Mayor Sandack called the Workshop meeting of the Village Council of the Village of Downers Grove to order at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers of the Village Hall. The Mayor Girl Scout Troop 1894 from Highland School to help lead the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.
Present:Mayor Ron Sandack; Commissioners Marilyn Schnell, Martin Tully; William Waldack, Sean P. Durkin, Bruce Beckman; Village Manager Dave Fieldman; Village Attorney Enza Petrarca; Village Clerk April Holden
Absent:Commissioner Geoff Neustadt
Visitors: Residents: Dwight Todd, DWL Architects, Phoenix, AZ; Midwestern University, 555 31st Street: Kevin McCormick, Greg Gaus, Dr. Kathleen Goeppinger; Linda Kunze, 933A Curtiss Street, Downtown Management Corporation; Greg Bedalov, 2001 Butterfield, DG Economic Development Corporation; Laura Crawford, 2001 Butterfield, Downers Grove Area Chamber of Commerce; Bill Wrobel, DG Watch, 7800 Queens Court; Chris Saricks, TAP Commissioner, 1116 61st Street; Mark Thoman, PDHA , 1109 61st Street; Alek Stojanovic, Beverly Glen Homeowners Association, 1913 Bates Place Staff: Nan Newlon, Director, Public Works; Liangfu Wu, Director, Information Services; Brandon Dieter, Management Analyst; Tom Dabareiner, Director, Community Development; Jamie Belongia, Intern; Doug Kozlowski, Director, Communications; Mary Scalzetti, Director, Community Events; Judy Buttny, Director, Finance; Mike Millette, Assistant Director, Public Works
Mayor Sandack explained that Council Workshop meetings are held the second and fourth Tuesdays at 7:00 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.
1. Public Hearing
Public Hearing for Proposed Pre-Annexation Agreements – 7450 Webster and 5866 Chase . The Manager said a public hearing has been noticed to consider the proposed annexation agreements for the properties located at 7450 Webster and 5866 Chase Avenue.
Mayor Sandack called the public hearing to order at 7:01 p.m. to consider proposed annexation agreements for the properties located at 7450 Webster and 5866 Chase Avenue. Notice of this hearing was published in The Downers Grove Reporter on December 17, 2008.
He then summarized the procedures to be followed for the public hearing.
Tom Dabareiner , Director, Community Development, said these are voluntary annexation agreements. He showed a slide depicting the properties, which are currently unincorporated and wish to connect to the Village’s water.
Commissioner Schnell asked if both properties are currently in a fire protection district.
Village Attorney Enza Petrarca responded affirmatively and said the owners will have to pay fire protection district fees when the properties are annexed into the Village of Downers Grove.
There being no further discussion, the public hearing was adjourned at 7:04 p.m.
2. Active Agenda and Informational Items
Special Use Amendment for Midwestern University. The Manager asked Mr. Dabareiner to address this matter.
Mr. Dabareiner said that the special use request is for the construction of a new Basic Science building and addition to the Student Service Building on Midwestern University’s Campus. The science building will be 227,000 square feet, and the addition to the Student Service building will be 16,815 square feet. He indicated that the Basic Science building will be constructed near the middle of the campus on the site of the recently demolished auditorium, and will include an underground parking garage with 83 parking spaces, as well as an underground stormwater detention facility beneath the parking garage level. All zoning and bulk requirements are met or exceeded. The Plan Commission recommended approval of the request and staff concurs with that recommendation.
Commissioner Schnell asked how they arrived at the 83 parking space figure. Mr. Dabareiner responded that they exceed parking requirements and called upon Dr. Goeppinger to further respond.
Dr. Kathleen Goeppinger , President, Midwestern University, thanked the Council for hearing their petition, saying that the number of parking spaces was derived by the configuration of space. There is also a small bike parking area.
Commissioner Beckman questioned what percentage of the property is buildable due to the wetlands. Dr. Goeppinger responded that much of the land is not buildable. This will free up about 14 acres by having the underground stormwater detention.
The Mayor noted that Midwestern is an integral part of the community.
Commissioner Tully clarified that this is an existing special use and a modification. He noted that the request exceeds all criteria for a special use. He concurred that Midwestern is an excellent corporate member of the community.
Downtown Façade Improvement Program & Downtown Design Guidelines. The Manager said that this project is consistent with the Strategic Plan goal of achieving an authentic downtown.
