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November 07, 2017

1. Call to Order

Mayor Pro Tem William White called the regular meeting of the Village Council of the Village of Downers Grove to order at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers of the Downers Grove Village Hall.  He explained that Mayor Tully was out of town on business.

Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag

Mayor Pro Tem White led those present in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

2. Roll Call

Council Attendance (Present):  Commissioner Walus, Commissioner Earl, Commissioner Waldack, Commissioner White, Commissioner Hosé

Absent:  Commissioner Barnett; Mayor Tully

Non-Voting:  Village Manager David Fieldman, Village Attorney Enza Petrarca, Village Clerk April Holden

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 past meetings, an opportunity will be given for public comments and questions of a general nature. 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. Finally, an opportunity is given for public comments and questions on items appearing on the Consent Agenda, the Active Agenda and the First Reading. 

The Mayor Pro Tem stated that at the appropriate time the presiding officers will ask if there are any comments from the public. Individuals wishing to speak, should raise their hand to be recognized and, after acknowledgment from the presiding officer, approach the microphone and state their name. Remarks should be limited to five minutes, and individuals are asked to refrain from making repetitive statements.

Mayor White 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 Council Meetings

MIN 2017-7554 - A. Minutes:  Council Minutes - October 17, 2017


Motion:  Commissioner Earl moved to approve the minutes as presented.  Commissioner Waldack seconded the motion.

Mayor White declared the motion carried by voice vote.     

4. Public Comments

This is the opportunity for public comments.

Connie Nicholson, Acadia on the Green, Building 2, said she loves living there.  She said she spoke before the Council last year.  She asked the Council to do more about decorating the downtown area with flowers and trees.  Residents that live downtown pay more tax for this and many would like to see it used for flowers, lights, etc.  The building residents have signed a petition she presented.  They would like to see the downtown area more festive.  Residents would be willing to serve on a committee if necessary.

Mayor White thanked her for her comments.

Jenny Garst, 5230 Farrar Court, thank the Council for their willingness to work with residents regarding stormwater management issues.  She spoke of previous meetings and discussions of stormwater regulations.  There was agreement among the Council that the current regulations are not adequate.  She noted the extensive flooding on October 14, 2017, and the outcry by residents.  She said staff was tasked to review and address this matter with Council, and she understood that the staff would bring this to the Council in late November/early December.  She asked as to the status.

Mayor White said it is on track to discuss this in late November/early December.  He noted that this involves a great deal of technical work.

Dave Fieldman, Village Manager, said staff is aiming to have this on the 12/5/17 Council agenda.

Mayor White said the materials will be online the Friday before the meeting.

Ms. Garst thanked Council for working with the residents.  She asked whether the direction given to the staff at the October 10 meeting is written down anywhere and whether the public has access to that.  Mayor White replied that it is reflected in the minutes of that meeting and those minutes are available to the public online.

5. Public Hearings

PUB 2017-7563 - A. Public Hearing:  2018 Budget

Mayor White called the public hearing to order at 7:13 p.m. to consider the proposed FY18 Budget.  Notice of this hearing was published in the Downers Grove Suburban Life on October 11, 2017, and a certificate of publication is made a part of these proceedings.  He then summarized the procedures to be followed for the public hearing.  The Mayor noted that there have been numerous public meetings to discuss the FY18 budget.

Mr. Fieldman said this is the fifth in a series of meetings.  The budget was posted on the Village's website in September and has been available since that time. 

Total General Fund revenues for FY18 are budgeted at $47 million, and expenses at $47.37 million.  The General Fund has a planned use of reserves of $320,000 due to the temporary hold back of 10% of State income taxes and due to maintaining a fund balance of 39%, which is looked upon favorably by the rating agencies.  The budget includes $1.5 million revenue from a 1% food and beverage tax that is to replace reductions from other sources that have been affected by changing patterns of consumption as well as changes in the State's budget.  There is no increase in the budget for Village operations.  There is an increase of $554,000 for required contributions to the public safety Police and Fire pension funds.  The budget reflects further reductions in staffing due to attrition.  It includes funding to implement facilities plan direction, a $300,000 contribution to OPEB unfunded liability, and $21 million for continued investment in the infrastructure. 

Mayor White noted that the public hearing is required by law.  He asked for questions or comments from the public and Council. 

Gordon Goodman, 5834 Middaugh, said he has some comments and issues he thinks need to be addressed.  First is the management of invasive species in the Lyman Woods buffer area.  He said that the cost estimate in 2015 for a 5-year plan was $101,001. The Village, the Park District and the Forest Preserve share ownership of Lyman Woods.  In 2014 poor maintenance of the buffers was acknowledged and a plan was instituted to implement the management, which has not yet occurred. He wanted to include the Village's share in the budget. Someone has to take the first step to get all three parties on line in this endeavor.

Secondly, Dr. Goodman noted that he has been speaking over the last year about improving activation of traffic signals for pedestrian crossings and upgrading traffic signals at Curtiss and Main.  He said he was told that this would require an upgrading of the traffic signals as part of the community investment program from 2018-2022 together with several other modernizations of signals already in the CIP.

