put the sign up before the January Board meeting.
In response to a question from Trustee Gibbs, Village Attorney Smith Stated that the sign is at the maximum the Ordinance allows and without adopting an ordinance to vary from that there is no authority to vary from the Ordinance.
In response to a question from Trustee Corsini, Mr. Christman stated that the sales office will be located at 7577 Lake Street.
Trustee Corsini stated she concurs with looking at these types of variations on a case-by-case basis with conditions since this is the first experience the Board has had with this.
President Adducinoted that there is Board consensus.
In response to a question from Trustee Henek, Village Administrator Palm stated that the Village Board could hold a special meeting on Friday, December 15, 2017. Village Attorney Smith stated that notice of the time and location will be posted in at least 48 hours in advance.
10. Executive Session
Trustee Cargie made a motion seconded by Trustee Gibbs, to adjourn the regular Village Board of Trustees Meeting at 8:13 p.m.
Ayes: Trustees Gibbs, Cargie, Vazquez, Conti, Henek, and Corsini