Mr. Dabareiner said this includes design guidelines based on the Downtown Pattern Book and was reviewed by the Downtown Management Corporation. It was also reviewed by the Architectural Design Review Board (ADRB) in November 2008, which recommended the Council adopt the guidelines. He noted that the guidelines are suggestions and reviewed various aspects of the guidelines. He explained that the proposed façade improvement program requires applicants requesting grants for façade and building improvements to conform to the design guidelines. The program would be voluntary for buildings/businesses located within the downtown TIF . This is a dollar-for-dollar grant program with up to $15,000 for façade only projects, and up to $40,000 for life safety and ADA upgrades. All façade projects must be consistent with the proposed Design Guidelines and Downtown Pattern Book. Dollar limits are based on what other communities are doing. He noted that the Chief Building Inspector also made recommendations on the dollar amounts. He then reviewed project highlights, saying that staff could approve anything below $10,000. More than $10,000 must be reviewed by the ADRB and then forwarded to the Council.
Linda Kunze , Manager, Downtown Management Corporation, said that the Board unanimously voted to approve the guidelines, and strongly supports both projects.
Greg Bedalov , President, Downers Grove Economic Development Corporation, said that the full Board of Directors of the Economic Development Corporation also supports the guidelines.
Commissioner Beckman applauded the development of the plan and supports it. He noted two restaurants in the downtown area where the front opens to the street, which doesn’t meet the guidelines. Mr. Dabareiner responded that was not accurate, in that the guidelines provide flexibility, and actually encourage that type of design. They are looking more at the materials and relationships of the building size and design style. They need to look at the entire package.
Commissioner Schnell also supported the project saying it allows the Village to preserve, protect and enhance older buildings, while also allowing the outside to be modernized. She asked for clarification that an amount over $10,000 has to go before the Council. She noted that a shop owner could get $55,000, with $15,000 for the façade and $40,000 for life safety.
Mr. Dabareiner responded that a petitioner could come back, but not in the same year. They could probably do the façade in one year and life safety the next year. In further response to Commissioner Schnell he said that the amount is maxed out at $15,000 every year.
Commissioner Waldack thanked those who worked on this project, saying he would like to see cumulative projects come before the ADRB and Council, rather than broken up into separate pieces to avoid ADRB and Council review. He noted there was language that would discourage the use of certain materials. He would like to see the discouraged materials listed in the guidelines and noted that this would not keep people from applying for or from getting funds.
Commissioner Schnell noted the use of the term “avoid” versus “discourage.”
Mr. Dabareiner said that the ADRB felt we should be more positive in terms of telling people what should be done rather than what cannot be done.
Commissioner Tully said that the guidelines are to specify what the Village would like to see done.
Mayor Sandack said that people will be told what is preferred or favored; however, if they receive Village funds for the façade program, it will be required.
Commissioner Durkin expressed his thanks to the staff, Downtown Management, Chamber and the EDC for their participation. He asked at what stage of approval the funds are released. Mr. Dabareiner responded that the Village wants to make payment on invoices, as it is a reimbursement project for completed work. Proof of paid invoices is consistent with TIF payments.
Commissioner Durkin noted that another community allows the program to be part of their cash-flow program. The Manager responded that this program is crafted such that the Village is not a direct participant in the loan document or negotiations.
The Mayor said he believed this was a great program and ensures continued growth of the Village. The pattern book is an outstanding document.
Loomes Avenue, Parking Modifications – Woodward Avenue to Bates Place. The Manager said this ordinance will reduce the amount of current existing on-street parking restrictions.
Mike Millette , Assistant Director of Public Works, noted that this request was initiated by the residents and would extend the no parking on Woodward restriction for school buses.
Mayor Sandack said that a resident meeting was held first, and then the Transportation and Parking Commission (TAP) met to discuss the matter.
Parking Modifications on Cumnor Road from Ogden Avenue to Grant Street. The Manager said this would add no parking restrictions between 7:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., Monday through Saturday.
Mr. Millette noted that this is an interim recommendation for a traffic calming petition area and was generated by the neighborhood.
Commissioner Beckman compared this to the parking modification recommended on Florence and asked whether these changes on Cumnor would result in continuing an existing pattern. Mr. Millette said staff was cognizant of the relationship, saying that possibility exists; however, the residents on the block were comfortable trying this first. It will be closely monitored.
The Mayor noted that this is an interim move and continued monitoring will be performed to ensure that there are no unintended consequences. Staff has been sensitive to neighborhood concerns in this area.
Parking Modifications on Florence Avenue, South of Ogden Avenue. The Manager said restrictions on Florence would be amended to include “No Parking Anytime” on the east side of Florence, south of Ogden Avenue.
