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 Enza Petrarca; Village Clerk April Holden
Visitors: Press: Colt Foutz, The Sun Residents & Others in Attendance: Peter Hultman, 1410 Gilbert; Andrew & Phyllis Clark, 1226 62nd St. Staff: Police Department: Ann Priorello, Pam Church, Kurt Bluder, Bob Porter, Tracy Adams, Mary Nelson, Jennifer Rizzo, Andrew Blaylock, Tracy Adams; Greg Curry, Fire Department; Information Services: Bill Herman, Liangfu Wu; Kerstin von der Heide, Public Works: Jack Bajor, Bob Schiller; Mike Baker, Assistant to the Village Manager; Marty Lyons, 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.
Mayor Krajewski proclaimed September 11as ALWAYS REMEMBER 9 /11 DAY in the Village.
The Mayor announced a program to be held on 9/11/02 at 7:00 p.m. at Downers Grove North High School commemorating the one-year anniversary of the attack of 9/11.
Commissioner McConnell announced that the Character Counts Coalition will hold a Memorial Service on Saturday, September 14 at 10:00 a.m. in Fishel Park. In case of inclement weather, it will be held at Lincoln Center.
Bid: 5202 Washington Parking Lot Improvements (Project 317-2). Manager Ginex said six bids were received for parking lot improvements, and the low bid was received form F&G Construction in the amount of $155,437 with a 5% contingency. He said this is to satisfy the requirements as agreed upon with the owners of 5202 Washington.
Commissioner Zabloudil asked what other projects F&G has worked on.
Bob Schiller , Assistant Director, Public Works, said they completed the pavement replacement restoration at St. Mary’s, and also contracted with the Village in 2000 for roadway extension widening. They were very well done.
Commissioner McConnell ask of any of this money is coming from TIF .
Marty Lyons , Director, Financial Services, responded that it was all from the TIF .
CAD Funding/Recommendations. The Manager asked Marty Lyons to make this presentation.
Mr. Lyons said the Council received a memo from Dave Van Vooren regarding the replacement process options for the equipment. He referred to documents also presented by Police Department staff. The first option is to choose the reduced system with a per officer solution, borrowing the funds. Option 2 is to proceed with a per officer solution with one laptop per officer, resulting in an amount of $319,295 which would be from existing funds. He said a budget amendment will be discussed later this evening. Thirdly, there is the option to purchase a reduced system on a per vehicle basis, and they would look to purchase that with existing funds.
The Mayor asked about loan options. Mr. Lyons said he would recommend taking an outside loan. In further response, Mr. Lyons said they could go to reserve funds, but those funds rely on their own investment income to balance their budgets. The fund most able to handle short-term borrowing would be the water fund. He agreed that the investment income would not exceed what they would have to pay over the life of the loan.
Mayor Krajewski then asked Commissioners Zabloudil and McConnell, as members of the Finance Committee, what their preference would be. Commissioner Zabloudil said the biggest decision was whether it would be per officer, or per vehicle, and he said they were of the opinion that one per officer was better. Commissioner McConnell said they asked staff to review Option 2 to see where the funds would come from if they chose to use existing funds.
Mr. Lyons said they did an analysis to combine the budget amendment and this analysis. If they proceed with the budget amendment there would be a projected deficit in the general fund of $345,000. If they require the departments to stay at 99% of their expenditures of the amended budget the deficit would be 0. If the departments stay at 98% of their budget they could fund the CAD project without borrowing and without delay; however, the 98% is very tough since they have already had a tight budget.
In response to the Mayor, the Mr. Lyons said general reserve fund balance was $7.4 million, which includes receivables. He said he would recommend recording the borrowed funds as a loan or lower the reserve.
Commissioner Schnell said she didn’t think they should borrow the funds, and they should encourage staff to stay as close to 98% of the budget as possible. They should consider taking the remaining funds from the reserve. Mr. Lyons said that whatever option they choose, it will be incorporated into the budget amendment.
Commissioner Schnell said the Village has a huge water project going on with the meters, and she would prefer to fit it into the budget if at all possible.
Mr. Lyons said that staff has been asked to take a preliminary look to see what is happening with the AMR project, and his estimate is that there was about a 12% loss ratio of water used but unbilled for 00/01. The Village collected $2.06 on every $2.30 of water provided in 00/01. It increased to $2.11 in 01/02 and year to date is at $2.18. The target was to increase collections by 8% to pay the half million-dollar debt service on the bond.
Commissioner Schnell then asked if the officers were to take the laptops home, as that may be additional pressure on the IS Department.