Thirdly, Dr. Goodman said he has raised this issue over the years concerning reducing the trash scattering in the Central Business District as now occurs when the trash is collected on downtown streets.  He showed a slide of barrels and trash being scattered over the streets, and requested that the Village's waste hauler either use trash-container liner bags or use some method to reduce the trash being scattered throughout the CBD.  It is in the Village's extended contract and the Village has to get the waste haulers to do a better job.  

Dr. Goodman then displayed a slide showing the Lyman Woods buffer area, explaining that the structures on the lower left side of the slide are the (Good Samaritan) Hospital areas. He pointed out the highest quality of the preserve.  The three buffer areas surround the high quality area and separate it from the hospital area; however, there are now invasive species coming into the area from hospital property and that problem has to be addressed. These areas have to be maintained.  This was discussed substantially on December 2, 2014 at which time Mayor Tully expressed his interest in proceeding with this.  He did not think the hospital should be responsible for the cost of this maintenance and was looking for some mechanism by which the three owners could come in onto hospital property and maintain the area.  Dr. Goodman explained that the Hospital's attorney, as indicated in the minutes of that meeting, said the hospital would cooperate.  Dr. Goodman is still looking for that cooperation to bear fruit, and for the hospital to grant permission to go onto hospital property and maintain the problem.  The Village Council should be prepared to make expenditures once that comes into play.  He then asked again that the Village add 1/3 of the total amount of $42,900, which would be $14,300 as the Village's share. It is time to get this done.

As for the activation signals, Dr. Goodman displayed another slide stating that pedestrians walking along Curtiss Street must now manually activate the Main Street crosswalk signals at all times of the day.  Automatic activation of these signals at certain times of the day could improve pedestrian safety in the downtown area. An upgrade of traffic signals at Curtiss and Main would be required to allow sufficient flexibility for such a change. He asked that the Council add a project sheet for upgrading Curtiss and Main traffic signals to the Village' s CIP for 2018-2022.  He commented that at the October 21 Coffee With the Council he understood the Village was seeking a grant to upgrade traffic signals, and he thinks this should be added to that grant request.

As for trash being scattered, Dr. Goodman showed a photo of a barrel next to the Post Office. When the barrel is emptied the debris blows all the way along the east boundary of the Post Office up to Burlington.  After the pick-ups in the downtown area he ends up having to pick up a lot of trash and putting it back in the barrels. This is not right. In the extension of the Village's contract with Allied, the Village included a paragraph in Exhibit B dealing with services for municipal and public facilities, which states that the service will be provided free of charge by the contractor. The Village has to make the contractor do their job better.  It will improve the downtown trash situation in the area. 

Dr. Goodman then summarized his three requests. 

Mayor White thanked Dr. Goodman for his comments.  He said he will consult with Mayor Tully regarding Lyman Woods. 

Dr. Goodman noted that it is only at the public hearing that people can express themselves in a way that the rest of the community can hear.  The public hearings are a very important component in the process of approving the budget.

Mayor White asked as to the timetable for the budget adoption. 

Mr. Fieldman said it will be on the First Reading portion of the 11/14/17 Council agenda.  After that the Council can consider it on the Active Agenda.  It must be passed by the end of the year.

There being no further comments from the public or the Council, Mayor White adjourned the public hearing at 7:35 p.m.

6. Consent Agenda

COR 2017-7555 - A. Claims Ordinance:  No. 6235, Payroll, October 13, 2017


BIL 2017-7556 - B. Bills Payable:  No. 6360, November 7, 2017


MOT 2017-7559 - C. Motion:  Authorize $42,750.00 to Total Fire & Safety, Inc. for Fire Alarm Monitoring System

Summary:  This authorizes $42,750.00 to Total Fire & Safety, Inc. for fire alarm monitoring. 


MOT 2017-7562 - D. Motion:  Award $15,375.00 to Streicher's, Inc. for Bulletproof Vests

Summary:  This award $15,375.00 to Streicher's Inc. for bulletproof vests. 


RES 2017-7566 - E. Resolution:  Authorize an Extension to the Agreement with Hyland Software, Inc.

Summary:  This authorizes an extension to an agreement for OnBase with Hyland Software, Inc. of Westlake, Ohio in the amount of $23,530.57.


MOT 2017-7564 - F. Motion:  Authorize the Purchase of Bulk Rock Salt at a Cost of $43.78 per Ton and Deicing Salt at a Cost of $55.78 per Ton from Cargill Incorporated Salt Division, North Olmsted, Ohio

Summary:  This authorizes the purchase of bulk rock salt at a cost of $43.78 per ton and deicing salt at a cost of $55.78 per ton from Cargill Incorporated Salt Division, North Olmsted, Ohio.




RES 2017-7565 - G. Resolution:  Amend Certain Purchasing Provisions as Official Village Policy

Summary:  This amends the Village's purchasing policy. 