Commissioner Waldack thanked the residents and TAP for their work. Much of this situation has been generated by one business, and he thanked the residents for putting up with the situation that exists living adjacent to the Ogden corridor.
Mr. Millette said he is pleased with how efforts are working in that area so far.
Senior Resident Engineering Services for FY09 . The Manager said staff recommends awarding contracts to V3 Companies of Illinois in the amount of $70,543.20 and to Hampton, Lenzini and Renwick, Inc. in the amount of $74,424.00 to perform senior resident engineering services for FY09 . He noted that the success of the relationship that existed between the Village and the senior resident engineers for Fire Station 2 has led to a recommendation to utilize senior resident engineers for upcoming projects. The firms recommended went through the competitive process.
Commissioner Schnell asked if correspondence will include Village Hall contacts and phone numbers. Mr. Millette said that all correspondence will have both numbers.
g. Senior Resident Engineering Services –Washington Park and McCollum Park. The Manager said staff recommends awarding contracts to perform resident engineering services to V3 Companies of Illinois in the amount of $236,796.00 for the Washington Park stormwater management project, and to Hampton, Lenzini and Renwick, Inc. in the amount of $189,968.00 for the McCollum Park stormwater management project. He noted that these are important stormwater projects.
The Mayor noted that the information provided to Council includes the Consultant’s Certification and contractor evaluation.
3. Consent Agenda Items
The Manager summarized and reviewed the items on the Consent Agenda for questions/comments from the public and Village Council.
Joint Purchase of Wireless Services with Nextel/Sprint Solutions. The Manager said staff is requesting a resolution authorizing execution of a one-year contract, with three one-year renewal options for the purchase of wireless services with Nextel/Sprint Solutions. This is similar to our current plan but provides cost savings as it is under the State of Illinois joint purchasing contract for wireless communication services.
Agreement with Illinois Metropolitan Investment Fund (IMET) . The Manager said staff is requesting a resolution to enter into an agreement with Illinois Metropolitan Investment Fund (IMET) to invest Village funds pursuant to the provisions of the Cash Management and Investment Policy.
Commissioner Durkin said he is an employee of Charter One Bank. Charter One Bank manages the IMET Convenience fund. Commissioner Durkin said he is not involved in any way with the management of the funds and will not benefit from the Village’s membership in the Fund. He supports this membership because he sees this as another tool for the Finance Department.
2009 Community Grants Program. The Manager said the Community Grants Commission recommends awarding $79,519 in grants to for a variety of community events.
Commissioner Beckman said he is pleased to see new participants in the program.
Commissioner Tully said he has questions he will discuss with Commissioner Neustadt at another time, as Commissioner Neustadt is absent tonight.
Upgrading Fire Department Network Connection. The Manager said staff is requesting a resolution approving the purchase and installation of wireless network equipment from Sentinel Technologies, Inc. in an amount not to exceed $44,318.00. This project is unbudgeted. The revenue source is PrimeCo funds.
Commissioner Beckman said there are alternative delivery systems coming on the market. He has approached staff on some of these, and there will be more conversations on this in the future.
Bid: Snow Plows. The Manager said staff is requesting approval of the purchase of 12 Wausau model HSP4211H Home Safe snow plows from Wausau-Everest, L.P. of New Berlin, Wisconsin, in the amount of $81,144.00. He noted that this model has lower than expected maintenance costs.
Commissioner Durkin asked if last year’s snow plow is still working.
The Manager said the maintenance costs are low, and it is working effectively.
Commissioner Durkin said he is concerned that it might not work properly due to its light weight. He said he is interested in the overall performance of the plow.
The Manager said he will document the performance.
Bid: Mowing Services. The Manager said staff is requesting a resolution to award a contract for mowing services for 2009 to Alaniz Landscape Group, Inc. of Elgin, Illinois, in an amount not to exceed $27,676.00.
The Mayor said this was competitively bid.
Heritage Festival Amusement Ride Contract. The Manager said staff is requesting a resolution authorizing the 2009 Amusement Ride Vendor Agreement with Astro Amusement Company, Inc., to operate the amusement midway at the 2009 Heritage Festival.
Commissioner Tully said there are 262 days until the 2009 Heritage Festival.
Beer Garden Vendor Contract . The Manager said staff is requesting a resolution authorizing an agreement with the Downers Grove Rotary Club to operate as the vendor of the Beer Garden at the 2009 Heritage Festival. This contract was competitively bid.
Heritage Festival Agreement – Parking Garage Assistants. The Manager said staff is requesting a resolution approving an agreement with the J. Kyle Braid Leadership Program to serve as Parking Garage Assistants for the 2009 Heritage Festival. This item was also competitively bid.
