Mayor Krajewski called the Workshop meeting of the Village Council of the Village of Downers Grove to order at 6:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers of the Village Hall.
Present:Mayor Brian Krajewski; Commissioners Marilyn Schnell, Thomas Sisul, Michael Gilbert, Sue McConnell, Martin Tully, Mark Zabloudil; Village Manager Riccardo Ginex; Village Attorney Daniel Blondin; Village Clerk April Holden
Visitors: Press: Susie Gura, Downers Grove Reporter; Jennifer Taylor, Chicago Tribune Residents & Others Attending: Cathy Devries, Ray W. Hemphill, Rest Haven West, 3450 Saratoga; Robert Pugliese, Lord, Bissell & Brook, 115 S. LaSalle, Chicago; Jim Russ, Downtown Management, 4915 Main; Linda Kunze, SSA ; Tim McJoynt, SSA ; Al Ambrose, Northern Trust, 50 S. LaSalle, Chicago; Martin T. May, 809 Chicago; Jack McGuire, 1425 Gilbert; Edveta Wolf, 5123 Carpenter; Andrew Clark, 1226- 62nd St.; Dave Tatterson, 1240 Gilbert; Ed Novak; Elmer Schulz, 932 Maple; Marilynn Gerloff, 4241 Highland; Mike Kubes, 5538 Lyman; David J. Morrill, First Baptist Church, Maple and Washington; Audra Hamernik, First Baptist Church, 4745 Seeley; Eileen Murphy, 14 Chestnut St., Garden City, Long Island, NY Staff: Jack Bajor, Director, Public Works; Amanda Browne, Planner; Marty Lyons, Director, Financial Services
Mayor Krajewski explained that Council Workshop meetings are held the second and fourth Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. The meetings are video taped live and for later cable cast over cable channel 6.
The Workshop meeting is intended to provide Council and the public with an appropriate forum for informal discussion of any items intended for future Council consideration or just for general information. No formal action is taken at Workshop meetings.
The public is invited to attend and encouraged to comment or ask questions in an informal manner on any of the items being discussed or on any other subject. The agenda is created to provide a guideline for discussion.
Bid: North Belmont Park Survey Services. Manager Ginex said staff recommends that the contract for Survey Services-North Belmont Park Watermain be awarded to C.M. Lavoie & Associates in an amount not-to-exceed $10,160.00. He said the boundary area is Walnut, Inverness, Janes and Maple and is currently unincorporated. It was recently discovered that there was contamination of private wells with TCE and there are no existing watermains in the area. He said they have worked with DuPage County to determine how to serve North Belmont Park. He said that Carol Fuller with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency will hold two public sessions on October 11 at the Public Works Department from 3:00-5:00 and 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Commissioner Schnell asked whether residents in the area will be required to sign water annexation agreements. Manager Ginex said he believed they would.
The Mayor said that Lisle and Woodridge are working with the County as well. The County is looking at different funding systems, perhaps an SSA , and he suggested staff communicate with these municipalities. Manager Ginex said this would be on the next week’s Consent Agenda.
Parking & Traffic Recommendations:
Parking Restrictions for Bunker Hill Circle & Concord Drive. Manager Ginex said the Parking & Traffic Commission (P&T) recommended no parking restrictions on the north side of Concord Drive east of Bunker Hill Circle from 8:00 – 11:00 a.m. They also recommended no parking on either side of Bunker Hill Circle from 8:00 – 11:00 a.m. The restrictions do not apply to Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays.
Parking Restrictions for Florence Avenue North of Ogden Avenue. Manager Ginex said that P&T recommended no parking restrictions at all times on the east side of Florence Avenue from the north line of Ogden Avenue to a point 185 feet north of the north line of Ogden Avenue.
Parking Restrictions on the South Side of Chicago Avenue. Manager Ginex said that P&T recommended no parking restrictions from 8:00 – 11:00 a.m., except Saturdays, Sundays, and Holidays, on the south side of Chicago Avenue from the east line of Washington Street to Elm Street.
Parking Restrictions on the 4600 Block of Puffer Road. Manager Ginex said that P&T recommended no parking restrictions at any time on both sides of Puffer Road from the north line of Chicago Avenue to a point 389 feet north of Chicago Avenue.
