1. Call to Order
Mayor Brian Krajewski called the regular meeting of the Village Council of the Village of Downers Grove to order at 6:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers of the Downers Grove Village Hall. Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag
Mayor Krajewski led those present in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.
2. Roll Call
Present: Commissioner Ron Sandack, Commissioner Stan Urban, Commissioner Marilyn Schnell, Commissioner Martin Tully, Commissioner William Waldack and Mayor Brian Krajewski Non Voting: Village Manager Cara Pavlicek, Village Attorney Enza Petrarca and Village Clerk April Holden
Mayor Krajewski said he would like to remind everyone present that the Council meeting is broadcast over the local FM radio station, WDGC . In addition, a tape recording and videotape of the meeting are being made using Village owned equipment. The videotape of the meeting will be used for later rebroadcast of the Council meeting over the Village cable television Channel 6.
The Council will follow the rules of conduct for this meeting as provided in Sec. 2.5 of the Downers Grove Municipal Code. These offer the public the opportunity to comment at several points in the meeting. First, immediately following approval of the minutes of the past meetings, an opportunity will be given for public comments and questions on the active agenda items for this evening’s meeting. Following this, an opportunity is given for public comments and questions on any subject. Finally, if a public hearing is scheduled for this meeting, an opportunity is given for public comments and questions related to the subject of the hearing.
The Mayor stated that at the appropriate time the presiding officers will ask if there are any comments from the public. If anyone wishes to speak, the individual should raise their hand to be recognized and, after acknowledgment from the presiding officer, approach the microphone and state their name and address. He stated that remarks be limited to five minutes, and asked that individuals refrain from making repetitive statements.
The Mayor said there are agendas located on either side of the Council Chambers, and he invited the audience to pick up an agenda and follow the progress of the Council meeting.
3. Minutes of Workshop and Council Meetings
Council Meeting – November 15, 2005 Workshop Meeting – November 22, 2005 There being no additions or corrections to the minutes, Mayor Krajewski said they would be filed as submitted.
4. Public Comments and Questions
Special Guests: Mayor Krajewski noted the presence of 7th grade Boy Scouts from St. Mary of Gostyn School. The Mayor had the members introduce themselves. He told Doug Kozlowski that the Scouts are looking for a community project, and he then wished the boys well on working for their badges.
A. Comments and Questions on Active Agenda
Dr. Gordon Goodman, 5834 Middaugh, commented on the amendment to the open burning ordinance permitting gas flame grilling in multi-family buildings. He asked if there was any follow-up on the definition of the type of buildings considered in this amendment.
Manager Pavlicek said that a written response was given to Commissioner McConnell stating that the ordinance simply states that in a multi-family property, no charcoal or wood-burning grilling can take place. They can only use gas or propane grills. She indicated that the Village would undertake a public education campaign so that residents have a clear understanding of what is being said in this ordinance.
Dr. Goodman then stated that the copy of the ordinance which was produced on line was a PDF document of an original, which was easy to read. However, the documents that are scanned cannot be read. He asked that this be corrected.
Dr. Goodman added that quite a while ago the open burning ordinance was amended. He said the Council planned to return to this issue to determine public reaction to the changes, and he said that the Council has an outstanding obligation to do that review.
Mayor Krajewski said that the Village Manager is working on a number of issues and how to prioritize them. They are working on issues and complaints that have come forward on the ordinance as amended.
Dr. Goodman said there is a very strong scent of wood smoke in his neighborhood. This could be difficult for asthmatics. He said he hoped the Village would make the public aware of the regulations regarding open burning, as well as the method of entering a complaint to the Village regarding violations.
B. Comments and Questions on General Matters
Dr. Gordon Goodman, 5834 Middaugh, asked about the expected schedule by which the changes in zoning would come before the Council, and when will it be heard again before the Plan Commission.
Manager Pavlicek said she would like to get back to the Council and Dr. Goodman on this question.
Dr. Goodman said there was a revision in the future workshop schedule regarding Nelson Meadows being before the Council. He said this would probably change as well. The Mayor responded that the Manager is looking at dates on these as well, and will get back to them as soon as a schedule is determined.