Police Chief Bob Porter said they would likely allow them to take them home, but they would still be held to policy. He said they’d encourage officers to use the computers to become more familiar with them. Commissioner Schnell asked if they factored in an additional IS person, and Chief Porter said not in the numbers provided to the Council.
The Mayor asked whether it would require more servicing or more training.
Dr. Liangfu Wu , Director, Information Services, said it would be servicing.
Deputy Manger Dave Van Vooren said they anticipate those issues would be part of the budget demands.
Commissioner Schnell said that they are actually looking for $400,000 rather than $345,000 if they include another IS individual. Deputy Manager VanVooren said that the officers who are coming on staff are more computer literate and are demanding more from the Department. He is unsure as to what the demand for IS services will be. He said there is a support staff function as part of the contract for the new equipment, but that will eventually come on as part of the Village budget. Commissioner Schnell clarified that those expenses would not be seen initially, and Deputy Van Vooren said that was correct.
The Mayor asked if they are saying that they need one IS person at 2000 hours to service 68 laptop computers. Dr. Wu said they are getting more than 100 computers, and they need to anticipate the problems. He said that a laptop is easier to break and more troublesome than a desktop computer. The Mayor said he doesn’t see how they would need one full time person for the 68 computers.
Tracy Adams , Records Manager, Police Department, said that part of the issue of going with per officer was to reduce the support. If there is a problem with a laptop, it can be left at the end of a shift for IS staff to address. There is more flexibility for the computer to be pulled out and fixed. She noted that the computers chosen are designed for military use, and should not be susceptible to breakage.
The Mayor said that the majority of the Council seems to be in favor of 68 laptops. Once the warranty is over they can look at the problem of adding on additional IS staff.
Commissioner Gilbert said it is not just the system, but all of the other things that go with it. He said it is more than wise to add a person to the IS Department.
Commissioner Tully said he thought this system is overdue. He would like to see it happen without any borrowing. If they go with Option 2, per officer, they would need to come up with $319,000. He asked for clarification that if all departments operated at 98% of the amended budget, the funds would be available. Mr. Lyons agreed. Commissioner Tully suggested a hybrid solution of setting a goal for all departments to operate at 98% of the amended budget, and if issues arose to make it impossible to meet this goal, they would tap the general reserve fund.
Mr. Lyons said that the system will hopefully create efficiencies that allow police personnel to assist in the support of the system. Commissioner Tully said that they need to look for support for the system, but he would also like to wait for the initial implementation.
Mr. Lyons said he will prepare a revised budget amendment to incorporate option 2 and 98% as a goal.
Chris Fregeau , 1918 Elmore, asked about the level of resident services being affected by the proposed amendments to the budget. She said the project appears to be substantially over what was projected. She asked how much will come from the general fund or the interfund transfers proposed for this project. Mr. Lyons responded that all funding for the CAD system is from the General Fund. Part of the ability of the General Fund use is to defer replacement of vehicles. They would maintain the fleet size.
Mayor Krajewski said that $1.2 million in the budget amendment is in the deferred purchase of the vehicles. There have been realized savings with staff and some other amendments are deferrals. He said they are asking the Manager to look at the vehicle replacement policy and maintenance history as well.
Ms. Fregeau said her concern is the $598,000 in capital projects. She worries about the resident services being cut to a level that might start hurting.
Com Ed Tree Agreement. The Manager said that several municipalities have worked with Com Ed to put together a uniform tree agreement that clarifies the existing language of the agreement. Staff recommends approval of the agreement.
Budget Amendment. Mr. Lyons said the budget amendment is an effort to reduce expenses with the least negative impact by finding one-time capital expenses that can be deferred. He then reviewed the amendment noting that the total reductions in the Capital Projects fund is $519,438.
The Mayor asked about the deferral of the fleet maintenance vehicles. He said the information he received stated they are going to defer all vehicles with the exception of the two ordered last year. He asked about water fund. Mr. Lyons said the vehicles in the water fund will be replaced.
The Mayor then asked about some capital projects being deferred, as well as staffing that has been deferred. He asked the Manager about the cost of adding services back in, specifically the Amnesty Day this fall. Staff’s memo said the Amnesty Day cost is $33,000, and they recommended the week of September 30. The Mayor then reviewed some of the savings by deferring staff hirings as well, noting that some of those positions will be filled and on budget by October 1. Mr. Lyons said the $30,000 is 1/10 of 1% of the general fund budget. He emphasized that a general reserve fund balance of $7.3 million takes them down to 14%-16% fund balance.