Commissioner Zabloudil asked about the restrictions on Florence and the source of the problem. If the problem was caused by Luxury Motors, he suggested that the EDC staff speak with them.
Downtown Management – S.S.A. The Manager said Jim Russ and Linda Kunze would make this presentation.
Jim Russ , Chairman of the Downtown Management Board (DMB) said originally they intended to discuss renewal of the SSA , but it was determined that the discussion was premature. They will return at a later date to discuss the SSA . He then announced that there will be a Strategy and Goal Setting Session on October 24, and invited the Council to attend that meeting. Their annual meeting will be held on Thursday, September 27, 2001 at 8:00 a.m. in Village Hall. He again invited the Council to attend.
Linda Kunze presented the Mayor and Council with a Welcome to Downers Grove banner. In addition, a new brochure was distributed introducing the DMB , its funding and its tasks. She provided a brief overview of the Board, stating their focus at this time is to attract new businesses into the community. A downtown CD-ROM was mailed to numerous prospective businesses. She outlined potential new businesses and activities, and noted that they have compiled a business directory and are also on the Internet at www.downersgrovedowntown.com. Ms. Kunze said the monthly meetings of the downtown property owners have greatly improved communications. Working with staff and Council, they have been able to address many of the parking issues. She thanked the Council and Public Works staff for their assistance with the downtown events as well.
Commissioner Gilbert asked about the health of the downtown businesses now that the roads have been completed. Ms. Kunze said they can see a major difference already. The restaurants are becoming more crowded each morning, and she has seen more people coming into the downtown area. She said they will be targeting businesses that they think are missing from the downtown area. She said that three businesses will be holding grand openings in October.
Commissioner Sisul complimented Ms. Kunze on the presentation, and the direction the Board has taken, as well as its accomplishments. Ms. Kunze said they look forward to working with the Council.
General Obligation Bond Issue Refunding.
Marty Lyons , Director of Financial Services, said this would be a discussion of the potential of refunding some of the G.O. bonds. He said that Al Ambrose from Northern Trust is also present. Mr. Lyons said, for technical reasons, they cannot reissue bonds at the present time. He distributed worksheets to the Council members.
Al Ambrose of Northern Trust said the G.O. bonds are not currently callable and they cannot take the benefit of the interest rates. He explained that long-term bonds are typically issued with a call feature for the protection of the person issuing the bonds. Typically it comes with a ten-year call. They can do an advance refund for some of the 1996 bonds which have a first call of December 1, 2006. They can purchase government securities and put it in escrow until the call date. He said it costs more to defease the old bonds. Mr. Ambrose handed out outlines on the callable bonds and ranks by potential savings per maturity dates, and explained the various tables in the handout. He stated they would continue to monitor the situation.
Commissioner Tully asked what would be a fruitful scenario. Mr. Ambrose responded that approximately 3% of the bonds being refunded is the industry benchmark. He said the necessary scenario would be a government securities increase and flattening of the yield curve.
Commissioner Tully asked about ways to address the cost of defeasing. Mr. Ambrose said it is more of less fixed.
The Mayor asked what the current rates were and Mr. Ambrose responded they were similar to those shown on page two of the handout—depending upon where the bonds were rated the interest rate is about 4.75% on that specific structure. He added that a 20-year bond is currently at 5%. He noted that Wall Street is in a turbulent mode right now, and bond market depends upon whether the country is in a recovery situation or not.
Mr. Lyons said the numbers will improve with time given current conditions. He said the Village has low borrowing rates in general.
ZBA Recommendation: First Baptist Church Special Use. The Manager asked Amanda Browne to present the Zoning Board of Appeals recommendation.
Amanda Browne , Planner, said the First Baptist Church at Main and Maple is requesting an amendment to their special use to allow an addition to the church facility. She described the proposed addition which would be 16,894 square feet and includes a multi-purpose room, gymnasium, and other facilities. She said the Zoning Board granted the variation for the side yard and rear yard setbacks contingent upon approval for the special use amendment from the Council.