MIN 2017-7558 - H. Minutes:  Note Receipt of Minutes of Boards and Commissions

Summary:  Architectural Design Review Board - August 16, 2017 and September 20, 2017; Community Events Commission - August 10, 2017; Library Board - September 27, 2017; Plan Commission - August 28, 2017; Transportation and Parking Commission - April 26, 2017 and May 10, 2017


Motion:  Commissioner Earl moved to approve the Consent Agenda as presented.  Commissioner Waldack seconded the motion. 

Votes:  Yea: Commissioners Earl, Waldack, Walus, Hosé; Mayor White

Nay: None

Mayor White declared the motion carried.

7. Active Agenda

8. First Reading

RES 2017-7560 - A. Resolution:  Grant Historic Landmark Designation for 735 Maple Avenue

Stan Popovich, Director of Community Development, showed photographs of the home and carriage house, which are located south of Village Hall.  It was built in 1892 and is a Queen Anne style Cross-gable building.  The home and carriage house meet the age and style requirements for landmark designation.

Rich Kulovany, 6825 Camden, said he is in favor of this request and thanked Mrs. Black for bringing this request forward.

Amy Gassen, 5320 Benton, commented that she fully supports this and thanked the homeowners for bringing it forward.


ORD 2017-7534 - B. Ordinance:  Authorize a Special Use for 1543 Ogden Avenue to Permit an Automobile Dealership

Mr. Popovich explained that this property is located on the south side of Ogden at the corner of Downers Drive and Ogden Avenue. He noted that Downers Drive is closed for through traffic. This petition will maintain the existing building. The owner will provide additional green space. Car carriers will be able to move onto Downers Drive. This request is consistent with the Village's Comprehensive Plan, and all standards have been met.


ORD 2017-7553 - C. Ordinance:  Amend Certain Traffic Provisions

Nan Newlon, Director, Public Works, explained that this was initiated by resident requests. She said there are three unregulated intersections on Lee Street at Janet, Carol and Virginia, which are proposed for two-way stop signs.  

The second item initiated by residents is located in the area of the Belmont Train Station between Burlington and Haddow on Cross Street.  There were no parking restrictions in place and some commuter parking was occurring causing difficulties for the residents there.  A four-hour parking restriction on both sides of Cross Street is recommended.

The Transportation and Parking Commission heard both petitions with a unanimous vote of approval for a positive recommendation to the Village Council.


MOT 2017-7561 - D. Motion:  Estimate 2017 Aggregate Tax Levy for the Village of Downers Grove

Mike Baker, Deputy Village Manager, said this item represents a required procedural step to lead to the Village's property tax levy and represents one of the Village's public meetings for the budget approval process.  He explained that the tax levy has not changed since the budget was released in late September and that levy includes the flat levy for operations with no increase. This is the seventh year without an increase.  There is a required portion of the levy in the amount of $550,000 for public safety pensions. The Public Hearing for the levy is tentatively scheduled for December 5, 2017.

Mayor White noted that this is the maximum that the Village can levy, and that it can be scaled back later.

9. Mayor's Report

Mayor White congratulated Downers Grove North's boys cross country team for winning the State championship.

10. Manager's Report

11. Attorney's Report

Pursuant to Section 2.5 of the Downers Grove Municipal Code, the following are presented for Village Council consideration:


  1. An ordinance authorizing a special use for 1543 Ogden Avenue to permit an automobile dealership
  2. An ordinance amending certain traffic provisions


12. Council Member Reports

Commissioner Waldack thanked the public for their concerns regarding his recent absences. He said he would miss next week's meeting.  He explained when you get to be 50 years old and above, doctors recommend a very simple procedure that many people don't want to have done.  It is something that must be done.  He will be having that procedure done and recommends that people talk to their doctors.

Commissioner Waldack then said that there are many changes underway in the downtown.  The Christmas tree is at the Main Street train station and Santa will be visiting at his Gingerbread house. Linda Kunze of the Downtown Management Board has negotiated for the November 24-26 Gingerbread Festival. The Gingerbread house is located right next to the toy store.  More information can be found at

Friday November 24 will be the tree lighting ceremony at 4:00 p.m. 

Saturday November 25 is the 9th annual American Express Small Business Saturday. Commissioner Waldack reminded the public that more sales tax generated in Downers Grove allows property taxes to be kept lower. There will be carriage rides as well as the gingerbread manhunt. 

Sunday November 26 is Breakfast with Santa at the Pinecone Cottage Teahouse. Santa will be at Emmett's Ale House at 11:00 a.m. and reservations are required. There will also be free carriage rides. 

Commissioner Earl said that the Library had a successful book giveaway. She encouraged the public to visit the Library.

Mayor White thanked Commissioner Waldack for his report.

13. Adjournment

Motion:  Commissioner Earl moved to adjourn.  Commissioner Waldack seconded the motion.   

Mayor White declared the motion carried by voice vote and the meeting adjourned at 7:55 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

April Holden

Village Clerk