Regarding Amnesty Day, the Mayor said there has been a lot of interest expressed in Amnesty Day, with many phone calls.
Commissioner McConnell said that the committee had some animated discussions to find funds, and she wanted to recognize the work done by Dave and Marty on the budget. She said they need to always ask the question of whether they are doing the right thing, and she would want to keep the flexibility in place.
The Mayor said he would like staff to look at the maintenance schedule for the roads for slurry seal. The policy has been to do the streets every specified number of years. He asked that they review those schedules.
Commissioner Tully expressed his appreciation to staff for trimming down what had already been trimmed down previously. He said that of the projects being deferred in the capital projects are four stormwater projects, which is an argument for having a dedicated source of funding for stormwater projects.
Commissioner Schnell asked what other surprises are out there. Mr. Lyons responded that the telecommunications issue is an issue of cash flow. They need to have fund reserves to begin the capital projects at a specific time of the year. He noted that the State may not be out of the hole yet as well. On the positive side the Council has handled the resources very well. There are still avenues to raise revenues if necessary.
The Mayor said staff has done a very good job over the past few years in working on the budget. The Village is the lowest of the communities in the surrounding area on its property taxes. Mr. Lyons said that some communities do not want Downers Grove in the surveys when comparing tax bases.
Mr. Lyons than thanked the Council for its support to him and to his staff. He said the decision to leave the Village was a difficult one, and he thanked all of the departments for their support as well.
The Mayor thanked Mr. Lyons for his ten years of work for the Village.
Mayor Krajewski then asked about Amnesty Day.
Deputy Manager Van Vooren said that last year’s budget came in at 95.4% below estimated expenditures. This year’s budget will come in at about 93% or 94% of expectations. He said a lot of projects have been deferred. If the intent is to spend $33,000, it might be good to go back to the departments and see what they feel the $33,000 could be spend on instead.
The Mayor said he’ll agree to that when he is confident that the money is being spent in the right areas. He said he walks on the south side of Downers Grove and he is upset that some repairs are being made that are not necessary, and other areas are not being properly maintained.
The Mayor asked if they are going to change the personnel numbers. Mr. Lyons said that if they move the hire dates to October 1, the numbers can be put in. The Mayor said if it is a budget amendment, the changes they know are being made should be put in. Mr. Lyons said that would also include all of the departments going down by 2%, as well as the individual decreases discussed.
STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS
Commissioner Sisul said that the Public Safety Committee met this week to discuss the sprinkling, and will come back to the Council with their recommendations. The Village Attorney is reviewing the issues.
Commissioner Tully said Public Services will be setting up a meeting soon.
Manager Ginex congratulated Marty Lyons on his new job, and wished him the best of luck.
The Manager said that the Fire Department Rescue Squad was one of the pieces of equipment showcased in a terrorism preparedness demonstration sponsored by the Illinois Terrorism Task Force. He said that the Village’s rescue squad was well received.
ATTORNEY ’S REPORT
Attorney Petrarca said she was presenting four items to the Council: 1) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and Com Ed; 2) A resolution authorizing submittal of applications to the DuPage Community Development Commission for the 2003 block grant funding for community oriented policing programs; 3) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and H.T.E., Inc.; and 4) An ordinance providing for an amendment to Ordinance #4440 and the Village of Downers Grove budget for fiscal year 2002/03.
Commissioner Gilbert said there was a meeting of the Historical Preservation Committee last evening. Director of Redevelopment Joe Skach provided insight into community planning and historical preservation. He discussed setting design guidelines. He said one of the things that’s a problem is how to manage the process of infill and redevelopment. He said Mr. Skach’s point is that the Council needs to establish its perception of development and redevelopment in a policy. That establishes a strong statement of what is wanted in the community, and developers will understand what the Village is looking for in terms of community planning. Commissioner Gilbert said the Council should encourage a design that enhances the development effort. He suggested that if the Village moves forward with this idea, they let the Historical Preservation Committee assist in writing preservation components of the policy, which will result in a strong statement from the Council as to what the Village should become.
Commissioner McConnell extended her congratulations to Marty Lyons.
Commissioner Tully also wished Marty Lyons success in his new job. He then wished everyone a safe Patriot’s Day.
The Mayor extended his best wishes to Marty. He announced that the Joint Review Board is meeting at 1:00 p.m. on Thursday. In addition, the Fine Arts Festival will be held on Saturday in the downtown area.
There being no further discussion, the Workshop meeting was adjourned at 7:50 p.m.
April K. Holden Village Clerk tmh