Commissioner Gilbert said in the past another church requested a variance, and asked Attorney Blondin about the situation. Attorney Blondin said that the Village recently amended its Ordinance text to allow churches to ask for setback variations in excess of the maximum variation otherwise allowed, and churches can make such requests as part of the Special Use process. He said in this case the formula for relief was available for them to request a variation within the maximum allowable under the Ordinance, so it was not necessary for them to invoke the additional Ordinance provision. Commissioner Gilbert asked if they could invoke that exception if this petition were denied. Attorney Blondin said they could, however, the Council is not approving the variation. That was done by the Board of Appeals dependent upon Council approval for the special use amendment.
Commissioner Zabloudil asked if any other variances were issued to this church previously. Ms. Browne said the non-conformities that are existing are lawful non-conformities that were in existence prior to 1965.
Commissioner Zabloudil then asked about the rear setback and the traffic flow.
Audra Hamernik , 4745 Seeley, and David Morrill , 510 36th Street, spoke on behalf of the church. Mr. Morrill said the setback of the rear yard is not where the traffic flow is. It moves along the west side of the property.
Commissioner Schnell said there is an easement with the Park District to jointly use the driveway, and Mr. Morrill said that was correct. He said that have had that agreement for a very long time and both agencies use each other’s parking facilities. Mr. Morrill further responded that the church has received letters from the four property owners most directly affected by the proposed addition indicating their support of it.
Commissioner Tully asked about the facilities accommodated by the new addition and whether they would be expanding the school. Mr. Morrill said there would be no school expansion due to the addition. They are adding 7,000 square feet to replace the square footage they are removing. They will be rearranging their space. The goal of school is always to increase enrollment, but this addition is not an expansion of the classroom size.
Commissioner Sisul commented that it has been a while since he toured their facility, but marvels at how well they have used the available space and accommodate the students as well as they have. He said they were good stewards of the property.
Zoning Commission Recommendations:
Nursing Homes in Residential Districts. Ms. Browne said the recommendation from the Zoning Commission to allow nursing homes in residential districts to provide services to residents and non-residents on an accessory basis.
Commissioner Zabloudil said he appreciated the need for service in-house. He asked about the anticipated impact on traffic at the Downers Grove facility. Ms. Browne said that this is a text amendment to the Zoning Ordinance and is not linked to a particular site plan proposal. The petitioner will have to come before the Zoning Board of Appeals and the Council with their proposal as part of the Special Use process. She asked the petitioner to respond to the question.
Robert Pugliese , attorney for the petitioner, said that they would expect a low amount of traffic volume, as this is not a medical clinic. He said that Rest Haven has an existing program in Palos Heights and most of the people who come in on an out-patient basis come in by a free bus provided by Marianjoy.
Commissioner Tully said the concept of having a rehabilitation facility available in the community is wonderful, particularly for senior citizens but including persons of all ages. He clarified that the proposed amendment does not include mental illness, alcoholism, drug abuse, etc. Mr. Pugliese said that was correct. This would address problems such as physical therapy to recover from a broken hip, or rehabilitation for stroke victims. Most of the patients have had a traumatic injury requiring rehabilitation services.
Text Amendments. Ms. Browne said the last two amendments received positive recommendations from the Zoning Commission. Part A deals with churches in residential districts beyond 1,000 feet of the Concentrated Business District. She said the amendment increases the lot coverage from 30% to 40%, regardless of the proximity of the church to the CBD .
Ms. Browne said part B of the amendment deletes a section of the Zoning Ordinance currently regulated by a section of the Subdivision Control Ordinance.
Commissioner Tully asked whether prior to the proposal there was a difference in the lot coverage inside the CBD and outside the CBD . Ms. Browne said there was, depending upon the residential zoning classification. Commissioner Tully asked if there was a reason why there was a decision to eliminate the difference. Ms. Browne added that churches closer to the CBD were older, on smaller lots, and were limited similar to other businesses in the CBD . The text as is was written originally would allow churches to continue at their current locations and not push them further away from the CBD , but not let them build so much of the site that they exacerbated any parking deficiency, etc.
STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS
There were none.
MANAGER ’S REPORT
Manager Ginex displayed the award received by the Public Works Department for the downtown restoration project. He explained the criteria used in determining the recipient of this national award. He then presented the award to Mr. Jack Bajor, Director of Public Works.
The Mayor congratulated Mr. Bajor, the Public Works staff and the community. He said the project goes back many years to the Lakota Plan. He pointed out that this was a national award preceded in May by the receipt of the Chicago Metro Award for the same project.