5. Public Hearings
Tax Levy 2005 Mayor Krajewski called the public hearing to order at 6:49 p.m. He said that this public hearing has been called by the Village Council pursuant to the Illinois Truth in Taxation Law to consider the proposed 2005 tax levy of the Village of Downers Grove. Notice of this hearing was published in the Downers Grove Reporter and a copy of the notice and the proof of publication have been presented and are made a part of the official record of this hearing. He then reviewed the procedures to be followed for the publich hearnig. He introduced Mike Baker, Assistant Village Manager.
Mike Baker, Assistant Village Manager, presented a brief overview of the tax levy process, and reviewed the timeline for the tax levy adoption. Following this evening’s public hearing will be the approval of the ordinance on December 20, and the tax levy abatements in Febraury 2006. The Council adopts property tax levies which include the Village levy, Library taxes and Special Service Areas. The Village’s rate for 2004 was just under $.44 per $100 EAV , or a percentage of 8.8%. He noted that schools make up 2/3 of the tax bill. Mr. Baker said the projection for 2005 is just over $2 billion EAV .
The Mayor asked about the estimated tax rate which would decrease if the assessed value of the property is more than expected, and will increase if less than expected. Mr. Baker said that was correct and that issue was brought up last November when some owners in the Village received notices of reassessment at about a 10% increase. Mr. Baker then gave a brief history of the tax rates since 2003. In 2003 there was a $1 million abatement, and since then there has been flattening and now decline in the tax rate, which is reflective of the overall economy. Using a slide presentation, Mr. Baker explained a graph depicting the historic amount of taxes levied in taxes as compared to expenses in public safety. He said that the Village has been able to provide public safety services over a 21-year period of time while maintaining a low tax rate with increasing expenses.
Mr. Baker said the Village’s tax rate is made up of the Corporate Police levy, the Fire Protection levy, the levies for the Police and Fire Pension, and levies for the General Obligation Bonds. The rate as compared to 2004 is projected to be reduced from $.44 to $.41, which will provide some relief to the Village property owners. Assuming a $300,000 piece of property, the property owner’s tax bill would be $439 in 2004 and decrease to $413 in 2005. This relates to the Village’s portion of their tax bill.
Mayor Krajewski said that surrounding communities have Fire Protection Districts which is why their tax rates are higher.
Commissioner Tully then reviewed the Village’s tax rate breakdown by year. The proposed rate for 2005 reflects a 5.8% reduction over last year, assuming no increase in the equalized assessed value as determined by the County Assessor’s Office. He noted that only 18% of the overall Village budget relies on property taxes, which is the product of providing well-diversified revenue streams in terms of income sources. The proposed property tax would result in a decrease in the rate as well as the dollars. To the extend possible, revenues are derived from non-resident sources which is one of the advantages of the Home Rule Sales Tax . Absent these taxing sources, the Village would have fewer sources of income and would be more dependent on property taxes to provide basic services. The Commissioner pointed out that a number of communities are raising their property taxes while the Village is lowering its property taxes.
Commissioner Sandack said he would like to see a comparison of what the Village levies as compared to other surrounding communities. Mr. Baker then provided an overhead slide with the comparison figures Commissioner Sandack requested.
Commissioner McConnell commented that the numbers shown in the report show that the intent of the Village has been to be fiscally prudent. She thanked the staff for making it happen, and said they need to keep it up and continue to be creative, looking at everything with fresh eyes.
There being no further comments, the Mayor adjourned the public hearing at 7:08 p.m.
6. Consent Agenda
COR00 -02152 C laim Ordinance: No. 5611, Payroll, November 11, 2005 No. 5613, Payroll, November 25, 2005 Sponsors: Accounting A motion was made to Approve this file on the Consent Agenda. Indexes: N/A
BIL00 -02153 List of Bills Payable: No. 5600, December 6, 2005 Sponsors: Accounting A motion was made to Approve this file on the Consent Agenda. Indexes: N/A
BID00 -02149 Bid: Award $132,576.00 to Foster Coach Sales, Inc. of Sterling, Illinois for One 2006 Ford E-450 Medtec Type III Ambulance Sponsors: Public Works and Fire Department A motion was made to Approve this file on the Consent Agenda. Indexes: Vehicle Purchases, Fire Equipment – Ambulance
BID00 -02150 Bid: Award $27,550 to Joe Madden Ford of Downers Grove for One 2006 Ford Expedition Four-Door Utility Vehicle Sponsors: Public Works A motion was made to Approve this file on the Consent Agenda. Indexes: Vehicle Purchases, Fire Department
BID00 -02134 Bid: Award $46,120 to U.S. Bank for FY 2005 /06 Depository and Banking Services, Lockbox Services, and Safekeeping Services Sponsors: Finance Summary of Item: This is a three-year agreement with a planned effective date of January 1, 2006 and two optional one-year extensions. The cost is $138,361 over the three-year period. Indexes: Banking Services Passed The Consent Agenda
A motion was made by Commissioner Tully, seconded by Commissioner Urban, that the consent agenda be passed. The motion carried by the following vote: Votes: Yea: Commissioner Sandack, Commissioner Urban, Commissioner Schnell, Commissioner Tully, Commissioner Waldack and Mayor Krajewski
7. Active Agenda
ORD00 -02146 Ordinance: Amend Open Burning Provisions re: Multi-Family Buildings Sponsors: Fire Department Summary of Item: This will amend open burning provisions as they relate to multi-family buildings.