First Amendment to License Agreement with Verizon Wireless. The Manager said staff is requesting a resolution authorizing approval of a first amendment to a license agreement with Chicago SMA Limited Partnership, doing business as Verizon Wireless to install, maintain and operate antenna equipment on Village property located at 801 Burlington.
Third Amendment to the Grant Agreement with Metra for the Belmont Grade Separation Project. The Manager said staff is requesting a resolution authorizing a third amendment to the grant agreement for eminent domain services for the Belmont Grade Separation Project with the Commuter Rail Division of the Regional Transportation Authority (Metra).
ATTORNEY ’S REPORT
Village Attorney Enza Petrarca said she was presenting 19 items to the Council: 1) A resolution authorizing execution of annexation agreements for the properties located at 7450 Webster and 5866 Chase Avenue; 2) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and Nextel/Sprint Solutions; 3) An ordinance establishing parking restrictions on Cumnor Road; 4) An ordinance amending parking regulations on Florence Avenue; 5) An ordinance amending parking restrictions on Loomes Avenue; 6) A resolution authorizing execution of a first amendment & reinstatement to license agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and Chicago SMA Limited Partnership d/b/a Verizon Wireless to install, maintain and operate antenna equipment on Village property; 7) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and Sentinel Technologies, Inc.; 8) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and J. Kyle Braid Leadership Program; 9) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and the Downers Grove Rotary Club; 10) A resolution authorizing execution of a contract between North American Midway Entertainment (N.A.M.E.) d/b/a Astro Amusement Co. and the Village of Downers Grove; 11) An ordinance adopting a façade improvement policy; 12) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and V3 Companies of Illinois, Ltd. (CIP-09); 13) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and Hampton, Lenzini and Renwick, Inc. (CIP-09); 14) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and V3 Companies of Illinois, Ltd. (Washington Park); 15) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and Hampton, Lenzini and Renwick, Inc. (McCollum Park); 16) A resolution approving and authorizing execution of a first amended and restated declaration of trust; 17) A resolution authorizing execution of an agreement between the Village of Downers Grove and Alaniz Landscape Group, Inc.; 18) A resolution authorizing execution of a third amendment to grant agreement for eminent domain services for the Downers Grove Grade Separation Project contract No. K00419 between the Village of Downers Grove and the Commuter Rail Transportation Authority; and 19) An ordinance authorizing a special use amendment for Midwestern University, 555 31st Street, to permit an addition to an existing structure and for the construction of a new science building.
MANAGER ’S REPORT
The Manager said Council authorized staff to spend up to the maximum of the salt contract in October 2008. The Village currently has plenty of salt and does not expect to need a change order.
The Manager also announced that Assistant Director of Public Works, Mike Millette, will retain the position as Village Engineer.
Commissioner Beckman brought up an issue from last week’s meeting, referencing information provided in the non-agenda packet. He would like to explore a means to finance homeownership, including mortgages that are in jeopardy. The primary purpose of ceding the bond authority is business. He will come back to the Council regarding this to understand if there is a need to pursue his idea.
The Commissioner then announced that tomorrow, the Chamber of Commerce is hosting their monthly luncheon to meet new community leaders, including the Village Manager and the Superintendents of Districts 58 and 99. Tickets are available and it is a good opportunity to hear the plans of the three new leaders.
Commissioner Durkin thanked Public Works staff for their consistent snow removal efforts. Snowplowing is being done in a tandem process. It gets the snow off the streets quickly and it seems that the snow melts more quickly.
Commissioner Tully said that the Annual Ice Festival will be held in 3-1/2 weeks. The theme is Mardi Gras, and will take place February 6-8. The Village will again be hosting the 2009 Ice Carving championship. He then asked about the fenced area with scaffolding at Mochel and Burlington, hoping this would be gone in time for the Ice Festival.
Commissioner Schnell also thanked Public Works for their work, and asked for a report for ice and snow removal overtime costs.
Commissioner Waldack said that before Christmas, he and Commissioner Beckman asked that those who could share with others do so. It is still winter, and he asked residents to remember the food pantries.
The Mayor said this has been a challenging winter so far, and thanked Public Works for their work. He commented that the recession is frightening, but tonight showed an expansion of Midwestern University, and efforts being made by the business community to upgrade their facilities. He sees this as a positive effort to keep the community growing.
There being no further discussion, the Workshop meeting was adjourned at 8:14 p.m.
April K. Holden Village Clerk tmh