ATTORNEY ’S REPORT
Attorney Blondin reviewed seven items he was presented to the Village Council: 1) an ordinance restricting parking on Bunker Hill Circle and Concord Drive; 2) an ordinance restricting parking on Chicago Avenue; 3) an ordinance restricting parking on Florence Avenue; 4) an ordinance restricting parking on the 4600 block of Puffer Road; 5) an ordinance authorizing special use at First Baptist Church/School to permit an addition to the existing structures; 6) an ordinance amending nursing home provisions of the Downers Grove Zoning Ordinance; and 7) an ordinance amending certain provisions of the Downers Grove Zoning Ordinance.
The Mayor asked the Village Clerk to read the Resolution appointing the Chairman of the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners. The Clerk read the resolution.
RESOLUTION APPOINTING KEITH KILLACKY AS CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD OF FIRE AND POLICE COMMISSIONERS
RESOLUTION 2001 -80
Commissioner Sisul moved to approve the Resolution as read. Commissioner Gilbert seconded the Motion.
VOTE :AYES:Commissioners Sisul, Gilbert, Zabloudil, Tully, McConnell, Schnell, Mayor Krajewski
The Mayor declared the Motion carried.
Commissioner Gilbert commented that Mr. Killacky is a career FBI man, and Mr. Lang was appointed a few weeks ago. He is a career firefighter. The third person appointed to the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners is a businessman in personnel administration. He thanked Stan Greanias for his services of 24 years.
1. Mike Kubes , 5538 Lyman, said he was with the Downers Grove Jaycees Adopt-A-Highway Program. He said there are 17 organizations and groups participating in the program, with many sites still unadopted. He thanked the Mayor for participating in the program, as well as Commissioners Tully and Zabloudil. He said that on Sunday, September 30 at 11:00 a.m. the Jaycees will be cleaning up the site at Old Main Street and Claremont. He invited the public to attend and assist in the cleanup.
Commissioner Tully said he thought Saturday’s Memorial Service went well, and he thanked everyone who was in attendance and made it possible. He was impressed by the caliber and quality of the high school students and their initiation of the service.
Commissioner McConnell echoed her thanks. She said she was involved in contacting some groups to put the memorial together and was told it was the single easiest event to put together. The participation level and response level was overwhelming. The students want to do something more and they are tentatively planning a Walk America Walkathon on October 29 to seek pledges for the Fireman’s Relief Fund.
Commissioner McConnell said that the organizational meeting for the Brookbank/Middaugh Task Force was held. They came up with a list of eight items to be addressed. She thanked Jack Bajor for being in attendance.
Commissioner Schnell added her thoughts that the Memorial Service was well attended. She asked if it was taped, and the Mayor said it was taped and will be telecast.
Commissioner Sisul informed everyone that the Rotary Club Oktoberfest was very successful with a good turnout. He said there was a large turnout of children on Saturday. He said it was a very fine activity.
Commissioner Gilbert said the Rotary Club did a nice job in doing exactly what they said they would do. He commented on the Memorial Service Saturday, saying it was a shame that there has to be a crisis for people to respond so positively. He said the speeches were very moving and the event brought the community together.
Commissioner Zabloudil shared in the thoughts about the Memorial Service. He also said the Rotary Club did a very nice job.
Mayor Krajewski said Cable TV filmed the Memorial service and it will be played periodically on the Village’s cable TV station.
The Mayor also complimented the Rotary Club on the Oktoberbest. He said the Chamber of Commerce conducted their annual meeting and initiated the new members.
The Mayor noted that the Chairman of DuPage County has done a good job of working with the Village and staff has a good working relationship with the County.
Commissioner Sisul moved to adjourn to Executive Session pursuant to sections 2©(5), 2©(6), and 2©(11) of the Open Meetings Act to discuss property acquisition, setting a price for property and pending litigation. Commissioner Gilbert seconded the Motion.
VOTE :AYES:Commissioners Sisul, Gilbert, Zabloudil, Tully, McConnell, Schnell, Mayor Krajewski
The Mayor declared the Motion carried.
There being no further discussion, the Workshop meeting was adjourned at 7:33 p.m.
April K. Holden Village Clerk tmh/