AN ORDINANCE AMENDING OPEN BURNING PROVISIONS AS THEY RELATE TO MULTI -FAMILY BUILDINGS
ORDINANCE NO . 4728 A motion was made by Commissioner Tully, seconded by Commissioner Urban, to Adopt this file. Mayor Krajewski declared the motion carried by the following vote: Votes: Yea: Commissioner Sandack, Commissioner Urban, Commissioner Schnell, Commissioner Tully, Commissioner Waldack and Mayor Krajewski Indexes: Open Burning
ORD00 -02147 Ordinance: Amend Restrictions for the Placement of Garbage, Refuse, Recyclables, Compostable Materials, Etc. on Parkways for Scavenger Removal Sponsors: Manager’s Office Summary of Item: This will amend the time refuse, etc. may be placed on the parkway.
AN ORDINANCE AMENDING RESTRICTIONS FOR THE PLACEMENT OF GARBAGE , REFUSE , RECYCLABLES, COMPOSTABLE MATERIALS , ETC. ON PARKWAYS FOR SCAVENGER REMOVAL
ORDINANCE NO . 4729 A motion was made by Commissioner Urban to Adopt this file. Mayor Krajewski declared the motion carried by the following vote: Votes: Yea: Commissioner Sandack, Commissioner Urban, Commissioner Schnell, Commissioner Tully, Commissioner Waldack and Mayor Krajewski Indexes: Scavenger-Hours
8. Mayor’s Report
Materials to be Received – Minutes
Environmental Concerns Commission – October 13, 2005 Public Services Committee – October 18, 2005 A motion was made by Commissioner Tully, seconded by Commissioner Urban, to Note Receipt Of this file. Mayor Krajewski declared the motion carried by the following vote: Votes: Yea: Commissioner Sandack, Commissioner Urban, Commissioner Schnell, Commissioner Tully, Commissioner Waldack and Mayor Krajewski Materials to be Received – Monthly Reports
9. Manager’s Report
Manager Pavlicek said that the Workshop meeting for December 27 will be cancelled. There will be a meeting on January 3, 2006.
10. Attorney’s Report
Future Active Agenda
11.Committee Standing Reports
Public Services Committee
Commissioner Schnell said that the Public Services Committee will meet at 5:30 on December 20.
Public Safety Committee
Commissioner McConnell said that the Public Safety Committee has not met.
Commissioner Tully said that the Finance and Administrative Committee met briefly this evening to preview items to be discussed at the retreat. They will consider continued cost constraints, and are on-board for long-range planning. He then outlined items which would be discussed on January 10 at Workshop. The Commissioner said that the next meeting is scheduled for January 17 at 5:30 p.m.
12.Council Member Reports and New Business
Commissioner Sandack thanked staff and those involved in preparation of the Hospitality Parade and the tree lighting ceremony.
The Mayor thanked El Sierra School for inviting him to come out and read to the 4th graders. He read them the “True Story of the Three Little Pigs,” and explained to the Council and audience that the Wolf was really just going out to get sugar for a cake he was baking for his grandmother.
13.Adjournment to Council Retreat – Committee Room
Commissioner Tully moved to adjourn to the Committee Room for a Council retreat. Commissioner Urban seconded.
VOTE : YEA – Commissioners Tully, Urban, Waldack, Sandack, McConnell, Schnell, Mayor Krajewski
Mayor Krajewski declared the motion carried and the meeting adjourned at 7:15 p.m